You can easily fix a leaking copper pipe with a repair sleeve. You’ll only have to cut out the affected pipe section and solder the gap with a repair sleeve.
You’ll need the following tools and materials for the repair project:
- Propane torch
- Tuber cutter
- Emery cloth
- Wire brush
- Flux paste
- Sweat coupling
Here’s how to repair a copper supply pipe to stop a leak.
Cutting the pipe and soldering a new pipe coupling
Copper pipes are prone to leakage when they corrode or burst upon freezing. Luckily, it’s possible to fix the leakage.
In case the leakage is a pinhole leak that measures less than half an inch, then you’ll need to cut the pipe for repair. You can fix the leak by cutting out the leaking pipe section and soldering it with a regular pipe coupling.
If you’re repairing longer pipe sections, then you should use a new sweat coupling. You can get the sweat coupling from a local hardware store or home center. Buy a coupling that can repair ½ inch or ¾ copper pipe.
Before starting with the repair work, turn off the water supply from the main valve. Then drain the pipe you want to repair by opening the connected faucets.
Next, mark the leaking section. Then cut the leaking section and take measurements of the gap created. Next, cut a piece of pipe from the coupling. The repair coupling should be cut one inch longer than what you cut to allow for a good connection.
You’ll need to use a tube cutter to cut through the pipe. You should smoothen the rough edges of the repair coupling you just cut.
You can smoothen it by inserting a tube cutter and turning it around until the sleeve slides over the end of the pipe without snagging. Then clean the interior edges of the sleeve using a wire brush. Once done, you can start soldering.
To get the best results when soldering, you’ll need to ensure the pipe is dry inside and outside. You can stuff a cotton cloth in each end of the pipe to absorb water dribbles before soldering.
Keep the faucet above the level you’re repairing open to avoid pressure buildup and dribbling as you do the repair.
Once you’re done with soldering, allow the pipe to cool off for some few minutes. Then turn on the water supply and check keenly for any leakage.