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Removing plumber’s epoxy

zvalve
zvalve Member Posts: 83
Anyone know how to soften and remove plumber’s epoxy. I tried acetone and goof off but the epoxy is sill  hard as a rock

Comments

  • mattmia2
    mattmia2 Member Posts: 9,630
    You probably will have to scrape it off with something like an old chisel or a knife,
    kcoppMad Dog_2
  • EdTheHeaterMan
    EdTheHeaterMan Member Posts: 7,828
    It ain’t coming off with chemistry.  Think of it as a rock or block of hardwood that’s part of whatever it is attached to.  Chisel or hand grinder or other mechanical abrasive. 
    Edward F Young. Retired HVAC ContractorSpecialized in Residential Oil Burner and Hydronics
    Mad Dog_2
  • ChrisJ
    ChrisJ Member Posts: 15,668
    If it's actually an epoxy I'd expect acetone (nail polish remover) to soften it.
    You need to soak it in acetone using a wet rag or other means for a while.

    Please read the precautions on using acetone, I'd recommend plenty of ventilation and fresh air.


    Single pipe quasi-vapor system. Typical operating pressure 0.14 - 0.43 oz. EcoSteam ES-20 Advanced Control for Residential Steam boilers. Rectorseal Steamaster water treatment
  • SlamDunk
    SlamDunk Member Posts: 1,580
    Channel locks and a good twist. My dad used a lot of it and is the only person I know who used it successfully. We're still finding that stuff.
  • Kickstand55
    Kickstand55 Member Posts: 110
    I had to chuckle when I read the title. Real Plumbers don't use epoxy putty or the black gooey spray that seals a boat hull, as seen on TV.
    I would call it Hacks Putty or Homeowners quick fix to keep the Plumber away. The Husband puts it on and the Wife calls us Monday morning. Funny how that goes.
    Mad Dog_2
  • KC_Jones
    KC_Jones Member Posts: 5,737
    If it's plumbers putty that stuff does get like a rock when it's old. Only thing I've had success with is mechanical removal, plastic scrappers etc. Most of the time I've encountered it was near finished surfaces so I try and avoid metal tools so I don't destroy any nearby finishes.

    A lot of patience is required.

    If it's actually some kind of epoxy....even more patience will be required.

    Pictures of what you are doing would help identify what's going on.
    2014 Weil Mclain EG-40
    EcoSteam ES-20 Advanced Boiler Control
    Boiler pictures updated 2/21/15
  • zvalve
    zvalve Member Posts: 83
    photo: tried to seal pinhole leak but didn’t turn water off and drain so fix failed. Notice many spots with corrosion further on down the line. Probably should replace with pex or what should I do since many potential pinhole leaks are forming. 
  • Larry Weingarten
    Larry Weingarten Member Posts: 3,289
    Hi @zvalve , Looking at the pipe, I agree that replacing with PEX is a good way to go. I might use Uponor or a system that doesn't use insert fittings, so you maintain good flow. Do you have access to a water quality test? I'm curious about the water.

    Yours, Larry
    rick in Alaska
  • mattmia2
    mattmia2 Member Posts: 9,630
    Normally I don't recommend sharkbites, but they would be a lot better than epoxy.
    wmgeorge
  • ChrisJ
    ChrisJ Member Posts: 15,668
    mattmia2 said:

    Normally I don't recommend sharkbites, but they would be a lot better than epoxy.

    Speaking of sharkbites a while back a contractor posted on FB that he thought it was funny all the professionals do nothing but bad mouth sharkbites and yet the supply house he goes to sells tons and tons and no DIY or homeowners go there.
    Single pipe quasi-vapor system. Typical operating pressure 0.14 - 0.43 oz. EcoSteam ES-20 Advanced Control for Residential Steam boilers. Rectorseal Steamaster water treatment
    mattmia2MikeAmann
  • HomerJSmith
    HomerJSmith Member Posts: 2,441
    Try a heat gun and knife or scraper.
    mattmia2
  • zvalve
    zvalve Member Posts: 83
    mattmia2 why don’t you recommend shark bites? Don’t’ you have to solder a fitting to the copper pipe to use the Uponor fitting as well as the purchase of a $250 expansion tool?
  • PC7060
    PC7060 Member Posts: 1,157
    edited March 2022
    zvalve said:
    mattmia2 why don’t you recommend shark bites? Don’t’ you have to solder a fitting to the copper pipe to use the Uponor fitting as well as the purchase of a $250 expansion tool?
    I personally don’t believe shark bites rise to the level of a professional job except for quick one-off repairs.  In my experience most pros use ProPress type tools for these situation if they don’t want to solder. 
    zvalveZmanMad Dog_2
  • zvalve
    zvalve Member Posts: 83
    PC7060 maybe so, I’m no pro but what do you recommend for a lowly DIYer  who can only afford $40 Harbor Freight tools?
  • ChrisJ
    ChrisJ Member Posts: 15,668
    edited March 2022
    zvalve said:

    PC7060 maybe so, I’m no pro but what do you recommend for a lowly DIYer  who can only afford $40 Harbor Freight tools?


    Either learn to solder or sharkbites. It'll likely be fine as long as it's in a place that's accessible.
    You need to do something and I'd try to get as much of that copper replaced as possible.

    For what it's worth I consider my self pretty good at sweating pipe and I've found Uponor brass fittings to be less than easy to solder for whatever reason. I got the work done, and they were quality joints, but it wasn't as easy as normal fittings.
    Single pipe quasi-vapor system. Typical operating pressure 0.14 - 0.43 oz. EcoSteam ES-20 Advanced Control for Residential Steam boilers. Rectorseal Steamaster water treatment
    rick in AlaskaMad Dog_2
  • SlamDunk
    SlamDunk Member Posts: 1,580
    ChrisJ said:

    zvalve said:

    PC7060 maybe so, I’m no pro but what do you recommend for a lowly DIYer  who can only afford $40 Harbor Freight tools?


    Either learn to solder or sharkbites. It'll likely be fine as long as it's in a place that's accessible.
    You need to do something and I'd try to get as much of that copper replaced as possible.

    For what it's worth I consider my self pretty good at sweating pipe and I've found Uponor brass fittings to be less than easy to solder for whatever reason. I got the work done, and they were quality joints, but it wasn't as easy as normal fittings.
    I agree. But my new experience with pro-press relegated sweating to "only if out of viega pro press fittings" and shark bites to "in case of emergency"
    zvalve
  • mattmia2
    mattmia2 Member Posts: 9,630
    You can get a knockoff expansion tool for around $50. I would use soldered copper because it is by far the cheapest option, but there is also compression and flare.
    zvalve
  • DJD775
    DJD775 Member Posts: 252
    ChrisJ said:

    zvalve said:

    PC7060 maybe so, I’m no pro but what do you recommend for a lowly DIYer  who can only afford $40 Harbor Freight tools?


    Either learn to solder or sharkbites. It'll likely be fine as long as it's in a place that's accessible.
    You need to do something and I'd try to get as much of that copper replaced as possible.

    For what it's worth I consider my self pretty good at sweating pipe and I've found Uponor brass fittings to be less than easy to solder for whatever reason. I got the work done, and they were quality joints, but it wasn't as easy as normal fittings.
    @ChrisJ Were the Uponer fittings you were using lead free? If so they will not transfer heat as well as a normal brass fitting. Or maybe Uponor just uses an alloy that does not solder as well. Just a few thoughts.
    zvalve
  • ChrisJ
    ChrisJ Member Posts: 15,668
    DJD775 said:
    PC7060 maybe so, I’m no pro but what do you recommend for a lowly DIYer  who can only afford $40 Harbor Freight tools?
    Either learn to solder or sharkbites. It'll likely be fine as long as it's in a place that's accessible. You need to do something and I'd try to get as much of that copper replaced as possible. For what it's worth I consider my self pretty good at sweating pipe and I've found Uponor brass fittings to be less than easy to solder for whatever reason. I got the work done, and they were quality joints, but it wasn't as easy as normal fittings.
    @ChrisJ Were the Uponer fittings you were using lead free? If so they will not transfer heat as well as a normal brass fitting. Or maybe Uponor just uses an alloy that does not solder as well. Just a few thoughts.
    They are lead free but so are all of the valves I've used for the past few years.  I think?

    The Uponor ones seem different, like you need to be extra extra careful especially with cleaning.  I ended up using Bridgit solder and tinning flux on all of the lead free brass including the Uponor.
    Single pipe quasi-vapor system. Typical operating pressure 0.14 - 0.43 oz. EcoSteam ES-20 Advanced Control for Residential Steam boilers. Rectorseal Steamaster water treatment
    DJD775
  • mattmia2
    mattmia2 Member Posts: 9,630
    They are really heavy so they take a lot of heat. I switched to using npt-propex adapters npt copper adapters because I would rather be able to easily reuse or reconfigure the like $6 propex adapter. The propex fittings are so expensive that copper tube is usually cheaper overall.
  • delcrossv
    delcrossv Member Posts: 742
    edited March 2022
    N/A
    Trying to squeeze the best out of a Weil-McLain JB-5 running a 1912 1 pipe system.
    zvalve
  • ChrisJ
    ChrisJ Member Posts: 15,668
    delcrossv said:

    N/A

    Naturally Aspirated?
    Not Applicable?
    North America?
    Nurse Associate?
    Noob Alert?
    Single pipe quasi-vapor system. Typical operating pressure 0.14 - 0.43 oz. EcoSteam ES-20 Advanced Control for Residential Steam boilers. Rectorseal Steamaster water treatment
    delcrossv
  • zvalve
    zvalve Member Posts: 83
    edited March 2022
    I got pretty good at sweating fresh unused copper pipes with leaded solder but that was 20 years ago and when I recently tried to sweat some joints with pipe that held water I had a hard time getting the pipes dry and my joints failed or were cold soldered. I may have used lead free solder as well so I bailed with shark bites. Seems as if there is more of a learning curve with lead free solder and the pro press joining methods as opposed to shark bites. In any case thanks all for your input and help and found that heat and a razor blade scraper were the best tools for removing plumber’s epoxy

    and don’t use the stuff to fix pinhole leaking pipes but an old piece of rubber garden hose and a hose clamp works in an emergency.

    Instead, do the job right with sweating on new pipe, or shark bites with pex B or Uponor and pex A or pro press fittings. Didn’t realize there were so many new joining methods for copper pipe and that there was a pex A or B. I was old school and thought sweating joints with lead solder or barb fittings with hose clamps around polyethylene pipe was all there was. 
  • DJD775
    DJD775 Member Posts: 252
    If you can't keep the water out it's nearly impossible to properly solder the joint. Common trick is to stuff some white bread in the pipe prior to joint assembly. This trick usually buys you enough time to properly solder the joint.
  • ChrisJ
    ChrisJ Member Posts: 15,668
    DJD775 said:

    If you can't keep the water out it's nearly impossible to properly solder the joint. Common trick is to stuff some white bread in the pipe prior to joint assembly. This trick usually buys you enough time to properly solder the joint.

    I also run the torch around the pipe before I flux it to cook any water or moisture out.
    Single pipe quasi-vapor system. Typical operating pressure 0.14 - 0.43 oz. EcoSteam ES-20 Advanced Control for Residential Steam boilers. Rectorseal Steamaster water treatment
    DJD775delcrossv
  • HomerJSmith
    HomerJSmith Member Posts: 2,441
    You can do a lot of cooking.
    wmgeorgemattmia2
  • delcrossv
    delcrossv Member Posts: 742
    ChrisJ said:

    delcrossv said:

    N/A

    Naturally Aspirated?
    Not Applicable?
    North America?
    Nurse Associate?
    Noob Alert?
    I was going to say just solder in a new section, but thought better of it if he's getting pinholes. Pex would be a better bet here.😲
    Since I needed a body to the post I put Not Applicable.
    Trying to squeeze the best out of a Weil-McLain JB-5 running a 1912 1 pipe system.
  • Erin Holohan Haskell
    Erin Holohan Haskell Member, Moderator, Administrator Posts: 2,284
    edited March 2022
    delcrossv said:

    ChrisJ said:

    delcrossv said:

    N/A
    Since I needed a body to the post I put Not Applicable.

    @delcrossv in the future, you can just write Delete and I'll remove it. Thanks!
    President
    HeatingHelp.com
    delcrossv
  • jumper
    jumper Member Posts: 2,245
    There are situations where epoxy is realistic solution. Beware of crappy epoxy.
    Mad Dog_2
  • Geosman
    Geosman Member Posts: 26
    From the looks of the blue deposit on what appears to be the original pipe, I question if this home has a stainless water tank or a tank with a depleted anode rod. I've seen pinhole leaks develop in hot water lines where water quality was very soft and where there are no sacrificial anodes to protect the system. Adding a high temperature inline filter canister filled with cut up magnesium anode rods seems to protect the system and prevent future leaks.
    MikeAmann
  • Mad Dog_2
    Mad Dog_2 Member Posts: 6,918
    I've never used that bread trick.
    Jet Sweats are very good. 
    A Copper x Female tee with a brass plug so steam can escape.  
    Crack the nut on the Water meter.
    Any time I'm installing a new main shut off valve after the water meter, I'm putting a Copper x female tee with a boiler drain....so u can do a proper drain down AND if the valve don't hold down the line, your diverting that water so you can solder..  You DIE for one of those when you can't get a good shut down and wonder WHY no one 🤔 puts one in ..its easy enough..
    I really love soldering and brazing...always did...Mad Dog 🐕 
  • mattmia2
    mattmia2 Member Posts: 9,630
    Mad Dog_2 said:

    I've never used that bread trick.
    Jet Sweats are very good. 
    A Copper x Female tee with a brass plug so steam can escape.  
    Crack the nut on the Water meter.
    Any time I'm installing a new main shut off valve after the water meter, I'm putting a Copper x female tee with a boiler drain....so u can do a proper drain down AND if the valve don't hold down the line, your diverting that water so you can solder..  You DIE for one of those when you can't get a good shut down and wonder WHY no one 🤔 puts one in ..its easy enough..
    I really love soldering and brazing...always did...Mad Dog 🐕 

    You mean like this:

    Mad Dog_2
  • Mad Dog_2
    Mad Dog_2 Member Posts: 6,918
  • Mad Dog_2
    Mad Dog_2 Member Posts: 6,918
    I LOVE those European style split ring clamps with rubber.  First time I saw them was In Bavaria in Seppe and Wick's (RIP) Homes in the boiler rooms 2005ish?  Where you git them, Mattmia?  Mad Dog  🐕 
  • Mad Dog_2
    Mad Dog_2 Member Posts: 6,918
    I've used Propoxy on Holes in Cast Iron radiators and boiler blocks, leaking holes in lead bends...Temp fixes that weren't breaking the bank..especially for old folks.  A potention $1000 dollar repair was done for $125 and wound up holding for many yrs..Mad Dog 🐕 
  • mattmia2
    mattmia2 Member Posts: 9,630
    edited June 2023
    Mad Dog_2 said:

    I LOVE those European style split ring clamps with rubber.  First time I saw them was In Bavaria in Seppe and Wick's (RIP) Homes in the boiler rooms 2005ish?  Where you git them, Mattmia?  Mad Dog  🐕 

    I got them from supplyhouse.com but I think they went out of stock after I ordered them.

    https://www.supplyhouse.com/Empire-Industries-40HS0005-Handy-Split-Ring-Extension-Hanger-For-3-4-IPS-1-CTS-Non-Hinged

    I'm pretty sure i bought a bunch of 1.25" cts clamps and I don't see that size in their catalog anymore.

    I like them because they electrically isolate the pipe from whatever metal the clamp is made out of and from the support structure, frequently damp masonry. Those copper plated steel clamps seem questionable at best against copper.