How to Repair a Leaky PVC Pipe Joint – after sawing out the bad section of PVC pipe, install the Fernco Qwik Ell flexible rubber elbow. This repair is continued from How to Repair a Leaky PVC Pipe Joint – Part 2.

Install the New PVC Pipe Joint

Now that the old leaky section of pipe is removed, I dried and cleaned the 45 degree street elbow on the “upstream” side as shown. I also deburred and cleaned the lower section of pipe that was cut with the handsaw. As you can see from this photo, the 45 degree elbow joint was never glued – a result of poor workmanship!

PVC Pipe Repair: Cut Out Bad Section of PVC Pipe

PVC Pipe Repair: Cut Out Bad Section of PVC Pipe

Trial Fit the Fernco Qwik Ell

Next, I trial fitted the two repair parts to make sure everything is positioned correctly and marked the ends with a blue pen. The repair parts are:

  1. A new 45 degree PVC street elbow.
  2. The Fernco QL-200 Qwik Ell

The pieces went together perfectly:

PVC Pipe Repair: Trial Fit the Repair Parts

PVC Pipe Repair: Trial Fit the Repair Parts

I removed the Fernco Qwik Ell and checked my the depth of the blue pen marks to ensure the Ell was seated properly.

PVC Pipe Repair: Remove the Fernco Qwik Ell

PVC Pipe Repair: Remove the Fernco Qwik Ell

The replacement 45 degree street elbow was removed, the depth of the blue mark checked for proper seating and purple primer applied.

PVC Pipe Repair: Purple Primer Before Gluing 45 degree PVC elbow

PVC Pipe Repair: Purple Primer Before Gluing 45 degree PVC elbow

The new street elbow is solvent welded in place with PVC cement.

PVC Pipe Repair: New 45 degree Street Elbow Solvent Weld

PVC Pipe Repair: New 45 degree Street Elbow Solvent Weld

The Fernco Qwik is slipped onto the pipe ends and checked for proper seating at the two blue marks. The Quik Ell fitting is flexible and easy to work into place.

Do not use glue on the Fernco fitting. The Qwik Ell is held in place by the two steel band clamps and can be removed later if needed by loosing the clamps.

Leaky PVC Pipe Repair: Fernco Qwik Ell QL-200

Leaky PVC Pipe Repair: Fernco Qwik Ell QL-200

The steel band clamps are tightened with a socket wrench. I tighten it up until it’s firm, then take it in another 3/16 inch or so it squeezes the rubber fitting.

PVC Pipe Repair: Fernco Qwik Ell Band Clamps

PVC Pipe Repair: Fernco Qwik Ell Band Clamps

And the job is done! My wife was eager to run a load of clothes through the washing machine and the repair was leak free.

The last task is to paint over the stain on the drywall ceiling.

Leaky PVC Pipe Joint Inspection

A close inspection of the leaky section of PVC pipe that was removed was interesting. The “downstream” end is on the left, the leak is the stained section in the middle and the fused cable saw cut is the ragged section to the middle right.

Leaky PVC Pipe Joint

Leaky PVC Pipe Joint

This is the “upstream” end that wasn’t glued – but it hadn’t leaked here. The plumber most likely dry-fitted the piping and forgot to take it apart and glue this joint. This actually was a benefit in making the repair because the section popped off cleanly making the cable saw cut unnecessary – but I didn’t know this at the time.

Leaky PVC Pipe: Fitting not Glued!

Leaky PVC Pipe: Fitting not Glued!

A smack or two cracked open the cut made by the PVC cable saw. The saw wire was so hot from friction it semi-melted it’s way through the pipe – the pipe tended to fuse back together behind the wire. Next time I would draw the cable saw back-and-forth more slowly to minimize the heat generation.

PVC Cable Saw Cut

PVC Cable Saw Cut

Hope this saves you some money on repairs!

Take care,

Bob Jackson

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