Leaking PVC Outside.

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Old 08-07-10, 03:02 PM
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Question Leaking PVC Outside.

I had a puddle in my grass that never dried up. So I just dug a hole in my yard. In the hole are 11 different pipes. Most are from and to swimming pool and pumps. A couple are from the sprinkler system. After a lot of careful digging and bailing I think I found a small leak in one of the pipes. I don't know how to proceed from this point. The hole is a spaghetti bowl of pipes. How the heck do I repair this leak? What products do I use to stop this leak. How about technique? Any help you can offer is really appeciated!!!
 
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Old 08-07-10, 06:25 PM
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You'll have to excavate a hole large enough to get both hands and a small child in it. JK
But you will need room to work. Once you isolate the pipe, you will need to determine if the break is at an existing joint or in the middle of a piece of pipe or a joint itself. From there we will proceed.
 
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Old 08-07-10, 09:07 PM
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Finding the leak is a start.

Generally, you’re going to cut-out the bad piece of pipe or connection where the leak is occurring, and splice in a new piece of PVC pipe w/ the appropriate connectors . . . usually it requires 2 couplers and a piece of PVC, and PVC cleaner, glue and a cutter, if dealing w/ straight pipe but may require one or more other connectors if a bend is involved.

Normally, the key to making the repair is getting sufficient slack so that the leaking pipe can be bent slightly in order to join the new pieces together. Repairing smaller sized PVC (1” or smaller) is easier as large PVC flexes very little, if any, over short distances. With a “spaghetti bowl of pipes”, you may need to dig back from where you found the leak until you can identify a turn in the leaking pipe so that it can slide backwards a bit after it is cut, w/ a repair piece added before sliding it back together. You may be able to ID the pipe as being irrigation or pool related by separately pressurizing each system as the leak should be more noticeable when the water is pressurized . . . this may yield clues about where to dig based on direction of pool/pool pump and irrigation lines.

If you could post a pic(s), it would help us understand this “spaghetti bowl of pipes” and better evaluate what needs to be done . . . it’s one thing if there are some cross over pipes involved but mainly laid out side-by-side . . . it could be a nightmare if the installer threw a bundle of pipes into a trenched hole where multiple pipes are stacked above or around the leaking pipe (still fixable but much more digging may be involved).
 
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Old 08-12-10, 08:42 AM
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For some reason I can't post photos or start an album. I have a picture I would share with you if I could. Here's where I stand. I dug the hole wide enough so I could dig below the pipes and then dug out all the Oklahoma clay under the pipes as well on a beautiful 101 degree Oklahoma afternoon. So I have a big hole that is filling with water at a rate of about 3 gallons a day. I have isolated the leak to a joint in a 2 inch pipe. It is wedged between a number of other pipes. Any tips on how to repair from her are most appreciated.....and hey if you can tell me how to post a picture that would be great too!
 
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Old 08-12-10, 12:40 PM
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Use something like Photobucket to post pictures
 
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Old 08-12-10, 03:31 PM
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Pictures by jjjedlic - Photobucket

This is picture in photobucket. Leaking pipe is 4th one from left. It is leaking in joint where spade crosses the pipe it appears.
 
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Old 08-12-10, 06:39 PM
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I sent you a PM. safpiourjfpsmnSO
 
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Old 08-13-10, 05:45 PM
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which coupler to use?

OK. Just got home from hardware store. I bought a "slip fix" telescoping coupler and a "dresser" compression coupler. I am staring at both and watching videos. I can handle either one. I am a little concerned about the dresser coupling because I have to cut the joint out of existing pipe so will have about a 4 inches gap in the pipe that goes inside the coupler. Also this coupler doesn't use solvent to chemically bond the pipe....is that an issue? I really don't have a preference, but want to use the right repair part for a permanent fix. Insight from the experts?
 
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Old 08-13-10, 07:18 PM
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The Dresser coupling will be the easiest fix. You may need to cut out a section including the existing cemented coupling and then add a cemented coupling AND a short piece of pipe in order to have the proper distance for the Dresser coupling.

First step is to locate the leak and then place the Dresser coupling over it and see if it will fit without cutting out the existing cemented coupling. The Dresser coupling requires about an inch to inch-and-a-half of the existing pipe inserted in each end. You can slide the coupling completely over one end and then slide back to center the two ends in the coupling.
 
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Old 08-13-10, 07:26 PM
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Dresser Coupling it is

Since this is pipe returning water to a pool pump the Dresser coupling works better because I can put it on without draining 40,000 gallons of water! I can slow the drain to a dribble by blocking the returns in the pool then stuffing a towel in the pipe where I cut it while I get things lined up. Might be a little wet and wild, but here I go...................
 
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Old 08-16-10, 07:52 AM
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Thumbs up Successful so far

Thanks for all your help. The "dresser coupling" worked great. Beer 4U2 I put it in Friday evening and not a drip since then. While I had the pipes exposed, yesterday I replaced the coupling on the pipe next to the main leak as well (it had a very slow drip...probably a quart a day). Unfortunately there wasn't enough room to put another dresser coupling or a "slip fix" so I had to cut out a long section and put in a new section with 2 joints. The good news was this line was easy to get dry so this wasn't as tricky an operation. I should've taken a picture of both of the joints I cut out. Neither had both lines square to the joint so they were destined to leak eventually.....makes me want to find the guy who put this in to begin with.

BTW...CHANDLER...you weren't kidding about needing a hole large enough to put a (not so) small child in. Was the highlight of my week to try to gently dig a big hole a garden trowel at a time through Oklahoma clay. Of course now I get to put it all back and am a little nervous about making sure it is packed in under the lines well enough to support the joints with pressure from ground and traffic above them.
 
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Old 08-18-10, 01:26 AM
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Locate the leaking area that where it is in the pipe. Apply the Rain-R-Shine PVC cement to seal plastics/rubbers surfaces. Stop the water flow till the glue sticks on the surface perfectly.
 

Last edited by jimsonburg; 08-18-10 at 02:21 AM.
 

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