Copper pipe is found throughout the plumbing in many homes. Copper is fairly durable and lasts for many years. However, copper can be pierced which, of course, causes the pipe to leak. Leaking plumbing is not only an annoyance, but, if left unrepaired, it can cause hundreds or even thousands of dollars in damage. You can repair a pierced cooper pipe using a procedure that is both simple and inexpensive. Make this repair in less than half an hour, even if you don't have any plumbing experience.
Things You'll Need
- Emery paper
- Propane torch
- Silver solder
- Bucket of cold water
- Old rag
Shut off the flow of water through the pipe by turning off a shut-off valve close to the damaged area. If you can't find a shutoff close to the area, turn off the main water shutoff for the house.
Wait a couple of hours for the water to completely dissipate from the pipe. The soldering process is much easier when the pipe has no water in it.
Sand the pierced area with emery paper to remove any dirt and oils from the pipe. This will provide a better chance for the solder to adhere to the pipe.
Fill a bucket with cold water and place an old rag in it. Place the bucket in the work area. You will use the rag to cool the solder quickly, and the water is convenient to have close by in case some combustible material in the area catches on fire.
Turn on the propane torch and adjust the flame so the tip is blue. Hold the tip of the flame on the damaged area of the pipe for 45 seconds to a minute to completely heat it.
Touch the tip of the silver solder on the damaged area and let it melt onto the surface of the pipe. Move the melted solder around the area so it covers the pierced area, as well as some of the area around the pierce.
Drape the damp rag from the bucket of water over the pipe to cool the solder quickly to help it bond. Turn on the water and observe the pipe to make sure it is not leaking.
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