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Old 02-02-2011, 07:53 PM   #1
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Shark Bite fittings


I know this tends to be a topic for debate, but I'm just wondering what is everyone's thought on using these for a small job where cost of fittings is not an issue (vs cost of buying a crimper). Are they really solid, or has anyone actually seem them leak, or even burst off? I need to tap into a line so I'm thinking of getting a Shark Bite T connector as well as a shark bite valve for that other connection. Do they hold up well or am I at risk if I use them?

I was reading and apparantly they are rated for use even in underground or otherwice inaccessible locations, so if that's the case then I assume they are rather solid and comparable to copper.

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Old 02-02-2011, 08:06 PM   #2
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Shark Bite fittings


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I know this tends to be a topic for debate, but I'm just wondering what is everyone's thought on using these for a small job where cost of fittings is not an issue (vs cost of buying a crimper). Are they really solid, or has anyone actually seem them leak, or even burst off? I need to tap into a line so I'm thinking of getting a Shark Bite T connector as well as a shark bite valve for that other connection. Do they hold up well or am I at risk if I use them?

I was reading and apparantly they are rated for use even in underground or otherwice inaccessible locations, so if that's the case then I assume they are rather solid and comparable to copper.

I know I'll get reemed for saying this but, MY opinion of them is that while they may be approved for use here, there, and everywhere, they haven't proven the test of time yet. Copper has. Quest piping was the best thing since sliced bread in it's day until the class action suits. If you feel comfortable with using something that may end up being a dud later down the road, go ahead. I'm sure it'll last for a few years or more and when it goes bad, it'll be a simple fix. I would avoid putting it in an area that may cause damage. Everyone who likes Sharkbites will argue that 'they have been using push fittings for air lines and this-n-that for years' but water is a different animal. It's treated with all sorts of chemicals that WILL wear out the rubber o-rings in the Sharkbite and WILL make it leak.
But, all of this is only MY opinion. I would get some practice soldering and run copper if it were me. It's really not that hard. PEX would be another option that would be the next best thing.

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Old 02-02-2011, 08:11 PM   #3
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Shark Bite fittings


What he ^ said x 2

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Old 02-02-2011, 08:26 PM   #4
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Shark Bite fittings


Alright #26, I do like how you acknowledge it is your opinion, and my opinion on this matter is different:I like those sharkbites and install them occasionally. If I have to make a tie in under a house, I use a sharkbite. I have two in my basement right now. You have a valid point about that quest, but I have often wondered what plumbers 30-40 years ago thought about this new-fangled copper water pipe. Imagine how flimsy and weak it looked compared to good old galvanized. But time has shown what works.

I am assuming from the original post that he has pex in his house, because he is considering buying a crimper. DIY Homeowners are really in a pickle in these situations due to the expense of crimping tools. I would say use the sharkbite. My two cents!!
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Old 02-02-2011, 08:46 PM   #5
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Yes I'm talking about the pex shark bites, and not the ones for copper. The location I'm doing this in is where the furnace, water heater, and electrical panel are, so as far as damage it would not be THAT bad if it burst, but safety... yeah, lets shoot that one out the window.

I may do more pex in the future, so I might just bite the bullet and buy the crimper and the proper fittings.
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Old 02-02-2011, 08:54 PM   #6
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Alright #26, I do like how you acknowledge it is your opinion, and my opinion on this matter is different:I like those sharkbites and install them occasionally. If I have to make a tie in under a house, I use a sharkbite. I have two in my basement right now. You have a valid point about that quest, but I have often wondered what plumbers 30-40 years ago thought about this new-fangled copper water pipe. Imagine how flimsy and weak it looked compared to good old galvanized. But time has shown what works.

I am assuming from the original post that he has pex in his house, because he is considering buying a crimper. DIY Homeowners are really in a pickle in these situations due to the expense of crimping tools. I would say use the sharkbite. My two cents!!

Not being argumentative but, copper has been used for water distribution in some way or other since almost 3000 years BC. It was introduced as water supply piping around the 1930's and has definitely proven the test of time. There are different variables that might make one reconsider the use of copper such as low pH in the water or overall poor water quality as is seen in most well systems. But, to compare copper, which is joined by essentially welding two pipes together, to a sharkbite, which is nothing more than a Chinese handcuff, isn't making much sense. While I say it's my opinion, I base my opinions on facts, not what would make my job easier. When sharkbites are around for more than 50 years, I may form a different opinion. I just prefer connections that don't rotate.
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Old 02-02-2011, 09:17 PM   #7
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Shark Bite fittings


I too had a bad opinion of sharkbites, however I recently installed one to use as a disconnect for my water supply system and it worked very well. It has been on for over six months, no issues.

Just to echo the point about copper, my house (1959 construction) was done entirely in copper, and I had to replace all of it with PEX because my water is pretty acidic (untreated well water) and all of the copper sprang pinhole leaks. Not to mention that the fittings were 50/50 solder. The PEX worked pretty well, I used Wirsbo with an expansion tool, but now I hear that Wirsbo has been sued (apparently successfully) over the brass fittings that they sold as unions for their PEX. I understand they have leakage problems, similar perhaps to the Zurn lawsuit over brass PEX fittings.

And as for the test of time, well wooden pipes predate copper for sure, and I believe the Romans used lead pipe. Some feel the lead was the cause of their downfall. PEX has been in use in Europe for some fifty years, but perhaps it takes 500 years before a product is accepted. Maybe by 2050 sharkbites will be considered legit.
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Old 02-02-2011, 11:30 PM   #8
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Shark Bite fittings


I'd use these instead of sharkbites. The tool runs about 40 bucks, give or take. One tool for multiple ring sizes. Images came from pexuniverse.com
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Old 02-02-2011, 11:50 PM   #9
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I'd use these instead of sharkbites. The tool runs about 40 bucks, give or take. One tool for multiple ring sizes. Images came from pexuniverse.com
How do those rings compare to the copper crimp rings for reliability?

As far as the sharkbites go, I have a few of them in my house and haven't had any issues yet.
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Old 02-03-2011, 12:02 AM   #10
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Shark Bite fittings


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I'd use these instead of sharkbites. The tool runs about 40 bucks, give or take. One tool for multiple ring sizes. Images came from pexuniverse.com
I am not a plumber but that is the tool I used to build my cabin. That is the way to go the crimper is affordable and the rings are a little more expensive but the biggest thing going for them is you need very little room to get the crimper on them so they work great in tight spots and I had no leaks. Which for a hack plumber is a great thing in a three bathroom "cabin".
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Old 02-03-2011, 12:40 AM   #11
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Shark Bite fittings


I use shark bites every once in awhile. They are great for remodels when you cut the hot and cold pipes in a remodel and want to cap them really fast. It is a great thing. I see them holding up for a very long time. I still hard pipe most things in just to much thought in trying to make everything solid. I hate when I go to turn off a valve and the whole damn thing spins.

I had a customer use shark bites in his bathroom he remodeled. I said that is good. We talked some more and he used a shark bite with the threaded end for his tub spout. We both laughed and cut it off and I fixed it real quick. Just know how to use them.
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Old 02-03-2011, 03:58 PM   #12
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Shark Bite fittings


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Originally Posted by TheEplumber View Post
I'd use these instead of sharkbites. The tool runs about 40 bucks, give or take. One tool for multiple ring sizes. Images came from pexuniverse.com
Is that similar or same as this?

http://www.homedepot.ca/webapp/wcs/s...k=P_PartNumber

Does it work with the regular waterline fittings? also how do things like valves work? I don't see any valves other then sharkbite ones.
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Old 02-03-2011, 08:25 PM   #13
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Shark Bite fittings


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Is that similar or same as this?

http://www.homedepot.ca/webapp/wcs/s...k=P_PartNumber

Does it work with the regular waterline fittings? also how do things like valves work? I don't see any valves other then sharkbite ones.
They appear to be very similar. Can't really be sure from the picture. They should work on pex fittings and valves. They have a ratchet action when you cinch down the ring. Very easy to use. Don't confuse the these rings with the cheap lightweight ones used for irrigation piping though. They are different.
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Old 02-03-2011, 08:38 PM   #14
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Shark Bite fittings


cool good to know.... ended up going with the sharkbites given the size of this project. Basically, two fittings. Well three... I forgot to buy a termination cap, but not even sure if there is such thing as that, is there? Basically I will T off an existing pex run with a sharkbite T fitting, then at the end of the run I will have a sharkbite ball valve, a bit of pipe, then it needs to just end. I then tap into that with a vampire tap provided with my humidifier. The ball valve will be to act as the shut off for the humidifier.

At some point when I decide to start a big project I will probably go ahead and buy the $200 crimper for the Waterline fittings as those seem to be the most commonly found fittings, and probably better then sharkbite.
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Old 02-03-2011, 09:12 PM   #15
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cool good to know.... ended up going with the sharkbites given the size of this project. Basically, two fittings. Well three... I forgot to buy a termination cap, but not even sure if there is such thing as that, is there? Basically I will T off an existing pex run with a sharkbite T fitting, then at the end of the run I will have a sharkbite ball valve, a bit of pipe, then it needs to just end. I then tap into that with a vampire tap provided with my humidifier. The ball valve will be to act as the shut off for the humidifier.

At some point when I decide to start a big project I will probably go ahead and buy the $200 crimper for the Waterline fittings as those seem to be the most commonly found fittings, and probably better then sharkbite.
Definitely don't use a saddle valve on PEX (or anything else for that matter) I don't understand why they even sell those because they aren't even code compliant. But, it's your house.....

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