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master plumber mark
02-06-2007, 03:16 AM
Everyone has been soo keen on all the pex pipe
systems for years and years now.......

the damn stuff just works wonderful dont it???

The best thing to come along since sliced bread!!


but their is a funny thing about all thaqt plastic PEX.....

when it gets as cold as hell out there like about -10

with the wind blowing at 25 mph ----

it ALL FREEZES UP.....just like that shitty copper stuff.


the copper pipes I can thaw out with a electiical pipe thawer,
and perhaps get the people out of troubles

but the PEX cant be thawed out that way!!!!

Its pretty hard and nearly impossible to carry a
250 lb salamander full of kerosine down a flight
of stairs with the hopes of heating a cellar area
hot enough to thaw out WIRSBO PEX pipe...

plus all the other situatioins that simply cannot be
heated properly....



it has not been this cold in INDY since 1989
and I am pretty sure about half of this city
will be calling me before the weekend.....


When they call the first thing I ask them is

do you have copper or plastic pipes......

if they have plastic,
I tell them that I cant help them
and maybe their water will
come back on sometime next week
when it gets above 30

we have some very, very expensive homes built in
this area over that last 15 years
that used all of the fun pex stuff and they
simply CANNOT be thawed out



so what else can a plumber do???

Cass
02-06-2007, 03:36 AM
Now that copper prices are dropping tell them you can rip out all that plastic and put in copper :D .

The homes should be plumbed in a way that the pipes shouldn't freeze to begin with.

Racer814
02-06-2007, 04:04 AM
I live in SE North Carolina...not that big a problem here but I do have to work underneath a piling house on the beachfront this morning:eek:

actually never had to try to thaw out pipes for a customer, I feel for you guys dealing with all that bitter cold

master plumber mark
02-06-2007, 04:05 AM
A builder should insualte the homes he builds much better.....


A homeowner should have enough common sense
NOT to leave the garage door open all night long......

I called a lady a moron yesterday when she asked me if
that might have frozen up her water softener and water heater...
leaveing the door open all night long....LOL


A homeowner should have the common sense to close the
vents on the outside of his crawl space home and pack them with
towells or insualtion to keep this bitter
weather from attacking his pipies....

A home owner should have the common sense to see if the
crawl space door is closed up good and tight....


A home owner should have the sense to leave the faucets
dripping throughout his home too......


NOT .....to all of the above....

they are not going to peek out of their caves and inspect
their homes in this weather,



but they DO seem to know how to hand me their master card.......

when I charge them the min of $250

hj
02-06-2007, 04:36 AM
As someone once said, "Common sense is not very common".

Cass
02-06-2007, 04:50 AM
I do not own an electric thawing machine but found this on a site that sells them. I wonder how many plumbers follow these directions.

Warnings
The ************ requires either a 15 amp 115 volt AC outlet when on the "Low" setting, and a 20 amp outlet when on the "High" setting.
Be sure the unit is plugged into a properly grounded receptacle. If in doubt, check receptacle before plugging in unit.
If the power cord supplied with the unit is not long enough, be sure to use a grounded heavy duty extension cord that is in good condition. Using lighter cords can result in severe power loss and overheating.
There is a possibility that the output current of the unit may be transferred into the electrical service, either at the house being thawed, or at a remote location. Therefore, all grounds (i.e. electric service, telephone, and cable TV grounds) must be disconnected, both at the house being thawed and all houses on the same distribution transformer.
Do not leave unit unattended while thawing. Do not leave unit operating overnight.

JohnD
02-06-2007, 08:20 AM
HJ how true, that is hilarious.

Mark I'm located 70 miles west of you. This last week I sold out of every type of pipe heating material that I had in stock. Then last Sun. after all was gone I had a guy come in and give me heck because I was out, and he had driven 52 miles. I just looked at him and told him he should have called 1st.

Another guy called me wanting an water heater element, I asked what wattage he had, he said 208 - 240, I told him that was the voltage, not the wattage. I explained to him what the difference was, he called me a dumb ass and hung up. Unfortunately he didn't give me a chance to tell him I could replace my heater element and who's the dumb ass now!!:D

master plumber mark
02-06-2007, 12:33 PM
CASS WROTE

There is a possibility that the output current of the unit may be transferred into the electrical service, either at the house being thawed, or at a remote location. Therefore, all grounds (i.e. electric service, telephone, and cable TV grounds) must be disconnected, both at the house being thawed and all houses on the same distribution transformer.



I have a hot shot pipe thawer and used it 4 times today

to the tune of 250 per job.....


they do sort of scare me when the pipes spark, smoke and crackle a little.....

and after about 5 minutes you almost cant hold onto the
copper cables cause they start to over heat....

thats when you know its time to turn off the machine....


but I have not burnt one down yet.....LOL

OldPete
02-06-2007, 12:57 PM
Ok. We get it. You don't like PEX.

Hey, how'dya feel about indoor plumbing. Crazy idea ain't it? And that motorized wagon.

Well that's just plain silly. It could run a person over or something.

:rolleyes:

master plumber mark
02-06-2007, 03:01 PM
well ,Pete old buddy.... if you would like to impart your wisdom

to me on how to thaw out pex pipe inside enclosed

cold frozen chases

and under tight crawl frozen in-accessable spaces....

I am all ears for some great advice....

plumber1
02-06-2007, 03:05 PM
Sometimes when you don't have a good connection with the clamps the cables get hot.

Pete, just try thawing plastic pipes. Builders don't do a good job with insulation, especially with multi level houses. Some subdivisions build that into the houses and it's just carelessness. So when the wind blows from the right direction, plumbers go like crazy thawing pipes.

dubldare
02-06-2007, 05:09 PM
I have a hot shot pipe thawer and used it 4 times today

to the tune of 250 per job.....


they do sort of scare me when the pipes spark, smoke and crackle a little.....

and after about 5 minutes you almost cant hold onto the
copper cables cause they start to over heat....

thats when you know its time to turn off the machine....


but I have not burnt one down yet.....LOL


That happens when you are heating too much pipe, have a poor connection to the pipe or have bad cable-to-clamp connections. I find that the thermal overload in the machine gives out long before the cables get too hot.

I'm not afraid of drywall in some of these overfinished basements. A return air grille or two can do wonders to keep the pipes from freezing.



Pete: don't be an @ss.

Dunbar Plumbing
02-06-2007, 05:42 PM
made me $450 today.


Split longways from joint to joint, cold water line feeding the toilet over a garage.

It broke because the insulation was installed backwards with the kraft-faced side opposite of the living space, along with a few gaps.

Of course, I replaced with copper as I won't even consider a glue connection in 3 degree weather.

Today was the first time I used a sharkbite, 1/2" straight coupling to transition from CPVC to copper. I didn't want to use a compression joint as it is not legal but anyone want to tell me if that sharkbite was even legal?

It's getting covered up, I'm feeling bad about it.

MPM read my follow-up on the delta dilemma thread.

jadnashua
02-06-2007, 06:01 PM
The Sharkbite spec sheet says they are legal to bury behind the wall - has all of the approvals. Watts has a coupling, similar in concept, but the execution is all plastics, and it is made in China. I passed on those.

I checked on big local distributor around here (S-NH) for them - they had heard of them, but didn't carry them. Other than on-line, where do you suggest I look for these?

dubldare
02-06-2007, 06:26 PM
The Sharkbite spec sheet says they are legal to bury behind the wall - has all of the approvals. Watts has a coupling, similar in concept, but the execution is all plastics, and it is made in China. I passed on those.

I checked on big local distributor around here (S-NH) for them - they had heard of them, but didn't carry them. Other than on-line, where do you suggest I look for these?


None are approved by code, as of yet. They may be installed as a 'alternate material' if approved by your AHJ.

We have a couple guys at work, service plumbers. One is lazy, and it's a stretch to call him a plumber; the other is a master who wants to make it cheaper on the customer (yet never has enough money cause he never gets enough hours). Both have been bit by the shark.

The lazy one replaced a tub/shower faucet with nothing but sharkbites- 10 of them! 4) 1/2" male adpts, 3) coups and 3) 90's. The customer complained that their new tub diverter was loose, and would spin to any direction. Took another plumber 3 hours more to remedy the issue, removing all the sharkbites. Cost to customer, the original $450 plus being pissed off; cost to company~$650+ and loss of face.

The master uses them a bit more prudently, but likes to brag that he can replace a wh without a torch.

Just another tool for the lazy and mis-informed. Takes the skill out of the job, IMO. We'll just see how they hold up for the next 5,10,15,20,30,50 years. My guess--they won't.


Can't wait for Pete to chime back in....

jadnashua
02-06-2007, 06:35 PM
I don't claim to know all of the applicable codes or specs. This is from their spec sheet:


CERTIFICATIONS

The SharkBite Push-FitŪ fittings have been design certified to IGC 188.The SharkBite Push-FitŪ fittings are
listed by IAPMO and are certified for potable and hydronic heating water distribution (note: Glycol mixture for
hydronics should not exceed 50% concentration).The SharkBite Push-FitŪ fittings have been certified for
underground applications and as a manufactured joint without access panels and they meet UPC, IPC and
cUPC requirements.The SharkBite Push-FitŪ fittings are design certified ANSI/NSF Standard 61.

dubldare
02-06-2007, 06:38 PM
They're in a grey area until the next codes come out---happens all the time with new stuff.

Dunbar Plumbing
02-06-2007, 06:51 PM
What's amazing was the fact that the connection swivels so easily but doesn't leak.

Like I stated, it was an emergency situation, no way in hell was a glue joint going to hold in this scenario whatsoever.

Naturally if this was all copper I would of never even thought of using one.

I paid out the nose for them at Ace Hardware. Supply houses in your area will have better pricing jadnashua.


I'm from the old school of plumbers line of thinking even though I'm 37; I believe that simplicity (sharkbites) take away from the true profession and it seems that when something is too easy, it has drawbacks.

dubldare
02-06-2007, 07:00 PM
I'm 33 and they look at me like I'm some kind of nazi, lol.

master plumber mark
02-07-2007, 05:01 AM
I used them today.. they work great


and in these parts they are ok to install undergournd...


I dont see what the difference is anyway....


you can "half ass" throw in

crimp type pex fittings all day long

in million dollar homes and hope that they hold up

for a few years and then let someone else worry about it

"down the road "



I have used them quite a bit and they work just fine..

they are jsut as sturdy as any plastic wirsbo fitting I have seen

and look much more professional than any crappy Kitech job .



So now we can all sit back and see if the shark bite fittings gives out

before the chlorine in the water starts to break apart the pex

fittings and pipe...



so my opinion is

if it is good for the goose , then its good for the gander...... .

OldPete
02-07-2007, 05:32 AM
I don't know how chlorine can break down brass fittings...

master plumber mark
02-07-2007, 01:44 PM
That is my point pete......

the brass fitting wont wear out...

which will wear out first.....

the seal inside the brass shark-bite fittings

or the PEX fittings , shitty crimp rings, and different pex pipes
being exposed to high chlorine levels....

lets wait ten--fifteen years and get back to me..


http://onsmartpages.com/weilhammerplumbingco/nss-folder/pictures/si_UEw80h80_SNOW%20FALL%20JAN21%20%2006%20088.jpg (http://onsmartpages.com/weilhammerplumbingco/pictures/view_alone.nhtml?profile=pictures&UID=10188)

I took that first pic off just to not offend all the true professionals here on this site....

here is an updated pic from last week.... minor drywall has been done

.but I know it still jsut isnt pretty enough for you all....

now remember....
the whole manifold is just hanging there on the wall with only a few nails
holding it in place....

Dunbar Plumbing
02-07-2007, 03:30 PM
Can you get the picture any larger? :p


A statement about brass fittings:


I've seen the thinness of the brass fittings used in PEX and why they don't make those fittings thicker is beyond me.


Those Mueller ball valves, junk. I won't install them because the socket for the piping is thin brass and give it 3 years and they start to cancer out and leak.

I stick to Nibco and I can't bring myself to buy premier ball valves even though they are cheap. The assembly is always loose.

I went ahead and gave up my last two service calls tonight; too tired and my feet have been cold and wet now for 3 days straight. Time for a much needed break. I start laughing when I get a call to fix a broken water line as I'm beat down. The crazy thing is that when the temperature starts to rise up towards 30 is when a bunch of calls come in.

I turned down a water pump call for a trailer that sits inside of a freezer chest outside the trailer. LOL!!!! Not gonna, don't wanna.

OldPete
02-07-2007, 08:51 PM
Can you get the picture any larger? :p


A statement about brass fittings:


I've seen the thinness of the brass fittings used in PEX and why they don't make those fittings thicker is beyond me.


Those Mueller ball valves, junk. I won't install them because the socket for the piping is thin brass and give it 3 years and they start to cancer out and leak.

I stick to Nibco and I can't bring myself to buy premier ball valves even though they are cheap. The assembly is always loose.

I went ahead and gave up my last two service calls tonight; too tired and my feet have been cold and wet now for 3 days straight. Time for a much needed break. I start laughing when I get a call to fix a broken water line as I'm beat down. The crazy thing is that when the temperature starts to rise up towards 30 is when a bunch of calls come in.

I turned down a water pump call for a trailer that sits inside of a freezer chest outside the trailer. LOL!!!! Not gonna, don't wanna.

The Wirs/Uponor brass fittings I use are full thickness and far from cheap ($ or made). That pex looks messy... nothing is clamped down after the valves?

Rancher
02-08-2007, 06:50 AM
here is a new house under construction I had to repair where the copper valves all froze but the wirsbo fittingCan I ask a stupid question... why would someone pay to put in that manifold array of ball valves so they could shut off every outlet of their plumbing in the house separately? Were they planning on having LOTS of plumbing problems in the future? Oh and you need to close the valves to the water softener before you turn the water back on.

master plumber mark
02-08-2007, 09:08 AM
That pex looks messey ????


that looks good compaired to some of the jobs in Wirsbo I
have seen out there..


as far as tacking up and secureing
the lines ...the house is not finished yet either....




the manifold was what the customer wanted....

and for a little bit more effort, it would be about what
I would do in my own home.....isolate each bathroom with ball valves..


a Wirsbo a pex manifold would have looked much, much
sloppier than the combo of both....




so whats the difference in costs anyway??
about 50 bucks in ball valves.....


if it makes them happy..... then its worth it.

Gary Slusser
02-09-2007, 08:47 AM
Just an observation... it looks to me as if some of those valves won't be capable of shutting off because the handle will hit the valve to the left...

And the design of the "manifold", I'd be concerned about flow rates and velocity limits. They're feeding the whole house with 3/4" and the manifold is 3/4" while feeding other 3/4" lines off the manifold; including one line for the whole bathroom cold or hot water needs? I would have expected 1" from the street and for the manifold. And are the two 3/4" stubs on the right for irrigation, pool, outside faucets with only a 3/4" feed?

Mark, there have been seals, gaskets and o-rings used in water using appliances like clothes and dish washers and their pumps, all types of fixtures, toilets, coffee makers etc., water pumps and all water treatment equipment (filters and softeners) on chlorinated water for the last 50+ years. There are damned few leaks caused by chlorine.

Brass has been used on chlorinated waters for like a hundred years. And in K, L and M copper tubing forever. Even galvanized pipe and nipples. With the exception of galvanized, all with minimal leaking/corrosion/damage due to chlorine. The same should be true with today's use of chloramines.

master plumber mark
02-09-2007, 11:07 AM
those valves will all turn off.... all installed by the dummey

typeing this post......so its no big deal.....

its on a well and the flow rate is NA

eventually they will get a water conditioner ...

Probably a 48,000 CLACK

It is all isolated for various reasons of my own choosing....


you really HAVE to be there to understand what I am dealing with...


the homeowners let this place freeze up after I had plumbed it
once already,

so I had to go back out and re do all those valves....

then winterize the home

again , I was very impressed with the WIRSBO --no freeze problems on the pex side


as far as the brass and pex and chlorine,

you mis-understood my sarcasm.....

got more troubles to deal with....later

Dunbar Plumbing
02-09-2007, 11:34 AM
What IS the effective way to unthaw plastic piping?

You can't open up the walls, that only happens when the pipes do it for you.

I unthawed two copper lines yesterday at a barber shop without anything more than a torch.

Customer were estatic that I didn't have to fix, anything.

This PEX is already somewhat in my area.......just in the condos and landominiums.

I'm thinking they are SOL ???? I'd rather have that problem than property damage anyday.

Randyj
02-09-2007, 12:39 PM
If you're not in too big of a hurry and it is a very small area you can seal up...mount a hairdryer in there and leave it on low or medium...might take a couple of hours but it beats tearing out the wall. Also...there are some really kewl dog grooming hair dryers that are made to be left on for long periods of time which work great for such applications.

master plumber mark
02-09-2007, 02:00 PM
I have a large Kerosine salamander in my truck

today I thawed out a water meter in the front yard with
it ......

I thawed out some PEX today with it too....

I would guess that it is about the only way to do it....

just blast the heat into the crawl space till it all thaws out.....

IF YOU COULD FIGURE OUT AN EASY WAY TO THAW PEX PIPE YOU COULD MAKE MILLLIONS

I dont think that their is an easy way.........


the kerosine salamander makes the house stink pretty badly....

master plumber mark
02-14-2007, 12:45 PM
just left a ladies house after
thawing out her garage for about 1 hour+
$250.00

she left it open last night and she froze up all
the wirsbo pex pipe in the garage including a

FROZEN Clack water conditioner

she had about 3 inches of snow half way in the garage
which really blew in last night


took my slamader and literally heated
the garage hot enough to melt marshmellows...
with the door closed


put the CLACK on bypass and eventually
everything else let loose......

told her to let the place just natrually warm up
and maybe the valve would be ok.....


what is the hope of that
valve surviveing this treatment??

Gary Slusser
02-14-2007, 03:56 PM
what is the hope of that
valve surviveing this treatment??

If the resin tank didn't break, the control probably will be fine. If the tank did break, the control will probably be okay.

dubldare
02-14-2007, 05:01 PM
I don't know how chlorine can break down brass fittings...



From the Uponor website: http://www.uponor-usa.com/index.php?id=66

ProPEX fittings are available in both brass and engineered plastic (EP). A revolutionary new plastic, EP is completely non-toxic, resistant to high chlorine levels, withstands extreme temperatures and has a proven history in rigorous plumbing environments.



Dezincification, ever heard of it...

http://www.hghouston.com/coppers/brass75.htm

http://www.copper.org/applications/rodbar/pdf/7013.pdf



Ever seen a fairly new ball valve pinholed? (Not leaking yet, but with a nice white blister of corrosion on it, within the body of the valve, not at a sweat joint) I've seen several the past few years espescially. Aggressive water and cheap valves. (cheap valves usually mean a substandard alloy)

We have a rash of failures from work done ~5 years back---ball valves pinholeing. They are almost all Jomar, although a few have been the imported (yellow handle) Watt's.

sirleaky
02-17-2007, 09:43 PM
Hi All,
I don't have much of a problem thawing pex pipes out it just sometimes takes thinking out of the box sometimes. I up here in Maine have had my share of experiences thawing all kinds of pipes. Try thawing a 350 ft underground poly well line. It had all total about 40 ft of ice in it in varying places. Some places 5 to 6 feet deep.


I was just looking at the manifold what with all the valves turned every which way at no uniform height. I always like to have my valves at the same uniform heights. And all other cuts of copper the same so as to make it an nice neat job. Up here in Maine most inspectors would not allow all the solder drips or boogers as I call them to pass inspection. Per the good workmanship language in the codes. Nor would I let them stay on there even if they would.The printing/writing is also a bit primitive.

I just think that it looks a lot more professional. I not only wipe my joints I have been know to remove 99% of the solder with sand cloth in the most conspicuous locations. You'd be surprised how impressed the customer is with this. If we are going to get the pay that we are worth we all have to let the professionalism's come out.

Just my two cents worth.....Sirleaky

Racer814
02-18-2007, 03:18 AM
^go back and look at that installation again...


if all the ball valves are at the same height, some won't be able to close
and we don't call them "boogers" here in the south, we call 'em "dog d**ks"..

nice to know you wipe all your joints and practice perfect craftsmanship..I do too...well, I try to....and I've never had a "perfect" job yet...
but to come on here and nit pick someone else's work with your very first post is not all that cool. I'm sure you didn't mean anything by it...I just know how it would strike me:)

Racer814
02-18-2007, 03:22 AM
The printing/writing is also a bit primitive.

Thats because he's a caveman


...and he's probably not "100% in love with your tone right now" :D

Racer814
02-18-2007, 03:34 AM
Can I ask a stupid question... why would someone pay to put in that manifold array of ball valves so they could shut off every outlet of their plumbing in the house separately? Were they planning on having LOTS of plumbing problems in the future? Oh and you need to close the valves to the water softener before you turn the water back on.main advantage of a manifold system as I see it...other than being able to shut off a tub or shower valve without killing all the water is that you will get hot water quicker at the furthest points as it can take a more direct route and can be sized down..........

sirleaky
02-18-2007, 06:54 PM
Sorry any offense was taken I was just trying to keep the respectful opinions of our trade/s intact. God knows that some homeowners already think there is nothing to our trade/s and that we are just nothing but overpaid hacks.

The manifold could be piped so as all the valves would turn put at the same level.

I go into every job with the intent of doing a perfect job. I never have had anything close to a perfect job, but it is not a bad goal to have.;)

master plumber mark
02-19-2007, 04:15 AM
golley gee fellows.......

I really dont have to defend this

but "cave man"...because I used a majic marker

to identify this guys outlets..?? thats really sweet....

If I were to go back out with some paint thinner
and remove my cave markings and put something
better on that "temporary wall" would you all like it then??

the customer was happy that I didentified the valves for him..


the valves had to be at different heights because the handles
would hit one another......if you did this for a living you
wold probably know that already..

as far as the soldering...this was the second set of valves
installed becasue the homeowner let the first set freeze up
...and part of the copper mainfold too...


and their is a time and place for pretty--pretty
and a time to just get the work done...
like when its about 5 degrees in the house.

I have probably soldered more joints before I was
9 yrs old than many of you have done up to this day.
some very good ---and some ugly....

so their are those who do

....and those who teach...

and those who are only critics

cause they cant do any of the above...

TedL
02-19-2007, 06:15 AM
Hi All,
Up here in Maine most inspectors would not allow all the solder drips or boogers as I call them to pass inspection. Per the good workmanship language in the codes. Nor would I let them stay on there even if they would.

Speaking as a customer paying T&M for some stupid inspector to require pretty joints with no drips in a location that doesn't show or doesn't really matter...I don't need such "protection". Safety and function are one thing, but a solder drip in my basement????????

kordts
02-19-2007, 08:07 PM
It takes the same amount of time to do sloppy or neat work.

Cass
02-24-2007, 04:24 AM
Not really. Doing neat work does take more time that is why some people don't do it. I can plumb faster if my copper isn't quite the right lenght and looks crooked but works and if the joints aren't wiped. I can change out an electric panel faster if the wires aren't coming in perfectly and have perfect 90 bends going to the breakers and wire bundles held neatly with zip ties.

Neatness does take more time.

master plumber mark
02-24-2007, 06:14 AM
CASS.... you can play mind games with yourself doing
pooolumbing all day long if you so wish...

I actually know a fellow that used to have "anxiety attacks" trying to make his work exrtra perfect....he would take it apart 4 or 5 times ....reroute the work over and over agian....

you could also set up a lazer level if

you really want perfect......and spend the whole

week trying to make pex spagetti look perfect...

(behind the water-heater) LOL

---------------------------------------------------------------------
extra solder used was 'wasteful'

all those repair joints could have been extra perfect

with no drips or spots where solder had to be wiped off...


but this is not the space shuttle either....

its a mechanical room with a water heater in front of it....

and it is not gong to leak in my lfetime

----------------------------------------------------------------------

Its all a futile effort because

the funny thing is with most customers that bothers me

is all they really care about is when they turn on the

faucets hot comes out on the left and cold comes out on the right...

and when they flush the toilets....

the crap goes away and dont come back..


they are not going to pat you on the head and tell you you are a good boy for all those level pipes.....


95% dont even have a clue what they are looking at.....
and dont even know wether they have a gas or electric water heater.....


so its simply all a "personal best"
thing you do for yourself...

just dont get out the lazer level

Dunbar Plumbing
02-24-2007, 09:29 AM
I treat every customer like they know as much as I do....and come to find out down the road that some have very good knowledge of the profession and know what to look out for.


Never do I leave drips on copper piping and for numerous reasons. There are exclusions and I cover that below.

For one, you might be the fool that has to come back and cut that pipe again someday and install another fitting or the like and since you didn't wipe the pipe clean, you are now taking that section completely out because wiping it with a rag (which you probably didn't) won't remove the flux corrosion near those drips and when you go to reheat and remove those drips, you spend 5 minutes and questionable solder joints because you cannot get the pipe clean completely.

When it is extremely cold like two weeks ago and I'm soldering I wear gloves and I can twick the solder bead forming on the joint and instantly bring heat back to it.....or I'll take the solder wire itself and quickly move it across the solder drop and will remove most of it without disturbing the closing joint.

Since my soldering is mostly limited these days due to service work, I will take it even one more step and do the "shoe-shine" approach on the piping where I'll take a long section of sandcloth and brush the copper, joints included to a high shined finish that involves the section I worked on from top to bottom.

It stands out completely from the last plumber ultimately and if you lose that customer......they'll wonder why the next one isn't performing the same professionalism. Taking an extra 10 minutes and straightening out a swing joint or piping hanging down from the ceiling when you know damn right well that if you spend extra time, j-hook the piping up,,,,it will actually make your work easier to do since you're not angling the pipe that you have to reconnect to.


And professionalism is exactly what that is. Putting the top notch work out there so your competition works below you.

Agreed, there are times I cannot remove the solder.......especially in areas where even the torch barely reaches. But in open view I make it look as good as possible and in new construction back in the day......I'd do the same.

Plumbing is artwork to me and I respect it because I'm in this boat for a limited time only due to physical limitations.

The last thing I want to be known as in present and past is that I had no respect for my profession.


And to brag, I just nailed the super service award through angie's list again, making it 4 years straight. 4 A reports in just the past 5 weeks. People can diss that system all you want but being in my position in that system is a money generator and I'm getting a good wage and they are getting top notch service. That system is growing in leaps and bounds and contractors are trying to get on that list. Being on the back end of stick on that list will drive your income down if you are a pisser and moaner of giving bad service to homeowners. Being on that system in bad view is a black eye that hurts for years, not 3 years like the BBB offers with no in-depth technical data around the bad workmanship.


I have a great deal of pride for my profession,,,,,,don't know if anyone knows that by now but I beat to a drumroll all my own. I'm not the best but I give the best service I know how. I leave nothing behind for the next plumber to criticize my workmanship.

That's being realistic in the above statement. You should only expect 70% of your customer base to like you no matter if you worked for free and left candy.


LOL! I do that now. I figure I'm delaying my diabetes diagnosis someday in the future and now when I bring the bill through the door.....

I leave a couple pieces of candy and my business magnet on their kitchen counter as a way of saying thank you for your patronage.

I leave before they start choking on the hot cinnamon candies to avoid a lawsuit.:eek: :confused: :p


Charging by the hour allows the above to be a normal and usual practice without complaint.


All plumbers are not created equal.......and by no means am I the best. I'm just the best at what I do for my customers, in my mind and no one elses.




word!

toolaholic
02-24-2007, 10:08 AM
I also couldn't believe that mess. I would be embarrassed to post that pix.
The truth is inflammatory !

master plumber mark
02-24-2007, 12:07 PM
If that pic really offends you ,

I will simply take it off.... I am not ahamed of anything

and as I already mentioined before, the job is unfinished

and more will be done after the drywall is hung and is finished.

though I doubt I will would make it much different.....

well, just to make you happy perhaps I can wipe those joints
a little better when I go back out to install the heater sometime this summer...

it might be all covered in white paint by then, but if it makes you happy



So why dont you post something you have done recently yourself??


maybe I can post something else too....


I took that pic off just not to offend all the true professionals here on this site,,,

Terry
02-24-2007, 12:40 PM
Hey, just leave the picture on there.
Why are people getting so picky?

It does show a form of manifold and helps to inform what may be part of a plumbing job.

master plumber mark
02-24-2007, 12:58 PM
Actually Terry I posted that pic to show how

the copper froze and broke throughout the mainfold and

at ALL the ball valves.....


and was very impressed that the Wirsbo did not freeze and break
and showed no other problems in the house


it was sort of interesting to re-solder the whole thing with the

heat of the torch ....the wirsbo attached to the copper

and all the re-soldering necessary.....

used snow and a wet rag to keep things cool

I understood that you are not supposed to solder up to 15inches
away from the compressed joint....


anyway everyone is a critic......

even if they only have a propane tank to their name


I will put a new more updated post back there.

master plumber mark
02-24-2007, 01:00 PM
Actually ..............................here is an updated pic....

Now try to remember .......all you professional folks .....that this is unfinished.....

and the only thing this "cave man " has holding up that whole manifold to the wall
is a couple spikes in case they decided to drywall behind this they could actually
just let the whole thing just sag down to the floor.......

Wirsbo will flex that much which is pretty nice....

their is some drywall put up on the left and styrofoam insulation
has been sprayed up from the lower garage area
around the pex itself at floor level.....




http://onsmartpages.com/weilhammerplumbingco/nss-folder/pictures/si_UEw80h80_SNOW%20FALL%20JAN21%20%2006%20088.jpg (http://onsmartpages.com/weilhammerplumbingco/pictures/view_alone.nhtml?profile=pictures&UID=10188) so let the critics have at it......



hey ..toolaholic....you got any pics of your work you want to post ???

Cass
02-24-2007, 01:19 PM
All I said was that neatness does take more time, I was disagreeing with kordts that neatness takes the same amount of time.

I was not commenting on anyones job, pro or con to neatness.

Dunbar Plumbing
02-24-2007, 01:50 PM
Damn tool, that's not why I wrote that. :rolleyes:

Just tellin folks how I run copper, that's all.


Come off one of those ridgid tools you're sportn' there. Help a poor man out.


I say put the pic back up. It's big enough for my desktop background:D


I had no clue this thread would go this direction and we STILL don't know how to unthaw PEX piping without ripping walls open.

toolaholic
02-24-2007, 06:49 PM
You fold EZ . HE HE . I do feel bad WE buster Mark's chops he he.I'M sure in time HE'LL nail us in the back of the head with a 24" stilson.

MARK PLEEZZZE put back that picture ,WE'll be good.:D


WE're DOOMED:o

kordts
02-24-2007, 07:18 PM
I guess it's just me, I got one speed. I take accurate measurements, and support the pipes before joining them. Flicking a booger or wiping the flux off is like reaming, after you do it enough, it becomes part of the process.

Dunbar Plumbing
02-24-2007, 08:42 PM
Are you sure you're RUGGED




I typed in snuggles as a user name and rugged is what I got.


Been gone a week from the boards and Blam-0 http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v70/DUNBAR/argue.gif

Cookie
02-24-2007, 11:04 PM
I recently had to have some electrical work done. My husband never got around to marking the circuits, well, this electrician without my knowing at the time, did it. He marked the circuits, ie, bedroom, kitchen, dishwasher, furnace, etc... I couldn't believe it. I don't know if you would call that professional, but, it was really the nicest thing someone did for me in a long, long time. He was the electrician that the gas company sent out on its warranty program which I subscribe to. The greatest thing any plumber or electrician can do for a customer is to mark something so we know what is what. I don't care what you mark it with, magic marker, crayon, or blood, lol, it is just a darned nice thing to do. Probably, the most helpful thing you can do for a homeowner. I think something like that makes the difference to me in hiring someone, if I have a say, with the gas company I get whoever they send out; but, if I could request a certain business I would if they went above and beyond on something like that. I only showed about everyone in my neighborhood the circuit breaker box, lol, and told them the name of the electrician. It is so much easier now for me, if something trips for some reason, or I got to shut something down for some reason. Doing something like what he did, was a class act.

I appreciated that. It makes it easier on my kids, too. And, anyone who helps my kids, shows my kids a kindness in someway, you won me over. My kids are my life.

Candy is also, really nice and sweet.

wanup
03-04-2007, 10:25 AM
I'm considering using Pex piping in my cottage in Northern Ontario. It is summer use only and I blow out my lines every fall for the winter.
We can get -35 C temperatures during the winter.

Do you know if Pex piping can withstand that kind of cold (no water in the lines of course) without cracking?

thanks

Dunbar Plumbing
03-04-2007, 10:44 AM
I'm considering using Pex piping in my cottage in Northern Ontario. It is summer use only and I blow out my lines every fall for the winter.
We can get -35 C temperatures during the winter.

Do you know if Pex piping can withstand that kind of cold (no water in the lines of course) without cracking?

thanks


Possibly in the home run method...


Read this


http://www.terrylove.com/forums/showthread.php?t=11550

jadnashua
03-04-2007, 02:12 PM
Pex should be fine for the use you mention.

wanup
03-04-2007, 03:56 PM
Thanks for the info guys. I checked out the links and it looks like this will be a great product to use especially when I'm at the cottage in the fall and overnight lows bring frost. Thats enough to pop my copper that is outside. Looks like Pex can easily handle that.

:)

master plumber mark
01-02-2008, 04:15 PM
Well the temp has hit 5 degrees here again and
we got a few frozen houses already..


went out a home today with
a total re-pipe in Zurn pex...

someone left the crawl space door open and the
whole system seems to be frozen solid
or partially frozen...

told them to get their own salamander
and just heat the crawl till lit thaws out again...

its is supposed to hit 58 degrees by next tuesday...

Marlin336
01-02-2008, 05:21 PM
You know, that's one of the first things I said when I saw pex being installed. I had all the plumbers stumped, none of them had thought of it before.

One crazy theory of mine which I hopefully won't get the chance to test out. Brass is a conductor, and water is a conductor. If you put the cable on the brass pex fittings can it conduct through the water/ice and defrost that way?

I'm sure their is a flaw here as that seems like way to easy a solution. What is it.
Just plain won't work?
Pex will melt at the fitting?

jadnashua
01-02-2008, 06:19 PM
Water can be a decent conductor if it has free ions, say from salt or other things, but on its own, it's not that great.

master plumber mark
01-03-2008, 04:44 AM
Looking at my thermometer its about 4 degrees
outside today.....

I can just hear those pex lines crackling and
freezing shut....


what ar those poor bastards gonna do??

Cass
01-03-2008, 04:47 AM
Mark, with very little wind there may not be many freeze ups. If the wind were 20 MPH or so I wouldn't be here typing.

Redwood
01-03-2008, 05:08 AM
Looking at my thermometer its about 4 degrees
outside today.....

I can just hear those pex lines crackling and
freezing shut....


what ar those poor bastards gonna do??


They are going to curse the guy that installed it in a manner where it would freeze and rightly so!

However, They will be very glad that when it thaws there is not one single leak!

Hopefully, They get the freeze problem areas resolved and avoid future troubles. PEX freezing is not caused by PEX... It is caused by the hack installer or the builder that left the path for the cold draft.

statjunk
01-03-2008, 06:16 AM
Mark,

I thought your work looked fine. I'm sure it could be nicer but it looks good. It works and the customer paid you so that is all that should matter.

Not all PEX cracks or freezes. It is the installation. I installed PEX this summer in a 75' run and this morning it was 3 degrees. The water moved perfectly through the pipe. Why because I insulated correctly and tented the insulation over it. Just like you'd do with copper. This is in the attic. You guys gave me the tenting idea.

So it isn't so much the product but the installer and method.

Tom

riverbend
01-19-2008, 06:56 AM
Looking at my thermometer its about 4 degrees
outside today.....

I can just hear those pex lines crackling and
freezing shut....


what ar those poor bastards gonna do??

Hopefully call someone other than you. Your work (pictures) in previous post is awful sloppy. Maybe turn the valves a 90*, and you could install them all at the same level.

master plumber mark
01-19-2008, 10:43 AM
well, well river-butt....

their are those that actually do real plumbing every day

and those that make smart little remarks like you.....

I am in combat every day,

I take pics of my work and others too...

and on occasion, you simply cant make a silk
purse out of a sows ear.
due to time constraints and other issues...

you would know this if you actually did this for a
living

perhaps you should stick with your job
bagging groceries at wall mart



here is a pic of some other pex I ran a
while back in a dump...

This is wirsbo pex ,
in case you dont know what you are looking at

go ahead and knock yourself out.



http://onsmartpages.com/weilhammerplumbingco/nss-folder/pictures/si_UEw80h80_DSC06114.JPG (http://onsmartpages.com/weilhammerplumbingco/pictures/view_alone.nhtml?profile=pictures&UID=10225)

Terry
01-19-2008, 11:31 AM
Mark,
Nice picture of Wirsbo (Uponor) piping.
I like the manifolds, it's a nice way of repiping.

riverbend
01-19-2008, 02:07 PM
Trust me, I know what I am looking at regarding PLUMBING. I have yet to see any PLUMBING that a TRADESMAN installed in your photos. I could care less if you want to slap it in, and move on to your next project. It will be behind sheetrock any way, huh? Have at it.

master plumber mark
01-19-2008, 02:51 PM
Well, let see some of your TRADESMAN
work.....river butt


oh, excuse me.....

you have never actually done this before..
or you would have some real Tradesman pics to post


You probably watch "this old house" every day
and consider yourself an expert.......

probably went out and bought your first pair of
Sears Craftsman pliers like the ones Bob VEELa sells on TV....

still hanging brand new above your work bench....


or perhaps you took a correspondence course......who knows......

-------------------------------------------------------------------

It is soooo easy to find fault with others work

like a pathetic arm-chair quarterback........ so be it.....

So if you actually have done this before go ahead and
post something....



When I get the three stroy renovation we are doing
completed , I will post some other pics for fun...


I honestly dont mind the criticism from other plumbers on this
site, or I would not post them......



Its the little weiners like you that make the world go round ....I suppose....

I will give you something to else to address next week

Just sit back and get your Pringles and beer ready.......

Terry
01-19-2008, 02:51 PM
Riverbend,
Do you run copper or PEX or both?

For PEX, that's pretty much how it's going to look.
Do you have some pictures of your work you can share?

master plumber mark
01-19-2008, 03:04 PM
He dont have anything,...no way....

I am just having fun with him terry......


have a good football day tomorrow....

riverbend
01-19-2008, 03:11 PM
Riverbend,
Do you run copper or PEX or both?

For PEX, that's pretty much how it's going to look.
Do you have some pictures of your work you can share?

Both. Mostly copper. No I do not have any pictures. I am familer with how PEX looks. My comments were pertaining to the Copper in the first post with pictures. For someone whos been in the TRADE since he was 9 years old, I would expect better work. Relax, its just my opinion, and remember I work at Walmart part time. If that work (copper) looks okay to you, great.

riverbend
01-19-2008, 05:04 PM
Upon further review (photo #1) it looks like a 9 year may have installed this system. Keep having fun with me plumber Mark, and keep up the good work, hopefully the water heater(s) will continue to cover it. Ever been in a real mechanical room?

master plumber mark
01-19-2008, 05:54 PM
I have Been just about everywhere......river butt.

Have listened to all the beer talk......and bull sh// too.....

I really do like the service the best..

Its a more personable area to be in..by far.....

go ahead......you can live your whole work life in a boiler room.....




of course if you would have read the info on pic #1,

that was a total repair job after the original slop

I threw in had completely and totally frozen over.....

(the thread was originally about that ........dumb-ass....)


All the ball valves are new because the original
ones had frozen up solid and cracked,,,,,and a lot
of that copper manifold had frozen solid and cracked here and there...

so I basically had to cut out most of what was originally
in there and start over with the pex stub outs comming up from the floor....OK????

This was Damage Control, after the homeowner forgot to
leave the heat on in a new house........

FYI..Riverbutt......when you dont have heat on and the water is left on
the pipes have a tendencey to break in sub zero temps...

you can see the burn marks on the wall....(sooo very sloppy)..
of course now that it has all been finshed ,
it was all painted white and looks good.... OK?

Perhaps , in hindsight....and to win your admiration and approval.....
I should have spent an extra work day and
totally cut the whole thing out and started over
and it would have not looked so bad?


FYI....you can use a can of white spray paint and clean up a
lot of nasty messes you have to make to repair a freeze disaster,
it really dont have to be hidden behing drywall...
and it will pass the homeowners inspection .....OK?

Have you ever had to repair a freeze disaster like that before
a mix of PEX and copper pipe all so close together???
......no, I dont think so........

http://onsmartpages.com/weilhammerplumbingco/nss-folder/pictures/si_UEw80h80_SNOW%20FALL%20JAN21%20%2006%20088.jpg (http://onsmartpages.com/weilhammerplumbingco/pictures/view_alone.nhtml?profile=pictures&UID=10188)



But what amazed me was the fact that the pex and black plastic
manifolds I had put in the system had NOT frozen
and broke....or the pex itself....

again that is what the thread was about

FYI Riverbutt.
...wirsbo black plastic mainfolds are used in Pex runs
usualy with 5 or more outlets to do a whole bathroom group...


what else amazes me....... is that you
probably dont know the difference..


where are your pics. -----I am still waiting-----

riverbend
01-19-2008, 07:10 PM
Am aware of freezing temperatures. Used a Miller welder (just yesterday) to thaw 100' of type L copper.Would of used the Hot Shot 400 but the welder is quicker. Thanks for letting me know about the brand names you install. In my neck of the woods we use Vanex with crimp rings Wirsbro is
hard to find. I also install manibloc infloor heat, sometimes using their manifolds, and other times making my own. When making my own I space the tees in away that all valves are at the same elevation. If space is tight, I turn the valves a quarter turn and thus they can stay on or near the same elavation. Again, if your happy with your HACK job thats great. I try to put enough $ into my jobs to do them right. Why the name calling? In my original post I said I would hope they call someone else as the work in the photo is shoddy.I also test backflow preventers (Febco,Watts,Rainbird etc.). More big words unistrut, unistrut clamps, clevis hangers. Really I have used them in my 24 years in the trade. Just never thought about taking pictures of my installs. Thats what as-built plans are for. My bad about taking enogh time to read the post. I just caught the holier than now post about you doing more joints, etc. than everybody on this forumn. That being the case I would expect to see that in your photos. I would still call someone else.

boober
01-19-2008, 08:20 PM
Sorry to interrupt the feud here...:)
And as evident by some of my questions in other posts, I'm no professional, but how about using something like a electric blanket to thaw PEX piping? Something rigged with a GFI that would trip if water were to leak due to the freezing (though the risk seems small from the stuff I've read.) It might take a bit more time, but it would thaw the pipes out sooner than waiting for warmer weather...

Or how about something akin to the ice dam cables for roofs, except made with variable heat settings and some insulation around it and some for the pipe?

master plumber mark
01-20-2008, 04:27 AM
Boober......sorry about all the bickering,

frozen pex pipes is what this thread
was originally about.....

anything might thaw out a small area that is frozen,
even a hair dryer could win the battle if it is a small battle



The only thing I know to do is to go

get a salamander blower that uses Kerosene...

then ....depending on the situation, you either need to

blow it into the chase, crawl space, or area that is frozen up....


if it is in an open drafty area ,,,you might even have to
build a barrier or tent of some nature to hold or direct the
heat onto the area that is frozen....


just dont burn the whole place down ....


Its the only way a HACK like me knows how to do it.....





also.....you should really ask ....River bend what he thinks



he is the only true craftsman here ......

boober
01-20-2008, 08:43 AM
Are you kiddin'? I can't even count threads I've steered off course with bickering.:D

I was simply "thinking outside the box" as another poster put it. Rigging something up that was on a role, that was similar to a electric blanket that could be applied and left on for a while could free a plumber up to go to other service calls and return when the thawing was complete. Again, just hypothesizing..

I am planning on running pex in my house, and noticed you mentioned the plastic Wisbro manifolds. I was hemming about using the propex copper manifolds because of their price, but now I fell a bit better about the plastic ones. I hate to be the "do it on the cheap" person, because that almost ALWAYS ends up costing more in the long run, but I feel a bit better after reading that the thing stood up to being frozen. I was also considering the Manabloc manifold since it has both built into the same block. No real worries of freezing here though, I have a basement, and have insulated pretty well. I plan on running 2" foam on the exterior to about 2' down to reduce even more heat loss.

Side note: Having walked around my neighborhood over the last few months, I'm one of only a handful of people without ice damming. Sure does make me feel good, after pumping all that cellulose into the attic last year (for a cost of less than $100.) And I can totally understand how customers can request some unusual stuff to "save money." I tried to tell my neighbor how to reduce his ice damming (he had water pouring down the inside of his exterior wall) but he chooses to shovel his roof as opposed to taking measures to ensure it won't happen again in the future...

ofblong
01-17-2009, 08:08 PM
http://onsmartpages.com/weilhammerplumbingco/nss-folder/pictures/si_UEw80h80_SNOW%20FALL%20JAN21%20%2006%20088.jpg (http://onsmartpages.com/weilhammerplumbingco/pictures/view_alone.nhtml?profile=pictures&UID=10188)

I took that first pic off just to not offend all the true professionals here on this site....

here is an updated pic from last week.... minor drywall has been done

.but I know it still jsut isnt pretty enough for you all....

now remember....
the whole manifold is just hanging there on the wall with only a few nails
holding it in place....

I am sorry for "resurrecting" such an old thread but I had to say something. I found this while looking for methods to unthaw a frozen pex pipe that I surrounded with a ton of insulation (found out it got frozen because my kids closed the heater vent so it got cold in that room). Anyway THAT LOOKS HORRIBLE. I would DIE if I saw something like that. I dont install plumbing nor am I a plumber but I DO sweat copper piping for 120psi compressed air. You used wwwaaaayyyy to much solder on those joints. You only need just enough to "sweat" the pipe together not use a whole role of solder on 10 fittings. I mean my 7 year old could sweat copper together better than that. If I was the homeowner/business that you installed it (or your boss) I would make you rip it out and do it right. I see what river is talking about (I did not at first). Its plumbers like you that give other plumbers a bad name. You would have been better off using a real manifold for a situation like this instead of some cobbled together mess.

Anywho I will say this thread was informative even though all I had to do to fix my situation was open the furnace vent and get the room back upto the 70 degrees my house is.

us marriage
06-08-2009, 08:13 AM
You can accomplish this by heating the areas where the pipes are, and by making certain they are insulated from the freezing cold. Outside pipes should be shut off at the source, or, if they are required (as in on a farm) they should be unsulated and heated where they are exposed to the cold.

Sometimes allowing a slow flow will keep them from freezing too, but this is a waste of a finite natural resource.