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Unread 08-01-2020, 07:36 PM   #46
gcc
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Originally Posted by jadnashua View Post
Basically, yes. You'd probably want to use a long-sweep 90.

NOte, that on the trap itself, you can swing the trap through probably close to 270-degrees...IOW, it can partially fold back on itself, and still function fine. That should give you a bit more flexibility in getting it where you want.

You DO want to ensure that when you're done, the riser from the trap is as close to perfectly plumb as you can, as with the large diameter drain, any little error will tip it. Keep in mind that to get things exactly where you want, you CANNOT dry fit the pieces. YOu have to carefully measure, since the pipe will not bottom out in the tapered fittings until you use the cement which literally melts the plastic, so they can fit together tight. My experience with Kerdi drains is that they do not have the normal amount of taper, and you may be able to dry fit that on.

Thanks! Is it easier to attach the riser to the trap longer than it needs to be and then cut it down or attach the riser to the drain first and then attach that assembly to the trap? I’m sure either would work but I’m just wondering which way is easier / least likely to screw up

Also - I cringe asking this - don’t want to start any arguments but... lost a little sleep thinking about it. How common is it for those of you doing this a lot to use shark bites in a wall? Makes me a bit nervous but I’m hearing more and more that people are doing it. There is no access from the back of the wall, so that makes it even scarier. Is this something that shouldn’t be done? Is sweating a pex conversion fitting better and then running pex with crimp rings a safer option? It’s more expensive- as I’d have to buy the crimp tool to make just 4 connections, but...is it the better thing to do?


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Unread 08-01-2020, 10:29 PM   #47
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There's a lot of controversy over the use of SHarkbites. I've used them when it is easier, or let that actually be a LOT easier. I don't have an issue with soldering, and prefer it most of the time. But, Sharkbites are approved for hidden connections.

Note that the ID of pex and then throw in the fittings, and you're volume, and potentially pressure can be down over the use of copper. The ID of pex with a few fittings inserted is closer to 3/8" copper. Okay for a single shower head, but don't try it for more, IMHO.

Some shower valves have mounting screws or tabs, but some need you to anchor them via the pipe connections, and that doesn't work well with pex.

The other thing with pex and sharkbites, well, that's true with either compression or crimp connections, is that they can rotate, unlike a copper solder connection.

You don't want any stress on the connection when using a Sharkbite, so straight in, straight out and use clamps, if needed.
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Unread 08-02-2020, 05:41 AM   #48
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One important thing I read and it makes sense. When using sharkbites always use a real copper pipe cutter, and never use a hacksaw to cut the pipes. You want a clean round pipe when done. The hacksaw can flatten part of the curve of the pipe.
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Unread 08-02-2020, 08:33 AM   #49
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I’ve read they are approved - it just worries me because there are a lot of mixed opinions. I’d we fo that way I’ll make sure we follow installation procedures - including NOT sanding the pipe, which I know you need to do for solder but not for sharbite.

Just for my own knowledge - is a threaded connection better than a push on or compression connection? I assume solder is probably the least likely to form a leak, but what about threaded and compression fittings? Lots of options and I am not sure what is best. I could solder on threaded connection and then run the ready in cpvc, which I have much more experience with. Dunno - decisions!!

Also - the concrete grinder attachment for my angle grinder worked great, but I can’t get it off the angle grinder. The spanner wrench that came with the grinder reach the holes cause the wheel is too thick. I had the same problem getting the wheel on but somehow it managed to lock in. Is there a way to get the wheel off without using the little spanner wrench?

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Unread 08-02-2020, 09:05 AM   #50
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Greg
...is a threaded connection better than a push on or compression connection?
I would say yes.

Let me also say, though, that I just recently visited the only Shark Bite connection I have ever made to a copper pipe as a test in a customer's greenhouse where it is completely exposed and it doesn't really matter if it started to leak. Been in place maybe 5 years or more. I had to make a modification requiring soldering in a tee within about 8 inches of the Shark Bite. I moved the pipe in the fitting a good deal and was sure I would need to replace it. I didn't. It doesn't leak after being moved more than I think would be reasonable. I still would not use one in a hidden location, but I'm convinced they can work.

I can't recall the last time I used the "proper" spanner to remove or install an angle grinder wheel of any kind, Greg. Put on a heavy work glove, press the spindle lock and just turn the thing like a jar lid.

My opinion; worth price charged.
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Unread 08-02-2020, 12:01 PM   #51
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I can't recall the last time I used the "proper" spanner to remove or install an angle grinder wheel of any kind, Greg. Put on a heavy work glove, press the spindle lock and just turn the thing like a jar lid.
Might have to hit the gym a few times first...

In genereal, if I solder a connection and it doesn't leak when the water comes back on, is it safe to say it is a good connection or do I have to watch it for a while to ensure that it really is a good connection, like I would feel I had to if it were a sharkbite.

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Unread 08-02-2020, 12:24 PM   #52
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If it doesn't leak when you turn the water back on it's probably good. If it still isn't leaking after you've admired your work for 10 minutes, it's probably better.
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Unread 08-02-2020, 05:09 PM   #53
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Lol!! I’ve only really worked with cpvc. I WANT to solder and have the torch, I’ve just never done it. So the debate in my head is ...Will my soldering be more reliable than a sharkbite? The other debate is - I don’t have any pex tools but pex would be a good way to run these line using 90 degree bends and lessening the number of connectors needed.

So my options are:

1. Use sharkbites with pex. It would be about $50 in fittings plus the pipe

2. Solder on pex sweat connectors to the supply lines and run pex the rest of the way using threaded or solder connections at the valve but have to buy a crimp tool and rings and fittings and pipe.

3. Solder on threaded connections to the copper and convert to cpvc and run those lines to the valve.

The reason I asked the question before was that I wanted to know IF I soldered and pressure tested and saw no leaks, could I be relatively sure it was a good connection. Keep in mind, the wall will be open for a little while once the system is pressurized. Just not sure...


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Unread 08-03-2020, 06:35 AM   #54
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I dunno, Greg, cpvc kinda makes me nervous, as do SB's. I mean, if something is that easy to put together it just can't be good, right?

My vote is for copper. PEX 2nd. Indeed, my master bath employs both; copper for most of it but PEX feeds the electronic shower valve and the shower heads.

Sweating copper joints isn't difficult. Be sure you have the correct torch (MAP before propane), correct flux, correct solder, correct emery cloth and wire brushes to clean the pipe and fitting, and a de-burring tool too (often built into the pipe cutter). You want to heat the fitting as evenly as possible, not the pipe, so the solder is drawn into the joint, while moving the tip of the solder around the perimeter of the joint as much as possible, while not using too much solder. See? Piece of cake. If ya really want to be fancy you could even clean the joint with a damp cloth immediately after, removes any excess and makes you look like you know what yer doing even if ya don't.

Mrs. Greg will be impressed.
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Unread 08-03-2020, 07:33 AM   #55
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LOL...Yes...it's a dilemma. This is a friend's house so it is his decision ultimately, I am just helping him out. It's faster to ask questions on here as if it is my shower but really it's his house so his call. I have a lot more tools and enjoy this work, and have done two in my own house, so I don't mind helping and really, doing most of it. It's a good break from the day job! My advice was to call a plumber for this part though. I certainly don't want that responsibility but Home Depot has him convinced to use sharkbites and call it a day, so that is his plan, and I am struggling with that since it is inside a wall where the only access to the connection would be to bust out the shower we are building.

Side note - my entire house is CPVC, including under the slab. My neighbors had a fitting leak under the slab - that was an ordeal. Leaked for years - the outside ground was always wet so they thought it was a sprinkler, and then the water finally started coming up through the slab in the garage and in the back of their house where the wall ended. Turned out to be a fitting in the middle of their house below the slab. They had to jackhammer through and find it. I'd prefer copper, too! Most houses down here in Florida use CPVC now - or at least - have since the early 2000s, maybe longer. But we also don't believe in shower liners down here if it is a step down shower, so I guess we don't mind water in our slabs?? I dunno. Is that why you don't like CPVC?

I did have another idea. The goal is to move the valve to the other side of the shower but keep the shower head on the same wall. So...supply lines need to go up the wall and over 5 feet and then down the opposite wall. What if we soldered on a copper coupling to the supply lines after removing the current valve and ran copper up the wall into the attic, then converted to Pex using a SB in the attic. At least then the connection would be in the attic and accessible if needed. I am not so worried about the wall where the valve is going because the that wall would have access from behind in a worst case scenario to get to the valve. Not that cutting a large hole on the other side of that wall is a good thing, but on the other side of that wall is a bedroom. The wall where the valve is now has no access. On the other side of it is the kitchen, and there is a double wall over in a cabinet there. That might be a better way to go.

Lots to think about. All I can do is give him the info.
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Unread 08-03-2020, 07:48 AM   #56
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Greg
Side note - my entire house is CPVC, including under the slab. My neighbors had a fitting leak under the slab
Greg, in my part of the country where the majority of residential foundations are SOG, even the worst of the hack builders know better than to have any fitting on any kind of pipe below grade under the slabs. Just isn't done. Ever.

That said, we've also run Type L copper under the slabs for decades. I've had enough failures of those copper lines to make me cease doing that at all. I would now run nothing but a PEX-al-PEX for all my below grade pipes. I still favor copper, mostly rigid copper, inside, but have done some PEX on the interior in remodel work a couple times, too. I've had no problems with any of that to date.

I am aware of folks using PVC and CPVC for interior plumbing and the only problems I've seen with that were instances where the fittings were not properly glued. I wouldn't use it, but I can see where it could work.

My opinion; worth price charged.
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Unread 08-03-2020, 12:22 PM   #57
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Hey CX...I agree. It's just the norm down here I guess. All these cookie cutter homes go in everywhere with cheap materials. 20 years ago when they built the house it was all the rage. I don't know if what they are using now to be honest. Maybe Pex?

Just curious - why wouldn't you use it CPVC for interior plumbing?

I'll attach two picks from my neighbor's ordeal. It was in the center of the house under his slab in the kitchen. The line from the water heater had a leak at the fitting.
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Unread 08-03-2020, 01:31 PM   #58
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When I go to back fill in that drain area that was boxed out once I set the drain in the new location, can I just pour cement in there or does it need anything to bond it to the slab around it? It is a really small area. I assume I back fill with the dirt first, then maybe put some gravel - or or is it ok to just use concrete to fill it in?

Thanks,
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Unread 08-03-2020, 02:02 PM   #59
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I wouldn't use the CPVC to plumb the interior just because. I can't give you a good technical reason I'm opposed to it, I just prefer copper or, sometimes these days, PEX.

You wanna use some kind of compactable fill up to the bottom of your existing concrete and concrete after that. Best to at least wash the edges of the hole and use a slurry of some pure Portland or some thinset mortar as bonding agent. I'd also put a few re-bar dowels in those squared edges, but you can probably get by without that if you want.

My opiinion; worth price charged.
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Unread 08-03-2020, 05:13 PM   #60
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Recognizing a cold solder joint can take a little experience. But, some people have had one last for years, then the pipe gets knocked, and it falls apart. A properly made solder joint is stronger than the copper pipe, so the pipe normally will split or fail before the joint.

The type of flux you use can make a difference. I think that it was easier to get a reliable joint when acid/oil based fluxes were more the norm...the new water soluble ones are easier to overheat and burn prior to you adding the solder. A rough guide is that on say 1/2" pipe, you'd use about 1/2" of wire solder, 3/4" on a 3/4" pipe, etc.

What I've found, when you don't do this frequently, is to use a flux with powdered solder in it (called a tinning flux). If you're watching carefully, instead of guessing, when you see the solder in the flux is melting, you know the joint is hot enough, and can remove the torch and add the solder.

Note, if you make a joint, turn the water on, and it leaks, you cannot just shut the water off, drain the pipe, reheat and add more solder...the water will contaminate things. You must take it apart, clean things off, re-flux, and resolder.

If you've never soldered pipe before, buy some extra fittings and practice a little. Note, used copper is probably at least a couple of bucks/pound at the salvage yard...more if it doesn't have any solder on it.

Clean is your friend when soldering, both the outside of the pipe, and the inside of the fittings. A good cover of flux, move your torch around to evenly heat things, and a good flow of solder. It looks neater if you use a (non-plastic) cloth to wipe the joint before it solidifies. The bits can still move for a few seconds when done until the metal solidifies, so don't let it move. The pipe WILL get hot, so gloves can be a savior. Don't burn the house down in the process...a fire extinguisher and maybe a heat shield or two may be called for. A spray bottle with some water in it isn't a bad thing, either.

You need at least one way for hot air to escape the pipe when doing your soldering. A valve works. Otherwise, when heating up that last fitting in a closed system, the heat expands, and will blow a hole in your last solder joint.

CPVC can get somewhat brittle when it ages, especially if it gets hit with sunlight and the UV.

Pex, IMHO, works better if you use an expander tool versus the crimp ones. Pex that can use expansion fittings is more flexible and stronger, plus, the ID through the fittings will have higher flow rates with less pressure drop because of it. An expander tool is more expensive than crimp tools, and if you try to use a manual one, your hand will get tired. But, you may be able to rent an electrical one. Pex must be protected from UV, or it will be degraded.
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