Tiny little pipe draining, Not sure what it is.

Old 01-19-17, 06:33 AM
Thread Starter
Join Date: Jan 2017
Posts: 1
Upvotes: 0
Received 0 Upvotes on 0 Posts
Tiny little pipe draining, Not sure what it is.

I have a little flexible copper pipe with a tiny little valve attached to the cold water input into my water softener (which then goes into the water heater, as my house softens hot water only, which from what I gather is normal?)
Anyways, the tiny little pipe has started draining water (into the basement drain hole) constantly. I am trying to figure out

A. What this little valve is even for and

B. Why it all of a sudden just started draining.

It looks like I could turn the little valve on it to turn it off, but I don't understand how it could have started without opening it in the first place? I have pictures below. The first one is up close of the valve/copper pipe coming off it, and the 2nd is a little further out showing it drain all the way to the floor.

Imgur: The most awesome images on the Internet

Name:  pipe.jpg
Views: 183
Size:  28.9 KB

Name:  pipe - Copy.jpg
Views: 178
Size:  45.3 KB

Last edited by PJmax; 01-19-17 at 08:10 PM. Reason: added pics from link
Old 01-19-17, 07:50 AM
PJmax's Avatar
Group Moderator
Join Date: Oct 2012
Location: Jersey
Posts: 62,480
Received 3,480 Upvotes on 3,125 Posts
Welcome to the forums.

Usually the softener is on the main cold water line so that hot and cold are both softened.

I see the valve and the 1/4" copper pipe. Is that pipe just hanging down to the floor and not connected to anything at the bottom ?

It may be set up as some type of drain line. The sealing washer may have cracked inside the valve allowing it to leak now.
Old 01-19-17, 10:16 AM
Forum Topic Moderator
Join Date: Sep 2005
Location: USA
Posts: 5,874
Received 372 Upvotes on 332 Posts
I think that valve was installed for some other reason (humidifier, icemaker, etc) and later abandoned. Or possibly to drain the pipes for working on them like Pete said.

Those saddle valves are notorious for being poorly made and badly designed, so I'm not surprised that it started leaking/draining.

I would get a 1/4" threaded cap. Remove the copper tubing and cap off the valve.
Old 01-19-17, 01:07 PM
Marq1's Avatar
Join Date: Sep 2016
Location: USA MI
Posts: 9,453
Received 1,137 Upvotes on 1,031 Posts
Is that a second saddle valve to the left side of the picture coming out of the water softener?
Old 01-19-17, 07:50 PM
Handyone's Avatar
Join Date: Aug 2000
Location: U.S.
Posts: 4,807
Upvotes: 0
Received 0 Upvotes on 0 Posts
Yes, that's a saddle valve to the left also. Maybe an icemaker line.

The 1/4" compression nut that the tube is inserted into can be removed from the valve.
Unscrew it, pull the tube out, and cap off the valve outlet.

Use a 1/4" compression cap with a 1/4" compression sleeve inside to seal off the outlet.

Cap: Sioux Chief 1/4 in. Lead-Free Brass Compression Cap-907-490201 - The Home Depot

Sleeve/Ferrule: Sioux Chief 1/4 in. Brass Compression Sleeves (3-Pack)-907-010203 - The Home Depot

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