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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Apr 2011
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    Default copper pipe

    please help I have been trying to repair a leak in a copper pipe i am in florida the pipe is the main water coming into the house idont have a problem soldering pipes untill i get to the old pipe that has been under dirt for about 30 years i am using new fittings but the solder will not stick to the under ground pipe is their some oter type other than solder that i can use or is thier something i can do to the pipe i have tried cleaning it heating it to the point of melting i hate the idea of removeing any more of the concreat floor but if i have to i will.

  2. #2
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    Default Re: copper pipe

    what material is the old pipe? copper? brass? galvanized steel?

  3. #3
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    Default Re: copper pipe

    its all copper

  4. #4
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    Default Re: copper pipe

    Quote Originally Posted by MLBSF View Post
    what material is the old pipe? copper? brass? galvanized steel?
    its copper

  5. #5
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    Default Re: copper pipe

    Three main things when soldering ( sweating ) copper :

    1) clean -- clean -- and clean all the fittings. I like emery cloth to clean the heck out of the exterior of the pipe so it's nice and shinny. For inside fittings there are fine wire brushes used for cleaning those.

    2) flux --- make sure to apply a thin coat to the pipe and fittings with flux

    3) heat --- have the correct heat applied. If this is your main line there is likely water in the line. You will have a more difficult time to heat the connection enough if you are using a common propane solder flame kit since the water draws the heat away In which case some plumbers will use Mapp gas flame since it burns hotter.

    Okay 4 things --- correct solder -- rated for water lines.
    "" an ounce of perception -- a pound of obscure "
    - Rush

  6. #6
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    Default Re: copper pipe

    If theres water in the line pack it with bread then solder it. The bread will soak up the water in the line.

    I agree with Canuk,use map gas if possible. Maybe even get a stick of silver solder.
    Gizmo

    Cut it 3 times & it's still to short.
    Inventor of the Miter Master Plus.

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  7. #7
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    Default Re: copper pipe

    Quote Originally Posted by Gizmo View Post
    If theres water in the line pack it with bread then solder it. The bread will soak up the water in the line.

    I agree with Canuk,use map gas if possible. Maybe even get a stick of silver solder.
    thank you their is no water in the pipe and i did use silver solder and i cleand the hell out of the pipe

  8. #8
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    Apr 2011
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    Default Re: copper pipe

    Quote Originally Posted by canuk View Post
    Three main things when soldering ( sweating ) copper :

    1) clean -- clean -- and clean all the fittings. I like emery cloth to clean the heck out of the exterior of the pipe so it's nice and shinny. For inside fittings there are fine wire brushes used for cleaning those.

    2) flux --- make sure to apply a thin coat to the pipe and fittings with flux

    3) heat --- have the correct heat applied. If this is your main line there is likely water in the line. You will have a more difficult time to heat the connection enough if you are using a common propane solder flame kit since the water draws the heat away In which case some plumbers will use Mapp gas flame since it burns hotter.

    Okay 4 things --- correct solder -- rated for water lines.
    thank you for reply i did all but use map gas 5 conetions were perfect went just like i was shown along time ago and i have praticed before i went at this but the old pipe defise me is their any other connetion type i can use under the slab that will work and not leak.

  9. #9
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    Default Re: copper pipe

    Quote Originally Posted by Dcowles1 View Post
    please help I have been trying to repair a leak in a copper pipe i am in florida the pipe is the main water coming into the house idont have a problem soldering pipes untill i get to the old pipe that has been under dirt for about 30 years i am using new fittings but the solder will not stick to the under ground pipe is their some oter type other than solder that i can use or is thier something i can do to the pipe i have tried cleaning it heating it to the point of melting i hate the idea of removeing any more of the concreat floor but if i have to i will.
    Soldering a water line under a slab takes more knowledge then most home owners have. What it sounds like you have is what we call a slab leak in Florida. The copper must be very clean before it can be soldered. This is not as easy as it sounds when it's 30yrs old and under ground. The line can not have any water in it or you will not be able to get it hot enough to solder. You may have to blow the line clear of water as where you are working is the low point of the system. I suggest you call a plumber. I'm sure you have a pin hole leak, and seeing that all the lines are the same age even after you repair the one you have you are more then likely to have others in the near future. A plumber will be able to tell you what shape the copper is in. You may be looking at a re-pipe.

    John


    John

  10. #10
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    Default Re: copper pipe

    Quote Originally Posted by johnjh2o View Post
    Soldering a water line under a slab takes more knowledge then most home owners have. What it sounds like you have is what we call a slab leak in Florida. The copper must be very clean before it can be soldered. This is not as easy as it sounds when it's 30yrs old and under ground. The line can not have any water in it or you will not be able to get it hot enough to solder. You may have to blow the line clear of water as where you are working is the low point of the system. I suggest you call a plumber. I'm sure you have a pin hole leak, and seeing that all the lines are the same age even after you repair the one you have you are more then likely to have others in the near future. A plumber will be able to tell you what shape the copper is in. You may be looking at a re-pipe.

    John


    John
    thank you my first sugestion to my x was to call a plumer but she has no money and yes it was a pin hole leak i found that the problem is conecting a new pipe to the old one i cleaned it with aluminium oxide cloth i could see myself in the shine thier is no water in the pipe and when i am done she is selling the house but i dont want the new owner to have to deal with this leak.

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