So we got the plumbing in. Most of it done in a weekend, and it would have gone faster if I’d just sucked it up and bought a Sawzall and started pulling out the old plumbing with that, first.
I settled on the Upinor ProPEX system because all of my contractor and handyman friends said “go to Pace Plumbing Supply”, so I did. I asked the guy behind the counter for some parts and he said “the tool is $400”. I’d looked at the various crimp-on systems, and the Shark Bite press-on (more later), but everybody’d said to use these guys, so we started with that.
A little video overview of the system:
It’s a Milwaukee M12 tool that expands the end of the tubing and a ring encasing the tubing just long enough that you can slide it down over the fitting.
From left to right:
The tool without a specific tubing adapter installed, With the ¾” adapter installed, The cutter, and with a fitted end-ring, and A couple of ½” fittings.
So on a Saturday morning, I started tearing out the old galvanized steel plumbing. Mistake #1: I didn’t figure out until, I think late that evening, that unscrewing it is a fool’s errand. Get a big-ass (or at least the beefiest ¾” stroke) Sawzall you can find (I bought a Milwaukee Sawzall) and start cutting.
I managed to get much of the house clear, and was working on the re-plumbing late on Sunday afternoon, when I made a call to a friend who came over and bailed my butt out. By the time he left at 11:30 or so we had water.
I then went down on Tuesday to City Hall and pulled my permit. Sshhh, don’t tell anyone.
There are three things left:
- I still have some major holes in the wall.
- The holes are there ‘til I can get my inspection, which is waiting on some electrical rework for the bathroom.
- The shower faucet is an interim faucet.
We also ended up with a few Shark Bite fittings. These were the only things that leaked when we pressurized the system, and I’d like to work them out as I get the chance. On the other hand, they were available from OSH and Lowe’s late on a Sunday afternoon.
-- Dan Lyke, Petaluma California, http://www.flutterby.net/