I've got a 1/2 inch copper water pipe into the back of my attached garage [Img1], conveniently next to where I have a fridge/freezer unit. I'd like to attach water from that pipe to the built-in water/icemaker in the fridge, but I may also want to add an outside spigot or some other function down the line, so I don't necessarily want to limit my options by taking over the whole pipe for that one purpose. The water pipe comes from inside my house and has separate shutoff valves available there so I could shut off water for the winter to avoid freezing risk, etc. Icemaker/fridge has 1/4" pex.

I've cut and deburred the pipe. I was originally going to use a brass 1/4 turn angle supply stop valve (5/8" OD Comp Inlet to 1/4" OD Comp outlet) with compression fittings [IMG2] that I have but could return, then run that to a steel 1/4inch ice maker supply hose [IMG3] to the plastic pipe that came with the fridge. Simple, think that should work...but if i wanted to attach anything else down the line, i'd probably have to cut it and reconfigure.

However, the option I'm now looking to do is to take that pipe and create a "t" to essentially split off (with a valve either as part of this or just down the line) the icemaker line, while also having an 'output' to continue the 1/2 inch copper pipe, which I'd then cap for the time being...might at some point go to an outdoor hose bib or something else.

What's the safest/easiest/simplest or perhaps "best" way to do this? Want to reduce risk of leaks or too many unnecessary components, also avoiding soldering if at all possible.

I could use a brass "t" with compression fittings, buy two more small lengths of copper pipe, one of which I then attach a compression "cap" end on for now, the other goes to the supply stop valve I currently have (but could return) then to the icemaker...but is there a better way of doing it? Thanks

[Image 4 is a general diagram of this situation, with the X box being what i'm trying to figure out essentially.]

Img 1 - context and copper pipe Img 2 - supply stop valve i was originally going to use Img 3 - fridge supply line from valve to fridge's plastic water line Img 4 - rough diagram of the situation

  • I am not understanding the dilemma. It seam all straight forward to me. Add a copper tee with a stub out one side capped for future additions and a stub off the tee branch for a 1/4 turn valve for the refrigerator water line.
    – Alaska Man
    Commented Jun 26, 2020 at 21:55
  • Are you asking about if you should sweat copper fittings to copper pipe or use compression ?
    – Alaska Man
    Commented Jun 26, 2020 at 22:02
  • You seem to have everything well in hand except your fear of soldering, which you should immediately overcome by getting a few fittings, some pipe, a torch and solder, and practicing. It really is easy and will probably lead to the most sanitary and leakproof option for what you are doing. I actually find that soldering is fun and rewarding (okay my wife thinks I'm nuts, maybe so...) Commented Jun 26, 2020 at 23:25
  • 1
    @JimmyFix-it Did you have an erector set when you were a kid?
    – JACK
    Commented Jun 26, 2020 at 23:48
  • removeandreplace.com/2015/09/11/…
    – jsotola
    Commented Jun 27, 2020 at 0:57

1 Answer 1


If you don't want to solder any fittings then use compression or push-on (Shark-Bite or similar).

Don't fret over issues like "if I go with plan A there are 6 pipe-to-fitting connections that could fail, but if I go with plan B then there are 7 of them but it accommodates future changes.." Plumbing has joints. Don't use two dozen fittings where 8 could do the job, but don't get all tangled up in optimizing a small job like this one for fittings cost or joints count or whatever.

You can add a tee now and leave a capped stub of pipe for future use, or you can just put that stop valve on the end of this thing and be done with it. Since this plumbing is all exposed, when (if) in the future you want to add a hose bibb or something you can splice in a tee at that time just as easily as you could do it today. Easier, in fact, because at that time you'll know exactly where you want the hose bibb to go whereas today you're agonizing over the possibilities of where it might eventually go.

  • So true about plan A, plan B, plan C. Just think it out and do the job.... and learn how to solder you can then change things in a snap+
    – JACK
    Commented Jun 26, 2020 at 23:52
  • Makes complete sense and very fair...was probably overthinking it. Also quite new to plumbing, so was worried I was making a stupid mistake/faux pas without realizing it - "oh, you should never connect X to a Y even though they both seem like they'll fit, what are you thinking!"
    – Rodys
    Commented Jun 29, 2020 at 15:23

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