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Old 06-29-2020, 05:18 PM   #1
FLASH_OUTDOORS
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I need to replace my leaking main waterline where it enters my house. Copper coming out of house and pvc coming out of ground. I want to take the steps now to make this freeze proof. What should I do?? I would say water pressure is in the high side of normal. Iím an electrician not a plumber.

I was thinking galvanized but it will rust.

Copper but I canít solder.

Pex but I donít have the tools and Iím not using shark bite.

Is pvc with insulation the best bet?

Is there a best way to do this so Iím not messing with it every year??





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Old 06-29-2020, 05:34 PM   #2
jimmy o
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Pex. Buy the tool. Best thing I ever did.
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Old 06-29-2020, 05:35 PM   #3
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My setup is the same way. It drives me nuts.
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Old 06-29-2020, 06:40 PM   #4
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My setup is the same way. It drives me nuts.


Leaky? Or pvc above ground?


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Old 06-29-2020, 06:41 PM   #5
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Originally Posted by jimmy o View Post
Pex. Buy the tool. Best thing I ever did.


Issue is that there will still be copper coming out of the house, with a ďt ď and spigot


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Old 06-29-2020, 06:58 PM   #6
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Not leaking but with the same pvc transition. Yard guys have broke it before.
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Old 06-29-2020, 07:02 PM   #7
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It’s been that way how long? I’d fix the leak , insulate it and make it pretty for the girls.
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Old 06-29-2020, 07:02 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by FLASH_OUTDOORS View Post
Issue is that there will still be copper coming out of the house, with a ďt ď and spigot


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They make a pex to copper fitting that has to be sweated on or use a shark bite there cheap and will go copper to pex
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Old 06-29-2020, 07:04 PM   #9
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They make a pex to copper fitting that has to be sweated on or use a shark bite there cheap and will go copper to pex


I guess I donít see the point in pex when there will still be some copper.


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Old 06-29-2020, 07:14 PM   #10
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Don’t use galvanized - it’s ok code wise but it’s junk. If you want to go copper then they make pro-press fittings. You basically use a big crimping tool - you can probably rent one at a tool rental place. Pro-press is pricey and I’m not sure if it’s cheaper than pex. I will say, done properly, pro-press is very durable.

As far as freeze protection just use 1.5” of fiberglass insulation with a pvc jacket and that’ll get you through 90% of Texas weather - if you’re electrically inclined and don’t want to deal with the freezing temperatures you might experience every 3-4 years then heat trace the line. Just next a little 120V circuit with a controller. Whoever built that water line that way deserves a knot on their head - pure laziness.

Last edited by StrayDog; 06-29-2020 at 07:18 PM.
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Old 06-29-2020, 07:23 PM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by FLASH_OUTDOORS View Post
I guess I donít see the point in pex when there will still be some copper.


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Same could be said for pvc to copper. Pex is more forgiving then pvc and easier to work with. Pro press ain't cheap by any means and leaves sharp corners that cut like zip ties.
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Old 06-29-2020, 08:09 PM   #12
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Donít use galvanized - itís ok code wise but itís junk. If you want to go copper then they make pro-press fittings. You basically use a big crimping tool - you can probably rent one at a tool rental place. Pro-press is pricey and Iím not sure if itís cheaper than pex. I will say, done properly, pro-press is very durable.

As far as freeze protection just use 1.5Ē of fiberglass insulation with a pvc jacket and thatíll get you through 90% of Texas weather - if youíre electrically inclined and donít want to deal with the freezing temperatures you might experience every 3-4 years then heat trace the line. Just next a little 120V circuit with a controller. Whoever built that water line that way deserves a knot on their head - pure laziness.


Like the fiberglass pipe wrap?


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Old 06-29-2020, 08:20 PM   #13
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Build a metal box stuff the insulation in the box like they wrap metal duct work with . Put box around it . Go back with Pex it expands unlike pvc Put a shark bite tee on it if you can’t sweat the adapter on easiest way to go .
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Old 06-29-2020, 11:14 PM   #14
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Go with soft copper. You can use compression fittings. Insulate it well. It will expand if it freezes
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Old 06-29-2020, 11:32 PM   #15
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That’s quite the rig. I’d go with copper, then insulate it and wrap with duct tape to protect it.
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Old 06-30-2020, 04:13 AM   #16
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There is nothing wrong with the PVC you have. I would get rid of that crappy PVC ball valve and replace it with a bronze valve. For freeze protection every winter I zip tie one of the Golden Rod heaters like are used in gun safes to the PVC where it comes out of the ground. The heaters are available on Amazon. Then zip tie pipe insulation over the whole exposed part. The heaters run all winter. They are only 8 watts so not a big issue with power consumption and they provide just enough heat so you pipes will never freeze in our climate.

As far as the yard guys, I cut a T-post into 18" lengths and drove them next to my water stub ups. Then put a piece of 2" PVC with a cap over them for safety.
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Old 06-30-2020, 06:42 AM   #17
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Originally Posted by kmitchl View Post
There is nothing wrong with the PVC you have. I would get rid of that crappy PVC ball valve and replace it with a bronze valve. For freeze protection every winter I zip tie one of the Golden Rod heaters like are used in gun safes to the PVC where it comes out of the ground. The heaters are available on Amazon. Then zip tie pipe insulation over the whole exposed part. The heaters run all winter. They are only 8 watts so not a big issue with power consumption and they provide just enough heat so you pipes will never freeze in our climate.



As far as the yard guys, I cut a T-post into 18" lengths and drove them next to my water stub ups. Then put a piece of 2" PVC with a cap over them for safety.


Iím assuming thatís a union ball valve, just judging from the way it looks. If I went back with a bronze valve (which Iím not against) how would I glue everything back up without a union. Maybe a slip coupling underground? Iíve used them a few times and always feel like itís Russian roulette.

Or do you think I could leave a section out of the pipe for a valve and pull both ends away from house enough to glue the valve in place?

If so I will do that.


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Old 06-30-2020, 07:21 AM   #18
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Are you sure this is the in coming waterline? Usually the in coming water would be under ground and you would not see it. However something may have gone wrong with it and it was replaced with pvc and connected at the wall hydrant. My guess is that this pvc line goes to something outside of the house a faucet or building or barn etc and your in coming line comes in some where else. This is a common hookup for a extra waterline leaving the house. With that being said I would wrap with heat trace (wire) tape, insulate it very well, build a box around it from ground to hydrant seal it up (caulk it) with plug for heat trace out where you can plug into a extension cord on below freezing days/nights. I don’t think you have that many freezing days in Tomball. Hope this helps. PM me # if you want to discuss In more detail.
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Old 06-30-2020, 07:55 AM   #19
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Looks like an East TX. plumber did that hook up!
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Old 06-30-2020, 08:51 AM   #20
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Are you sure this is the in coming waterline? Usually the in coming water would be under ground and you would not see it. However something may have gone wrong with it and it was replaced with pvc and connected at the wall hydrant. My guess is that this pvc line goes to something outside of the house a faucet or building or barn etc and your in coming line comes in some where else. This is a common hookup for a extra waterline leaving the house. With that being said I would wrap with heat trace (wire) tape, insulate it very well, build a box around it from ground to hydrant seal it up (caulk it) with plug for heat trace out where you can plug into a extension cord on below freezing days/nights. I donít think you have that many freezing days in Tomball. Hope this helps. PM me # if you want to discuss In more detail.


Iím positive itís the main. Iím considering putting the valve in the ground and rebuild it from there


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Old 06-30-2020, 08:51 AM   #21
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Looks like an East TX. plumber did that hook up!


An East Texas electrician is about to fix it. Lol


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Old 06-30-2020, 09:30 AM   #22
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Quote:
Originally Posted by FLASH_OUTDOORS View Post
I’m assuming that’s a union ball valve, just judging from the way it looks. If I went back with a bronze valve (which I’m not against) how would I glue everything back up without a union. Maybe a slip coupling underground? I’ve used them a few times and always feel like it’s Russian roulette.

Or do you think I could leave a section out of the pipe for a valve and pull both ends away from house enough to glue the valve in place?

If so I will do that.


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Move the ball valve up to where the line transitions to copper, There should be an elbow buried where the line comes above grade. Dig up the elbow and enough of the line to cut in the horizontal run upstream of the elbow. Then replace everything up to the new ball valve. There should be enough spring the below grade PVC to make up the vertical PVC run as the last glue joint. The other option is to leave the PVC as is and freeze protect it. I'm just not a fan of PVC ball valves. Never used one that did not give me trouble. PM me if you need more info. I just up the way in Montgomery.
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Old 06-30-2020, 09:37 AM   #23
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I thought you weren't supposed to use Pex outside because of UV damage?
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Old 06-30-2020, 10:41 AM   #24
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An East Texas electrician is about to fix it. Lol
10-4 on that!
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Old 06-30-2020, 10:59 AM   #25
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Like the fiberglass pipe wrap?


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That works or just get some armaflex foam pipe insulation and a small heat trace kit - something like this.

https://www.homedepot.com/p/M-D-Buil...4309/204814418

If you use fiberglass spring for some PVC jacketing to keep it from getting torn up. They make a product you seal the seam of the pvc jacket with to keep moisture out. Got to a plumbing supply house and they will fix you up - I prefer to fix stuff once and not jack with it every year. A bit overkill but I hate continuously working on stuff.

https://www.grainger.com/mobile/product/JOHNS-MANVILLE-JOHNS-MANVILLE-Insulated-Pipe-WP5750756/_/N-r6d?breadcrumbCatId=28517&fromPidp=true&picUrl=//static.grainger.com/rp/s/is/image/Grainger/6TEH8_AS01?$smthumb$webparentimage$
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Old 06-30-2020, 11:14 AM   #26
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Old 06-30-2020, 12:07 PM   #27
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Ok, just grabbed all the stuff to put bronze ball valve at copper transition and switch over to PEX


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Old 06-30-2020, 12:17 PM   #28
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You will want to make sure the PEX is not exposed to sunlight. The UV breaks it down. I have a spare tool for the SS crimp rings I could loan if that would help. If you are doing 1" PEX I don't recommend the SS crimp rings. The copper rings are the answer for 1" PEX. I put in a water filter with 1" PEX and the SS rings and chased leaks for a week before I made a tool to crimp the copper rings.
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Old 06-30-2020, 12:33 PM   #29
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My 2 cents
Don't put metal or brass male fitting into a female PVC. It can expand and break or if you get it too tight it will break. Also it may be a while before it breaks. I flooded my whole house.
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Old 06-30-2020, 12:44 PM   #30
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kmitchl View Post
You will want to make sure the PEX is not exposed to sunlight. The UV breaks it down. I have a spare tool for the SS crimp rings I could loan if that would help. If you are doing 1" PEX I don't recommend the SS crimp rings. The copper rings are the answer for 1" PEX. I put in a water filter with 1" PEX and the SS rings and chased leaks for a week before I made a tool to crimp the copper rings.


Iím gonna wrap it all in insulation


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Old 06-30-2020, 01:31 PM   #31
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Old 06-30-2020, 01:53 PM   #32
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Old 06-30-2020, 02:16 PM   #33
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That's what I did to mine 5 years ago, the only issue is the salt air rusted out the handle on the valve so I replaced it with a 316 SS valve and handle.
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Old 06-30-2020, 03:01 PM   #34
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Looks good!
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Old 06-30-2020, 04:37 PM   #35
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Looks good. Much better than before.
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Old 07-02-2020, 02:34 PM   #36
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You'll want to paint or seal your insulation. UV will deteriorate it pretty quick. Or just keep a bunch of pool noodles around to replace it with.
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