41 votes

Can Teflon thread tape be reused?

You should remove the tape and replace it, a small roll at a big box store is less than a dollar.
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  • 98.4k
38 votes
Accepted

What is this plumbing part?

It appears to be a Plastic Water Softener Air Gap...what ever that is! https://www.homedepot.com/p/KEENEY-2-in-Plastic-Water-Softener-Air-Gap-PP855-69/204374532
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28 votes

What should I be aware of in buying second-hand sinks and toilets?

I applaud your effort at frugality and environmentalism. The "throwaway" mindset peeves me to no end. Many folks change out fixtures just to change the look or size, and there are plenty of good units ...
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  • 106k
25 votes
Accepted

Outside hose bibb with very fine thread?

What you see there is a vacuum breaker spigot with its pants down. You'll need to try and procure the parts or just replace the whole works. More on that
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  • 106k
23 votes

Any special precautions when turning off water to a property?

In addition to what FreeMan stated, if you have an electric water heater you want to turn off the breaker that feeds it. Depending on your plumbing, turning on some hot water faucets to finish some ...
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  • 55.5k
19 votes
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Can I still be sold plumbing fixtures that contain lead?

If you go to your local hardware store, no. Products sold in the US have to be lead free, since 1996 In 1996 Congress further amended the Safe Drinking Water Act, requiring plumbing fittings and ...
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  • 20k
19 votes

Can Teflon thread tape be reused?

I agree with Ed Beal that you should replace it, but if you're in a pinch you certainly can reuse PTFE tape, assuming you recover enough of it and it's not totally shredded. Carefully unwrap it and ...
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  • 106k
18 votes

What should I replace this broken condensate line connection with?

That is a simple brass hose barb. I'd carefully unscrew it from the pipe, being sure not to twist and damage the PVC. Then I'd take it to my local hardware/big-box store and purchase one in a matching ...
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  • 30.3k
16 votes
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When to replace a toilet's wax ring?

You only have to replace the wax ring if the toilet leaks. It's wise to replace it whenever you remove the toilet, though. It's not a matter of age, but the fact that a wax ring is intended to be a ...
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  • 106k
14 votes

Any special precautions when turning off water to a property?

I've turned the water off at the meter for our house more than once - I even bought my own "curb key" to do it. We've had a small variety of leaks and issues requiring this. The water ...
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  • 30.3k
13 votes
Accepted

How do I increase the water pressure in my shower in spite of water-saving hardware?

If Jeff's suggestions don't fix the problem, it could simply be that the water-saving showerhead doesn't allow the pressure / flow rate you want. This was the case in all of the apartments I lived in; ...
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  • 500
13 votes
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What type of bathroom sink supply plumbing is this?

Chrome-plated copper. They will last virtually forever, unlike "modern" flex lines. The fittings either are, or are compatible with, compression fittings. The 5/8" pipe from the wall is ...
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  • 137k
12 votes

How to use alternate flush mode on toilet

It's not an alternate mode, per se. Those values are the minimum and maximum tank volumes based on float setting. [Correction: These values seem to apply to High Efficiency (HE) and Ultra-high ...
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  • 106k
12 votes
Accepted

How do I connect my sink to the drain in the wall?

Go to your local big-box store (or even better, a locally owned plumbing supply place) and get a standard P-trap kit. It will include all the pieces you need as well as instructions on how to install ...
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  • 30.3k
12 votes

Is tightening this nut impossible?

The installation instructions show a rubber washer in that T connection to the toilet inlet, so once you have it finger tight, it should only need another 1/4 turn or so with the wrench to make a seal....
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  • 1,325
11 votes

Can elbow fitting be used to line up drain tailpiece with trap

The best repair for this problem is to cut the trap from the drain pipe, glue on an ABS 1 1/2 inch (or same pipe diameter as existing pipe) coupling and than a short section of new pipe long enough to ...
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  • 10.8k
11 votes
Accepted

Stop Pipes From Pulling Through The Wall

To expand on Jack's good answer: There is approximately 3" from the inside of the drywall closest to the camera to the side of the plumbing closest to the camera. It appears that the plumber used ...
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  • 30.3k
10 votes

Leaking saddle valve

Turn the water off, and remove it. Those things are rubbish, and always leak eventually. If you need a valve there, cut out the damaged section of pipe, and install a proper tee and valve. If you don'...
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  • 128k
9 votes
Accepted

How to identify an old compression stem in order to find a replacement

How many splines are on the broach, how long is it and what's its diameter? As according to faucetpartsplus.com, that's all you need to get started. They have an entire list for spline counts, ...
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  • 12.8k
9 votes

Can Teflon thread tape be reused?

As an additional answer alluded to by Nelson, it also somewhat depends on the use case. If it's a shower head (as in this example) where a drip really won't make any difference, if you don't have new,...
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  • 1,725
9 votes

Stop Pipes From Pulling Through The Wall

That anchoring job looks pretty weak. You need to determine exactly where the movement's coming from. I think you need to install a 2x4 horizontally between the studs to the right and left of your ...
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  • 55.5k
8 votes

Can I still be sold plumbing fixtures that contain lead?

There are plenty of plumbing fittings used for non-potable water that are still being made which contain lead in the brass alloy. The lead free ball valves usually have a NSF icon on them. Ball ...
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  • 954
7 votes
Accepted

How to remove this plastic pipe elbow

In the UK (where question poster is located), there are several distinct types of plastic push-fit connectors. You can get specialized tools to help undo each type. John Guest Speedfit Wavin Hep2O ...
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7 votes

Are all toilet bolts installed from under the floor?

A typical toilet has a flange that's bolted to the floor and stays there. Bolts are then turn upside down, with the head down, and the toilet sits on these. The threaded end faces up and the nut goes ...
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  • 1,171
7 votes

What should I be aware of in buying second-hand sinks and toilets?

If you are going to spend good money to build an addition on your home why would you even consider someone else's thrown away junk. Spend money on "up to date" new and modern water saving toilets, ...
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  • 12.1k
7 votes

What is this hose reel part called?

A swivel or "rotary union" (but there are many things under the same names that don't look like that, or in some cases work like that. It's imprecise, but does cover what you have, as well ...
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  • 137k
7 votes

What is this hose reel part called?

My strong suggestion is that you contact the manufacturer of the hose reel unit. It is possible that the part that broke in yours is a custom part for that manufacturer or a specialty product that is ...
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  • 61.7k
6 votes

Caulk or Grout the base of a toilet?

Code requires toilets to be caulked at the floor, that, IMO is a mistake. If the toilet does develop a leak, it will be restricted under the toilet and the subfloor, and may leak for a while before it ...
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  • 31.3k
6 votes

Caulk or Grout the base of a toilet?

The grout may help to keep the toilet stabile for awhile, but to ensure it remains level and secure you should install shims. I've used plastic building shims that can be snapped-off at 2 inch ...
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  • 10.8k
6 votes

Leaking saddle valve

It's a self-piercing saddle valve like this one: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FB76LXrYKsU . If you're familiar with electronics, it works a lot like the so-called "vampire tap" for coax cable. ...
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