How to replace Galvanized Pipe to Copper Pipe -English Version

This is the English version of “How to replace Galvanized Pipe to Copper Pipe”, by Dr. Zhang and Mr. Zhang
We also have the same topic of Chinese version here

English Version Part 1:

English Version Part 2:

  1.        What the video is about

In this video we are going to show you how to replace your water supply galvanized steel pipes to copper pipes.

2.            Benefits/Drawbacks

What are the benefits of replacing?  First, you need to know that there are three choices: steel, copper or PVC piping.

2.1.      Galvanized steel

Galvanized steel pipes will rust, and can accumulate minerals and bacteria. Look at this ugly one. If you just bought a house, if you see this is wrapped around the pipe, this is a temporary fix to stop leak, it is likely it will cause problems soon.

2.2.      PVC

PVC (Polyvinyl chloride) never rusts. Not this ABS type. 66% US market water supply and 75% sewer.  Easy to install, use this hacksaw, solvent etc. California has restrictions. It has health risks. I have already got rid of all my food plastic containers. I am concerned the plastics might leach chemicals. I would use it only for drain and waste.

2.3.      Copper

Copper. Copper is durable, bacteria-resistant, costs less and is more easily installed than steel. It requires fewer fasteners than galvanized pipes. However copper rust is poisonous. The good thing is, the poison kills the bacteria, I don’t know about people.   So many people have replaced galvanized steel with copper in recent years, I guess we’ll be finding out soon!

3.   If you choose copper, this is what you need

3.1.      Pipe

make sure to cover the ends since in the crawl space under the house it is dusty, if debris is inside the pipe, it will clog the filter at the faucet.

3.2.      flexible tubes

3.3.      Couplings

Couplings, there are different kinds, you may go home depot to buy more than you need to reduce the number of trips there. You may return it later if unused.

3.4.      Cutting tool

3.5.      Lead free Solder

3.6.      Lead free flux

3.7.      Straps, screws

3.8.      torch

3.9.      pipe wrench

4.            Safety first

Safety first. Place multiple goggles in convenient places, so that you don’t have excuses not to use them. It is not worth losing your sexy eyes to save a few dollars.

5.            Cut galvanized Pipe

5.1.      strategic

Cut strategic places, minimize number of cuts.

5.2.      Plugs and Caps

Use plugs and caps to temporarily block the water supply to different parts of the house rather than completely cutting the water supply.   This is to reduce the stress on your family.

See diagram.

6.            Cut Copper

6.1.      Mark it

6.2.      Double check

7.            Solder

7.1.      Safety

7.2.      Practice first

7.3.      sand it

7.4.      Flux

7.5.      Heat

7.6.      Apply lead

7.7.      How to re-do it

8.            Re-connect

8.1.      Single bathroom

If you are only replacing the pipes for one bathroom or kitchen, you may re-connect them right away.

8.1.1.      Dielectric coupling

If you are doing a long term galvanized-copper connection, then use dielectric coupling.

8.2.      Bypass

If you want to replace the complete house, you need to first make sure you completely understand the way the plumbing is laid out and which parts of the house will have to be without water at the same time.  If two bathrooms are connected, as in this diagram here, it is best to keep both shut down until you are completely finished with both.  This is because with water trapped inside the copper pipe, it takes long time to heat the copper pipe and is difficult to solder securely.  Still, you need to have one to use, so if you do not have an additional bathroom, this may be a difficulty you will face.

8.3.      Last Connection

You need to drain the water before any soldering.

8.3.1.      Joint need to be Higher without water trapped inside

8.3.2.      vertical

Choose a vertical pipe instead of horizontal pipe at the new joint.



, , ,