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Old 01-16-2014, 09:23 PM   #1
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Questions about leaking sink and supply lines


One of the two supply lines under our powder room sink is leaking, both where it couples to the faucet and also down below where it meets with the valve. Our contractor, ostensibly to save a few bucks on the plumbing during our home renovation, decided that he could install the sink himself. I ordered the faucet, valves and supply lines, all of which are Kohler products.

I have some questions about the way the installation was done. The supply lines that I ordered were not flexible, but were straight metal tubes. Yet, as part of the installation, the contractor bent them (see photos below) and it appears that the lines in some spots go into the connections not straight, but at a slight angle. (Where you see the supply line going into a fitting at an angle is not an illusion created by the camera. That's exactly how it is.) To me this is a recipe for leaks, but I'll stand corrected if the experts think this was installed correctly. I'm not a plumber.

Any advice would be appreciated. I was going to try and undo the connections top and bottom, wrap some plumber's tape around them and then try and retighten them. We're going away for the weekend and I've got a wood floor in the powder room that is already starting to show signs of cupping due to the leak. I've turned off the water at the valve, but there is still dripping. Would it be better to replace these lines with flexible braided tubing?

Thanks.
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Questions about leaking sink and supply lines-leftsupplyline.jpg   Questions about leaking sink and supply lines-rightsupplyline.jpg   Questions about leaking sink and supply lines-valve.jpg  

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Old 01-16-2014, 09:57 PM   #2
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Questions about leaking sink and supply lines


You can turn off the water take the top nut off. Place pipe dope on the brass end of the ball then tighten it very firmly with a back up wrench.

Our remove the faucet dissamble the supply tube add the pipe dope then tighten it firmly to the faucet reinstall the faucet then add a bit of dope on the ferrell where they attach to the stops and tighten them. That type of supply tube requires that you use some force to make them seal right.

The second way is how a plumber installs that faucet and supplies.

Or go by some flex tubes with rubber ends.
http://www.lowes.com/pd_76000-104-LF...r|1&facetInfo=

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Old 01-16-2014, 11:12 PM   #3
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Questions about leaking sink and supply lines


First try tightning the fitting up more at the faucet.
Compression fittings do not use dope or tape. Straight fittings like where it connects to the faucet also do not need to be sealed.
Still leaking just replace them with flex lines.
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Old 01-16-2014, 11:35 PM   #4
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Questions about leaking sink and supply lines


It is obvious the installer did not use a tubing bender. I've done a lot of commercial work where that type of supply is common, but you need to do a few to learn the tricks- it's becoming a lost art like pouring a lead joint has become.
The riser needs to be straight coming out of the faucet and the stop or it will leak- as you know. About the only recourse you have now is to loosen the nuts and apply teflon pipe dope to the ferrule surface and the end at the faucet. Trying to straighten the line at this point probably won't help. If all else fails- turn to DIY friendly braided flex
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Old 01-17-2014, 06:41 PM   #5
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Questions about leaking sink and supply lines


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Originally Posted by joecaption View Post
First try tightning the fitting up more at the faucet.
Compression fittings do not use dope or tape. Straight fittings like where it connects to the faucet also do not need to be sealed.
Still leaking just replace them with flex lines.
If he doesn't back that up he will mangle the copper out of the faucet. The hard supplies always seal better with dope on the brass ball because it acts as a lubricant and allows you to tighten better. Folks that don't use a touch of pipe dope are folks with a lot of stupid call backs. That makes you no money and pisses off your customer.
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Old 01-20-2014, 11:32 AM   #6
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Questions about leaking sink and supply lines


Thanks for the helpful advice. I ended up calling a plumber and he replaced the cold water line. He said no pipe dope or teflon tape had been used by my contractor. (Of course, we stupidly forgot to ask him to replace the hot water line as well since that was probably installed the same way.)

So, now, here's my concern:
This same contractor installed the shower valve in my master bath. The shower is already tiled and any access to check the pipes would mean breaking through the wall behind.

I was busy and distracted when the shower valve was installed. I did notice that when the shower wall was open, the hot and cold water lines ran up from the floor to the shower valve at an angle, sort of making the shape of an "A." I thought those pipes would normally run vertically and then make a sharp right turn to the valve. Now, I'm wondering if the contractor bent them at an angle and whether this will put stress on the hot and cold lines down the road. This plumbing is right above our brand-new kitchen. We haven't given the contractor his final check yet. What would you do in this situation?
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Old 01-20-2014, 11:36 AM   #7
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Questions about leaking sink and supply lines


Was your "contractor" a licensed plumber? Did he pull permits and have inspections?
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Old 01-20-2014, 11:45 AM   #8
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Was your "contractor" a licensed plumber? Did he pull permits and have inspections?
No, I don't believe he's a licensed plumber. The necessary permit was pulled for kitchen water and gas installations that required the moving of lines, and those were done by licensed plumbers. The other areas -- powder room, master bath -- were direct replacements and require no permits in our town. As mentioned in the original post, he seemed to be attempting to save a few bucks by doing some of the plumbing work himself. I hope we don't pay for it down the road.
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Old 01-20-2014, 11:53 AM   #9
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Questions about leaking sink and supply lines


Thats not unusual the contractor would leave it out of inspection since plumbers cost more. Under IPC code permits are required when adding valves, waterlines and any piping. The replacement exception refers to P traps or if a plumber removes a toilet to snake and reinstalls the same toilet. Installing new fixtures requires a permit. Maybe next time you will be a bet more careful good luck with it.
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Old 01-20-2014, 11:56 AM   #10
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Thats not unusual the contractor would leave it out of inspection since plumbers cost more. Under IPC code permits are required when adding valves, waterlines and any piping. The replacement exception refers to P traps or if a plumber removes a toilet to snake and reinstalls the same toilet. Installing new fixtures requires a permit. Maybe next time you will be a bet more careful good luck with it.
I hear you, but I talked directly to the head of the building department in our town and gave him detailed information on what would be done. He said that permits are only required if lines are moved, not replaced in their original positions.

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