Archive for the ‘Uncategorized’ Category

Treating Stains and Mildew

Tuesday, December 22nd, 2009

Wouldn’t it be nice if a fresh coat of paint over a good primer would cover over stains, water marks, and mildew? When the paint is still wet it may appear to cover, but as it dries these stains will seep through and you’ll end up with a fresh coat of stained paint.

Before you prime or paint, remove all stains and mildew. It will take some elbow grease, but cleaning it before hand will save you time in the long run because you won’t have to repaint it. The best thing to use to destroy the spores that cause mildew is regular household bleach diluted with water. You will need to fix water stains at the source before you repair the wall or ceiling.

Water leaches chemicals from wood and drywall. When the mixture seeps through a wall or ceiling, it stains. Mildew is a spore in the air. Given food (paper or paint) and moisture, mildew flourishes on walls.

Step1: MIX THREE PARTS WATER TO ONE PART LAUNDRY BLEACH

You will want to mix this two solutions in a bucket. If you are sensitive to bleach, protect your eyes and hands.

Step2: APPLY LIBERALLY WITH A SPONGE

Apply again after 20 minutes even if the mold has disappeared.

Step3: RINSE OFF THE BLEACH AND DEAD MILDEW WITH CLEAN, FRESH WATER

Allow it to dry throughly before cleaning with TSP substitute. Then prime with a stain-blocking primer and paint.

Shut Off Valves and Supply Tubes

Wednesday, December 16th, 2009

Shutoff valves let you turn on and off the water near your fixtures so you don’t have to shut off the water to the entire house to make repairs. They attach in different ways: by soldering, threading, or compression fittings. Compression fittings are the easiest to install and don’t require pipe dope, or compound. A metal sleeve makes the fitting watertight, as long as you install it right. Make sure you turn the water off before you start working. You will need to open the faucet you are working on and another one somewhere below it in the house so you can drain all the water out of  it.

Step1: DISCONNECT THE SUPPLY PIPE

Before you start, turn off the main water supply to the house. Unscrew the supply pipe at the wall. You will need to cut it with a mini-pipe tubing cutter or a mini-hacksaw if it is solder ti the wall. Make sure you are careful when cutting the tube. If it is out of round, the compression fitting will leak. Leave enough room between the escutcheon plate and the cut to install the fitting. Deburr the pipe with an emery cloth. Now slide the compression nut over the supply pipe as far back as you can.

Step2: PLACE THE COMPRESSION RING OVER THE END OF THE SUPPLY PIPE

The end should completely cover the end of the supply pipe. Thread the compression valve into the compression nut. The valve should slide snugly over the ring. Hand tighten the nut. If it doesn’t turn easily, add a tiny drop of oil to the threads. Don’t use pipe compound; the fitting doesn’t require it, and it can make the fitting leak.

Step3: TIGHTEN THE COMPRESSION VALVE TO THE NUT BUT DON’T OVER TIGHTEN IT

You will need one wrench to hold the back of the valve and keep it square and another to turn the nut. Follow the same procedure you used to install the valve to attach the supply lines. Only turn the water on for a second and let it flow into a bucket to flush the lines before installing the fixtures.

Soldering Copper Pipes

Tuesday, December 15th, 2009

Soldering copper pipe fittings isn’t hard, but you will need to practice to make perfect. It’s a good idea to gather some scraps of copper and solder a few joints until you get it right. Copper plumbing is appreciated for it’s professional look. Copper is a durable, clean functional connecting system.

Make sure that you get the L pipe instead of the M pipe. The M pipe has a thinner wall and is for heating systems. It may leak under greater pressure of a water supply system.

Step1: PREPARE THE INSIDE OF THE FITTING

You need to start with rimming the inside of each fitting with a round wire brush and sand the end of the fitting with an emery cloth. When the connections are clean it ensures a good seal.

Step2: CLEAN THE OUTSIDE OF THE PIPE.

To do this use an emery cloth or steel wool. Use a deburring tool or the handle of a pair of pliers to deburr the inside of the pipe. If you don’t deburr the pipe a burr can cause a hum once the water starts running through the pipe. You’ll need to be careful because the edges may be sharp.

Step3: APPLY FLUX TO THE PIPE

Apply a layer of flux (lead-free soldering paste) to the end of the pipe using a flux brush. You will need to cover about 1 inch of the pipe with the flux. When you insert the pipe into the fitting make sure it is tight against the bottom of the fitting. Twist the fitting slightly to spread the flux.

Step4: UNWIND THE SOLDER WIRE

You will need at least 8 to 10 inches of the wire extended from the spool. You will need to bend the first 2 inches to a 90-degree angle.

Step5: HEAT THE FITTING

Put the pipe in both sides of the fitting so soot from the torch won’t contaminate the joint. You will need to hold the flame against the center of the fitting for 4-5 seconds or until the soldering paste begins to sizzle.

Step6: TOUCH THE SOLDER TO THE PIPE

Move the flame to the low end of the fitting. Now remove the flame and touch the solder against the pipe. If the solder melts, the pipe is ready to solder.

Step7: APPLY MORE HEAT IF NECESSARY

After the solder melts when you touch it against the pipe, remove the flame and quickly melt ½ to ¾ inch of solder into the joint. Capillary attraction will draw the liquid solder into the joint. If your joint is properly soldered, it will show a thin bead of solder around the fitting.

Step8: CLEAN THE FITTING

Some of the plumbers will reapply flux and briefly heat the pipe to clean it further. You should always wipe away the excess solder with a rag. Be careful when handling the pipe because it will be hot. You can cool the pipe and fitting with a damp rag. Now turn on the water and check for leaks. If the joint leaks, take it apart and re-solder it.

Connecting CPVC

Friday, December 11th, 2009

CPVC is used for hot and cold water supply. It is cheaper to but than copper and it is just as durable. It also withstands high temperatures and pressure in the supply system. It’s easy to cut with a hacksaw or tubing cutter and connections are easy and quick to assemble. You can get one-step cements for CPVC and eliminate the purple primer. You need to make sure that one-step cements are allowed and that they meet your codes before you use them. Also, check the local codes carefully to determine whether or not you need to use primer.

Step1: DEBURR THE PIPE

Make sure you remove the burrs to ensure even coverage with the primer and cement. After you have deburred, sand lightly with an emery cloth, that way the pipe will sit in the bottom of the fitting.

Step2: COAT THE SURFACES WITH PRIMER IF REQUIRED

Apply an even coat of primer to the pipe and the fitting. Primer will soften the pipe to help seat it and reacts with the cement to make a permanent bond. Make sure you use a purple primer if you are required under code to primer. That way the inspector will be able to easily see it.

Step3: APPLY THE CEMENT AND ASSEMBLE THE PARTS QUICKLY AND CAREFULLY

You will need a dauber to apply an even coat of cement to the pipe and fitting and insert the pipe all the way into the fitting until it stops. Make sure you twist the pipe a quarter of a turn to spread the cement evenly. Hold the pipe for 30 seconds to prevent the heat made by the cement from pushing apart the connections. Wipe off the excess cement with a clean rag.