How to Solder Plumbing Joints
If you’ve ever wondered how to solder plumbing joints, you’ve come to the right place. Here are some basic tips to solder plumbing joints successfully. Always remember that water and fire don’t mix, so make sure that the joint is completely dry before you begin. And remember, always use caution when soldering pipes! Use an insulated glove if you don’t have a strong grip, and use a pair of tongs to hold the joint securely. how to solder plumbing joints
Prepare your copper pipe by applying soldering flux. Flux cleans away impurities and oxides on the surface of copper. You’ll also need a soldering torch. Hold the torch with your left hand or your right if you’re right-handed. You can also use a cotton rag or leather glove while holding the torch. Once the pipe is cleaned and dry, carefully heat up the soldering torch and reflow the joint.
Apply the solder to the joint. You can also apply plumber’s flux to the joint. It will melt when it comes in contact with the heat and will draw the solder to the joint. To make sure that the joint is fully soldered, heat up the joint with a propane torch. The flame of the torch should be pointed at the joint. It will take anywhere from 20 to 60 seconds for the solder to melt and set. Ensure the valve is open while soldering.
Copper pipes must be cleaned before soldering. A propane torch or acetylene/air torch will provide enough heat. Generally, a soldering iron can’t reach a temperature of 400°F, but a propane torch will provide the heat necessary. To avoid splattering, clean cotton rags and a spray bottle are necessary tools. And remember, copper tubing and fittings are flammable!
Unlike with welding, soldering pipe is the standard way to join copper pipes. Properly solder joints ensure a water-tight seal that will last for decades. Copper pipes are prone to pinhole leaks and should never be joined with a welding gun. It is also important to note that solder is not toxic, so make sure that it’s the right kind for your pipes before starting the project.
When brazing plumbing joints, it’s important to remember that the heat from the brazing process can cause copper oxide inside the tube. Copper oxide is a result of the presence of copper and oxygen. When air enters a copper pipe, it will cause copper oxide to form inside, making the joint look black and ugly. That’s no way to fix a leak. So, always make sure you braze or solder plumbing joints properly.
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