PVC or Polyvinyl Chloride is a popular material for plumbing pipes and have been used in other construction projects because of its numerous advantages. It is cost-effective, easy to assemble and durable. Aside from being a choice of many do-it-yourself enthusiasts, PVC is corrosion and abrasion resistant. However, in time, problems can also occur and the most common is a dripping pipe. It can be a leak in the tub or an irrigation system. In this particular discussion, we will talk about fixing the leak problem on your PVC pipe.
Fixing the Leak Without Cutting the Pipe
Step 1: While water is still dripping, mark the area where the leak is coming from and turn off the shut valve if the problem is in the supply line. On the other hand, if it is part of the drainage system, ensure that there is no water flowing as the repair is ongoing.
Step 2: With the use of runner drain stoppers, secure all the holes in the pipe, drains and access holes included, except for one drain or an access hole. This should be done to create suction inside the pipe.
Tip: To create suction, use a wet/dry vacuum and place it over the unplugged drain.
Step 3: Get the PVC primer and get just enough amount to cover the leak. By this time, the suction caused by the vacuum will attach the primer into the crack, enough to fill the leak and at the same time it will remove remaining water and dirt in the pipe.
Step 4: This time, do the same using the PVC glue. After the glue is on the crack, turn off the vacuum. Leave it to cure for half an hour or longer and remove the stoppers you have used a while ago.
PVC Leak Repair with Cutting
Step 1: Search for the leak to know the extent of the problem. Since the dripping might not be the exact location of the leak, wipe the pipe along the area where you suspect the crack to be with a dry cloth.
Step 2: For long term results, it is practical to which pipe portions needs replacement. If the leak is within 2 inches of a pipe joint, be ready to remove a section of the pipe, including the couplings.
Step 3: If your plumbing system has a local shut-off valve, turn it off. However, if there is none, you need to shut off water supply from the main line.
Step 4: Remove the affected pipe and with the use of PVC cutters, cut the piping at least 1 inch from both ends. Locating the exact leak might not be that easy since the PVC might still look good. Once you have decided the portion to cut, do so at a 90-degree angle and make a straight cut through the PVC on both sides.
Step 5: If there is still water in the pipe you have removed, allow it to drain and wipe the moisture inside the pipe with a dry cloth.
Step 6: Get the replacement fitting and parts to measure if it fits and will work well with the original pipe. These parts should be loosely assembled so they can be easily disassembled for preparation for the primer and glue application.
Step 7: With the use of the PVC primer, apply a thin amount on both the insides of the fitting and the pipe. Be sure to apply it with the brush that came with the solvent and on all the parts to be joined.
Step 8: To do this properly, start to work on the exposed plumbing by applying a coat of PVC glue at the pipe exterior and then on the interior part of the fitting. Next step is to connect the pipe to the fitting using a twisting motion until such time that the glue has spread inside the joint. This will also secure the pipe and let it reach the neck of the fitting. Hold the connected pipe and fitting for at least 10 seconds to ensure it is secure.
Step 9: Repeat the procedure until all the missing parts are in place.
Step 10: Let the solvent glue cure by letting it stand for 15 minutes or longer. After the allotted period, you can now turn on the shut-valve and let water flow. This will let you determine if the leak has been repaired.
Repairing PVC Joint Leak without Cementing for PVC Drain Pipes
Step 1: Locate the leak.
Step 2: Buy neoprene couplers, a rubber sleeve with metal clamps on both sides. This will be used to replace the PVC part that has a leak.
Note: Use calipers to measure the diameter of the PVC elbow a little below the glue joint you will be cutting to ensure the rubber sleeve will be a perfect fit.
Step 3: If there is no space between the pipe and joist of the floor, you may have to make a template made of cardboard. This will be used to mark the part of the elbow joint to be cut.
Step 4: Once the marks are on place, you can now cut the part you need to replace using either a saw or a PVC cable saw.
Step 5: After cutting off the pipe, clean both ends with a dry cloth.
Step 6: Install the rubber couplings and tighten the screws on the metal clamps to ensure perfect fit.
Temporary PVC Leak Repair
If you want to go for a temporary solution, GOOP glue can do the job.
Step 1: Locate leak and turn off the shut-valve.
Step 2: Dry off the joint using clean cloth and you can also use a heat gun to remove the moisture.
Step 3: Use fine sand paper on the part you want to cover and wipe it with rubbing alcohol to remove the dust.
Step 4: Apply glue at least ¼ inch of both the sides of the joint and let it cure for at least 12 hours and do not open the shut valve during this time.