(206) 949-5683, Top Rated Plumber, Seattle
Page 1 of 2 12 LastLast
Results 1 to 15 of 22

Thread: question about soldering copper tubing

  1. #1

    Default question about soldering copper tubing

    I just ran to the hardware store to buy some solder before they closed for the weekend, hoping to get a leg up on my plumbing project this weekend. I went without my reading glasses and when i got home i saw that the roll of solder i had bought has 3.5% silver. I thought "no problem".

    It does behave differently than the other solder I was using on this plumbing project. Needs much more heat and doesn't flow as nice. Have I made a booboo or will this still be ok? Won't be able to test my joints until I complete the circuit next week. But i could use the info to continue or stop until the shops re-open on Monday.

    thx.

  2. #2
    Moderator & Master Plumber hj's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2004
    Location
    Cave Creek, Arizona
    Posts
    25,605

    Default solder

    As long as you use proper soldering techniques you should have no problem.

  3. #3

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by hj
    As long as you use proper soldering techniques you should have no problem.

    been using it, not as easy as the last roll but doable. I'm pretty sloppy with this stuff. Ugly joints. aarrgh. TN-AG 3.5% silver.

  4. #4
    Moderator & Master Plumber hj's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2004
    Location
    Cave Creek, Arizona
    Posts
    25,605

    Default solder

    It will have a fairly small temperature range where it is plastic and flowing. So it will take more heat to melt the solder, and possibly continuous heat to keep it flowing until the joint is made properly. But it will solidify faster than your previous solder.

  5. #5
    Retired Defense Industry Engineer jadnashua's Avatar
    Join Date
    Sep 2004
    Location
    New England
    Posts
    21,382

    Default

    Did your old roll have lead in it? It could if it has been sitting around for a long time.
    Jim DeBruycker
    Important note - I'm not a pro
    Retired Defense Industry Engineer; Schluter 2.5-day Workshop Completed 2013, 2014

  6. #6

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by jadnashua
    Did your old roll have lead in it? It could if it has been sitting around for a long time.
    i imagine it must have to flow so nicely.

    shame about lead being poisonous to organic beings. maybe in the next universe they can work that one out.

  7. #7
    In the Trades Bob NH's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2005
    Location
    New Hampshire
    Posts
    3,307

    Default

    The amount of lead that you will get in your water from a soldered joint is negligible. It is an issue of the law more than the hazard. Kids eat lead paint and there may be a few places that have lead pipes, so the EPA logic is that you must avoid lead in soldering water pipes.

    They got rid of perfectly good leaded brass and some of the pump manufacutrers replaced it with inferior nickel plated iron. The lead in the brass was to make it easier to machine and it contributed no lead to the water. Rationality is not a constraint for government rule-makers.

  8. #8
    Moderator & Master Plumber hj's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2004
    Location
    Cave Creek, Arizona
    Posts
    25,605

    Default logic

    Or Ralph Nader.

  9. #9
    I&C Engineer (mostly WWTP) Lakee911's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2005
    Location
    Columbus, OH
    Posts
    1,328

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Bob NH
    The amount of lead that you will get in your water from a soldered joint is negligible. It is an issue of the law more than the hazard. Kids eat lead paint and there may be a few places that have lead pipes, so the EPA logic is that you must avoid lead in soldering water pipes.

    They got rid of perfectly good leaded brass and some of the pump manufacutrers replaced it with inferior nickel plated iron. The lead in the brass was to make it easier to machine and it contributed no lead to the water. Rationality is not a constraint for government rule-makers.
    Maybe so, but I'll not take my chances. You go ahead and drink leaded water, Bob.

  10. #10

    Default

    well, here's the thing. Truth be told I completed the job with lots of soldered joints. lots. Today I tested. Three leaking joints. Undid two and resoldered and fine. The third one is a bit of a bugbear. I have been using my butane torch hooked up to a small metal cannister to do the job, it's what i've been using for years. The firdt two joints were very hard to unsolder. required a lot of time. The third joint doesn't budge. My thinking is that this tin/silver solder has a really high melting point and that i'm not going to get at it with butane. Would the solution be to go out and get some propane which burns hotter? Pain in the neck, but if it's the only way to undo this joint I guess i'll go for it. let the experts plz contribute to this thread.

  11. #11
    In the Trades Gary Swart's Avatar
    Join Date
    Sep 2004
    Location
    Yakima WA
    Posts
    7,246

    Default

    I think you're on the right track. Butane just doesn't get a hot enough flame. Propane would be better, Mapp gas would be even better.

    Last edited by Terry; 06-21-2010 at 12:03 AM.

  12. #12

    Default

    propane it is then. what is mapp gas?

  13. #13
    In the Trades Gary Swart's Avatar
    Join Date
    Sep 2004
    Location
    Yakima WA
    Posts
    7,246

    Default

    It is a gas that burns hotter than propane. It comes in bottles like propane. I believe most professional plumber use it now because it's faster and better suited for heating joints on valves where prolonged heat is not desired. This would not be a bad option for you.

  14. #14
    DIY Senior Member rdtompki's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2005
    Location
    Iowa
    Posts
    115

    Default

    Another torch option would be propane with a good torch. I recently redid our master bathroom plumbing with hundreds of sweat joints in 1/2" and 3/4". MAPP gas was overkill for this small pipe. The higher output spread flame of the torch (with built-in igniter) would heat up the joints in a fraction the time of the pencil flame torch that comes in the low cost kits. The built-in igniter is a big safety benefit.

  15. #15
    Aspiring Old Fart, EE, computer & networking geek Mikey's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2005
    Location
    Central Florida
    Posts
    2,685

    Default

    Keep in mind that if there's any water in the pipe there ain't much that you can do to heat the joint enough to melt the solder.

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
  •