Expert Advisors 101: How to Sweat Copper Pipes and Fittings

If your home has copper plumbing, then you should know how to fix it if something needs repaired or if you’re running new lines to a fixture. Sweating copper pipe isn’t that hard, and it’s kind of fun. To help you out, Friedman’s Home Improvement has tips for the basics on how to sweat copper:

    1. Cut the copper pipes to the correct length with a hacksaw or a copper tube cutter.
    2. Remove the burrs around the cut edge with a wire brush or file.
    3. Clean the end of the copper pipe with a special cleaning brush that will sand it down. You will know it is clean when the surface is bright all around.
    4. Clean the inside of the copper fittings.
    5. Apply soldering paste to both the cleaned ends of the copper pipe, and the insides of the cleaned copper fittings.
    6. Attach the copper fitting to the end of the pipe, using a propane flame in the middle of the fitting to heat both ends at the same time. Do not apply heat directly to fluxed area.
    7. Still using the flame, solder the copper joints together. You only need a little bit of solder around the circumference of the tube, or you could get too much solder inside your pipes.
  1. Wipe excess solder away with a rag after you have finished soldering.

Voila! You’re done, and everyone who uses your copper plumbing will thank you for your hard work. Celebrate by inviting your friends over for drinks so you can show off your handywork!

For help selecting the copper pipes, tools and supplies you’ll need for sweating your copper pipes, visit us at Friedman’s online or at one of our Santa Rosa, Sonoma, Petaluma or Ukiah stores, where you’ll get the lowest price and local advice.
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