Welcome! Here are the website rules, as well as some tips for using this forum.
Need to contact us? Visit https://heatinghelp.com/contact-us/.
Click here to Find a Contractor in your area.

Punctured Kitec Pex-Al-Pex lines - best path forward?

Options
I'm helping out a friend who punctured 3 or 4 of his 3/8" Kitex IPEX Pex-Al-Pex lines. He was installing a floor with some very tiny staples that went through a few lines in the radiant system. The punctures are small enough we might be able to just cut a half inch on each side of the puncture and put a pex-al-pex specific compression coupling in. However if I need to take more than that out I might be a bit more challenging as the stuff seems hard to find from reputable sellers.

Options (note Supply House doesn't have this stuff...let me know where to buy)
A) Cut out a section, find some 3/8" pex-al-pex replacement tubing use compression fittings on both sides
B) Find an adapting coupler of some sort (pex-al-pex compression to barb?) and use Pex-A or whatever oxygen barrier pex in the middle
C) Find a reducing pex-al-pex reducing coupling (1/2" to 3/8") and buy 1/2" tubing (which is readily available) to use in the middle.

Or any other ideas...

Comments

  • hot_rod
    hot_rod Member Posts: 22,158
    Options
    I didn't think there was a 3/8 Kitec? What is the O.D.?
    1/2" is .640 outside.

    A company in Canada makes Kitec fittings
    www.veratek.ca
    Bob "hot rod" Rohr
    trainer for Caleffi NA
    Living the hydronic dream
    Ironmankcopp
  • Big Ed_4
    Big Ed_4 Member Posts: 2,785
    Options
    Use the correct fitting , compression in a pinch..

    There was an error rendering this rich post.

  • Ironman
    Ironman Member Posts: 7,376
    edited February 17
    Options
    I’ve never seen 3/8” Kitec pex-Al-pex. Are you sure it’s not 1/2”?
    Bob Boan
    You can choose to do what you want, but you cannot choose the consequences.
  • dko
    dko Member Posts: 603
    edited February 17
    Options
    3/8 was made, couldn't find official IPEX catalog, but reseller had it in its catalog



    It was probably a good time when he was redoing the flooring to repipe the kitec. Maybe still not too late given he has to take some back out anyway? Haven't read too much into the lawsuit or failure rates.
  • hot_rod
    hot_rod Member Posts: 22,158
    Options
    I’m pretty sure the Kitec is a different size than other PAP..

    Uponor, Watts, etc are CTS, copper tube size. So the same OD as copper plumbing pipe. 1/2” Pex and PAP is 5/8” OD
    1/2” Kitec was .640 OD, so compression fittings will not slip over it

    Kitec paid out something like 90 million for fitting dezincification lawsuits. The brass fittings failed.

    Although some suggest the zinc would react with the aluminum layer in the tube and the tube would blister and fail. Any tube you can get to, I would replace.
    Bob "hot rod" Rohr
    trainer for Caleffi NA
    Living the hydronic dream
  • dko
    dko Member Posts: 603
    edited February 17
    Options
    I removed my comment about the compression fittings, but I was speaking from experience. Pex-Al-Pex compression adapters from that company will work with 3/8 and 1/2 kitec (not larger), enough of a tolerance.

    But as the fittings do have warnings to be used only with their piping, it is probably not proper to advise it.

    As for proper advice
    Replace pipe
    or
    Contact IPEX for their Kitec adapters. Not sure if they discontinued completely, but they do exist directly from IPEX.


    https://www.markssupply.ca/5069/brand/kitec (example)
    Nowhere that actually has in stock anymore.
  • hot_rod
    hot_rod Member Posts: 22,158
    Options
    dko said:

    I removed my comment about the compression fittings, but I was speaking from experience. Pex-Al-Pex compression adapters from that company will work with 3/8 and 1/2 kitec (not larger), enough of a tolerance.

    But as the fittings do have warnings to be used only with their piping, it is probably not proper advise it.

    As for proper advice
    Replace pipe
    or
    Contact IPEX for their Kitec adapters. Not sure if they discontinued completely, but they do exist directly from IPEX.


    The company I listed above Veratek, looks like a machine shop that specializes in making fittings for the obsolete Kitec and Warmrite tube. It has the dual o-rings like the original Kitec fittings. Looks like he did his homework on the fitting design.

    I think the repair could be done with one of their couplings as it has some length to play with.
    Bob "hot rod" Rohr
    trainer for Caleffi NA
    Living the hydronic dream
  • dko
    dko Member Posts: 603
    Options
    The crimping tool is affordable too, definitely something to look at.
    Would have to hope it's not 3/8" and is actually 1/2"
  • AdamInEvergreen
    AdamInEvergreen Member Posts: 42
    edited February 19
    Options
    The system is 3/8" and 5/8" (as indicated by the writing on the tubing).  It is a decent sized house (probably 5k square feet) but the system is built excessively complex with like a dozen zones.

    The piping isn't easy to replace anywhere...the recent flooring work the tubing was fastened from the bottom so all the drywall in the ceiling of the floor below would have to be torn out to re do it. 

    I have a manual clamp ring tool that works well for installing barbed connectors on Pex...I was hoping to just use some of those with normal oxygen barrier pex but I get the impression that's not an option with Ipex. That's what supply house support told me at least. 

    Sorry for the bad Pic of the diameter but I circled the 3/8.  The 5/8 is just below that. 




  • hot_rod
    hot_rod Member Posts: 22,158
    Options
    You need to find the Kitec specific coupling. Or a transition coupling to go to cts size Pex.
    You might shop e bay, someone has a stash of them.

    However, the thin o rings on Kitec fittings would go bad after storing them for years. They crack and crumble when you try to use them. You need two good soft o rings for them to seal. And chamfer the ID of the tube will to insert the fitting, with some lube. Or you roll the o ring out of the groove.

    I scrapped a 5 gallon bucket of old Kitec fittings once the word got out about the dezincification issues. Plus all the o rings were cracking.

    Maybe shop some of the online Euro sites, I think a 7mm compression fitting may work. PAP compression fittings will have a brass, not plastic ferrule. A standard pex compression fitting will not work on PAP, even if you find the correct ID and OD.

    Caleffi still offers PAP compression fittings, but I’ve checked in the past, the Kitec is just too large of an OD to fit

    If the company I mentioned above has 3/8 couplings, that is where I would got. Tolerances are correct and you get fresh o- rings😏
    Bob "hot rod" Rohr
    trainer for Caleffi NA
    Living the hydronic dream
    PC7060kcopp
  • Simply Rad
    Simply Rad Member Posts: 184
    Options
    I think Watts Radiant Pap compression fittings will work
    Jeffrey Campbell
  • jmatthers
    jmatthers Member Posts: 1
    Options
    If you are on Long Island, I have plenty of 3/8" Kitec tube. A hundred feet or so.