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Thread: Soldering question for new shower faucet

  1. #1

    Default Soldering question for new shower faucet

    I am just about ready to install a new shower faucet. I have done a lot of research and reading, but I am still stumped by one issue.

    I bought an American Standard faucet set. The inlets are threaded. Here is a picture:

    http://www.eclipta.com/pics/valve.jpg

    My question is how do I connect my copper pipe to these threaded inlets? I assume that I do not simply solder pipe into the threads. Rather do I use a threaded adapter such as this:

    http://www.eclipta.com/pics/threaded.jpg

    If the above adapter is correct, do I simply screw it in or should I use teflon tape? I am worried that if I use teflon tape it will be damaged from the heat when I then proceed to solder my pipe to the adapter. But I am also worried that if I don't use teflon tape it will eventually leak. Or am I totally on the wrong track?

    If anybody can clue me in here, I would appreciate it. The instructions that came with my faucet set are terrible.

    I just discovered this forum and looks great. Thanks for the help.

    -Sean

  2. #2

    Default

    Solder the male adapter to the correct length piece of pipe BEFORE you screw it into the valve.Then you can connect the pipe at the back end,far enough away to preclude heat damage to the valve. Yes,teflon tape is called for on the threads.

  3. #3
    Retired Defense Industry Engineer jadnashua's Avatar
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    Default

    Many of those fixtures will allow you to solder a pipe directly in or use a threaded connector, instead. See if the pipe will fit inside the valve. Then you've got a choice. If you decide to use a threaded connector, you can solder that separatly onto a piece of pipe so you aren't heating the valve. Use either pipe dope, tape, or both to attach the fitting to the valve/pipe assembly, then finish up the rest of the soldered connections. People that aren't used to soldering could overheat the valve. Best to take out the cartridge before soldering around it.
    Jim DeBruycker
    Important note - I'm not a pro
    Retired Defense Industry Engineer; Schluter 2.5-day Workshop Completed 2013, 2014

  4. #4

    Default

    Thanks for the replies. I have a few follow up questions.

    1) I will have an elbow corner very close to the inlet. Doesn't that preclude me from soldering the pipe to the adapter first? If I screw it in after the elbow will likely end up pointing the wrong way.

    2) I am confused about soldering pipe directly into the threaded inlet. Won't this cause a problem because of all the gaps created by the threads?

    3) What exactly is pipe dope and how does it differ from teflon tape?

    Thanks again for the tremendous help.

    -Sean

  5. #5
    Retired Defense Industry Engineer jadnashua's Avatar
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    If the pipe will fit inside of the valve (on the inside , not over the threads), then it is smooth wall of the pipe soldered to a smooth inside of the valve.

    Pros solder next to the valve all of the time. The further away from the valve you are, the less likely you will be to mess something up. If you are not comfortable soldering, buy some fittings and try it where it won't make a difference. Then throw away the practice piece. If you aren't comfortable after that, pay a pro to do it for you.
    Jim DeBruycker
    Important note - I'm not a pro
    Retired Defense Industry Engineer; Schluter 2.5-day Workshop Completed 2013, 2014

  6. #6
    Plumber jimbo's Avatar
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    Teflon holds up in frying pans, right? You can solder a fitting which has tape on the threads without worry. You should remove the valve internals, however.

  7. #7
    Plumber Cass's Avatar
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    Personaly it is just as easy to presolder the Male adp. as it is to do it the other way. I have seen lots of teflon pans burned from going over 375F with nothing in the pan.

  8. #8
    Plumber Cass's Avatar
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    Default Teflon thread seal tapes

    After checking, Teflon tapes have a heat ratings of 375F-500F. Solders can range from 400F-475F for their melting point and the fitting may get to over 500F as heat continues to transfer through the fitting. Plumbers have been soldering with the adaptors on the valve for years with no problems, This is just FYI.

  9. #9
    Moderator & Master Plumber hj's Avatar
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    Default valve

    1. Faucets with female threads like yours do not accept copper tubing directly into the valve.
    2. You do not solder the elbow fitting to the piece of copper, just the male adapter, and then the elbow is soldered after the adapter is tightened into the valve.
    3. If you have to use something like a street elbow into the adapter, then remove the valve interior parts before soldering it. Do not overheat the adapter or you will have a leak, either from melting the joint sealer or overexpanding the brass parts due to the heat.
    4. Pipe dope compound, which I prefer, or teflon tape, or both are all acceptable.

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