The average homeowner is not a plumbing expert.
In fact, if you are a new homeowner, it is very possible that you have never thought much about plumbing in the past. But if you are dipping your toes into the world of DIY maintenance or have recently hired a plumber to do some work for you, you may have heard more and more about SharkBite™ fittings.
If you’re looking to learn more about this nifty plumbing tool, you’ve come to the right place. We’ve compiled all the research so that you can become a Sharkbite fittings expert and take your home improvement knowledge to the next level.
What Are Sharkbite Fittings?
Let’s start with the basics. What exactly are Sharkbite fittings?
Sharkbite fittings are push-to-connect pipe fittings that have grown in popularity over the years. They have replaced the need for plumbers to have to do soldering when it comes time to connect tubing. While they have been around for over twenty years, they continue to grow in popularity as more and more homeowners see how easy and effective they are to use.
What Are The Benefits of Sharkbite Fittings?
The biggest benefit of Sharkbite fittings is how simple they are to use. Soldering takes significantly more time and skill. When you use a Sharkbite fitting, however, all you need to do is push your tubing into place, and voila! You are ready to go.
Many plumbers find that Sharkbite fittings are just as reliable as traditional connection methods, if not more so. The trick is to ensure that you are achieving a good seal. Sharkbite offers a variety of tools to help ensure that your seal is tight and there are no leaks.
Sharkbite fittings are designed to last a lifetime and come with a 25-year product warranty.
Downsides of Sharkbite Fittings
Every rose has its’ thorns, and when it comes to Sharkbite fittings, there are a few downsides to consider as well.
Unlike traditional soldering methods, a Sharkbite fitting does have more of a potential to break. Mostly, this occurs when the o-ring gets a laceration, typically from a poorly cut pipe.
Need Special Tools
In order to properly install and remove your Sharkbite fittings, you will likely have to invest in the company’s specially-made tools. This can be an investment the average homemaker may not be interested in making.
How To Use Sharkbite Fittings in 3 Steps
1) Cut Pipe Cleanly
As we’ve mentioned previously, it is important to make sure that your pipe is cut cleanly in order to avoid damaging the o ring on your Sharkbite fitting. Sharkbite offers a deburring tool that will help make sure to give your tubing a clean edge. It can also be used to properly size your tube.
2) Tube Stiffener
You’ll then want to insert the tube stiffener into your Sharkbite fitting. This will help make sure that you get a proper seal.
3) Insert Pipe
Lastly, you will push your pipe into the fitting. Make sure that you have pushed it all the way in, in order to avoid causing leaks in the future.
How Much Do Sharkbite Fittings Cost?
What Kind of Tubing Can You Use?
Sharkbite fittings work well with both PEX and copper pipe. While you don’t need to use a tube fitting with a copper pipe, it is essential that you use it with the PEX pipe in order to obtain the best possible seal.
Consult With A Plumber
Want to learn more about Sharkbite fittings? Your local plumber at AJ Alberts Plumbing can help! We are experts on all things plumbing and can help you out with your home projects, whether they are big or small. Contact us today to get started!