Leaking copper joint: any better ideas?

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Old 09-20-17, 12:06 AM
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Leaking copper joint: any better ideas?

hi !

i was down in the crawl space replacing some flexible duct work when i noticed a small puddle. =(

there's a leak at a small section of 1/2 copper pipe that connects it to a T connector and a 1/2 copper elbow. can't tell if it's the top or bottom joint . the section is too small to just replace the elbow or just the T connector.

my original plan was to cut at 3 places (A) and remove the whole elbow and T connector apparatus and replace with a new one using 3 no stop couplers.

anybody have any better ideas?

thanks!
 
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Old 09-20-17, 12:12 AM
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You could use regular couplers on the left and no-stop one on the right.
 
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Old 09-20-17, 02:30 AM
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that's true. good point on the couplers.

but it sounds like i pretty much have to remove that whole section huh?

i'm tempted to use push fit fittings. anyone have an opinion on that? technically it's not inside a wall and can be accessed (still a pain to get in the crawl space).
 

Last edited by denn30; 09-20-17 at 02:33 AM. Reason: added more information
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Old 09-20-17, 04:51 AM
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No reason you can't use Shark bite fitting.
 
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Old 09-20-17, 05:30 AM
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After a good cleaning first, I would try resoldering (lots of soldering paste) the leaking joint . If you have trouble draining the water in the line, I drill a 1/16 inch hole in the bottom of the line and solder over it (after cleaning the area) when finished with the repair. Use a battery powered drill in with a plastic bread bag. Good luck.
 
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Old 09-20-17, 06:00 AM
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leak

All good advice. I'll add my recommendation for shark bite fittings. At first I was skeptical but I've used them and they seem to work well. And I have a few with a couple of years in place and still fine. I still solder when I can, but don't hesitate to use shark bites when soldering won't work. Good luck, Steve
 
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Old 09-20-17, 01:13 PM
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After a good cleaning first, I would try resoldering (lots of soldering paste) the leaking joint .
If it's been leaking then the leak path is contaminated and you are just wasting your time trying to solder.

If you can solder joints that is the most permanent solution, shark bites are expensive and you will always wonder if they are leaking.

Don't get me wrong they are great for temp use but I would never put them anywhere as a permanent solution.
 
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Old 09-20-17, 03:13 PM
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Since this location is not totally inaccessible, I think Marq's caution is little too much. I agree solder is best, but by your description it may be a tough area to get a good solder . Use the Shark Bites. They are good and if they leak it won't be any worse than a bad solder joint. And it will be a lot easier to fix.
 
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Old 09-20-17, 03:24 PM
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IMO I would cut the 3/4 left or right to get the water out.. I would then heat that whole assemble and flux and re solder. No need to take apart..

Then reconnect 3/4 with solder coupling or shark-bite...
 
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Old 09-20-17, 04:39 PM
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thanks for all the advice. not sure yet what i'm going to do. going to tackle it this weekend. i'll report back when i finish it.

thanks!
 
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Old 10-04-17, 02:57 PM
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hi, so i've been putting it off and going to tackle it this weekend. it turns out it's the hot water line.

what's the best way of draining the hot water line (NOT the hot water heater)?

thanks!
 
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Old 10-04-17, 05:30 PM
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Problem with the HW side is, and especially when the pipe is below the heater, you often get a siphon effect..

Even with the cold valve closed to the heater water often continues to trickle out the pipe your repairing..

I often need to drain the heater some to stop this from occurring..

Similar on cold with multiple floors.. Often opening an outside hose bib will deviate the water there instead of the pipe your repairing....
 
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Old 10-04-17, 06:32 PM
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thanks! unfortunately the pipe being in the crawl space it is indeed below the water heater.

what do you think? 1) turn off the main water supply, 2) open all the top floor and bottom floor faucets both hot and cold 3) turn off the water heater, 4) disconnect the hot side supply hose from the water heater
 
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Old 10-29-17, 12:11 PM
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hi guys, just a final update in case someone has a similar situation to mine.

i shut off the main water. opened all the faucets both down stairs and upstairs. even detached the supply hot water connection at the water heater. unfortunately this did NOT drain the hot water line in the crawl space. (originally i was hoping to drain it and just re-solder that joint but nope).

so i ended up cutting at points A as originally planned. using the old piece, i measured and soldered some 3/4 pipe to both ends of the T connector and a 1/2 inch portion to the top end. i pre fit everything in place before soldering everything together. i used no stop copper couplers to give me some wiggle room when fitting things together.

hope that helps. thanks everyone for giving me their advice.
 
 

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