Upon troubleshooting the central humidifier, I realized that it isn't connected to a water supply line (new property woes). One end of the flexible copper pipe is connected to the humidifier and the other end has what I've learned is a saddle valve (encircled in blue) and needs to go. 

Existing copper line

The distance to the main supply is approx 5 feet and accessible. This is what is available at the main supply end. PEX

A plumber that installed a softener earlier probably left this white pipe (encircled in red) in case I needed to add something later. I'm guessing this is where I can tap into for supplying water to the humidifier?

I also noted a sealed-off copper pipe (encircled in green) which I could/should use since that's the 'softened' water and may be healthier for the humidifier filter.

Water heater

I do not know how to solder and don't mind learning but I have basic DIY experience with push and compression fittings. The tools I have include a copper pipe cutter, deburring kit, DIY tools and the desire to buy more.

Which type of pipe do I need and how do I go about connecting everything end to end? Thanks.

2 Answers 2


It looks like you have a 1/4" water line run to the humidifier (what would feed a refrigerator ice maker). Assuming that the line size is sufficient, you should be able to fix this easily.

Pick one of your stubs to cut (with the water off, of course). If you opt for the PEX, get a plastic pipe cutter. If you opt for the copper, use your scoring cutter. Once you have the end cut off, put a standard 3/8" Sharkbite cutoff valve on (should be a 1/2" line for both), and then adapt it to 1/4". The logic here is you might need a 3/8" line after all and you'll only be out the cost of the adapter to switch later (plus 3/8" stuff is easier to find). Now, run 1/4" to where your current humidifier line ends (can just buy a braided ice maker line) and use a 1/4" coupler to connect the two.

  • Please clarify: I can't eyeball the green encircled pipe but the calipers say 0.630" as the outside diameter which would translate to 1/2" as per the Nominal Pipe Size table. Which means the supply encircled in green is 1/2". If so, after reading your post I think I'll just need 2 items: 1) SharkBite 1/2 Inch X 1/4 Inch Compression Straight Stop 2) 1/4-inch Compression x 1/4-inch Compression x 60-inch Stainless Steel Icemaker Flex Connector. Is my understanding correct?
    – eszed
    Dec 5, 2022 at 2:30
  • @eszed Most pipe is measured as Inside Diameter. Except under sinks. And cutoff valves are outside diameter for the attaching valve. The key in measuring ID is "Is this pipe large enough to be considered the next 1/4" size up? 0.63 < 0.75 so it's definitely not 3/4". As for the rest, that will work. Sharkbites can be replaced later so if you just want to go 1/4" out of the gate, that's fine.
    – Machavity
    Dec 5, 2022 at 4:02
  • Thank you. I will attempt this soon and update this thread right after.
    – eszed
    Jan 9, 2023 at 18:25
  • I finally completed this today. Installed a braided hose with a sharkbite on the copper. The hose started dripping from the solenoid end. Flipped it and it still leaked from the solenoid end. I removed the solenoid and cleaned it thoroughly which stopped the leak finally.
    – eszed
    Jan 18 at 23:11

You're correct in wanting to get rid of the saddle valve. It's not a question of whether or not it will leak, it's only a question of when.

But you also need to REMOVE the part of the pipe that it's connected to since there is literally a hole in the pipe there.

I'd cut that section out using a pipe cutter, and then sweat (i.e. solder) a proper "T" and a shutoff valve in its place so that you can connect the humidifier line.

If you don't know how to solder pipes then I also assume you have no experience or tools for working with PEX (which is what the rest of the pipes appear to be) and so you will probably need to hire a plumber to do it for you.

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