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Old 03-15-2014, 11:50 PM   #1
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Water Water Everywhere and not a drop to drink!


So I have been remodeling a house built in 1929 and we recently ran into financial difficulties. In order to save money I had the gas turned off for the winter. A gamble yes and it almost paid off until recently here in Pennsylvania we had a string of deep freezes. I checked on the house daily and ran water to make sure everything was doing ok. Then things got nuts and I missed for a few days. I came back to water everywhere and still shooting out of one of my supply pipes. I shut off the main shut off for the house. The pipes didn't crack only blew out their fittings. Ok so today I procured some SharkBite fittings and cut out the blown fittings and replaced them with the Sharkbites. When I turned on the main supply again the Sharkbites leaked big time! So now what? I'm definitely not a plumber but shouldn't these have worked? Also the only other plumbing currently in the house is the kitchen sink which is right above the basement. I tried turning on the kitchen sink and some water came out at first but then nothing. HeLP!!

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Old 03-16-2014, 06:16 AM   #2
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What type pipe is it?
Tried removing the aerator on the faucet to see if the screens plugged up?
If it's copper pipe and it froze it's now expanded and no fittings may work. If it had of been Pex it would have expanded and most likely did no damage.
Little late now but if you had no heat the plumbing should have been winterized by removing all the water.

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Old 03-16-2014, 07:54 AM   #3
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Did the pipes have layers and layers of paint on them (as they often/usually do in old houses)? The Sharkbite fittings need to be pushed on completely, so clean off at least an 1 1/2" of the paint (if any) from the ends of the pipes and make sure they're pushed all the way on.
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Old 03-16-2014, 08:00 AM   #4
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picture of the pipes and what you did will help us help you....ben sr
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Old 03-16-2014, 10:29 AM   #5
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Joe is right. Because of the freezing expansion your pipes might not have a round cross-section any longer. Even soldering might not be enough to fix that. Sharkbites certainly won't.
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Old 03-16-2014, 11:02 AM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by joecaption View Post
What type pipe is it?
Tried removing the aerator on the faucet to see if the screens plugged up?
If it's copper pipe and it froze it's now expanded and no fittings may work. If it had of been Pex it would have expanded and most likely did no damage.
Little late now but if you had no heat the plumbing should have been winterized by removing all the water.
Joe it is Copper pipe unfortunately. Am I properly screwed here and have to start from scratch and re-plumb everything? There was paint on the pipes but I sanded the ends the shark fittings went onto. Should I try re-soldering before I overhaul?
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Old 03-16-2014, 12:18 PM   #7
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Usually if you cut a few inches further away from the split, the copper won't be stretched-out as badly as it is right next the split.

And...yes, if you've got the time, tools and skill, it'd be better to solder your new connections rather than use shark bites.
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Old 03-16-2014, 03:23 PM   #8
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I basically cut out all the connections that had popped sanded and then placed the identical shark fitting as the old fitting on the pipes. When I turned on the water supply the shark fittings were leaking. They were leaking pretty badly which has not been my experience with them they usually work great! This is what led to my post as I am perplexed however this is the first time I've ever dealt with frozen pipes as I am just a DIY'r but I figured when I didn't see any actual splits in the pipe and just the popped fittings that if I replaced those fittings then I would be good. Might just start from scratch and redo it. Any ideas as to why there was no supply to the upstairs kitchen faucet once I turned on the supply? Could the leaks have been significant enough to divert water away from the kitchen? Could those pipes (some insulated with foam) still be frozen?
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Old 03-16-2014, 03:48 PM   #9
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The aerator on your kitchen faucet is probably just clogged.
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Old 03-17-2014, 06:58 PM   #10
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Many Thanks gentlemen!! I redid everything in the basement with PEX and Everything works just great!! Kitchen sink faucet works as well!!! Thanks again for all your knowledge!
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Old 03-17-2014, 08:12 PM   #11
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Your welcome. Glad you got everything working now. Good job!!

Going forward, if you don't shut off and drain the water in the lines during winter weather, set the thermostat to at least 60 degrees.


Last edited by jmon; 03-17-2014 at 08:24 PM.
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