to Solder Copper Pipe
By Contractor Mike
Having successfully managed our three previous
plumbing tasks, you are now confident and ready
for a bigger challenge. I’ve got one for
you. Time to sweat some copper!
Plumbing related motivations run the gamut from
dealing with emergencies to personal convenience
to make-work projects that serve only to show off
your talents. This practice exercise falls into
the latter category, with its origin mere nuisance.
Every time you walk down the side yard next to
your garage, you wonder which previous owner attached
that ugly looking 20-foot run of 1/2” copper
line to the stucco just to place a hose bib, rather
than run it directly through the garage wall!
On the inside of the garage you see part of the
answer to your wonderment: There is evidence of
a previous copper line (copper brackets, water-stained
studs or drywall) running horizontally and 24-inches
off the floor along the inside of the garage wall.
Why would someone change it from inside to outside?
Because, by no mere coincidence, that's the exact
height where the previous homeowner's driver-side
door banged against the copper line until it crimped
or, more likely, finally busted.
So, all you have to do now is cut and sweat in
a copper "T" and a 4 elbows, run the
line 5-feet off the garage floor (no ladder needed),
run it back town to the height of the hose bib,
drill a hole through the stucco, re-configure the
hose bib, and Voila!
"All you have to do..." is one of those
phrases about which you should have been immediately
suspicious. It's kind of like saying, "All
you have to do to get to the moon is..."
But the longest journey begins with a single step.
And we're going to do this step-wise and according
to a little known plumbing mantra: Success in increments
is far more preferable than humiliating failure
all at once!
Contractor Mike was a General Building
Contractor for nearly twenty years in Los Angeles
and is now a produced playwright.