we have had a minor plumbing drama here tonight - water dripping from the kitchen ceiling etc.
I have traced it to the plumbing to the upstairs washing basin - the 15mm pipe
to the hot water tap appears to be leaking at the last 90-degree Yorkshire
elbow before the tap.
Emergency action had been to turn off the valve providing water 'upstream', and
put a container under the elbow; lifting up the pipe (which was 'dangling' in
mid air a bit) seems to have helped for now.
Tomorrow I will have to look at a proper repair. I have never had a joint fail
on me before (the soldering for this was done around ten years ago, not by me ;-/)
It is possible/sensible to try to remake the joint, simply by holding the pipes
in the correct position, and applying heat and solder? Or is it necessary to
pull the joint apart (any tips on this?) and remake with a fresh elbow/solder?
Thanks for any advice
Chances are the joint was never made properly in the first place, so it
could be full of all sorts of crud in the places where solder is
supposed to be. So best option would be to remake it.
To be able to heat and reflow the existing solder so as to get it apart
means you need to get that bit of pipe completely empty as well.
Sometimes its easier to cut them out if you can't. To heat and reflow
you will need to get it hot, and then use a twisting action with a pair
of water pump pliers or mole grips etc while pulling on the hot fitting.
To remake the joint, clean both pipe ends well with wire wool or
similarso it bright and shiny. Flux the ends of pipe, and push them home
into the fitting. If the new fitting is a solder ring one, then heat the
fitting and adjacent pipe until you see a bright ring of solder appear
at each end. For end feed, once the solders starts to flow, feed about
1cm of solder into each end and then let it cool.
On Saturday, December 20, 2014 11:42:57 PM UTC, jkn wrote:
the kitchen ceiling etc.
y me ;-/)
I don't expect reheating it to work. Not only does it have whatever stopped
it making a sound joint in the first place, its then got 10yrs of crud in
it. Solder needs spotless cleanliness (or mechanical agitation while hot to
get past adhering crud). To resolder it you'd need to take it apart & clea
n it perfectly - replace the section with new will be much easier.
Nope, just quite clean. That's the reason for the flux.
Nope, just quite clean. That's the reason for the flux.
Trouble is that you have to clean what you connect to.
Getting it off and cleaning the pipe properly and using
a new yorkshire fitting will work fine, but its not a trivial
exercise because you have to get the water out of the pipe
so you can heat it properly even to get the old fitting off.
How easy that is to do depends on the detail of the pipe
but it does sound like it may not be that hard with his.
The main problem will e getting rid of any remaining water in the pipe.
You won't be able to do anything until this is done.
For this reason you may have to cut the pipe, drain the water & start again.
(So an straight connector will be needed or maybe a bit more pipe.)
Supposing you can get rid of the water, sometimes the joint can be reheated
and more solder & flux appled.
But usually not, the joint might have to be heated and pulled apart.
Then clean up (heat and wipe off old solder with a dry cloth).
Redo as normal.
Cut it out and replace with a flexible tap connector such as one of
these http://tinyurl.com/ktqr6rv or flexible pipe repair kit like
http://tinyurl.com/pptww2l ? Saves the hassle of having to unsolder
the existing elbow and soldering in a new one.
Yes I'd agree with Chris's solution - far less hassle. However if you do try
to un-solder, a couple of tips. Firstly to drain the pipe apply a 'wet &
dry' vac to the open tap and suck the water out. Secondly, unsoldering
fittings can be a nightmare as they often jam, this can be eased by
applying more solder and flux as you try to pull the joints apart.
Hi all, thanks fot the various bits of advice
OK, I take the point about there being 10 years of crud in the joint. I also
think the fact that the pipe has been unsupported for this time has made a difference.
Sounds like I'll have to cut the pipe back a bit anyway, then either remake the
joint anew, or use one of the flexible connectors as suggested. I hadn't
realised that you get get them in fairly long lengths (900mm); although not
my preference that may be the way to go.
Here's to a fun Sunday afternoon...
You're certainly better off cutting out the offending joint and starting
If there's room, I would do the following.
Use a cylindrical cutter to cut each pipe a couple of inches or so back
from the elbow. Clean up the ends of the remaining pipes with wire wool.
Then reassemble, using copper push-fit fittings - so you'll need one
elbow, 2 straight couplers and 2 short lengths of 15mm copper pipe. That
will be much neater than using a flexible pipe.
If you use one of the roller pipe cutters, that leaves an ideal
pipe end for pushing push-fit connectors on.
Note that flexible connectors don't have same life as copper pipe
(that's properly soldered copper pipe, anyway;-)
[email address is not usable -- followup in the newsgroup]
Either the solder has failed, or the fitting has gone porous in some way.
Either way, I'd remove it and replace with new. As with all soldering you
need to make sure things are clean before proceeding.
*Oh, what a tangled website we weave when first we practice *
Dave Plowman firstname.lastname@example.org London SW
On Sat, 20 Dec 2014 15:42:55 -0800 (PST), jkn wrote:
"appears" or actually is? Check that the water isn't coming from
higher up, failed fibre washer in tap connector? Turn off supply to
that section, open tap, dry everything off with kitchen roll, turn on
supply, vent air from tap, turn of tap, find the leak, a finger
tracing around joints pipes starting at the highest point and
frequently checked for wet is good.
The "dangling" nature of the pipe sort of indicates that something is
loose, has the pipe partially pulled out of the tap connector?
If it is the yorkshire draining down is simply a matter of turning of
the hot supply to the house opening hot tap upstairs and hot tap down
I'd give it a very careful inspection. Does it look like a dry (as in
solder) joint? ie the ring of visible solder each end of the fitting
should be smooth, even, complete and whetted to the pipe and fitting.
Is there any obvious mark for the leak? You may have to clean up any
old flux/lime scale to inspect properly.
Unless it's really bad I'd just reheat have lots of flux on the
solder and run more solder in. Allow to cool then test. If that
didn't work, cut out and either replace (two couplers and elbow
required starts to look messsy) or use a flexi tap connector.
On Sunday, 21 December 2014 12:28:05 UTC, Dave Liquorice wrote:
Good News - on rolling up my sleeves and investigating further, prior to my
planned repair, it turns out that it was simply that the top of the final
flexible hose had worked loose where it fitted onto the tap itself. The taps are
a little loose on the basin and occasional re-positioning must have loosened
A quick tighten with a spanner seems to have sorted things; I'll re-do the
actual tap seating when I find my basin spanner...
In fairness to myself, I would have double-check the real (as opposed to
'apparent') source of the leak before I set to, but your reminder didn't do any
Right, what's next?...
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