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Old 02-03-2009, 09:13 AM   #1
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copper pipe "speed" couplings?


Just saw them used on This Old House (please don't laugh you pros). They were putting in a whole house water filter and literally the pipes just SNAPPED together? What's the consensus on these for someone who's success rate on sweating pipes is about only 50% (me).

Besides price, of course, what are their limitations? Heat/cold? Indoor/Outdoor? I got burned real bad once relying on a compression fitting that failed once so i'm skeptical on these speed couplings. Anybody have a link to a site for them?

thanks..

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Old 02-03-2009, 09:16 AM   #2
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copper pipe "speed" couplings?


They're called SharkBite fittings. They are pretty handy, especially for DIYers that don't have the confidence or ability to sweat joints. They cannot be concealed in a wall or floor, and must remain accessible. They can't be buried either. Most plumbing supply houses are starting to carry them.

http://www.cashacme.com/prod_sharkbite_pushfit.php

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Old 02-03-2009, 09:21 AM   #3
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Check that...
Looks like they've received IPC and UPC approvals for concealed locations and burial according to their literature. My info was old!
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Old 02-03-2009, 09:56 AM   #4
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copper pipe "speed" couplings?


can they handle extreme temperatures? lets say if i was running a water line for a sink in a garage that could get down to 10 degrees F in the winter? obviously the water is shut off at that temp but does expansion/contraction compromise the reliability down the road?
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Old 02-03-2009, 07:31 PM   #5
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all sharkbite fittings i.ve seen are brass and have the capability of bursting in cold weather.
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Old 02-03-2009, 07:33 PM   #6
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copper pipe "speed" couplings?


No fitting can handle repeated freeze/thaw. PEX pipe can take a total freeze repeatedly, but the fittings are subject to damage if they ice up. I don't think these are any exception.
My suggestion would be an electric pipe heat wrap to prevent frozen lines in the garage during cold temps. Pretty sure you can get thermostat controls for them as well.
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Old 02-03-2009, 08:54 PM   #7
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copper pipe "speed" couplings?


most heat wrap tapes come with built in thermostats. Shark bit fittings will freeze, but no more than and maybe less than a copper fitting. I carry a large selection of these for demo or retrofit work, Really good when tapping into wet lines. No need to drain all the water just slide them on. Good to keep the remover tool handy. Also good to connect dissimilar pipes.
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Old 02-03-2009, 08:58 PM   #8
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copper pipe "speed" couplings?


In most places in Canada they pass code to be concealed behind walls... they can handle up to 300 psi or something crazy... much more than standard compression fittings.
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Old 02-03-2009, 09:19 PM   #9
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Plumbers here are hard to adapt to new things. This is the only reason some things take so long to be used universally.
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Old 02-06-2009, 07:33 PM   #10
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copper pipe "speed" couplings?


I ffind them spectacular for those times that the sweating is kicking my ass. Usually then go back and "fix" the connections at a later date, but at least I have hot water in the mean time. Such is the nature of a DIYer.
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Old 02-06-2009, 11:11 PM   #11
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copper pipe "speed" couplings?


They've been using these for gas line connections in my area. Well, the handyman hooked a tee to a coper gas line to feed a stove.
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Old 02-07-2009, 06:27 PM   #12
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copper pipe "speed" couplings?


A local plumber in my area recommended them to me when I was replacing my hot water heater recently. I was commenting about sweating some pipes next to a wall and he said that they don't sweat any more, they use the Sharkbites. I don't have problems sweating, but these sure were quicker for two connections, about $6 each here locally at HD.
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Old 02-07-2009, 07:51 PM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by John McCabe View Post
They've been using these for gas line connections in my area. Well, the handyman hooked a tee to a coper gas line to feed a stove.
Oh my god, please tell me you are kidding. THESE ARE NOT GAS FITTINGS. Copper gas connection must be brazed (not soldered), and a compression-type fitting is not for this application. The handyman isn't so handy.
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Old 02-07-2009, 08:40 PM   #14
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copper pipe "speed" couplings?


Quote:
Originally Posted by thekctermite View Post
Oh my god, please tell me you are kidding. THESE ARE NOT GAS FITTINGS. Copper gas connection must be brazed (not soldered), and a compression-type fitting is not for this application. The handyman isn't so handy.
I was thinking about that. I looked on the sharkbite website and it only mentions potable water and hydronic heating.

Last edited by jerryh3; 02-08-2009 at 07:34 AM.
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Old 02-07-2009, 10:29 PM   #15
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copper pipe "speed" couplings?


Uh, yeah...Water only.

Sharkbites are great for a repair here and there or making a few little connections, especially for DIYers. It would be borderline ridiculous to use them to completely plumb a house though. With a job that big, there's no reason not to either invest in a PEX tool or learn to solder...Some people tend to use Sharkbites as a crutch.

Just an opinionated opinion!

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