Hire the best Gas Fitter

Copper pipes in concrete?

Results 1 to 25 of 25
  1. #1
    Novice Smiley Guy's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2006
    Location
    Sydney
    Posts
    22

    Default Copper pipes in concrete?

    Somebody told me that cement can sometimes eat into copper pipes (for hot & cold water). They also said there is a special tape you can get to put around them to protect the pipes. Is this correct? Can I just use plain plastic sheet? I am chasing some pipes into a brick wall where they will eventually be cemented into place.

  2. #2
    Registered
    Join Date
    Aug 2003
    Location
    .
    Posts
    1,836

    Default

    I think some one is pulling your chain..

    Al

  3. #3
    1K Club Member DJ's Timber's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2006
    Location
    East Warburton Vic
    Age
    53
    Posts
    500

    Default

    The only concern I would have is to make sure that the pipe can't move or rattle after it has been cemented in place.

    I have had to jackhammer some of the concrete out of my folks place to fix some leaks that was soaking up through the carpet. One section of pipe was rubbing on a stone in the concrete, cause the concrete hadn't been vibrated and there were a lot of airgaps around the pipe
    Cheers

    DJ

  4. #4
    Pretend my avatar moves! bitingmidge's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2003
    Location
    "The Home of the Biting Midge" MountainCreek Qld
    Posts
    1,138

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Smiley Guy View Post
    Somebody told me that cement can sometimes eat into copper pipes (for hot & cold water). They also said there is a special tape you can get to put around them to protect the pipes. Is this correct? Can I just use plain plastic sheet? I am chasing some pipes into a brick wall where they will eventually be cemented into place.
    Rest assured that eventually the copper WILL corrode if encased in concrete, the last time I dug out pipes chased in brickwork was in my daughter's unit, and it took 21 years for the shower combination to spring a leak.

    DON'T listen to the bricky!

    Normal plastic packaging tape is fine, but it's easier just to use lagged pipe (the stuff with the plastic insulation round the outside).

    I don't allow cast-in pipes on any of my jobs UNLESS it's in conduit and can be replaced WHEN it springs a leak. This isn't always possible in situations like yours, so go for it!

    cheers,

    P

  5. #5
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Oct 2003
    Location
    Sydney,Australia
    Age
    68
    Posts
    143

    Default

    Largely what Midge said. Copper pipes direct into concrete = leaks in a few years, ruined carpets etc. & a PITA to replace.

    The 'old' way to fix this was to make a trench in the concrete & lay the pipe in sand, cover it with sand & then cap with cement - builders were just laying the pipe (and 240 volt cables) bare in the floor & walls, tied to the reo, and pouring over the top.

    I've seen a lot of copper pipe with what looks like green plastic water hose covering it - I think that is the 'special tape' that has been mentioned to you that will somehow stop the pipes from leaking.

  6. #6
    Try, Succeed, Success ! John99's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2004
    Location
    Sydney
    Age
    58
    Posts
    74

    Default

    Hi Smiley Guy

    I had a natural gas pipe that was in concrete and where it came out of the concrete it corroded and I had one big gas leak
    Thinking about mowing the lawn doesn`t get it done !

  7. #7
    Registered
    Join Date
    Aug 2003
    Location
    .
    Posts
    1,836

    Default

    I think if youse all look he is going to encase it in mortar which a whole lot different to concrete.

    I assume it will be mortar as its going in a brick wall and I thought Id let Jethro off with calling it cement.

    Nearly all concrete contains retarder, which is very corrosive.

    Al

  8. #8
    Novice Smiley Guy's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2006
    Location
    Sydney
    Posts
    22

    Default

    Thanks guys - I think I might ask at the plumbing supplies store after your advice - just in case!

    I'm not exactly sure if I'm using 'mortar'. It's an existing wall in which I have already chased the channels out for the pipes. I will fill it in (after I put pipes in) with a sand cement mix ( a weak one in case I ever do have to get to the pipes!)

    Is that what you are calling mortar? My title is confusing.

  9. #9
    Registered
    Join Date
    Aug 2003
    Location
    .
    Posts
    1,836

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Smiley Guy View Post

    Is that what you are calling mortar? My title is confusing.
    Thats it!!

    Al

  10. #10
    1K Club Member journeyman Mick's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2003
    Location
    Kuranda, paradise, North Qld
    Age
    61
    Posts
    1,782

    Default

    Sorry Smiley and Al, I've had to open up walls where pipes and combinations had been chased and mortared in and they had corroded. Admittedly this was after 25 years or so, but it does happen. Not all of the pipes corroded (large commercial building with 8 bathrooms) but about half have needed attention so far. Of course, if you have internal brick or black walls it's a bit hard to avoid altogether, but using lagged pipe and then lagging the combinations and breeching pieces will go a long way towards avoiding problems down the track.

    Mick
    "If you need a machine today and don't buy it,

    tomorrow you will have paid for it and not have it."

    - Henry Ford 1938

  11. #11
    Diamond Member Barry_White's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2003
    Location
    Kentucky NSW near Tamworth, Australia
    Age
    84
    Posts
    1,196

    Default

    When you go to the plumbers supply just ask for lagged copper pipe. It has a foam type lagging around the pipe, varies in colour sometimes green colour sometimes orange colour depending on the manufacturer of the copper pipe. Copper pipe comes in two grades, hard drawn which you can't bend and soft which comes in coils which you can bend which ever way you want.
    Regards Bazza

    Skype Username: bazzabushy

    "Experience is a hard teacher because she gives the test first, the lesson afterwards."
    -Vernon Sanders Law

    The views expressed by the poster are general in nature and any advice should be taken in this vein. The poster accepts no responsibility if this advice is used. When undertaking any work personal professional advice should be sought from suitably qualified persons in the field of work being undertaken.


  12. #12
    Registered
    Join Date
    Aug 2003
    Location
    .
    Posts
    1,836

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by journeyman Mick View Post
    Sorry Smiley and Al, I've had to open up walls where pipes and combinations had been chased and mortared in and they had corroded.

    Mick
    Mick everything up your end of the country corrodes, when I was up there some years ago I even had my nether regions starting to corrode.

    Al

  13. #13
    Timber Hoarder Cliff Rogers's Avatar
    Join Date
    Sep 2002
    Location
    Minbun, FNQ, Australia
    Age
    65
    Posts
    1,950

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by ozwinner View Post
    ...had my nether regions starting to corrode.

    Al
    Happens if you don't use it enough Al.
    Cliff

    ...if all you have is a hammer, everything looks like a nail...

  14. #14
    Novice Smiley Guy's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2006
    Location
    Sydney
    Posts
    22

    Default

    I have already cut and soldered most of the pipe (well Dad has - that's what they're there for right?) - can I buy some 'lagging? What's it called?

  15. #15
    1K Club Member
    Join Date
    Aug 2005
    Location
    Victoria
    Posts
    1,391

    Default

    foam lagging.You can buy it in rolls.

    Tools

  16. #16
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Dec 2005
    Location
    Huntington Beach, CA USA
    Age
    80
    Posts
    144

    Default

    FWIW, I had a house built on a slab floor. Our pipes ran through the slab and were encased in a neoprene tube (or, excuse the word condom). I was told by the plumber that this was to prevent corosion. The plumber also said that they used soft copper pipes so that there were no soldered joints below the slab.
    Rich

    Help! I've dropped my nail gun and can't glue up.

  17. #17
    Diamond Member Barry_White's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2003
    Location
    Kentucky NSW near Tamworth, Australia
    Age
    84
    Posts
    1,196

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Tools View Post
    foam lagging.You can buy it in rolls.

    Tools
    I think you would find that type of lagging would nbe too bulky to be chased into a wall. The prelagged pipe has a lagging that is only about 3 to 4mm thick and is much denser than the after the event lagging.

    Probably the best thing to do would be to get some grey duct tape and wrap the pipe with it.

    Shouldn't take more than an hour to accomplish that.
    Regards Bazza

    Skype Username: bazzabushy

    "Experience is a hard teacher because she gives the test first, the lesson afterwards."
    -Vernon Sanders Law

    The views expressed by the poster are general in nature and any advice should be taken in this vein. The poster accepts no responsibility if this advice is used. When undertaking any work personal professional advice should be sought from suitably qualified persons in the field of work being undertaken.


  18. #18
    Pretend my avatar moves! bitingmidge's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2003
    Location
    "The Home of the Biting Midge" MountainCreek Qld
    Posts
    1,138

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by ozwinner View Post
    I think if youse all look he is going to encase it in mortar which a whole lot different to concrete.
    Nearly all concrete contains retarder, which is very corrosive.
    And "nearly" all (depending on your brickie! ) mortar contains cement, which isn't at all corrosive!.

    Sorry Al, I've dug out too many to let you get away with it!


    Cheers,

    P

  19. #19
    Novice Smiley Guy's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2006
    Location
    Sydney
    Posts
    22

    Default

    Thanks guys,

    Very glad I asked. The foam stuff would be too bulky in what I have chased out in the wall. I'll go to the shops and ask for some thinner stuff this week hopefully.

    I was going to to it this Wednesday when the boy is in day care, but the weather is cooling down enough for a couple hours fishing!!!

  20. #20
    Diamond Member Barry_White's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2003
    Location
    Kentucky NSW near Tamworth, Australia
    Age
    84
    Posts
    1,196

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Smiley Guy View Post
    Thanks guys,

    Very glad I asked. The foam stuff would be too bulky in what I have chased out in the wall. I'll go to the shops and ask for some thinner stuff this week hopefully.

    I was going to to it this Wednesday when the boy is in day care, but the weather is cooling down enough for a couple hours fishing!!!
    Like they say work is only for people that don't know how to fish.
    Regards Bazza

    Skype Username: bazzabushy

    "Experience is a hard teacher because she gives the test first, the lesson afterwards."
    -Vernon Sanders Law

    The views expressed by the poster are general in nature and any advice should be taken in this vein. The poster accepts no responsibility if this advice is used. When undertaking any work personal professional advice should be sought from suitably qualified persons in the field of work being undertaken.


  21. #21
    PLU.MBR.BL.DR. bricks's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2007
    Location
    Adelaide - West
    Age
    42
    Posts
    643

    Default

    Hey bloke wrap your pipe in normal grey duct tape, this will work well enough. The new copper pipes are thinner material ( cheap rubbish ) so it will corrode faster than old copper would have. Grey tape will do it, thats what i use, yes im a plumber, just make sure there are no holes in it ( do a good job)

    Lagging will not work as it is porous and will let moisture through.

    When you fill the chase up, try doin the corners on one day and then the next day when its hard you will find it a lot easier to bend the taps into a level position.
    If you dont play it, it's not an instrument!

  22. #22
    1K Club Member journeyman Mick's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2003
    Location
    Kuranda, paradise, North Qld
    Age
    61
    Posts
    1,782

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by bricks View Post
    ................Lagging will not work as it is porous and will let moisture through.........................
    What, the green plastic lagging that comes on the pipes? (Kemlag) I seriously doubt that.

    Mick
    "If you need a machine today and don't buy it,

    tomorrow you will have paid for it and not have it."

    - Henry Ford 1938

  23. #23
    Diamond Member Barry_White's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2003
    Location
    Kentucky NSW near Tamworth, Australia
    Age
    84
    Posts
    1,196

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by journeyman Mick View Post
    What, the green plastic lagging that comes on the pipes? (Kemlag) I seriously doubt that.

    Mick
    I agree with Mick. I have had Kemlag buried in soil for years and dug it up and the only area where moisture has got in is in the end where the Kemlag is cut and then it it has only gone in by capillary action a couple of inches. Kemlag is a closed cell foam so moisture doesn't penetrate.

    The chances of moisture getting in a pipe that has been rendered in is remote unless the pipe is leaking.

    The corrosion is started by the wet cement coming in contact with the copper and sets up a chemical reaction.

    Like you say bricks grey duct tape will do the job anyway.
    Regards Bazza

    Skype Username: bazzabushy

    "Experience is a hard teacher because she gives the test first, the lesson afterwards."
    -Vernon Sanders Law

    The views expressed by the poster are general in nature and any advice should be taken in this vein. The poster accepts no responsibility if this advice is used. When undertaking any work personal professional advice should be sought from suitably qualified persons in the field of work being undertaken.


  24. #24
    PLU.MBR.BL.DR. bricks's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2007
    Location
    Adelaide - West
    Age
    42
    Posts
    643

    Default

    Sorry Mick but eventually the kemlag will have to come off when it is heated or joined, and i was talking about the black foam insulation that someone suggested re smileys last post, plus you could put your kids through private school for the cost of kemlag.
    If you dont play it, it's not an instrument!

  25. #25
    1K Club Member journeyman Mick's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2003
    Location
    Kuranda, paradise, North Qld
    Age
    61
    Posts
    1,782

    Default

    Most of the jobs I've been on Kemlag has been used for all hot water and wherever pipes are chased into the blockwork. Combinations are usually covered in stripped off plastic lagging if it's around and any bare bits or joints etc are covered in duct tape. I reckon that by the time you factor in the labour component to wrap bare copper in tape then it's more expensive not to use kemlag. Wasting dollars to save cents, I reckon.

    Mick
    "If you need a machine today and don't buy it,

    tomorrow you will have paid for it and not have it."

    - Henry Ford 1938

Similar Threads

  1. trying to solder copper pipe
    By barned01 in forum Plumbing
    Replies: 28
    Last Post: 26th Jun 2008, 07:56 AM
  2. shower copper tray
    By cabman in forum Bathrooms
    Replies: 3
    Last Post: 19th Nov 2007, 09:10 PM
  3. Removing roots from pipes without replacing pipes
    By Williamstown in forum Plumbing
    Replies: 8
    Last Post: 8th Oct 2007, 12:27 AM
  4. Copper pipes in brick and plaster wall
    By juan in forum Plumbing
    Replies: 5
    Last Post: 11th Jul 2007, 08:34 AM
  5. Replies: 54
    Last Post: 15th Feb 2007, 07:49 PM

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •