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purpleheart 05-06-2010 01:21 PM

remove compound from brass fittings to unscrew fittings
I am converting a built-in dishwasher to a portable one. Before anyone tells me how much better it would be to buy a used portable, let me just say that there are no used portable dishwashers for sale in my area, ever, and a new one is not financially possible. I have acquired a used built-in and bought the fittings, casters, water hose remnant necessary to hook up but have a very frustrating problem.

I have all the fittings necessary to hook up a waterhose remnant to the dishwasher inlet pump, but I need to remove the old brass fitting and replace it with another size fitting. There is a pipe thread compound (I am thinking from the factory, but not necessarily) of some sort which is making it impossible to unscrew the old fitting. Is there any way to dissolve this compound or break the seal without putting enough pressure to break the plastic parts it attaches to?

I am a single Mom with a limited tool selection so if a specialty tool is necessary, I would need to know the name of it. Also, if this isn't possible or advisable, what is a good way to know what size fitting I would need to buy to fit the end of the existing fitting? For instance, I know the size of the fitting is 3/8" on the side that attaches to the unit, but have no idea what size the other end is. I foresee 4 or 5 trips to Home Depot using trial and error unless someone has some helpful advice. Any help would be appreciated.


JDC 05-07-2010 02:18 AM

You need a crescent wrench (biggest you can fit in there) to go on the dishwasher 90 and a set of 8" Channel Locks to hold backup on the female end of the the fitting the 90 screws into. You can try spraying penetrating oil on the threads and letting it sit for a couple of hours before attempting to remove. Use penetrating oil...something like PB Blaster or Liquid Wrench. WD-40 is not a penetrant. It is a water displacement agent. Most dishwashers do not come with a 90 installed so it was probably put in by whomever installed the machine.


You could just use the existing dishwasher 90. Its a bit hard to tell from a photo, but it looks like 3/8" IPS X 3/8" compression. If so you'll need a 3/8" compression end hose. Another size that is commonly used is 1/2" OD (outside diameter) compression. Again though, if I had to make a guess from the photo, I'd say it was 3/8" compression.

In any case Good Luck with your DIY project. Keep us updated

oh'mike 05-07-2010 04:06 AM

Purple--Don't be concerned about the pipe joint compound--That piece will turn out of there.
Like JDC said--Use a crescent wrench on the angle fitting and a pair of channel locks on the valve.

That flimsy valve will take the amuse---I seldom hold the valve when removing the brass fitting and I've never broken one.---Mike---

purpleheart 05-08-2010 06:49 AM

water hook-up finished!
thanks, guys, for all the advice. I did finally get the water source hooked up with the help of the local true value hardware plumbing guy. I just couldn't get that stupid 90 off, but he was able to get me from what I had to a hose hookup even though it involved a 2.5" piece of copper pipe. I don't believe I could have ever figured it out without you guys telling me what was there so I could describe it to him. Now for the electrical. I guess I'll post another query about wiring a plug that I can run a heavy duty extension cord to......Almost there!

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