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Old 03-27-2011, 02:10 PM   #1
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Unknown copper coupler on baseboard heat


I am in the process of a Master Bedroom makeover, which includes a paint job, new hardwood floors, and a closet organizing unit.

When I removed the carpet and baseboards in the Master Closet, I found this "coupler" on a section of copper pipe. It has a small leak. As you can see from the photo below, it has a threaded connection on one side and is soldered on the other.



I'm looking for some professional advice on what to do. I could just remove it and replace it with copper pipe. I believe there is enough "play" in the pipe.

Should I try tightening the threaded connection?

Or should I call a professional plumber in to make the repair?

I'm pretty handy and am not afraid to solder, I just don't know what this is or what to do to repair the leak.

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Old 03-28-2011, 09:48 AM   #2
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Unknown copper coupler on baseboard heat


I've never seen something like that, but I'm guessing it's some sort of union. What are the pipes connected to?

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Old 03-28-2011, 10:16 AM   #3
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Unknown copper coupler on baseboard heat


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Originally Posted by md2lgyk View Post
I've never seen something like that, but I'm guessing it's some sort of union. What are the pipes connected to?
The pipes are connected to hot water baseboard heat.
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Old 03-28-2011, 12:28 PM   #4
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Unknown copper coupler on baseboard heat


So this "thing" is in the middle of a long run of pipe? Not somewhere near one of the radiators?
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Old 03-28-2011, 12:57 PM   #5
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Unknown copper coupler on baseboard heat


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So this "thing" is in the middle of a long run of pipe? Not somewhere near one of the radiators?
It is inside one of those "fake" radiators (no fins) connecting the 2nd floor bedroom radiators to the location where the line goes down to the boiler in the basement.
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Old 03-28-2011, 01:59 PM   #6
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Unknown copper coupler on baseboard heat


Is it actually threaded or does it look more like it is supposed to slide?

It looks like a Slant Fin HydroTite coupling.

It's an "expansion coupling." It's designed to allow the pipes to expand and contract as needed due to the temperature of the water in the hydronic system.

If you replace it with solid pipe you'll probably hear lots of creaking as the pipes heat/cool. A plumbing supply store should have a replacement.
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Old 03-28-2011, 03:26 PM   #7
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Unknown copper coupler on baseboard heat


[quote=AandPDan;618604]It's an "expansion coupling." It's designed to allow the pipes to expand and contract as needed due to the temperature of the water in the hydronic system.[quote]

I have never seen one of those in use, but wondered if it might be something like that, so with that in mind, I now wonder if it might be possible to buy just the seal for it. It looks like the device itself is copper, and should last as long as the pipes, so it might be worth checking to see if it happens to use some sort of split packing, in order to repair it without having to take any of the fittings apart.
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Old 03-28-2011, 03:35 PM   #8
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Unknown copper coupler on baseboard heat


They come in 2 sizes 3/4 and 1". Both are listed on Ebay for about $12.
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Old 03-28-2011, 05:12 PM   #9
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Unknown copper coupler on baseboard heat


Quote:
Originally Posted by AandPDan View Post
It looks like a Slant Fin HydroTite coupling.

It's an "expansion coupling." It's designed to allow the pipes to expand and contract as needed due to the temperature of the water in the hydronic system.

If you replace it with solid pipe you'll probably hear lots of creaking as the pipes heat/cool. A plumbing supply store should have a replacement.
I went to a local plumbing supply store and they told me they have nothing like that. They referred me to Home Depot, because they sell Slant Fin. Home Depot didn't have it either.

I looked on eBay and found one. I'm going to try a few other plumbing supply stores because I'd like to do the work tomorrow.

The photo from eBay, where it is $10.50 + $4.80 shipping = $15.30 total:



EDIT: I went to the Slant Fin website and found a local distributer of their products.

Last edited by AlbanyHDTV; 03-28-2011 at 05:18 PM.
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Old 03-28-2011, 06:44 PM   #10
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Unknown copper coupler on baseboard heat


Try to find a heating supply company.You don't have your location in your profile--someone could tell you a location if you did.

Around here it's Porter pipe and supply.

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