Sharkbite Insert Pushed Into Fitting

Discussion in 'Plumbing Forum, Professional & DIY Advice' started by sjsmithjr, Jul 22, 2013.

  1. sjsmithjr

    sjsmithjr Geologist

    Messages:
    295
    Location:
    Knoxville, Tennessee
    Ever seen this happen before? The integral tube liner was pushed up into the fitting.

    IMG_0485.jpg

    Sharkbite drop ear fitting used with sharkbite pex tubing.

    ...and no; this isn't mine.
  2. hj

    hj Moderator & Master Plumber Staff Member

    Messages:
    27,043
    Location:
    Cave Creek, Arizona
    No, in fact I wouldn't have thought it was possible.
  3. jadnashua

    jadnashua Retired Defense Industry Engineer xxx

    Messages:
    22,266
    Location:
    New England
    The instructions say to take it out when using copper - it is required on plastic pipe to maintain enough stiffness to create a seal. Is it copper pipe?
  4. hj

    hj Moderator & Master Plumber Staff Member

    Messages:
    27,043
    Location:
    Cave Creek, Arizona
    It does not HAVE to be removed for copper tubing, it just doesn't have a function when used on copper.
  5. sjsmithjr

    sjsmithjr Geologist

    Messages:
    295
    Location:
    Knoxville, Tennessee
    As noted above both the fitting and pipe are Sharkbite products. The tube support liner is there to ensure that the o-ring seals properly when using pex. In this case it still worked, but there is obviously no guarantee that the seal will hold, and the fitting should be replaced.

    I wouldn't have thought it possible for the insert to move either, nor would I have thought it possible for the o-ring to seal in its absence. Strange.

    Thanks for your replies.
    Last edited: Jul 23, 2013
  6. Jerome2877

    Jerome2877 In the Trades

    Messages:
    397
    Location:
    BC
    It is there to make sure the tube doesn't collapse and is to support it from the inside. Just take some needle nose pliers and pull it out then steal one from another sharkbite and put it in. You can insert it into the pex before you push it into the fitting to make sure that doesn't happen again.
  7. jadnashua

    jadnashua Retired Defense Industry Engineer xxx

    Messages:
    22,266
    Location:
    New England
    If this was on copper and the cutter wheel was a little dull or you advanced it too fast, it tends to bend the edge of the pipe more. Regardless, the pipe end should be restored to full diameter before installing a fitting on it. If this step is omitted, it could be too small for the sleeve to fit into the pipe.
    Last edited: Jul 23, 2013
  8. hj

    hj Moderator & Master Plumber Staff Member

    Messages:
    27,043
    Location:
    Cave Creek, Arizona
    quote; The tube support liner is there to ensure that the o-ring seals properly when using pex.

    It has NOTHING to do with the "O rings" sealing properly. It is to support wall of the PEX and make sure it does not compress from the pressure of the o-ring and start to leak.
  9. sjsmithjr

    sjsmithjr Geologist

    Messages:
    295
    Location:
    Knoxville, Tennessee
    Maybe we should just all cut and paste from the Cash Acme literature and say "The SharkBite® fittings have an integral Tube Support Liner that is effective in supporting PEX tubing to ensure the o-ring seals correctly on the outside of the PEX tubing." So WHAT it does is ensure that the o-ring seals and HOW it does it is by supporting the PEX tubing. WHY it does it is because the o-ring can compress the pipe and cause a leak.

    Interestingly, my nephew discovered that the liner had pushed into the fitting while correcting a leak at a pipe nipple, which he discovered during the pressure test. He pulled the tube support liner, corrected the leak at the nipple without addressing the issue with the liner, and re-ran the 24 hour pressure test with positive results. He still plans on changing out the fitting, figuring it's not worth trying to repair it just to save $8. After all, it's hard to say at this point if the issue caused by the installer, a manufacturing defect, or damage to the fitting.

    Thanks again to all who took the time to reply.
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