Solder won't let go

Discussion in 'Water Heater Forum, Tanks' started by MRC, Jun 26, 2011.

  1. MRC

    MRC New Member

    Messages:
    5
    Location:
    Seattle
    Hello all~

    Hey my line going from the expansion tank into the WH has the pressure fitting /nut on the WH end and solder off the expansion tank "t" fitting. This is a flex line and it has a slow drip/leak. (perfect for waterboarding;))
    The nut came off just fine but the solder will NOT let go.
    Question - The tank is vertical & above the intake line. Is there water 'trapped' in the line via vacuum?
    I have released the pressure from the expansion tank & still no dice.

    Help?.......
  2. Terry

    Terry Administrator Staff Member

    Messages:
    15,298
    Location:
    Bothell, Washington
    Have you opened up all the faucets above so that they can drain down?
  3. MRC

    MRC New Member

    Messages:
    5
    Location:
    Seattle
    yuppers. let them drain for a good 30 minutes first thing.
  4. MRC

    MRC New Member

    Messages:
    5
    Location:
    Seattle
    Ok...so the trick was to get the conection REALLY hot.....I mean to the point where it was burning 18 inches down the line.
    So new question. I am very used the running NEW plumbing & joints. Do I need to replace this entire T or simply get the joint hot again and clean it out prior to soldering in the new line?
  5. Gary Swart

    Gary Swart In the Trades

    Messages:
    7,386
    Location:
    Yakima WA
    Copper fitting can be cleaned an reused. That is a great thing about copper. However, it is somewhat tedious to do so. Now, if it's late at night and you are a long way from an open supply house, then yeah, clean the old one. Otherwise, I would spend the few cents it costs for a new tee and be done with it. So, it's your choice. It's likely the problem you had getting the joint apart was some water remained in the pipe. It doesn't take much. Make very certain the entire pipe is empty and dry before trying to solder your new joints.
    Last edited: Jun 26, 2011
  6. MRC

    MRC New Member

    Messages:
    5
    Location:
    Seattle
    Done and done. Opted to clean up the inside of the T and close it up. No runs, drips or fouls.
    Thanks for the help guys.

    MC
  7. hj

    hj Moderator & Master Plumber Staff Member

    Messages:
    27,047
    Location:
    Cave Creek, Arizona
    quote; where it was burning 18 inches down the line

    That was NOT burning it was heated steam from water in the line. When you say you "relieved the pressure in the tank" does that mean you depressed the air valve to let it out? IF so the tank was still full of water. You had to turn off the hot water pressure then let the faucets run until the flow stopped, and even then there might not have been enough air in the tank to push all the water out so you might have had to connect an aircompressor and inject air until NO water flowed from the faucet.
    Last edited: Jun 26, 2011
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