Tip & How-To about Plumbing
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Water is dripping constantly from the
rag that you have wrapped around the pin hole in the water pipe. Let's see how
easy it is to fix that dripping and give you peace of mind. With some of the
fantastic improvements in plumbing fittings in the last few years, plumbing
repair has been made very simple.
leaks are caused by just a couple of things. The pin hole in the copper pipe
that is caused by pitting inside the pipe. Usually this is caused by poor water
quality. The inside of the pipe flakes off to cause a hole inside the pipe that
eventually gets through to the outside. These often are given away by the green
spot that usually is seen on the outside of the copper pipe first. This is
caused by mineral left by the water evaporating off of the surface of the pipe.
So in all reality there is a leak before there is a leak. The other main
problem is the joining of two dissimilar types of pipes. Copper and PVC or Copper
and Pex are two examples. The expansion
rate of the two different types of materials is very different. This causes
friction and constant movement where the two meet. This movement eventually
will cause enough of a gap to allow the water to leak out.
Until recently there where many redneck fixes out there most involving garden hoses, inner tubes, hose clamps, epoxy, and many other creative fixes. I have seen way too many to describe all of them. Now there is a great way to fix those leaks with a simple push fitting. The new design of the push fitting allows for the pipe to be cut at the hole and then a coupling just pushed onto the pipe to fix the leak. The hardest part of the whole process is to get the pipe cut neatly. The same fitting can also be used to replace those pesky plastic to copper unions that always seem to give trouble. Joining different types of piping is no longer a problem.
By doing a quick search for push fitting you can find a number of different suppliers of this type of fitting. I have used a number of different ones and they all seem to work well. My preference is the brass types as they seem to be much more rugged in construction. The price of those fittings also reflects that. The most common that I have seen and used are the Sharkbite Brand. These are very good, are sold in many plumbing supply houses, and in Home Depot Stores. Other companies include Watts, Probite, Tectite, and Speedfit. I'm sure that I have left some out. These are some that I am familiar with and have used.
Bottom line is that it is now very easy for even a desk jockey to fix his own pipes. Go by the closet home improvement store on your way home. Pick up some of these fittings and impress the wife with talents that she did not know you had. You may even get brave and do that small plumbing project that she has been begging for. Now you can use these fittings to cut into that water line to run that new outside faucet or hookup that water filter yourself. With the push type fitting plumbing has been made easy enough for anyone to be able to do it.
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