Copper pipe leaks are commonplace in plumbing systems. However, fixing this problem is relatively easy with the proper tools and skills. Here is a look at the steps to solve copper pipe leaks.
Repairing Copper Pipe Leaks With Soldering
Step 1: Remove the damage section of the pipe.
First, turn off the shut valve to cut the supply of water coming from the main line. However, with the presence of a local shut valve, you can cut water supply from here instead. Second, drain the damaged pipe to ensure water is in the pipe. Third, with a copper tube cutter, remove the section of the pipe at least an inch from each side of the leak. With the cutter, grip the pipe and tighten the cutter screw. Once it is in place, rotate the cutter with a full revolution several times until the section of the pipe you want to remove detaches from the pipe.
Step 2: Clean the mating surfaces.
With a wire-fitting brush, remove the corrosion that has built on the copper pipe and ensure to clean the outer pipe of the copper with emery paper or sand cloth. After all the ends are clean, apply flux paste evenly on all the surfaces.
Step 3: Install the repair sleeve.
Place the sleeve onto the pipe by sliding it to one end and slipping it back over onto the other. See to it that you loosen pipe hangers that are near to the section you are working on. Ensure that approximately ½ inch of each pipe is covered by the sleeve by centering the sleeve over the ends of the pipe.
Step 4: Solder the joint.
Using propane torch, hold the tip against the side of the joint and the tip of the solder wire at the opposite end. This is because the solder wire will liquefy and just flow until it covers the joint. Remember to move the solder away once it has melted and has covered the joint.
Fixing With Pipe Repair Clamp
Step 1: Locate the leak.
Turn off the shut-valve from the main water supply. If your plumbing system has a local shut-valve, there is no need to cut off water supply from the main pipe line. Once you have located the leak, measure the diameter of the existing pipe to know what size you need for the pipe repair clamp. Since the leak might be tricky to find, use a dry clean cloth and wipe the pipe on the area you suspect the leak to be.
Step 2: Place the rubber pad.
Once you have the clamp, wipe again the pipe with a clean cloth. Open the clamp and put the small rubber pad to cover the leak.
Step 3: Install the clamp.
With the rubber pad covering the leak, place half of the clamp over the rubber pad and the remaining half on the side of the pipe.
Step 4: Secure the clamp.
Close the clamp with a squeeze and push a screw through the hole. Attach the nut as well. Next, tighten the screw, one at a time, to secure the clamp in place. Use a screwdriver to do so.
Step 5: Turn water on.
After the clamp is secured and in place, you can now turn the water supply on to check if the leak is already fixed.