Push On Fittings
A push on fittings is very useful for both the pro and do it yourself person. They redefine the way houses are plumbed. With them, labour to install a fitting has decreased to about 2 seconds for copper, CPVX and PEX. Average that out for an entire house and your cost savings become substantial. Average that out for an entire house and your cost savings are substantial.
Push on fittings are available in two types: brass and plastic. Brass push on fittings go by the name of Sharkbite and are sold in most plumbing supply houses, hardware stores and on the internet.
Simply push a pipe with a square, clean end into the fitting until you feel it hit an internal stop which is about 1 inch into the end of the fitting.
Push on fittings are perfect for switching from one pipe material to another. The plastic fittings are installed the same way and are available at most large plumbing supply houses.
Before you install the push on fitting, always check the pipe end to make sure it has been cut straight and is free of debris and sharp edges.
Never reuse a damaged fitting.
Never be in such a hurry that you don’t know if the pipe is fully inserted.
Always feed the pipe straight in. Do not put side or angled pressure on the pipe where it enters the fitting.
Choosing the right push on fitting
Though all push on fittings are allowed by many codes, some municipalities have restrictions on their use. Most plumbers prefer all brass over all plastic fittings and rarely have a problem. Plastic fittings are still carrying the stigma of the failure of PB fittings. Even though manufacturers claim the problem is solved, it may be many years before these fittings are fully accepted. Be sure to check your local codes before you choose between brass and plastic.
Removing a push on fitting
In case you change your mind about what pipe you want where push on fittings won’t lock you in. You can use a special horse shoe shaped device to remove the fitting. The device is marketed for all plastic fittings. Simply snap the pipe removal tool over the pipe, press it hard against the fitting and twist out the pipe.
When you work with any pipe, and especially when you work with push on fittings, be sure to remove any sharp or raised edges on the cut end. Pros might use a reamer, but the average homeowner can use a plumber’s cloth or common sandpaper. Not smoothing the edge might mean the pipe won’t fit into the fitting, or worse, that it fits but cuts the O ring inside.