Install Copper Saddle Valve

Install Copper Saddle Valve

Saddle valves allow you to tap into a water line without cutting the pipe a inserting a T fitting. Their only drawback is their small size severely limits the amount of water that can flow through them, Thus their use is limited to fixtures, such as ice makers and water filters, which do not require large volumes of water.

Saddle valves have a sharp tip which can puncture a copper water line which are not used on plastic pipes. A small diameter water line is then attached to the valve with a compression fitting. The advantage of using a saddle valve on copper pipe is that it can be installed with the line fully pressurized. As you puncture the line, water will spray out, but it is quickly stopped as you tighten down the valve handle.

Start by placing the rubber gasket on top of the pipe.

Arrange the saddle valve body over the rubber gasket with a bolt on each side.

Make sure the position of the valve is correct, then tighten down the nuts with a wrench.

Turn the handle clockwise. This will push the sharpened tip through the pipe wall.

You’ll feel a sudden give in turning the handle when the tip has punctured the pipe. Go about a half turn more, then back the handle off to release the water from the main pipe, letting it flow through the valve. If you haven’t installed the outlet pipe already, turn the valve back off and do so now.

Installing a Saddle Valve on Galvanized Pipe

When installing saddle valve on galvanized pipe, shut off the water, drain the pipe, then drill a 3/16 inch hole in the pipe.

To keep the drill bit from sliding off, tape a small piece of wood to the surface.

Once you’ve drilled the hole, remove the piece of wood and clean off any burrs on the hole with a file.

Set the rubber gasket over the hole and assemble the valve, making sure everything lines up properly.

Tighten bolts, attach the water line and regulate the flow by turning the handle.

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