Copper Piping - Fiberglass RV
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Old 06-08-2017, 11:44 AM   #1
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Name: Ginny
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Copper Piping

Ok,
I did finally get the furnace removed (just needed two people, one to pull, one to hold the existing pipe)

I was able to unscrew the copper/brass fitting from the furnace
(everything is unhooked, I even unscrewed my propane line from the tanks just to be sure- so no current gas leak issues with an uncapped line).

Now I have an open line from the heater going to a T (in from H/W Heater- out to furnace and fridge). I have tried everything to get the furnace side of the T loose... I have used PB breaker, even a heat gun (though I don't know if I got it hot enough, I got it as hot as I felt comfortable getting it)...
I have a cap that I want to put on the line there, but I can't get the connection undone, and as I try to loosen it, it twists the whole T connection, which I can't imagine is good for the pipes that will remain... so I have a few questions...

1. any other suggestions on how to remove this coupling so I can cap?
2. If I cannot unscrew, any suggestions on how to cut the pipe and add a new ferrule/cap?
3. If I am doing that, is it possible to just cut the whole T out and put in a new section of copper line that doesn't come up into my storage space?

I can provide pictures if needed. Thanks as always! I appreciate yall's advice.
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Old 06-08-2017, 11:59 AM   #2
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Quote:
Originally Posted by fieldphoto View Post


I can provide pictures if needed.
Please
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Old 06-08-2017, 12:04 PM   #3
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Pictures would help. But you have to hold the fitting with one wrench while pulling on another wrench on the nut. No torque to the copper pipe. Heat won't help with this and neither will solvent. Sometimes the best tool for holding the fitting is a slip joint pliers, commonly called water pump pliers. And use the best wrench you have, preferably a box end, on the fitting.

If it's all copper, then it uses flare fittings. You could cut the pipe and flare the end and cap it that way, but a flare cap nut would be simpler if you can get it apart. If the pipe turned out to be 5/8" OD, you could cut it and cap it with a 1/2" copper pipe sweat cap. That pipe is called 1/2" copper pipe. You can also get sweat caps for 1/2" OD. In that case, call the copper 1/2" tubing".
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Old 06-08-2017, 12:34 PM   #4
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See pictures linked here:
Picture 1

Picture 2

I can take more pics when I get home tonight, if these arent clear enough.

THANK YOU!
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Old 06-08-2017, 01:21 PM   #5
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Raspy gave the answer just buy the proper flared cap or plug and put it on the fitting.
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Old 06-08-2017, 01:22 PM   #6
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Not sure which side of the TEE you want to cut off and if it is a permanent change.

You can cut the copper with a diagonal cutter or electrical pliers. Then hold the TEE as I mentioned and put a box end wrench on the nut. It will come off.

Then, if you don't need the tee, put a flair coupling in, in place of the TEE or a flair cap on that side of the tee. You can get these at a plumbing supply, Lowes or a refrigeration shop.
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Old 06-08-2017, 01:22 PM   #7
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If I am going to bother to do all that, can I just cut the line and remove the T all together, and put in connections that lay flat and are out of my way? Seems like a similar amount of work to me, but I havent done much with this type of pipe before.
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Old 06-08-2017, 01:31 PM   #8
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Originally Posted by fieldphoto View Post
If I am going to bother to do all that, can I just cut the line and remove the T all together, and put in connections that lay flat and are out of my way? Seems like a similar amount of work to me, but I havent done much with this type of pipe before.
You can get a 90 degree flare coupler to replace the T. There are a few different fittings you could use to cap off the line.
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Old 06-08-2017, 02:25 PM   #9
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Looks like a 3/8 flair tee. Hold the tee with one wrench and loosen the nut with another. Ace Hardware will have a flair cap.
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Old 06-08-2017, 03:07 PM   #10
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Originally Posted by fieldphoto View Post
If I am going to bother to do all that, can I just cut the line and remove the T all together, and put in connections that lay flat and are out of my way? Seems like a similar amount of work to me, but I havent done much with this type of pipe before.
You can't just cut the pipe and install a coupling, unless you are talking about a flair coupling which requires a flaring tool. Do not use a compression style connector on gas. Sweating on a sweat coupling with Silvabrite solder would also be mechanically fine, if done well.
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Old 06-08-2017, 03:19 PM   #11
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I will try getting it loose one more time. If not, instead of capping can I cut out a section of line and rebuild (see picture 2 in earlier post)?
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Old 06-08-2017, 03:25 PM   #12
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See my post #10.

I'm still not sure what you are trying to do with the PEX piping as shown in pic#2. Unfortunately that is an Uponor Tee and requires a special tool set to work with. Just cut that out and install a crimp style brass tee from Lowes.
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Old 06-08-2017, 03:41 PM   #13
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Raspy,
Thanks for your replies. I realize now picture #2 is at a bad angle for perspective. The pipe, as it currently stands, comes up at a hard 90 degree from the floor, and is about 14" off the floor of the cabinet at the T. Since I dont really need the T I wanted to maybe run a new line that stays on the floor of the cabinet and goes around the wheel well.
I hope that makes more sense! I can post another picture at a better angle later.

Per your other post, if I get a flaring tool and the correct brass fittings, it does sound like this is something I can do? (and of course test afterward with soapy water etc)
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Old 06-08-2017, 03:52 PM   #14
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Put a wrench on the back side of the T. (or vice grip) Put a wrench on the flare nut. Try to get the wrenches lined up 1"-2" a part so when the wrench are pulled together you are loosening the nut. Grip both wrenches together and squeeze the wrenches together. This lets you put the full force on the connection an not twist the connection.
Eddie
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Old 06-08-2017, 03:56 PM   #15
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Eddie, this is a good idea.. might even be better than having 2 people...
I will try this!
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Old 06-08-2017, 04:08 PM   #16
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Ginny,

You certainly can do it and it would be nice to have the tools if you ever needed them again. Go for it.
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Old 06-09-2017, 08:58 AM   #17
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UPDATE:

OK. I was unable to get the nut off the line where I wanted, so I cut the line made 2 flare ends, and reconnected the line lower and out of the way.
I did some bubble tests, no issues that I could see- and fired up the stove, it worked- yay!

NOW... in the middle of this, I decided to finally install the LP Gas detector I had been meaning to install, just in case this all went afoul.
I installed it at the base of the bench seat on the kitchen side of my 13ft scamp. I splice it into the DC wires that run the little water pump (that I never use). Light comes on, tests... all seems well.

I work another 1-2 hrs in the scamp on other projects (including one using freshly dried lacquer paint, rubber cement, and super 77 spray adhesive). The door to the scamp is open. I finish work, close everything up and head inside.
A while later, the alarm starts going of in the scamp. So I figure I have one of a few possible issues- your thoughts are appreciated:

1. I have a leak where I made a connection
2. I have a leak elsewhere that I did not know about before- either because I wiggled the pipes, or it has always been there- but I didnt have the propane detector in
3. off-gassing from any of the chemicals I used in the scamp last night
4. power supply issue because of where I ran the line
5. power supply issue because of drain on the battery by the device

Thoughts??
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Old 06-09-2017, 09:22 AM   #18
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Could you get the other two flare nuts on the T fitting loose? If so you could have cut the one line, remove the T and replace it with a angle fitting. Not sure exactly what you did so can't comment more. I did propane installations for a few years in homes so have some experience with the lines and fittings.
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Old 06-09-2017, 11:09 AM   #19
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Name: Ginny
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Bob, I went from this:
Before

to this:
After

Hopefully the perspective is right so you can see I took off about 12" in height that the pipes were coming up into the open space. now they are lower by the wheel well.

Spouse reports that there was an odor, but it smelled like the rubber cement, spray 77, paint smell... not the usual rotten eggs/dead animal smell propane is supposed to smell like.

So, I am leaning towards the off-gassing of the other stuff lead to the alarm going off, but I will continue to test it and see if it goes off again, unless someone else has another idea?
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Old 06-09-2017, 02:37 PM   #20
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It is my opinion that connections, other than those at the appliance, (furnace, stove) should not be inside the trailer. Not sure if it is a law or rule of any kind.
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