Silicone Vs Plumbers Putty

Discussion in 'Plumbing Forum, Professional & DIY Advice' started by Kail, May 6, 2016.

  1. Kail

    Kail New Member

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    Jan 23, 2016
    Location:
    Albany, Oregon
    I have been plumbing the house I'm trying to build and I'm almost done with rough-in and starting to second guess myself before the walls get covered up. For my shower and tub drain I used a high grade silicone to set the drain assembly instead of plumbers putty. Is this OK? It seems like people do both. Which is better?

    Thanks ahead of time for any advice?
     
  2. CountryBumkin

    CountryBumkin Active Member

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    Orlando, FL
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  4. standardairconditioner

    standardairconditioner HVAC'ker

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    The mistake a lot of DIY make with Plumber's Putty is when they use TOO MUCH of it.

    Manufacturers' will let you know if you can use it or not, ie. tub drains that contact the tub.
     
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  5. hj

    hj Moderator & Master Plumber Staff Member

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    If it is something you are NEVER going to replace and it is hard to get to, such as a shower drain, silicone. Otherwise plumber's putty.
     
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  6. Cool Blue Harley

    Cool Blue Harley One Dumb Plumber

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    Apr 16, 2016
    Location:
    San Francisco, CA
    Silicone for me. Anything I don't want to leak which is, well, everything. Clean up with WD 40. Sometimes a bit of plumbers putty in my slip nuts but usually Laco Slicktite. Phenoseal for sink and WC caulk joints because it's water soluble for easier clean up. Silicone on basket strainers.
     
  7. Terry

    Terry Administrator Staff Member

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    Occupation:
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    Same for tub drains. Putty for the strainer, nothing on the rubber seal between tub and tub drain.
    I reserve Silicone for shower drains.

    On lav pop-ups, pipe dope on the threads where it goes through the large rubber washer to prevent water from rolling down the threads.

    On compression sleeves, normally nothing, or maybe light oil.

    Anthing with a seal, like a flex lav supply, or a flex water heater supply, nothing.
     
  8. asktom

    asktom Member

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    Victor, MT
    If the silicone works, you don't really need to think about it. If the silicone fails and you need to clean things up, you will learn to see the positive side to putty.
     
  9. hj

    hj Moderator & Master Plumber Staff Member

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    quote; a bit of plumbers putty in my slip nuts

    Aha! So YOU are the person doing that. Thanks for making my miserable when I have to try to loosen them in a small cabinet.
     
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  10. Cool Blue Harley

    Cool Blue Harley One Dumb Plumber

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    Location:
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    My suspicion is that every cabinet is considered a "small cabinet" if you have a "typical" plumbers frame. My sincere apologies for the countless years of misery I have personally caused you. Ha Ha
     
  11. hj

    hj Moderator & Master Plumber Staff Member

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    I do NOT detect "sincerity" in your apology, and I am much smaller than the stereotypic plumber.
     
  12. EvenICouldDoThat

    EvenICouldDoThat Fixer In Chief

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    Plumber's putty for basket strainers, and here's why: if the sink users accidentally break the seal between the strainer and the sink, it will leak whenever there is water being held in the sink. For instance, in the triple sinks in a bar, used for washing glasses. The resultant leak is in a rarely seen area, and by the time its found, it is very, very ugly. Well, ok, you guys are plumbers, so ugly is the probably the usual for you, but still... (And I'm saying this in a very respectful way,honestly.)
     
  13. flapper

    flapper Member

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    What about using pipe dope?
     
  14. CountryBumkin

    CountryBumkin Active Member

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    Pipe dope is for "pipe" thread (tapered thread) :)
     
  15. flapper

    flapper Member

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    Theres this plumber who always uses pipe dope on compression ferrules also
     
  16. Terry

    Terry Administrator Staff Member

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    I don't use Silicone on baskets for sinks. That's a little too permanent for me. Yesterday the homeowner wanted to replace the basket on his seven year old Kohler undermount kitchen sink for the disposer. I tried to remove it, it was was glued on very well. I looked at the nice cast iron sink, the stone counters, and thought..............the old flange isn't all that bad. If I start cutting and prying, they may be into a new sink and counter though.
    We did get the new Kohler hands free faucet installed, and the Insinkerator hot/cold dispenser installed. And a new TOTO Carlyle installed in his upstairs with a Dahl TOTO angled shutoff.
    I use putty or stainless putty on baskets.
     
    Last edited: Feb 28, 2019
  17. plumber69

    plumber69 In the Trades

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    Prince Rupert, British Columbia
    Other way around... putty stains marble not silicone
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Jul 14, 2016
  18. Terry

    Terry Administrator Staff Member

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    Occupation:
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    Bothell, Washington
    They also make Stainless Putty for use on marble.

    [​IMG]
     
    Last edited: Feb 28, 2019
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