How to go from 1/2" copper to 1/4" compression fitting, with a ball valve inbetween

Discussion in 'Plumbing Forum, Professional & DIY Advice, Tips & ' started by Studly, Nov 2, 2011.

  1. Studly

    Studly New Member

    Messages:
    12
    Location:
    Minnesota
    To hook up my furnace humidifier, I want to put in a T (sweat connection) in my 3/4" copper pipe that comes out of my water heater, so it comes out to a 1/2" on the side, which will eventually hook up to the 1/4" compression fitting that joins my flexible copper tubing to the humidifier.

    I definitely want to put in a ball valve straight stop in between the 1/2" copper and 1/4" compression fitting.

    What's the easiest way to do this? I went to 2 Home Depot stores and they both pieced together about $20 worth of fittings, going from 1/2" copper to threaded fittings to compression.

    In other forums, they recommended going with a 5/8" compression x 1/4 compression straight ball valve, which is a great idea, but I can't find that in any stores here in suburban Minneapolis.

    Can someone recommend the easiest and best way to do this, with parts I can easily find? Thanks much for your recommendations!
    Last edited: Nov 2, 2011
  2. Jerome2877

    Jerome2877 In the Trades

    Messages:
    397
    Location:
    BC
    You could use a 1/2" x 3/8" 1/4 turn ball valve and run 3/8 to the unit and then use a 3/8" x 1/4" brass reducing coupling where it connects to the unit.
  3. ballvalve

    ballvalve General Engineering Contractor

    Messages:
    3,261
    Location:
    northfork, california
    Use a 5$ saddle valve for humidifiers [!] and coolers and you'll be done in a half hour.

    At least for a fridge, its best to shut off the water and DRILL a proper size hole for good flow. The self piercing is doable for a humidifier, but drilling is always best.

    Plumbers like to say they are a hack and dangerous, but done right and left exposed are great tools.


    http://www.filtersfast.com/P-Aprila...le-Valve.asp?gclid=CN6vm5X_mawCFSYaQgodRlkdPw

    http://www.idealtruevalue.com/servlet/the-12936/Detail


    http://www.google.com/products/cata...i=10eyTuLPF-mriQKamaBZ&sqi=2&ved=0CHQQ8wIwBw#

    This is an application that really does not require a ballvalve.

    You must have hit the wrong forums. After many years in HVAC, thats what they do for humidifiers. and a good reason not to shop at home depression stores.
    Last edited: Nov 3, 2011
  4. hj

    hj Moderator & Master Plumber Staff Member

    Messages:
    26,486
    Location:
    Cave Creek, Arizona
    quote; Use a 5$ saddle valve for humidifiers [!] and coolers and you'll be done in a half hour.

    REAL GOOD ADVICE!!!! Not. we have been telling people to get RID of their Saddle valves for YEARS, and now you tell them to install one? What is the problem? Just use a 1/2" x 1/4" straight or angle compression valve. ANY device can use a 1/4 turn "ball" valve.
    Last edited by a moderator: Nov 4, 2011
  5. ballvalve

    ballvalve General Engineering Contractor

    Messages:
    3,261
    Location:
    northfork, california
    I find it funny that our water heaters flex pipe seals depend totally upon the same piece of rubber as the saddle valve.

    Yet no plumber would suggest that is a problem.

    Thats not counting the 30 or 40 washers on your flex hoses in the house, the toilets tank donut, and the washing machine hoses..

    Seems like saddle valves get a bad rap for no reason at all, especially if one drills a hole for it.
  6. JerryR

    JerryR Member

    Messages:
    237
    Location:
    Florida
    This my ice maker tap off the 3/4" water heater input line. It was installed many years ago. Today I prefer all ball valves. This could easily be replaced with a ball valve one day if had the notion to do so.

    Jerry

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  7. Fubar411

    Fubar411 New Member

    Messages:
    141
    Location:
    St Louis, MO
    Funny though

    Here in St Louis, you can't have your main shut off be a 1/4 turn ball valve. I heard the justification is that would be too hard on the street connections. But hey, it is only the most important shut off in your house, right?
  8. hj

    hj Moderator & Master Plumber Staff Member

    Messages:
    26,486
    Location:
    Cave Creek, Arizona
    quote; Here in St Louis, you can't have your main shut off be a 1/4 turn ball valve. I heard the justification is that would be too hard on the street connections

    That is a "stupid" justification, so therefore, someone there owns a gate valve manufacturing company.
  9. Terry

    Terry Administrator Staff Member

    Messages:
    14,889
    Location:
    Bothell, Washington
    Saddle valves are notorious for being undersized, and flimsy.
    As a plumber in the field, we use shutoffs made for that purpose, not a flimsy saddle valve which will only come back to bite you.

    It's not the rubber that is the issue, it's the valve.
  10. ballvalve

    ballvalve General Engineering Contractor

    Messages:
    3,261
    Location:
    northfork, california
  11. hj

    hj Moderator & Master Plumber Staff Member

    Messages:
    26,486
    Location:
    Cave Creek, Arizona
    The gasket in supply lines is NOT clamped to a water line. The clamps are NOT a full circle clamp but just two plates with the copper squeezed between them, and usually deformed by the pressure to tighten the clamp. An entirely DIFFERENT situation than supply line gskets.
  12. ballvalve

    ballvalve General Engineering Contractor

    Messages:
    3,261
    Location:
    northfork, california
    The only thing different is the quality of the 'rubber' and how long before they fail. Then they ALL leak.

    We might as well add in the packing on every valve as another source of failure.
  13. hj

    hj Moderator & Master Plumber Staff Member

    Messages:
    26,486
    Location:
    Cave Creek, Arizona
    Yours is a specious argument. IT ignores the "environment" of the various rubber components. The saddle valve is the ONLY one that depends on the copper tubing NOT distorting, (and probably actually not distorting further), in order to avois a leak.
  14. SewerRatz

    SewerRatz Illinois Licensed Plumber

    Messages:
    1,706
    Location:
    Chicago, IL
    saddle valves are against most plumbing codes. Here in Illinois it is spelled out in the code "NO SADDLE VALVES OR FITTINGS" Put in your tee and get a 1/2" compression by 1/4" compression 1/4" turn compression stop. I know the pictures do not show the 1/4" turn valve and one is a sweat by 1/4" compression, but its just to show the proper way to hook up an ice maker, or humidifier.

    As fosaddlele valves the biggest issue is they fail, not as causing a leak but they fail as in not turning off since the needle valvcorrodeses away.

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]
    Last edited: Nov 5, 2011
  15. ballvalve

    ballvalve General Engineering Contractor

    Messages:
    3,261
    Location:
    northfork, california
    SADDLEi_mk.jpg At 5 bucks, If the valve is frozen, its a second one for cheap. But the link I gave is a saddle with a female thread for YOUR chosen valve.

    Isnt it odd that the great governments that prohibit saddle valves have a truck full of them in the municipal service van? They aint cutting any mains. Nothing specious about that.

    http://www.coppersaddle.com/

    But this would sure cut into the profit of cutting, draining the lines and adding a tee.
    Last edited: Nov 5, 2011
  16. David Palmer

    David Palmer New Member

    Messages:
    9
    Location:
    South Georgia
    Sharkbite makes a 1/2 threaded female to 1/4 and or 3/8 slip fitting that is quite nice.
  17. dlarrivee

    dlarrivee New Member

    Messages:
    1,172
    Location:
    Canada
    Give it up "ball-valve", the only people who use saddle valves are lazy people who are always looking for a short cut.
  18. ballvalve

    ballvalve General Engineering Contractor

    Messages:
    3,261
    Location:
    northfork, california
    Yeah, I'll give it up when google gives less then 300,000 pages devoted to saddle valves.

    The guy that uses saddle valves: [lets call them saddle TAPS - which take away the cheap valve issue]

    1] does not have 200 bucks for a plumber to screw around with his pipes and did the reseach for WHERE they make sense, cost and mechanically

    2] All municipalities that tie into mains

    3] general engineering contractors that know how to spec them, use them and install them properly where cutting into a large pipe would cost several thousand dollars for no good reason.

    The guy NOT using saddle valves for the following reasons:

    1] granpa didnt have them available
    2] loss of profit because its way too quick [sorry, its hard to look at ones real motive for not offering a customer a quick solution]
    3] not bright enough to drill a hole to give good flow to a saddle valve and NOT use the dubious self pierce feature.

    Maybe I am just too good to my customers because when I was 15 and bending tons of sheet metal in my uncles HVAC shop, a customer came in with a blower motor that had plain bearings that "squeaked" a bit when running. Little did I know my uncle was watching as I showed the guy how to oil the relatively new motor and make it work another decade.

    I really thought my favorite uncle was going to beat me after that. He made me understand that to survive you sell new motors, and then resell the good ones you got for free that some dope thought was bad.

    I decided just then that when I had my own business I would do my best to help my customers save a buck - which especially now in this economy, makes a saddle valve look like a chance to make that next mortage payment.
    Last edited: Nov 5, 2011
  19. dlarrivee

    dlarrivee New Member

    Messages:
    1,172
    Location:
    Canada
    Sorry to hear that your uncle is a crook and it has jaded your views.
  20. SewerRatz

    SewerRatz Illinois Licensed Plumber

    Messages:
    1,706
    Location:
    Chicago, IL
    Saddle valves are complete crap. I never seen a saddle valve on municipalities trucks, I have seen them live tap a main, and if they need to do a larger tap, they will cut in a proper fitting.
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