Re-solder copper joint

Reply

  #1  
Old 12-09-12, 11:09 PM
D
Member
Thread Starter
Join Date: Apr 2012
Posts: 29
Received 0 Votes on 0 Posts
Re-solder copper joint

Hello everyone, I have gotten great advice here in the past so I figured I would post again. I recently tapped into my cold water line with a T to run water for a faucet. After sweating it I noticed a slow but steady leak in one of the ends so I drained it and reheated it and applied more solder. There is no longer a leak with the pressure turned all the way on for one day, but I'm not sure if I should trust it or take it out and start over. I did tin it the first time so I'm not sure why it didn't take. If I do need to take it out can I reheat it and get the T off or do I just cut it out?

So, do I take it out or leave it?

Thanks in advance!
 
Sponsored Links
  #2  
Old 12-10-12, 01:52 AM
PJmax's Avatar
Group Moderator
Join Date: Oct 2012
Location: Northern NJ - USA
Posts: 57,022
Received 835 Votes on 782 Posts
The number one cause in a case like yours is the pipe wasn't fully cleaned.
I'm always leary of a connection where the solder didn't take the first time. I'll usually take it apart and redo it with a new fitting.
 
  #3  
Old 12-10-12, 05:20 AM
N
Member
Join Date: Jan 2012
Location: Canada
Posts: 2,741
Received 17 Votes on 16 Posts
Being reasonably new to soldering pipe (not wire though), I had a few small leaks when I first did a few connections.
Being that I was playing 1 1/4" pipe and generally working when stores where closed (kids in bed) I did have to redo a few connections by heating, removing, clean the pieces and try again.
Be sure to always clean the pieces completely.

If it's just 1/4" cheap fittings, replace and go.
 
  #4  
Old 12-10-12, 06:29 AM
M
Member
Join Date: Dec 2003
Location: USA
Posts: 994
Received 0 Votes on 0 Posts
You don't mention using flux. I hope you did.
 
  #5  
Old 12-10-12, 07:31 AM
D
Member
Thread Starter
Join Date: Apr 2012
Posts: 29
Received 0 Votes on 0 Posts
I did use flux. It seems like the consensus is to redo it. Do I need to cut it out or can I reheat and take it off and replace with a new T
 
  #6  
Old 12-10-12, 08:27 AM
N
Member
Join Date: Jan 2012
Location: Canada
Posts: 2,741
Received 17 Votes on 16 Posts
Depending on where and how it's hooked up, you might have to cut one spot, then reheat the others.
The key is being able to seporate the pieces. If you cut one side, you'll be able to use plyers to wist and remove the part while only heating one spot.

I've never tried heating more then one joint during a solder redo.
 
  #7  
Old 12-10-12, 08:57 AM
Z
Member
Join Date: Jan 2008
Location: Southeastern Pennsylvania
Posts: 3,065
Received 10 Votes on 10 Posts
Hi Dexter Ė

Iím a newbie but Iíve done a fair amount of soldering with success. I think the pros will tell you here that you SHOULD NOT reuse fittings because you can never be sure you cleaned all the old solder out of the fitting. (I never knew why until recently).The fitting must be clean, shiny, and fluxed to solder properly.

When you get the tee off you are then supposed to really clean the pipes that were soldered into the tee really good until they are bright and shiny with all the old solder removed, flux again, and then solder again.

You can use channel locks to twist the old fitting off while you heat the fitting with a torch.

Iím pretty sure all the above is correct.

Just saw Mikeís response.

I think heís right, sometimes you might have to do some cutting. I think I tried to get old fittings off without a twisting motion when it was hot, and I could not do it. Seems like you have to wiggle it off when hot. But maybe the pros would know of some trick.

Good luck!
 
  #8  
Old 12-10-12, 09:35 AM
W
Join Date: Dec 2005
Location: USA
Posts: 3,188
Received 0 Votes on 0 Posts
I don't understand what you mean by "tinning" the pipes before soldering. Did you heat and apply solder to the pipe/fittings before assembly?

I wouldn't resweat an old joint, but IMO there's nothing wrong with resweating a new joint if it's weeping. However, if there is any moisture in the pipe you'll probably not be successful.

I never reuse fittings although I don't see any reason why they couldn't be reused if you can get the joint reassembled. Usually there's always left over solder from the first use that makes the joint hard to put together.
 
  #9  
Old 12-10-12, 09:38 AM
N
Member
Join Date: Jan 2012
Location: Canada
Posts: 2,741
Received 17 Votes on 16 Posts
I forgot to mention in my post, be very careful not to damage the fitting. Copper is soft and heated even worse. It's pretty easy to make a hot fitting out of round which will make reassembly tough and a good seal even harder.
 
  #10  
Old 12-10-12, 05:33 PM
D
Member
Thread Starter
Join Date: Apr 2012
Posts: 29
Received 0 Votes on 0 Posts
Thanks to everyone. I just cut it out and replaced it with no leaks! I think it wasn't cleaned properly
 
  #11  
Old 12-10-12, 05:45 PM
Z
Member
Join Date: Jan 2008
Location: Southeastern Pennsylvania
Posts: 3,065
Received 10 Votes on 10 Posts
All's well that ends well! Super !!!!!!!!!! Good to hear.
 
Reply
Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is On
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off


Thread Tools
Search this Thread
 
Ask a Question
Question Title:
Description:
Your question will be posted in: