solder wont flow

Discussion in 'Plumbing Forum, Professional & DIY Advice, Tips & ' started by danger, Jan 1, 2010.

  1. danger

    danger New Member

    Messages:
    5
    Location:
    Pittsburgh PA
    so today i was installing a new shower diverter and after i cut all my pipes and put them together (cleaned and fluxed) i pulled the propane torch kit out of the box to find someone had stolen the torch. it took about an hour to get back to the job with the new torch. the first joint soldered just fine but when i moved on to the next the solder just wouldnt flow at all. it really wasnt even melting. should i have recleaned and refluxed everything or am i doing something wrong?

    thanks!
  2. Doherty Plumbing

    Doherty Plumbing Journeyman & Gas Fitter

    Messages:
    810
    Location:
    Penticton, BC
    That is a good sign of a dirty joint (or possibly water in the piping). Reclean everythign REALLY well. The copper should be shiny all the way around about 1/4-1/2" past the fitting hub.

    Apply the heat EVENLY all the way around the fitting towards the back of the hub you are joining as to draw the solder all the way and into the hub.
  3. nhmaster

    nhmaster Master Plumber

    Messages:
    3,189
    Location:
    S. Maine
    My vote is for water in the pipe, but you will have to take it apart, clean it and re-flux after you get the water out
  4. RTAPlumbing

    RTAPlumbing Plumber

    Messages:
    27
    Location:
    lawrenceville, GA
    defineatly water

    I think there is water in the pipe as well. Make sure the shower head is off or cap whatever the case might be to release pressure while soldering. Possibly add flux while you are heating it you might have burned out all of the flux.
  5. danger

    danger New Member

    Messages:
    5
    Location:
    Pittsburgh PA
    thanks guys. yeah i did leave the shower head on. hopefully thats it. will try it in a bit.
  6. hj

    hj Moderator & Master Plumber Staff Member

    Messages:
    26,631
    Location:
    Cave Creek, Arizona
    solder

    Solder NOT melting, means it is not getting hot enough, and that means water in the pipe. Dirty copper would still melt the solder, it would just not flow around the joint properly.
  7. danger

    danger New Member

    Messages:
    5
    Location:
    Pittsburgh PA
    well i disassembled everything and sure enough there was water in there. i dried it out well and everything went fine. thanks again.
  8. propane is a weak tool

    if you would have had a turbo torch with acetelyne
    gas it probably would have melted that joint. with no problems...

    I cant stand a propane torch
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