Repairing Residential Boiler Piping??

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Old 07-14-08, 08:11 AM
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Repairing Residential Boiler Piping??

Hello everyone,

I have a fifty year old residential hot water baseboard heating system with 3/4" copper piping. I would like to repair some leaks at piping fittings and manual shut off valves. Some of the locations are very tight to wooden structure and difficult to work on - - especially when soldering copper.

It is my understanding that there are newer and more
flexible (plastic / synthetics) piping materials being used today for residential boiler piping that don't require soldering. I am not sure that I will be able to make these repairs myself, but would like to be somewhat knowledgeable about what's possible and what's not - - and potential material compatibility problems.

Would appreciate your comments and suggestions on work that I would like to have completed before the heating season.

Thanks,
Bob
 
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Old 07-14-08, 07:00 PM
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There is a great new coupling for copper pipes that elminate solder. They are called Shark Bite and they are sold at home depot. I don't understand why they aren't popular. You just twist and push to connect 2 pipes. They even have Tees and elbows. It's easier than Leggos.
 
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Old 07-14-08, 08:16 PM
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Shark Bite

I've used them many times on domestic water but I don't know if they would take the higher temps of a heating system.

There are ceramic fiber "blankets" with a heavy foil or light sheet metal backing which are often used as heat shields when soldering near combustables. There are also chemical compounds such as LA-CO Cool Gel heat barrier spray. http://www.laco.com/
 
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Old 07-15-08, 03:33 PM
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I used Shark Bite on baseboard heating pipes a couple of times and no one has called to inform me of another leak, so I guess it's ok.
 
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Old 07-15-08, 08:02 PM
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I was curious so I checked out Cash-Acme for the specs...

The SharkBite® push-fit fittings have been design certified and listed to ASSE 1061/NSF 61. The SharkBite® push-fit fittings are listed by IAPMO and are certified for potable and hydronic heating water distribution (note: Glycol mixture for hydronics is not to exceed 50% concentration). The SharkBite® push-fit fittings have been certified for underground applications and as a manufactured joint without access panels and they meet UPC, IPC and cUPC requirements.

Instant push-fit connection for increased ease of use. Certified to 200 psi and 200°F (93°C). Fits OD controlled copper, CPVC, or PEX pipe. Body composed of solid DZR brass.
So, it appears that if you are careful not to exceed 200°F, you would be OK in a hydronic system.
 
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Old 07-15-08, 08:16 PM
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Thanks Troop

Had my own head been screwed on straight, I would have looked it up myself. I carry a few 1/2 & 3/4" Shark Bites. Might get me out of a jam sometime.
 
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Old 07-17-08, 09:52 AM
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Repairing Residential Boiler Piping

Hey guys,

You have given me a whole lot to check out.

Grady - I am on my way to look at the "Laco" web site that you have recommended - - for the "Cool Gel" heat barrier spray.

Pulpo & NJ Trooper - I am also going to search for "Sharkbite" on the internet. Based on what you have indicated I might be able to use these fittings on my hot water heating system copper piping - - that would be a nice solution.

Do appreciate the comments,
Thanks again,
Bob
 
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Old 07-17-08, 07:00 PM
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Shark Bites

Just a heads up on the Shark Bite fittings: Make sure you get real Shark Bite fittings. They are made by Cash-Acme & are quite heavy for their size due to the brass. I would not use the plastic imitations.
 
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Old 07-18-08, 09:29 AM
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Repairing Residential Boiler Piping

Thanks Grady - - will check out the Cash-Acme SharkBite fittings - - not looking for a failure...!

Thanks again,
Bob
 
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