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Old 02-22-2007, 06:09 PM  
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Default Galvanized pipe question....

I'm at the stage of my remodel where I need to upgrade a few of the plumbing runs. In previous upgrades, some of the galvanized water lines were connected to the CPVC plumbing. This is what I intend to do in the bathroom.

I need to disconnect a few of the threaded connections, but can't seem to bust them loose. Are there any tips for loosening them up? I have soaked the joints with WD-40 and tried some heavy duty pipe wrenches, to no avail. My next thought was to try a torch on the joint to heat it up. Any suggestions?

Thanks in advance!

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Old 02-22-2007, 07:00 PM  
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Be prepaired to have things go south. IE the fitteng on the far side of the one you want to undo, may break. things like that can happen. heat can help to break things apart, but with the pipes full of water I am not sure if that will do any good. I have always found a lot of tapping on things helps to break them loose. try reefing on it while an assistant tap tap taps around the joint.

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Old 02-23-2007, 07:02 AM  
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I wouldn't rely on WD-40 since it really isn't a penetrating lubricant. When I have threaded connections that are difficult, I use KROIL. If the installer used a sealant, this probably won't work anyway so you will be back to what asbestos said.
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Old 02-23-2007, 12:16 PM  
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Hey Streamin:
I have had the best success with heat in this case. Caution: The threads on the ends of the galvanized pipe are not galvanized; it was cut away by the pipe die. Therefore, the ends are usually rusted almost all the way through and will break off easily and oversized wrenches will crush the pipe.
Galvanized pipe was a good thing in its day; I have some that are over 50 years old and still working, they have so much scale in them, there is only a pencil sized opening in them. Some day I plan to replace them with CPVC.
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Old 02-23-2007, 05:56 PM  
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Two decent size pipe wrenches should be used. One to hold and one to unscrew.
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Old 02-25-2007, 09:59 AM  
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Heat it with a torch, then try two pipe wrenches. If it doesn't bust loose, go to the next joint and turn it loose there. If that doesn't work, cut the pipe and use a flexible coupling with a metal band around it to make the connection.
Your best option is to start on one end and take the galvanized pipe out, especially if it is old pipe. Mineral deposits from the water and other gunk build up in galvanized pipe over time, causing the problems you have now and eventually clogging things up.
Use PEX, copper or CPVC
Good luck!

Last edited by cajunhiker; 02-25-2007 at 10:07 AM.
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Old 02-25-2007, 11:15 AM  
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If you are working in an area where a little water won't hurt anything, try draining the pipe
(so the heat won't get lost in the water) heating the joint with a heat gun or torch to get it pretty hot and dousing it with ice water. the abrupt change in temp might contract the joint enough to break it loose with pipe wrenches.

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