5 Steps to Installing PVC Plumbing Fittings

What You'll Need
Tape measure
Replacement PVC pipes and fittings
PVC glue
Ratchet-style PVC cutter
PVC cleaning solution
Putty knife or spatula
Note pad and pencil

Whether you are undertaking a refurbishment or simply want to fit a replacement as part of a repair, knowing how to install PVC plumbing fittings can be a useful skill. With the correct equipment and following a few steps, you will find it a relatively easy task.

Step 1 – Inspection

Before you begin the process of installing new PVC plumbing fittings, you must first be fully aware of the correct measurements of the relevant area. This will ensure that you obtain the correct PVC pipes and fittings to complete the task. Undertaking a full inspection will also enable you to get a clear picture of what needs to be replaced. Write down the results and take this with you when you purchase the new items.

Step 2 – Gather Tools

The results of the inspection will put you in a position to know what equipment will be required. If you are unable to obtain PVC plumbing fittings in the exact size that you require, you will need to make use of a cutting implement. Though a ratchet-style cutter is available from many hardware stores, if you are reluctant to buy one then determine whether you can obtain one from a tool hire company.

Step 3 – Cut Pipes

Once you have all the required equipment, you can cut the PVC plumbing fittings in accordance with the measurements you noted previously. Stretch the tape measure along the pipe to the required length and mark the distance to be cut with a pencil line. Secure the fittings to prevent them from slipping while they are being cut. Ensure that your efforts were correct by dry-fitting the fixtures and fittings to test that they slot into place as they should and are properly aligned. When the fittings are firmly in place and secure, trace a pencil line along the edge of the fittings so that you can return to the correct position when you glue them. Once this is complete, you can disassemble the fixtures and fittings.

Step 4 – Prepare Fixtures

Prime the PVC plumbing fittings to assembly by dampening a rag with some PVC cleaner and swab it around the outside edges of the pipes and inside the fixtures; limit this action to the portions that will be fitted together and allow it to dry for a few seconds.      

Step 5 – Assemble Fixtures

Once the relevant sections have been cleaned, gather some PVC glue onto a putty knife or spatula and apply it the same surfaces of the pipes and fixtures that you have previously cleaned. Push the parts together until the edges are aligned with the pencil marks that you drew when dry-fitting the pipes and fixtures. Hold the parts in place for about 30 seconds before letting the glue take over. When all the parts are correctly in place, quickly use a rag to wipe to wipe away any excess glue that remains on the outside of the pipes before it dries. Refrain from using the appliance attached to the pipes for a few hours.