Polybutylene inlet

Discussion in 'Plumbing Forum, Professional & DIY Advice, Tips & ' started by Hagrinas, Jun 29, 2005.

  1. Hagrinas

    Hagrinas New Member

    Messages:
    2
    Location:
    California
    I had a crack in my water inlet pipe. It's the blue polybutylene type, pb2110 sdr 13.5. It cracked about 8 inches from the end, where it went into a compression fitting that is 3/4" male at the other end and went into copper.

    I went to my local hardware store to find out what to fix it with, and the person there sold me a black plastic pipe, which I presume is polyethylene, and I spliced in a replacement piece. Although both pieces were supposedly 3/4", the blue pipe was actually a bit thinner, so it was a pain to force the fitting in, and I had to replace the compression part, which was not a big deal.

    The questions I have now in retrospect is whether what I did made sense, whether I'm likely to have problems in the future, and what to keep in mind down the road.

    One problem was getting the fitting inside the blue plastic. To start off, I was able to get one end into the black plastic very easily by just dipping it in boiling water. With the blue plastic, I didn't have the option since it was in the ground, just a few inches below where it normally came out of the ground. I ended up taking a plastic drinking cup, drilling a hole in the bottom the exact size of the blue pipe, slipping it over it, and then pouring boiling water in. I ended up getting the thing forced down, but not all the way down. I was told to put two high quality hose clamps at each end, but I used only one at the blue end since the fitting was not down far enough that I felt a second one would help. But for now, nothing leaks.

    If anything goes wrong, would there have been a better way to do this? It didn't occur to me at the time to put the original compression fitting underground and then just sweat in a new piece of copper and a female fitting. I don't know if doing that is even appropriate, or if building a box around it so the fitting is not buried would be more appropriate. If it fails because I screwed up, I can always try to get the fitting out, or just cut it 2 inches lower.

    Is this the type of thing that is likely to cause trouble, should I just leave it alone unless it causes trouble, or am I just looking for trouble if I leave it? Would I have been better off using a heat gun to get the fitting in deeper, and if so, would it make sense to try now to make the connection better? or is there a better way or a more appropriate fitting?

    BTW, the house was built in 1977 so a claim is not an option.
  2. hj

    hj Moderator & Master Plumber Staff Member

    Messages:
    26,472
    Location:
    Cave Creek, Arizona
    pipe

    A good plumbing store should have Qest compression fittings that equal the outside diameter of both pipes, since they should be the same.
  3. Quest Adapters

    if you had to ram or insert something into the quest pipe
    you are probably going to have future troubles

    Lowes sells quest to copper type adapters....

    comes in grey with a large nut ....
    the nut and two rings go on the quest pipe
    about a whole inch down on the pipe..... you tighten it down to the
    solid brass fitting which has a 3/4 male end on it
    which goes to the copper...

    the fitting cost about 4 bucks

    they work very very well, considering the junk you
    are adapting to... they are life savers.
    Last edited: Jun 30, 2005
  4. jimbo

    jimbo Plumber

    Messages:
    8,997
    Location:
    San Diego
    That fitting on the PB will blow...soon. Any inside barb-type fitting on PB must use crimped type clamps. Screw-type clamps cannot be tightened enough to do any good.
  5. Gary Slusser

    Gary Slusser That's all folks!

    He's not talking about a barbed/insert fitting. It is the brass QEST (not QUEST) compression x MPT adapter. You use a brass/plastic (smooth) insert with all QEST compression fittings.

    Gary
    Quality water Associates
  6. jimbo

    jimbo Plumber

    Messages:
    8,997
    Location:
    San Diego
    If I read his post correctly, the OLD fitting was compression, but the new fitting he forced INSIDE the pipe, and then applied a "good quality clamp" around the outside. He mentioned there was supposed to be two clamps but only one would fit. I interpreted screw-type hose clamps, but I could be wrong.
  7. Gary Slusser

    Gary Slusser That's all folks!

    Yea my bad, sorry about that. I thought you were talking about Master's fitting suggestion, not the original poster's solution of an insert/barbed fitting for IPS PE tubing in CTS PB tubing.

    Gary
    Quality Water Associates
  8. Hagrinas

    Hagrinas New Member

    Messages:
    2
    Location:
    California
    Follow up

    I put some pictures here to clarify. http://pages.sbcglobal.net/fakeusername/Polybutylene plumbing.html

    Yes, the original was compression, as in the bottom photo. The new one is a plastic barbed fitting that connects the polybutylene to the new black one.

    The blue piece is the entire length that had to be removed to get past the leak.

    The clamps I was told to use are screw type hose clamps. The insert is barbed plastic.

    The OD of the two pieces is not quite the same. (see photos)

    If I'm understanding things correctly, I can just remove the new pieces, attach a Qest fitting to the polybutylene, and attach the other end to copper.

    I don't really have a good feel for what the Qest fitting looks like, but I'm assuming that it's something along the lines of one of these: http://ace.imageg.net/graphics/product_images/pACE-954201dt.jpg .

    If that's the case, it seems pretty clear. I would just need to lengthen the copper by less than a foot and I'd be set.

    I compared the blue piece to a standard L 3/4" copper pipe and they seem to be around the same OD, and both fit my original compression fitting, so I assume that the black piece is the one with the "wrong" OD for me.

    Am I understanding things correctly?
  9. jimbo

    jimbo Plumber

    Messages:
    8,997
    Location:
    San Diego
    These are the Qest compression fittings which have been referred to. You need to get a fitting with the corrct specs. If you can't find one rated for CTS then sweat a female adapter on the copper and use a Qest compression to male IPS adapter.

    You are on the right track now and your persistence will be rewarded with a long-lasting repair.
  10. Gary Slusser

    Gary Slusser That's all folks!

    Yes the PE tubing is IPS (iron pipe size) and larger than the copper tubing size (CTS) PB (and 3/4 L copper). You can use a QEST (the link above doesn't work) male adapter on the PB and bring the copper to it.

    Gary
    Quality Water Associates
Similar Threads: Polybutylene inlet
Forum Title Date
Plumbing Forum, Professional & DIY Advice, Tips & Polybutylene advice and budget Jan 15, 2014
Plumbing Forum, Professional & DIY Advice, Tips & Soldering Near PEX, Polybutylene Nov 18, 2013
Plumbing Forum, Professional & DIY Advice, Tips & Need expert help, polybutylene water service? Oct 7, 2013
Plumbing Forum, Professional & DIY Advice, Tips & Not sure if Polybutylene - Help? Jul 29, 2013
Plumbing Forum, Professional & DIY Advice, Tips & Pb? Polybutylene Piping Jan 6, 2013

Share This Page