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Soldering Tips (QUICK TIPS)

Solder Smarter

 

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by Jeff Patterson in Plumbing
Soldering Tips

Soldering tips can make a BIG difference.

That could be…the difference between getting frustrated and having an easier time.

…the difference between burning your home down or NOT!!!

If you’ve watched my other tutorials you know I LOVE PEX.

But sometimes you’ll have to solder in fittings.

So today’s quick soldering tips will hopefully help make this process smarter and better.

Here are the supplies you need

    • Bernzomatic MAP-Pro Gas ($16) (Amazon link)
    • Berzomatic Trigger Start ($50)
    • Ridgid No. 15 Pipe Cutter ($31)
    • Fitting Wire Brush ($11)
    • Emery Cloth ($3)
    • Laco Flux ($14)
    • Flux Brush ($4)
    • Silvabrite 100 Lead Free Solder ($34)
    • 1/2″ Copper Pipe ($10)
    • 1/2″ 90 Degree Elbows ($10 for Bag of 10)
    • Heat Shield ($15)
    • Ironglad Gloves ($16)
    • Safety Glasses ($5)
    • Fire Extinguisher ($30)

Let’s get started with the tips.

 

MAPP or Propane Gas

MAPP gas burns hotter than propane.

That’s good if you want to heat up copper pipes.

Bad if you’re trying to not burn down your house.

That said, if you want to spend less time heating up the pipes and exposing the surroundings to a flame, MAPP is the way to go.

Btw, it’s called MAPP but MAP-Pro is on the canister below.

1 - MAP Gas 600

Bernzomatic makes a great trigger starter for MAP-Pro canisters.

Automatic Start

I’d recommend getting one of these because it makes soldering safer.

The flame is easily controlled by simply pressing or depressing the starter button.

How should you prep copper pipe BEFORE soldering?

 

How to Prep Copper Pipe

Cutting copper pipe is easy.

Both the Ridgid No. 15 or AutoCut tool are great

Ridgid 15

The nice thing about the Ridgid No. 15 is it has a deburring tool.

Use this to remove burs inside the pipe after cutting it.

Debur

Use either a wire brush or emery cloth to clean the inside and outside of the pipe. Use the wire brush to clean the inside of fittings, e.g. 90 degree elbows or T-fittings.

Pipe Brush

This is emery cloth..super cheap and awesome.

Emery Cloth

Apply a thin layer of flux to the outside of the pipe.

Flux

And inside of the fitting.

Copper Fitting

You don’t need a ton of flux, just enough to cover the surface of the pipe and fitting.

Inspect the pipe and fitting to make sure none of the brush hairs are on them.

A single brush hair can ruin your soldering job…darn hairs!!!

How do you approach the actual soldering?

 

Soldering Tips…Let’s Make Life Easy

Soldering isn’t hard…after you practice.

My biggest recommendation is to practice somewhere safe before trying to solder inside a wall or ceiling.

Buy 10 fittings and some copper pipe.

Setup a little practice station outside and have at it.

That way, you’ll get familiar with your torch and won’t risk burning down the house on the first try.

I like to heat up the pipe for a few seconds then apply heat behind the fitting.

That way, the solder will be drawn into the fitting/pipe connection.

Check out my video for the quick tips…I think these will help a ton

Soldering Tips

 

Your Turn

What do you think?

Are you more comfortable with the idea of soldering after this tutorial?

Let me know down in the comments.

Also, if you have a preference in terms of solder, flux or torch share that in the comments as well.

I believe that having the right tools make a BIG difference.

If you’ve found a soldering setup that works for you share it below.

Make it a great day,

Jeff Patterson

 

 

 

 

 

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