PEX (cross-linked polyethylene) pipe is a popular choice for both residential and commercial projects. However, to connect multiple sections of PEX piping together, a compression fitting is required.
But can you use compression fitting on PEX? Of course, compression fittings are a versatile and convenient option for connecting PEX pipes. These fittings are quick and easy to install. Whether you’re a professional plumber or a DIY enthusiast, they’re a great choice for any project.
In this piece, we’ll explore the benefits and the step-by-step guide on how to use a compression fitting on PEX piping to make your next plumbing project a breeze. So let’s get started.
What Is Compression Fitting?
Compression fittings are used to connect two pieces of pipes or tubing together. Also, it is made up of three main parts: the fitting body, the compression ring, and the compression nut. Compression fittings are a staple in the world of plumbing and HVAC systems.
They work by compressing the PEX piping onto a ferrule, or small metal ring, which creates a watertight seal. Compression fittings are available in various sizes and styles and can be used to connect straight sections of PEX piping. Also, it is suitable for creating angles and other configurations.
Tools For Fixing Compression Fitting To PEX
To use compression fittings with PEX piping, you will need a few basic tools and materials. These include
- PEX cutter
- Compression fitting
- A pipe cutter
- A pipe-bending tool
- A compression tool
- Adjustable wrench
- Go/No-Go gauge
Compression Fitting Sizes
Compression fittings are used in plumbing and are available in various sizes. The sizes typically refer to the outside diameter (OD) of the pipe or tubing that the fitting is designed to connect to.
Common sizes include:
1/4″, 3/8″, 1/2″, 3/4″, 1″, 1 1/4″, 1 1/2″, and 2″. However, it can vary depending on the manufacturer, thread types, and the country you are in.
How To Use Compression Fittings With PEX Piping?
Here are step-by-step instructions on how to properly prepare the PEX tubing and fitting for connection, as well as some tips for ensuring a successful installation.
Step 1: Cut the PEX tubing to the desired length.
Step 2: Clean the end of the PEX tubing with a PEX tubing cutter or a plastic pipe cutter. This will ensure that the end of the tubing is clean and free of any debris.
Step 3: Slip the compression ring onto the PEX tubing. The compression ring should be placed about 1/2 inch from the end of the tubing.
Step 4: Insert the PEX tubing into the compression fitting. Ensure that the tubing is inserted as far as it goes into the fitting.
Step 5: Tighten the compression nut onto the fitting. Use a wrench to tighten the nut, making sure to keep the tubing inserted as far as it will go into the fitting.
Step 6: Turn on the water and check for leaks. If there are any leaks, tighten the nut a little more.
Watch this video to learn more about PEX pipe fitting.
Benefits of Using Compression Fittings with PEX Piping
Here are some benefits of using compression fittings with PEX piping:
Ease Of Installation
Compression fittings do not require any special tools or equipment to install, all that is needed is a wrench to tighten the fitting onto the pipe.
Compression fittings are relatively inexpensive and widely available, making them a great option for those on a budget.
Reliability And Durability
The fittings are tightened onto the pipe by hand, ensuring a secure and leak-free connection. They are also made from durable materials such as brass or plastic, which can withstand the pressures and temperatures of a plumbing system.
Compression fittings can be used with a wide range of pipe materials. That includes PEX, copper, and PVC, making them suitable for a variety of plumbing applications.
PEX piping is flexible and allows for easy installation in tight spaces and around corners. Compression fittings are also designed to work with this type of piping and provide a secure connection.
Easy To Disconnect And Reconnect
Compression fittings are easy to disconnect and reconnect, making it easy to make changes or repairs to your plumbing system.
Precautions When Using A Compression Fitting?
There are a few precautions to take when using compression fittings on PEX to ensure a safe and effective installation.
Use The Correct Size Fittings
It is important to use fittings that are the correct size for your PEX piping. Using fittings that are too small or too large can result in leaks or damage to the piping.
Use Pex-specific Fittings
PEX piping requires special fittings that are designed specifically for use with PEX. Using fittings intended for use with other types of piping can result in leaks or damage to the piping.
Use The Correct Tool
Compression fittings require a special tool to secure them properly. Make sure to use the correct tool for the fittings to ensure a secure and leak-free connection.
Over-tightening the compression nut on a fitting can cause damage to the PEX piping and may result in leaks. Follow the manufacturer’s instructions and use a torque wrench to ensure the fittings are tightened to the correct specification.
Use Pex-approved Lubricant
PEX piping requires a special lubricant to ensure that the fittings are inserted properly and sealed effectively. Make sure to use a lubricant that is approved for use with PEX to avoid damaging the piping or fittings.
Additionally, it is essential to avoid overheating the pipe or fittings during the installation process. That is because this can cause damage to the pipe and reduce the effectiveness of the fitting.
We believe that we’ve answered all the questions regarding the compression fittings usage on PEX pipes. However, note that using compression fittings on PEX pipes can be a great option for making connections.
But it is important to be aware of the precautions and proper installation techniques to ensure a safe and effective installation. Also, make sure to follow the manufacturer’s instructions.