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Thread: Made Mistake-used purple primer on ABS pipe

  1. #1
    DIY Junior Member mancavebuilders's Avatar
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    Question Made Mistake-used purple primer on ABS pipe

    Yes, it clearly states on the can that this primer is not to be used on ABS. In the past, we had always used PVC pipe and used the primer. City inspector said ABS had to be used on our new sewer drain for the shop. Well the pipes are in and all the fittings seem really good, and I mean REALLY GOOD. I have read everything online that says you don't need to prime ABS and you shouldn't prime ABS, but it's already done. Does it actually hurt anything?? We did use the correct cement and other than making it a better weld, is there any reason for concern since we did use the purple primer? We did make a mistake on one of the fittings and tried to get it apart immediately. That didn't work. We broke a brand new Craftsman screwdriver trying to beat the thing apart. The pipes are not buried yet. Any reason the city inspector would have a problem with what we did?
    Would appreciate any info.
    Mancavebuilders

  2. #2
    Moderator & Master Plumber hj's Avatar
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    Default primer

    It depends on the inspector and whether he sees the primer's stain, so there is no way WE can answer your question. But Sears will replace the screwdriver.
    Last edited by hj; 05-19-2009 at 06:27 AM.

  3. #3
    Plunger/TurdPuncher kingsotall's Avatar
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    Scientifically, I don't have an answer. But the fact that the pipes aren't buried is reason enough to start it all over using ABS cement. It's called pride in ones craft. Like the name on the screwdriver you broke.
    I just post cuz I like to see my avatar.

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    Plumber jimbo's Avatar
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    If this is a big job, it might be worth trying to get an opinon either from the primer manufacturer, or the PPFA. ( Plastic Pipe and Fittings Association).

    I am guessing that you are OK, but you inspector may not be interested in MY opionion!

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    DIY Junior Member mancavebuilders's Avatar
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    Hey, I just called the Primer manufacturer and left a message. I'm waiting to hear back from them. You can't see the purple primer on the black ABS pipe but you sure can see the great bead of weld around the fittings. I think the primer and cement make an extra strong bond, but that's just my opinion. By the way, I found out this morning that while I was at work last night, my hubby buried most of the pipe. I really don't want to dig it up again, (who ever does though) I spent my entire weekend in that trench trying to level that drain line.

  6. #6
    DIY Junior Member mancavebuilders's Avatar
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    Smile Found answer to primer problem

    After stressing about it all night, I took the advice to call the manufacturer of the primer. I finally got word back that even though they don't recommend it, it wouldn't hurt to use the purple primer on the ABS pipe. What a relief! So if anyone else is dumb enough to do this, at least it doesn't have to be replaced. I'll tell you this much, it makes a heck of a bond with the extra solvent in the primer.
    Thanks to all for your advice and comments.

  7. #7
    In the Trades Gary Swart's Avatar
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    I'm not sure that bead around the joint does any good or not. I probably doesn't hurt anything since the joint is made by solvent welding and that is all done inside the joint. But, bottom line, you have good joints and that's what really matters. I did find it curious as to why you were required to use ABS and not allowed PVC. In some areas of the country, they don't even sell ABS. My opinion is that either will work just fine.

  8. #8
    DIY Senior Member chris8796's Avatar
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    I don't think you'll have any issues, PVC primer is usually a combination of THF (70%) and MEK (30%), while abs cement uses MEK (70%) and Acetone (30%) as the solvent. I don't see where a little bit of THF would be a problem, it would evaporate off like acetone. ABS is soluble in THF.

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