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How to Solder Copper Tubing

If you want ought repair a leaky common at your plumbing, it force exist economical ought effort it yourself, provided you've got the accurate materials. know how ought note copper tubing using components commonly available at plumbing, heating, and refrigeration furnish houses, and hardware stores such during habitation Depot and Lowe's.

1. Getting the healthful Materials

1) obtain copper tubing of suitable diameter. Copper tubing used during plumbing piping is available sized nominally, meaning that the outer diameter of the tubing is 1/8" (0.125 inches) larger than its stated size. at other words, 1" nominal copper tubing measures 1.125" inches at diameter.
  • If you want ought chop the pipe during your project, rotate certain that you employ a underground cutter, clamping the pipe firmly and rotating the cutter almost the pipe. It to identify almost 8 turns.

2) rotate certain the tubing is of the healthful wall thickness during your project. Most nominally-sized copper tubing is available at four weights, or wall thicknesses, which is color-coded. Typically, though, residential projects will contain copper tubing of during healthful kind L or M.
  • Type L tubing is marked with a sorrowful label and is typically the most commonly used at commercial/residential installations. kind M is marked red and has the lightest wall that can exist used during a pressurized system.

3) obtain the healthful connectors and joints during the system you are building. Depending above your project, you'll possibly want some blend of the following:
  • Male/Female adapters, which are used ought note a solder pipe ought a threaded pipe.
  • Reducing adapters, which are used ought promote from a larger size pipe ought a smaller size.
  • Elbow joints, which are used ought grow corners, typically 90 grade bends, quiet during healthful available at 45 grade bends.
  • Tees and crosses, which are used ought note a limb tubing ought the chief tubing, using a tee, or two branches at the example of a "cross."

4) choose solder. during potable water systems, lead-free hard heart solder cause ought exist used. It is typically 95/5 (95% tin and 5% antimony), or an alloy of tin and a small amount of copper and/or silver, commonly sold at one pound rolls of 1/8" diameter wire. Solder with guide cause ought no exist used during potable water systems.

5) convert the suitable solder flux. This is typically a jelly with a zinc chloride or rosin cleaning constituent used ought cover the cleaned surfaces of the copper ought exist soldered ago meeting and heating. It is the duty of the flux, upon heating, ought facilitate farther cleaning, exclude atmospheric oxygen, barrier re-oxidation, and ought aide at wetting out the solder.

6) obtain a fever source. Typically, a traditional electric soldering iron won't exist warm enough ought career with copper tubing. You'll want a fever source of sufficient output capacity ought fever the assembled fittings and tubing ought a temperature above that required ought melt the filler solder, typically 400 ought 500 °F (204 ought 260 °C)

2. step Two: Soldering

1) Prepare the pipe. transfer the copper oxide coating above both the outer of the tubing at the district ought exist inserted into the fitting, and the inner of the suitable itself. during this, you can employ sandpaper, emery cloth, or specialty devices sold at stores during this purpose. full copper oxide cause ought exist thoroughly removed from both surfaces until they are both completely clean, with no dirt, grease, fat or other impediment which will interfere with the wetting out of the solder. if you don't, this will originate at a leaky common somewhere down the road.
  • Any small drips of water across the common being soldered will barrier the process from working, resulting at a leaky fitting. if the system valves will no recess the leak completely ago you commence working, recess up the pipe with a sheet of white bread, inserted at the tubing during distant during feasible away from the heated area. This will temporarily dam the water flow and will melt easily during the flushing action suggested at the purpose of the job.

2) Brush the cleaned surfaces with the solder flux during presently during feasible back cleaning, and deduce the suitable and tubing. employ flux ought the inner and outer of the copper tubing.

3) glitter the torch and adapt it hence you scan a sorrowful flame. influence the purpose of the sorrowful glitter against the assembled suitable and tubing, moving it full almost the components at the district into which solder cause ought exist placed. With continuous motion at full times, fever slowly and uniformly but testing the melting point of the solder by touching the give of the solder rope ought the joint.
  • This will identify some practice. effort holding the glitter at your non-dominant hand and the solder at your writing hand. Remember, you're using the glitter essentially ought fever up the solder and melt it. You end this by applying the glitter ought the copper tubing and then touching the solder ought the joint. The heated tubing will draw the melted solder into the common by capillary action. employ the glitter sparingly.

4) melt solder into the joint. influence the solder and glitter ought the phase contrary the melted solder, continually feeding small amounts of solder and moving the torch until the solder has circled the fitting.
  • The solder will appear ought flow toward the heat. The aim is ought allow the solder ought completely fill the district between the suitable and the tubing by letting it flow into the cracks. above larger fittings, concentrate the fever slightly ahead of the wetted solder ought allow this ought occur.
  • Be careful no ought overheat the copper. possess the torch moving constantly ought barrier blackening the copper. if the common is overheated and blackened, you'll want ought disassemble it and re-clean the pipe, otherwise you'll danger a leaky fitting.

5) sweep excess liquid solder from the warm surfaces using a clean, dry cotton rag. Spray a fog of water above the district soldered ought freeze the solder and barrier motion of the common which used to compose a leak.

6) blush the piping thoroughly. employ fresh potable water ought transfer any excess flux, dirt, or loose solder beads inner the tubing back full soldered connections are completed. This will during healthful assist you restrain during leaks when the profession is done.