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  • #27389
    Profile photo of 74
    74
    Survivalist
    rnews

    Plumbing, soldering repair on old systems

    I do a lot of work on older homes and one of the common repair items is replacing non functional valves. The house I’m working on now needed a new water main shutoff. This valve is normally located where the water system enters from the street. To fix this valve the water must be turned off at the street.

     A major problem with working on existing plumbing is trapped water. It is not possible to solder leak free joints if there is moisture present in the pipes. I have two methods that have worked for me to keep water away from the joints to be soldered.

     

    The first method is easy and works when there is a drip that cannot be dried out using a torch.  Make a small ball of bread and force it into the end of the pipe. Poke the bread as far as possible down the pipe with your finger or a rod. The bread will act like a dam. I like to clean all my fittings and pipe before I use this technique. Flux all the fittings so they are ready for assembly. After I insert the bread I can dry the pipe end with a torch, then flux the clean end of the pipe (being careful not to burn myself on the hot pipe). Assemble the fittings and solder.

     The second method I use on vertical pipes when a shutoff valve will not close completely. This method requires a compressor to blow out the pipe. After all the fittings and pipe ends are clean and ready with flux. I insert a flexible tube into the leaking pipe far as possible then use the compressor with a nozzle to blow the water out of the pipe. This is a messy wet process so be prepared.  After the water is cleared, pull the tube, dry the top of the pipe with the torch, flux the pipe and assemble the fittings. Solder all the joints.

    #27406
    Profile photo of undeRGRönd
    undeRGRönd
    Survivalist
    member8

    the Bread will dissolve under pressure when the system is in use, so don’t worry (for the peanut gallery)

    How do you like the new Silver Solder, 74???

    "ROGUE ELECTRICIAN" Hoping to be around to re-energize the New World.....

    Cogito, ergo armatus sum

    #27411
    Profile photo of 74
    74
    Survivalist
    rnews

    Sometimes you do need to remove the filter screens on the faucets but no big deal. Don’t use whole wheat bread or something with little grains though.

    I’m not sure I see much of a difference from the past in terms of solder. There hasn’t been lead in solder since the 70’s.

    #27419
    Profile photo of undeRGRönd
    undeRGRönd
    Survivalist
    member8

    hmmm

    I used leaded solder in the 80’s but dad had it, so it could have been old.
    I have used no-lead solder that did not have silver, it seemed harder to use.
    I use silver solder in my electronics projects. Better Conductivity!

    Yep, I heard use White Bread only. :D

    "ROGUE ELECTRICIAN" Hoping to be around to re-energize the New World.....

    Cogito, ergo armatus sum

    #27422
    Profile photo of 74
    74
    Survivalist
    rnews

    GRG,
    The only time I find a time when soldering is the easiest, is on new work. Old work has Murphy’s rulebook to follow.

    #27428
    Profile photo of freedom
    freedom
    Survivalist
    rnews

    74, we replace almost all the pipes here in Florida with PVC going into the houses. Inside we are doing CPVC. Very little copper being used here anymore.

    #27431
    Profile photo of 74
    74
    Survivalist
    rnews

    This house has copper coming in and switches to iron pipe. The iron pipe is rusty of course. I’m not certain If I will pull it out now or not I have to go over the numbers.

    #27434
    Profile photo of freedom
    freedom
    Survivalist
    rnews

    I changed all my 1923 iron pipes. I just finished last month. You need to start little by little. Connect with the rubber connections till you get it all out. I started the PVC at the meter to the main connect in the outside of the house then slowly started doing all the water lines and the main large pipe to the septic tank which was the harder one because of all the digging. Then I did the two bathrooms with CPVC. Just finished. Now will do a new water heater this month.

    No more iron or copper.

    #27435
    Profile photo of 74
    74
    Survivalist
    rnews

    Freedom, I would leave the copper up to the meter in the house I’m working on and replace it from there up to the 2nd floor bath. But I can’t do it over time. This is a fix it all and get out job.

    #27443
    Profile photo of freedom
    freedom
    Survivalist
    rnews

    I also have a second floor, what I did was pass new CPVC on the outside of the house on the back of the house and went up and to the side so I got new pipes for the top bath and the bottom bathroom and kitchen.

    #27444
    Profile photo of 74
    74
    Survivalist
    rnews

    Lol Freedom, I have winters here. Even pipes against an uninsulated exterior wall will freeze.

    #27446
    Profile photo of Brulen
    Brulen
    Survivalist
    member9

    Sometimes I have trouble soldering pipes with water close to where my joint is located. I use mapp and most of the time I get it. I don’t like working on old pipe, its more difficult to solder. Very thin sometimes from years of use I suppose. Where we get all the copper in our bodies. Plumbers use the light weight copper pipe. Its much easier to cut. For my own house I use the thick stuff. I’m a retrovert. Someone will make a fortune if they steal the copper lol.

    #27448
    Profile photo of Brulen
    Brulen
    Survivalist
    member9

    <div class=”d4p-bbp-quote-title”>freedom wrote:</div>I also have a second floor, what I did was pass new CPVC on the outside of the house on the back of the house and went up and to the side so I got new pipes for the top bath and the bottom bathroom and kitchen.

    Freedom Did anyone ever tell you about plumbing code? Oops never mind I just remembered the wildlife hanging in the garages. What a strange place. Any houses for sale? Anywhere I can drive my Atv around without getting a ticket is good enough for me.

    #27455
    Profile photo of undeRGRönd
    undeRGRönd
    Survivalist
    member8

    Codes are for us professionals ;)
    If Y’all used the building codes, we wouldn’t have any business or service calls! :D

    I used to cuss the homeowner doing electrical work, until I realized this…

    "ROGUE ELECTRICIAN" Hoping to be around to re-energize the New World.....

    Cogito, ergo armatus sum

    #27456
    Profile photo of freedom
    freedom
    Survivalist
    rnews

    I do all my work the same way as the building code. I have worked as a contractor and developer since I was 18 and I am 57. I do every job above the code. I run all the water lines underground the same way the old ones where.

    Brulen I am not sure what plumbing code from what state you are talking about since every state has there own codes. For the last 35 years of construction which I have seen every type of construction all plumbers do it the same way I did.

    74, underground copper or PVC pipe will not freeze also the pipes on the wall have to be in the walls not on the outside. Yes it is a lot of work but I use a good blade that cuts the concrete. LOL you guys think I put the pipes outside?

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