(206) 949-5683, Top Rated Plumber, Seattle
Results 1 to 5 of 5

Thread: Flushing copper pipe

  1. #1
    Mechanical Engineer loafer's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2008
    Location
    Maine
    Posts
    49

    Default Flushing copper pipe

    Great forum! I've searched it extensively in the past mouth and found answers to most of questions.

    I recently rerouted some copper water lines in our 1980 house and discovered a significant amount of buildup in the hot water supply lines. The supply line from the hot water heater is 1/2in and there is about 1/16in buildup around the entire pipe ID, effectively reducing the ID to 3/8in. The depsoits appear to be iron and can be easily wiped out. The pipes appear to be in excellent condition otherwise. The house is on a well and has a sediment filter, but no water softener

    My question is; Is there a way to flush the hot water lines to remove this build up, or do I need to remove the pipes?

    Thanks!
    Josh

  2. #2
    Computer Programmer Bill Arden's Avatar
    Join Date
    Sep 2006
    Location
    MN, USA
    Posts
    584

    Default

    Yes it is possible to clean out the pipes using cleaners, like vinegar, but you will risk both creating leaks and plugging up faucets as the flakes come loose.

    I'm sure the phrase "if it works, don't fix it" comes to mind.
    Important note Ė I donít know man made laws, just laws of physics
    Disclaimer: I'm a big fan of Darwin awards.

  3. #3
    Mechanical Engineer loafer's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2008
    Location
    Maine
    Posts
    49

    Default

    So vineger might work?

    My thought was to flush most of the junk out the bathtub faucet, and remove the strainers from all the sinks.

    The gunk in the pipes has a texture more like really wet mud, it's not flakey or hard. Some of the pipes that I removed i was able to push the stuff out with a small peice of rag and a long piece of steel tubing to try and figure out what the stuff is. Once the water evaporated from my pile of goo it left a fine orange powder, which I figured was Iron. Very interesting stuff.

  4. #4
    Moderator & Master Plumber hj's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2004
    Location
    Cave Creek, Arizona
    Posts
    25,655

    Default deposits

    If it is that soft and movable, maybe a high pressure water or air flow would blow it out.

  5. #5
    Retired Defense Industry Engineer jadnashua's Avatar
    Join Date
    Sep 2004
    Location
    New England
    Posts
    21,412

    Default

    Iron deposits probably won't be affected much by vinegar. If you could open the valves and build pressure so you got high flow, similar to how they flush out water lines on public systems by opening all of the fire hydrants, you might flush a bunch out. You'd probably need some sort of auxilliary pump.
    Jim DeBruycker
    Important note - I'm not a pro
    Retired Defense Industry Engineer; Schluter 2.5-day Workshop Completed 2013, 2014

Bookmarks

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •