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Clogged drains and broken pipes can be a real pain to deal with. This is especially true when working in constricted areas. However, if you know how to repair PVC pipe in tight spaces, you will be able to fix it before there is costly water damage.
Most of the time, PVC pipes are in tight spaces, which means you need to be mindful of the wires and cables in the area. If you’re unsure, it’s always better to hire a professional plumber. Here are the ideas on how to repair PVC pipe in tight spaces if you are investigating how to do it yourself.
How to Repair PVC Pipe in Tight Spaces
Pipe repairs in tight spaces are quite challenging. Thankfully, inside pipe cutters and other tools can make things a whole lot easier. Read on to learn more about the different ways of repairing PVC pipes in small spaces.
Tools & Materials
If the PVC pipe can be repaired, then you should have the right tools at hand. Here are things you will need for repairing methods below:
Method 1: How to Repair PVC Pipe in Tight Spaces with Repair Epoxy
Adhesives like putty as well as liquid resins can help when it comes to simple or temporary pipe repairs. Thanks to its thickness, repair epoxy can be used for pipes that run through holes in hard-to-reach areas.
Here’s how to repair PVC pipe in 5 simple steps using epoxy:
Rinse the leaky PVC pipe thoroughly. Pay special attention to the damaged area.
Allow it to dry before applying the epoxy.
Check the manufacturer’s instructions on how to use repair epoxy or an adhesive for PVC pipes.
After applying the epoxy/adhesive, wait until it hardens. It may take from 15 to 45 minutes, depending on the type of glue or putty you use.
Once the cure has been completed, turn on the water and inspect for any leaks as it flows through the repaired pipe.
Method 2: How to Repair PVC Pipe in Tight Spaces Using Silicone or Rubber Tape
Stretchy and sticky, silicone and rubber tapes are capable of adhering to PVC pipes, thereby plugging the leak tightly. They are also easy to apply. All you need to do is wrap your repair tape around the damaged pipe by following this simple process:
Take the repair tape (either rubber or silicone) and wrap it around the PVC pipe to fix the damage temporarily.
Cover a few inches in every direction toward the outside edges besides protecting the leaking place itself. That will reinforce the cracked spot.
In case of larger leaks, you should consider wrapping the whole pipe spirally.
This will prevent additional leaks from developing and also ensure that the weakened section stays intact.
Whether you use rubber or silicone tape, make sure it is firmly wrapped around the plastic pipe. That can be challenging in cramped rooms and tight places, though.
Method 3: How to Fix PVC Pipe with Fiberglass Cover/Tape
Just like rubber tape, fiberglass tape is suitable for fixing smaller leaks. However, this water-activated cover is not sticky because it’s made of resin. Instead of a spongy substance, water acts as a binder.
Before applying the tape, clean the pipe thoroughly to remove any dirt or grime.
Add the wet cover wrapping it around the joint or pipe, depending on where the leak occurs.
Once the fiberglass tape is wrapped, wait for 10-15 minutes for the resin to harden. It’s recommended to cure it by exposing the damaged section to the sun or using a portable UV flashlight. After hardening, it will create a coating or varnish.
Then put the cloth on the top in such a way that the wrap is extended about 3 inches beyond the damaged or leaking spot. The hardened wrap will prevent leaks, serving as a waterproof barrier.
Method 4: Repairing PVC Pipes with Rubber and Hose Clamps
You should first drain the PVC pipes and shut off the water.
Next, you need to rub up the affected area to remove any oil.
Replace the damaged section and ensure a tight fit with the use of a PVC sealant or primer.
Add some PVC cement and set the recessed fasteners. Allow them to dry before proceeding. Then add PVC cement, covering the patch and the leaky pipe.
If it’s not necessary to replace any portion of the PVC pipe, then you will be able to secure the leak with a piece of rubber and a few hose clamps. Simply screw them down over the rubber tape. That will do the trick!
Method 5: How to Repair PVC Pipe in Tight Spaces With Saddle Repair Kits (for More Serious Repairs)
These kits consist of partial tubing segments as well as PVC cement and primer. They are used for more serious leaking problems. For a saddle patch, you’ll need 0.25-inch cement, 0.25-inch primer, and an appropriate pipe section.
Shut off the water and let the pipes drain.
Clean the affected area with a rag.
Apply cleaner (PVC primer) to the leaky pipe.
Generously cover the damaged section with PVC cement.
Secure the repair pieces in place by pressing them over the pipe. As the cement is hardening, these pieces are going to seal the leak(s).
How to Replace Damaged Portions of PVC Pipes
The pipes that are too damaged to be repaired should be replaced with new ones. Oftentimes you need to cut out the damaged section and replace it rather than changing the whole pipe.
Tools & Materials
To replace the damaged or leaking portion of a PVC pipe, you will need:
- Pipe bridges
- Expanding or flexible couplings
- Piece replacement(s)
Steps to Follow
- Identify the leak(s) or crack(s)
- Shut off your water supply by turning the valve
- Drain PVC pipes
- Cut off and remove the damaged section
- Secure the new piece of pipe in place
- Let it dry before turning on the water supply
When Should PVC Pipes Be Replaced?
Sometimes simple repair solutions don’t work. Over time, plumbing tends to deteriorate, and no tools can help. Listed below are cases when pipes have to be replaced:
Large or multiple leaks that can’t be prepared with nonabrasive drain cleaners.
In particular, the gaps you can place your forefinger through.
Substantial pipe discoloration
Corrosion and rust don’t only make the water unhealthy, but they can also block pipelines when accumulated and cause pipes to burst because of high pressure. Replace those pipes to prevent devastating damage.
The lifespan of PVC pipes
Just like other plumbing supplies, plastic pipes should be replaced and upgraded after some time. If you live in an older home, occasionally check the pipes for peeling, scratches, and blemishes.
FAQs About How to Repair PVC Pipe in Tight Spaces
How Do You Repair a Clogged PVC Pipe?
You can fix it by removing the clog with a coat hanger and by using a drain snake. This long coiled wire can clear it entirely. Be careful when working with power tools and avoid using them in areas where the temperature is too high.
How to Fix a Broken PVC Pipe?
After shutting off the water, score the pipe with a knife and cut off the broken piece using an extended pipe cutter. Take sandpaper to smooth the edges and reattach the new piece using plumbing glue and clamps. If you’re not knowledgeable about potential leaks, check with a plumber because the pipes may need welding.
How to Repair Leaking PVC Joints without Cutting Them?
Silicone and waterproof rubber tape can help with minor leaks. These repair tapes are available in a roll, so you can easily wrap them around PVC pipes even if it’s in a tight space. Additionally, you can try to fix leaking joints and pipes with resin tape, repair epoxy, or hose clamps.
If you who’ve got a broken or leaking PVC pipe, be sure to fix it as soon as possible! Use this step-by-step guide on ideas for how to repair PVC pipes in tight spaces. Discuss with a plumbing professional to avoid serious water damage, which is a costly affair for many homeowners.