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Thread: How to remove compression fitting?

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    SlowCoder is offline Handyman
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    How to remove compression fitting?

    I want to replace the cutoff valve and old rusty silver ring on my toilet's water supply. In order to remove the ring I need to remove the compression fitting. The pipe's pretty short, so I can't cut it. What's the best method?

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    I must confess that back in my younger and dumber days I tried dozens of methods of removing a compression ferrule. At best it is a iffy situation but in 99 out of 100 tries it will introduce many more problems than what it might resolve.

    Fortunately there is a much simpler solution to your dilemma.

    The compression nuts are all made to an industry standard, therefore you can loosen the compression nut, then remove the angle stop valve but leave the compression nut and compression ferrule in place. Now remove the compression nut and ferrule from your new valve, then slide the new valve in place and tighten it with the original nut.

    The trim escutcheon ring is made of a light gage brass sheet metal that is chrome plated. You can use a pair of aviation tin snips to cut the old trim escutcheon away, then you can get a two-piece "split trim escutcheon" that fits around the pipe in two half sections and snaps together for a final fit.
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails How to remove compression fitting?-angle-stop.jpg   How to remove compression fitting?-split-escutcheon.jpg  
    Last edited by LazyPup; 07-11-2008 at 01:06 AM.

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    SlowCoder is offline Handyman
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    Thanks for the tip on the 2 piece escutcheon ring. That could help things.

    However, I reinstalled the valve so that I could turn the water back on last night, and it leaked all over the place. I tightened. I tried plumber's tape, etc. That ring won't stop leaking. So, now I've got a house with no water, a boy who really could've used a bath last night, and a wife who's not too pleased.

    I'm going to stop by the store and get a compression fitting, escutcheon ring, and valve this afternoon.

    Since I can't cut the pipe (too short), I still need to remove the old compression ring. What do you guys think about using a soldering iron to heat and expand the ring to slide it off? Any problems with that? Otherwise I suppose I'll try the hack saw method.

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    LazyPup's Avatar
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    Heating the ferrule will not work because the copper pipe has a greater expansion rate than does the brass and heating it would only make it tighter.

    You could try cutting the ferrule with a saw, but from my experience if you get so much as one minor nick or significant scratch in the copper pipe wall the new ferrule will not seal.

    At this point the only reliable solution would be to open an access into the wall, cut the pipe back and solder on an extension.

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    jnaas2 is offline Apprentice
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    You can cut the compression ring off but like the previous post if you nick the copper it will probable leak. If there isnt enough room to cut off the farrow and install a new one you will need to sweat a copper to male iron pipe adaptor on then you can switch out the valve at a later date without any trouble. In cases of emergency I have seen someone take teflon tape and wrap it 4 or 5 times around the farrow and get it to stop leaking for a while. I seen one house where they fluxed the farrow and pipe and nut and soldered the whole thing together it didnt leak but I had to open the wall to replace the shutoff. GOOD LUCK

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    Water supply..

    What supply tube are you speaking of? The one that goes from the valve to the bottom of the toilet tank? The 1/4" one?

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    Quote Originally Posted by LazyPup View Post
    The compression nuts are all made to an industry standard,.
    Unfortunately, that is not true. MOST are standard, but there were a couple of brands widely used that were different. The common modern ones are referred to generically as "fine thread" and the other ones are referred to as "coarse thread". A couple of companies still make the coarse thread valve, specifically so we can do the replacement as you suggest, becaust that method has the highest success rate.

    There are several good ferrule remover tools, and I do that often, but the problem arises if you do not have the new ferrule at the same location on the pipe, you do not get a good squeeze. And if the original was overtightened, that distorts the pipe quite a bit, and can cause problems on reinstallation.

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    HayZee518's Avatar
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    I suppose you can use a dremel tool with a fine grit abrasive disk and just go slow till the brass is paper thin then use something to pry the ferrule off the copper. be mindful that the copper has already been squished with the old ferrule so the diamter may not seal as on a new pipe.

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    SlowCoder is offline Handyman
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    I went ahead and cut them off with my hack saw, and all's good. There's still another inch of pipe sticking from the wall after cutoff, so I suppose I could do it again if I needed. Appreciate the assistance.

    P.S. Plumber's putty is my friend! Much better than plumber's tape.

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    is this pipe copper tubing? if so consider sweat soldering a short stub with a copper coupling onto what's left. then you'll have "lots" to play with.

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