How to Braze Copper Tubing
Copper tubing is used widely on plumbing fixtures in the home. It can add some class to your faucets and exposed pipes. People mostly use it in their bathroom décor, but it can also be used in the kitchen. Save money by learning how to do certain upgrades in your home by yourself. Here is how to braze copper tubing in your fixtures, and update the look of your bathroom or kitchen.
Tools and Materials to Braze the Copper Tubing
- Small Paint Brush
- Old Towel or Cloth Rag
- Copper Tubing
- Copper Fittings
- Blow Torch
- Wire Brush
- Sand Paper
Step 1. Clean the Copper
Clean the copper tubing to remove all dirt and grime from the pipes and tubing. You need a clean surface to braze, so do not forget this important step. If you do not clean it, then there is a possibility the surface will oxidize and make the fitting weak. If this happens, then you will have to braze the copper over again. Shine the copper tubing as well. You want it to be bright and clean. Avoid touching the copper after you shine it, as the oil on your skin can get on the tubing and cause difficulties.
Step 2. Sand the Surface
Use sand paper to rough the surface that you will be brazing. Do not bear down hard with the sand paper; you want to lightly sand it. Also use the sand paper to smooth out the end of the tubing you have cut for the job. It is best to do the sanding for this job by hand. If you use a sander, you will sand the surface too much. This will cost you more time and money. Use the wire brush to rough the inside of the fitting that you will connect to the pipe. Use an old towel to clean the surface of the fitting.
Step 3. Apply the Flux
With a small paint brush, start to paint the flux onto the inside and outside of the fitting. Make sure you evenly spread the flux on all parts. You cannot really use too much. Insert the copper tubing into the fitting. Paint more flux where they join. You will then need to insert the solder inside the tube. Place enough solder to the tubing so that it will melt evenly.
Step 4. Heat it Up
Turn the torch on and let it fade a little. This gives the flame time to die down and not damage the surface you are brazing. You want a medium sized flame before you begin brazing the copper tubing. Heat up the surface you are going to begin brazing first. Constantly move the flame on the surface, do not hold it still on one area. If you hold it still for too long, then the cooper will get too hot and start to melt. Keep moving the flame until the copper tubing forms to the fixture. Allow it to cool. Repeat the whole process over, until the entire fixture is brazed.