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.

Benefits of Sharkbite Fittings:

blue and red pipes utilizing sharkbite fittings
Why are so many people choosing Sharkbite fittings over traditional connection methods for their plumbing system? Here are just a few of the reasons.

1. Faster

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.

2. Reliable

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.

3. Reusable

Sharkbite fittings are a great investment, as they have the potential to be reusable! In theory, one could remove a Sharkbite fitting off of their pipes and attach it to a new one. Be sure to double-check your Sharkbite’s o-ring, though. Occasionally, the o-ring can get damaged, making it impossible to get a sturdy seal.

4. Long Lasting

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.

1. Can Break

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.

2. 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

How simple to use are these revolutionary pipe fittings? You can assemble your Sharkbite plumbing fittings in just a few simple 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?

Sharkbite fittings will cost a bit more than soldering your pipe, but they are still relatively affordable. Depending on the style you need, and where you purchase them, you can expect to pay $4-$40 per fitting.

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 Professional 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!