PEX pinch clamp /clamp ring repair - do I need the tool?

Discussion in 'General Discussion' started by melbo, Sep 19, 2015.

  1. melbo

    melbo Hunter Gatherer Administrator Founding Member

    I need to replace 2 outdoor frost free hose spigots on the exterior of my house. Not looking forward to entering the crawl space since one has been leaking for awhile now...

    The visible fittings in this plumbing look like this:
    Do I need the tool to reinstall or can you use pliers or something else?
    I used to work with the compression rings and had one of the ProPEX expander tools but haven't worked with this type of connection before.
    JohnSteven likes this.
  2. ghrit

    ghrit Bad company Administrator Founding Member

    If you are very careful, you can get away with pliers. Saying that, I highly recommend having spares on hand, because you need to develop a technique with pliers that is distinctly not normal. You might check into shark fittings, they are about as idiot proof and fast as possible. What I don't know is whether or not shark fittings are made for hose.

    Where is Colt?
    JohnSteven and melbo like this.
  3. melbo

    melbo Hunter Gatherer Administrator Founding Member

    Thought about shark fittings but am not sure if they make one that converts from PEX to the inside the house end of my new spigot. Might be worth checking out.

    Actually, spare shark fittings in an assortment of sizes would be a prudent thing to have a small bin full of from a preparedness standpoint. Off to the store
  4. ghrit

    ghrit Bad company Administrator Founding Member

    Rent the clamp tool while you're there. It puts a hell of a lot more force on the clamp band than you might achieve with pliers.
    melbo likes this.
  5. gundog10

    gundog10 Monkey++

    You can rent the pex tool for around $10 a day from ACE. I just went ahead a bought one along with extra fittings. As mentioned above they put alot more force and clamp better then a pair of pliers. Do it once and use the right tool. Just my .02
    vonslob, kellory and melbo like this.
  6. ghrit

    ghrit Bad company Administrator Founding Member

    Just remembered, most auto shops have the tool, might be you could borrow one. (They use 'em for radiator hoses.)
  7. BTPost

    BTPost Stumpy Old Fart Snow Monkey Moderator

    Why not just use a Stainless Steel Compression Hose Clamp..... You can get one at ANY Hardware Store....
  8. kellory

    kellory An unemployed Jester, is nobody's fool. Banned

    Agreed, why use a speciality fitting, when the standard version is widely available, and uses standard tools?
  9. duane

    duane Monkey+++

    Never had much luck with 1 compression hose clamp. Always use two with screws 180 degrees apart. I have went to shark fittings almost 100 %. Follow the rules on square and inserting and have, at least so far, no failures. You do need to covert some pipes but they have a good line of fittings. Pex works great, but the fittings and tools get expensive and it is sometimes hard to get the tools into cramped spaces. The clamp tool for the special clamp s isn't that expensive and holds the sides when you clamp and give a really good fitting seal on air compressor parts. 150 lbs or more pressure. I have clamped them in a pinch with an old dull pair of dykes.
    vonslob likes this.
  10. melbo

    melbo Hunter Gatherer Administrator Founding Member

    Well, when I go to sell my house and the home inspector sees a hose clamp in place of the industry standard fastener used for the job, it will look like a DIY shortcut and might be listed on the Home Inspection report. I'd probably be asked to have it repaired as a condition of closing and then I'd be crawling under the house twice instead of once.
    Last edited: Sep 19, 2015
  11. kellory

    kellory An unemployed Jester, is nobody's fool. Banned

    If it is required, use it, but if not, there are easier methods. Building codes vary. Follow your local rules.
    However....industry standard usually means this item or equivalent.
  12. KAS

    KAS Monkey++

    u can use tile snips
  13. duane

    duane Monkey+++

    Codes are fun and like a woman's mind keep changing. The new Pex is the third plastic pipe system, not counting limiting black plastic pipe , that has been accepted as legal to code. Like alunimum wiring 2 of the 3 are no longer legal and the failures cost me a lot of time, money and grief
  14. vonslob

    vonslob Monkey++

    I have never seen pex rings like that, but I would use sharkbites. Why are you using fittings like that, can't you use regular pex rings?

    I would not use hose clamps, my thinking is that it would leak.
    Last edited: Sep 19, 2015
    KAS likes this.
  15. KAS

    KAS Monkey++

    i love shark bites... no tool needed to install
  16. kellory

    kellory An unemployed Jester, is nobody's fool. Banned

    Yeah, but the applicator can be a blt€H...[​IMG]
  17. Airtime

    Airtime Monkey+++

    Melbo, PEX is a cross linked polyethylene plastic and like most plastics it "creeps" when there is force on it for a long duration. Put a couple plastic washers under a bolt and torque it down and then a year later the bolt will be looser and remove the washers and they will be thinner.

    The design of PEX is that the cross linking between the molecule chains, if pre-stressed, and that is critical, moderate some of the creep. In other words, when it is installed you need to sort of pre-creep the plastic so a year from now it is still adequately tight and won't leak. You can't compress the PEX itself enough with hose clamps to assure no long term leakage.

    My crimp style tools to install the normal 1/2" and 3/4" copper crimped compression rings weren't very expensive, 40-50 bucks as I recall and included a go/no-go gauge. The newer snap clamp ring assure you have the PEX compressed enough without measuring but an advantage is working in more cramped areas where getting a crimping tool exactly perpendicular to the tubing and from two different angles is hard.

    Last edited: Sep 20, 2015
    vonslob likes this.
  18. smithcp2002

    smithcp2002 Monkey+++ Site Supporter++

    Use Sharkbite, just had the house replumbed with the new pex, they messed up the hose bib and the house filter. Fitting are expensive but you can take them apart and reuse them. Crimp and clamp one time use and that is it.
  19. ColtCarbine

    ColtCarbine The Plumber Founding Member

    If it was me in your situation, I would make repairs to the existing PEX with like materials. The clamp pictured is the industry standard clamp used on PEX piping that uses a push in barb fitting. Home Depot and Lowe's, among many other hardware stores sell the tubing, fittings and stainless steel clamps.

    Clamps are like 60 cents a piece.....

    Yes, you should use the proper crimping tool that crimps the stainless steel PEX clamp you pictured. Good luck crimping that stainless steel clamp with pliers. You can rent or buy the tool.

    SharkBite 3/8 in. - 1 in. PEX Clamp Tool-UC961 - The Home Depot

    To get the little bugger's off....

    You can cut the clamps at the crimp point with diagonal cutting pliers or end cutting pliers.

    Or......peel the tab that folds over where it ratchets on the left side. That tab can be a bitch to fold back over.

    If the fitting does not pull out, you have two options heat the tubing with heat gun (torch will work but no direct flame on tubing, just heat) or cut it.

    Use a new utility knife blade. Be careful as you cut the tubing length wise, You do not want to score the fitting with a knife mark....... almost cut all the way through the tubing and peel it apart.
    BTPost likes this.
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