Water Leaking!!! Please Help!!!

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Old 01-02-05, 07:45 PM
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Water Leaking!!! Please Help!!!

i just changed out my bathroom faucet...3 handle faucet for my tub...

i have all copper supply lines...the house is about 40 years old...the old fittings were not budging...so i cut the water supply lines and used a compression fitting on the cold and hot...the lines are 1/2 inch water supply...i used a 1/2 compression fitting with a female end, so i could screw a 1/2 inch male cpvc fitting to the compression fitting...

the faucet came with a great fitting allowing me to connect a cpvc fitting to it, glue everything, and then tighten it onto the faucet body...(does that make sense?)

i ran a new 1/2 cpvc shower head pipe up the wall...i put a cpvc male connector on the 1/2 inch pipe at the top and screwed it into the brass elbow that screws into the wall to secure the shower head...

no leaking on the compression fitting...works great...

it is leaking where the 1/2 inch male connector attach to the faucet body and the brass elbow up at the shower head...i used teflon tape (about 2-3 wraps) on all these connections...i tightened them as hard as thought...(i have never used cpvc, so i didn't know how tight i could tighten it without destroying the threads...

long story short...the leaks are at the teflon wrapped connectors...i can't tighten them anymore because they are glued onto the pipe...i know i have to redo it, but when i do, i need to know what to do to prevent these leaks again...


very frustrated....michael
 
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Old 01-02-05, 08:07 PM
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Number one problem is the threaded joints in a wall. If I understand this, the leaks are both on the same pipe. One at the showerhead elbow and one at the valve. You can cut the pipe anywhere in between and then retape or use plumbers joint compound to reinstall the threaded joints. You should have enough "give" to be able to install a coupling in the line then. The space you have from tightening up the joints will be enough for the lip in the coupling. Make sure you clean and use the correct glue. Good luck and reply back with any questions.
 
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Old 01-02-05, 08:22 PM
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more info

ok...

one leak is at the top of the shower head pipe where the cpvc enters the elbow...

the other leak is on the bottom of the faucet body where the water supply lines enter the faucet...

the bottom end of the shower head pipe is a threaded joint...it doesn't leak...where i put the shower head arm in is threaded...it doesn't leak...

i don't understand why the threaded joints are a problem...everytime i have used threaded joints, they don't leak...ie...all the valves for the cold and hot water supply for the kitchen or bathroom faucets i replaced...i used a threaded valve on a 1/2 threaded copper male end...they never leaked...

how much is too much on the wrench...i don't know how hard to tighten the cpvc...should i use teflon tape and and plumbers joint compound???

also...addition...i used cpvc glue and primer...none of these joints leak...just the threaded joints...

what other option do i have for the elbow uptop...how does it fasten to the wall for support???
 
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Old 01-02-05, 08:35 PM
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The elbow for the shower arm is probably what is called a butterfly elbow. It has 2 "wings" with holes that are usually screwed or nailed into a support.
You could probably fix this situation (this is the easiest way) by getting a new cpvc coupling (guess you need 2 of them) and using a rattail file, file out the lip in the center of the coupling. Cut the pipe and redope the threads using either teflon or pipe dope. Hold the coupling at the center of the cut and mark the top and bottom of the coupling on the pipe. Slide the coupling onto the pipe and down out of the way. Rethread the pipe into the joint and tighten firmly. Clean and apply glue to the area of the cut and slide the coupling back over the cut and wipe glue at each end of the coupling. My comment on threaded joint in walls is because I try to avoid them. Guess I just got so used to sweating joints that I don't think about using threaded fittings. Good luck.
 
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Old 01-02-05, 08:43 PM
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???

i still don't see how to stop these leaks at the joints...how much teflon tape and how tight do i need to tighten them???

what exactly is the coupling for again...you said to cut the pipe, retape the fittings and then use the coupling...

i am very sorry...but i don't understand...i guess i am too frustrated right now to think...i have to keep our water turned off...can't leave it on all night...i have to turn it on for short periods of time and keep towels around the leaks...i am so frustrated and irritated right now...

thanks for you help...

michael
 
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Old 01-03-05, 05:32 AM
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You cannot tighten the fittings without cutting the pipe. When you cut it, before you unscrew it to redope it, hold the coupling so the center is at the cut and mark the ends of the coupling on the pipe. This will be where the coupling has to line up when you reglue the line together.
Remove the threaded joints and do about 4 wraps of teflon tape on the threads. Slide the couplings, with the center lip filed smooth, onto the pipe and down far enough to be out of your way. Screw the threaded joints into the fittings you removed them from. Firmly...is the only description of how tight to get the joints. Clean the pipe ends and apply glue. Slide the coupling to the marks you put on the pipe when you cut it and wipe glue around both ends of the coupling. Good luck.
 
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Old 01-03-05, 10:25 AM
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rethink

thanks for your help...after a night of rest...plus a break from this mess...my mind cleared enough and figured out what you meant by the coupling...

turns out...i loosened the compression fitting where the copper joins the cpvc...that allowed me to tighten the leaking joints...i then reattached the compression nut...that fixed the dripping leak...

the other leak turned out to be where the shower arm connects to the elbow uptop...i removed it...retaped it...no more leaking there...

it is now 12:30 pm...i am going to check it every hour or so...when can i be sure it will not leak...???
 
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Old 01-03-05, 10:33 AM
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A couple hours should be enough. Water usually either leaks or it doesn't. Make sure you have turned the water to the faucet and showerhead on to make sure water is going through them and you should be good to go. Glad it worked out for you without cutting the lines. It was not the best way to fix them, but the easiest. Good luck.
 
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Old 01-03-05, 08:47 PM
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update

fixed all leaks...had the water on all day...no leaks...i was just about to take a shower...i mean, literally...just about to turn the water on...

BANG!!!! WATER RUSHING!!!!

hurry...find the pants, find my keys, get the water main turnoff key...run outside...turn off the water...blah..blah...blah...you get the idea...

the nut on the compression fitting blew the top off...there is a small metal ring around the 1/2 copper water supply line...the nut broke......

so...i finally said screw it...called a plumber...95 bucks later...had two new water supply lines sweated on with copper...no cpvc...no leaks...maybe i can sleep now...i am just glad it did that while we were at home...

thanks for all your help...

michael
 
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Old 01-04-05, 09:54 AM
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one more question

i just reglued the faucet and shower pipe...had a leak at the threaded joint...

finished the last joint at 11:45 am...the glue can says allow 2 hours before pressure testing...since the faucet and and shower are not under a significant amount of pressure (i assume since water runs out of it)...how long before i can test for leaking...do i have to wait 2 hours before i can test for leaks...???
 
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Old 01-04-05, 10:00 AM
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2 hours is to protect the glue manufacturer. If it drys a half hour it shouldn't leak. If it does, it probably would have leaked after 2 hours. Good luck.
 
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Old 01-08-05, 07:51 PM
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time to cover up pipes

ok...i have all my leaks fixed...the plumber came in on monday night and sweated the new copper water lines...i fixed the leaks on the faucet and shower pipe...

so, since tuesday morning...after everything is done...no leaks...

question: if it hasn't leaked since tuesday after i fixed all the leaks...then can i assume it will not leak...the sweated copper water lines or the cpvc faucet and shower pipes...

i need to replace the the access panel and be done with all this drama...can i feel assure now that things will be fine...
 
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Old 01-09-05, 05:28 AM
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I would think 4 or 5 days would be enough to safely assume the leaks are fixed. Good luck.
 
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