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JonJackjon t1_j72hulk wrote

>If using Sharkbite fittings, be careful where you use them and be sure to check on them every once in a while.

Seems to me, if you have to check on them once and a while they they aren't a permanent solution.


boringname119 t1_j72tk11 wrote

Agreed. I think they're great for a temporary fix. Like we had a project we were working on, ran into hiccups, and it was getting late. Made a quick trip to home depot for a sharkbite so that we could turn the water back on and finish the next day.

Pretty soon we're going to be relocating some plumbing in our basement. It's going to require taking out what's there, some steps in the middle, then putting in new stuff. Sharkbites will be great for that middle time so we can still use the rest of the house's plumbing.

I don't think I'd ever put one in with the intention of leaving it there though.


Brom42 t1_j72vl65 wrote

This is exactly how I view them. When I had copper and was reworking things, it was a great way to cap things off without having to sweat a temp connection. Now that I am all pex, it's cheaper/just as easy to just crimp a shutoff on the end vs a sharkfit connection.


phormix t1_j740plv wrote

What would be a better way to go from Copper->Pex? Something with a solder connection on one side and the pex-crimp on the other?


slewp t1_j748zi0 wrote

Yes, that is exactly what you would use. Copper sweat to PEX crimp


Brom42 t1_j74d5tl wrote

Yup. They make connectors that you sweat to your copper on one side and the other has the appropriate connection for the type of pex you use. I would definitely go that route for something permanent.


Atty_for_hire t1_j72w9bl wrote

This is what I did last year. We added a first floor powder room in an old house and tapped into the central hot and cold water lines. The bathroom was the priority so we could have two toilets. But I was always planning on a more extensive plumbing redo to the main lines so I used shark bites and left a little extra pex so I can dial it in the future.


80000000000000000855 t1_j72ynnx wrote

There’s no such thing as permanent in any aspect of building.


[deleted] t1_j7312iz wrote

So how often should I be opening my walls to check the soldered connections on my copper pipes? Should I drywall over the holes after the inspection, or should I just leave them open since soldered copper piping isn't meant to be a permanent solution?


Great68 t1_j735s1a wrote

There are a lot of instances of copper joints within walls failing and causing damage.

I have yet to see any real studies or data to prove that sharkbite fittings fail more frequently than copper joints over time, other than anecdotal posts and comments like these online.

I'm not saying that it's impossible for sharkbites to fail more frequently, I'm just saying there has been no objective proof to this day that they actually do.


JonJackjon t1_j73g401 wrote

If you are referring to a scientific study of the failure rate of soldered copper vs sharkbite vs ________. I am not aware of any.

However there is at least one lawsuit against sharkbite's which suggests at least some folks have had issues with them. I know of no current or past lawsuits against copper. Remember to be problematic a device need not be scientifically compared to a "standard".


Great_Bodini t1_j73hd6v wrote

Copper isn’t a company you can sue. Manufacturers have QA areas that sample to make sure what they are putting out meets standard. Copper fails all the time, very likely due to the sheer amount of it in use, but unless you track it back to one manufacturing facility, you can’t sue anybody for it failing.


JonJackjon t1_j73vpq9 wrote

You could sue the tubing mfg, but only if you could prove the copper was not suitable for the advertised application.

I'm not aware of copper failing due to normal usage only. Yes freezing, certain types of water will erode copper. But I've yet seen a properly sweated copper pipe or joint fail. My dad's house was built in 1951, no leaks to date. None of my friends or coworkers have ever had issues.

So I disagree with your statement "copper fails all the time".


Sparkynplumb t1_j769n5h wrote

In my 5 years as a resi service plumber I've seen copper fail "all the time". I had a poorly soldered joint (under pressure) randomly come apart when I bumped It. I've replaced entire houses with PEX due to well water eating the copper. Yeah I've had SharkBites give trouble, but I wouldn't be afraid to use in my own house.


JonJackjon t1_j77s753 wrote

The next town over has water that tends to eat through copper. They get small pinholes start to leak then they realize this is the same throughout the house. This is a tough one to categorize as one could argue it was a misapplication or poor installation as the water should have been treated.

Things like poorly soldered joints or poorly assembled PEX termination or Sharkbites are a tough thing to quantify. Surely you've found how to make a good solder joint. However I would not characterize any failure resulting from a poor installation to be a failure of the product.

I will admit in my home I'm very conservative. I personally sleep better feeling the all copper plumbing is the best I can do.

BTW I also have water sensors in a number of places that can shut off the main water supply if water is sensed.


adisharr t1_j737ew1 wrote

So you're talking about the billions of soldered copper joints throughout history compared to SharkBite fittings? It's completely ridiculous to compare the two. In no way is a SharkBite fitting ever going to be as solid as a soldered fitting unless the person had absolutely no idea how to properly solder a joint.


Great68 t1_j738ole wrote

>In no way is a SharkBite fitting ever going to be as solid as a soldered

And what I'm saying is, prove this with objective data.

Show me a MTBF chart of sharkbites vs copper fittings.


Bmxingur t1_j76icfv wrote

I'm sure the guys wiring houses with aluminum wire, and plumbing stuff in polybutylene pipes said the same exact thing. There is no data, no one sits around and collects these numbers. I don't call sharkbite and tell them when I find their shit leaking like 3 times a week. So much knowledge in the plumbing industry is tacit and anecdotal, yet vital and true.


adisharr t1_j738uqz wrote

Okay I'll get back to you in 30 years. I'm not sure why you think a compression fitting with an O-ring can compete with a soldered connection.

edit: you SharkBite guys can downvote this comment to hell for all I care LOL I hope you use them all over your house.


Great68 t1_j739avo wrote

I'm not sure why you think you can state that it can't without data to prove it.


Mahou t1_j73aul4 wrote

I'm not sure why you need a report to tell you "yep, turns out this is worse than literally melting metal into the shape you want it". Who knew?

It's the nature of the beast, and everyone knows it, which is why here and elsewhere everyone says "don't put it behind drywall".


Great_Bodini t1_j73h0qg wrote

I’m with the dude, if “everyone knows it” there should be numbers to back it up. Everyone “knew” that asbestos was an amazing fire retardant material, and that lead worked fantastic in gasoline and paint.


DirtyPolecat t1_j73iq7i wrote

Do you not make any personal decisions in life without a team of scientists to hand you a study on it? Are you incapable of using your existing knowledge on materials science and physics to make an educated guess on something? Do you really need somebody to tell you that metal is stronger and lasts longer than rubber?


Great_Bodini t1_j73k1to wrote

For my plumbing for our long term house? Yeah I’d like to see data. My aluminum windows that went out in 10 years would like to have a word with my rubber sealed windows.


Mahou t1_j8b6579 wrote

What a weird argument. The data is there for soldered plumbing. That's exactly why the argument is the way it is. You're saying you trust sharkbite more because published data saying it's worse doesn't exist. But, more importantly, published data saying that it's better doesn't exist - and that's everyone else's problem with it. Rubber doesn't last as long as metal, so people are rightly skeptical.


adisharr t1_j746g0s wrote

There seems to be no common sense with the SharkBite fans, they just want magical nonexistent data.


BigSquatchee2 t1_j73avuy wrote

Ok, the data shows that we still get more complaints about sharkbite failures now than we do about soldered joints over the last 100 years and sharkbite is still relatively new.

You sound like you represent sharkbite but are posting from a burner account my guy.
Sharkbites fail at the joint, properly soldered joints don't fail much, usually the pipe will fail first.


Great68 t1_j73bwvf wrote

Ok, show this data then?

Pardon me for having an open mind until I actually see some data proving otherwise. I don't live life on the subjective opinions of others.

Fuck people seem to take such personal offense over their precious "soldered fittings" here.

And LOL at the "you represent sharkbite" comment, good one. What a stupid comment, would be like me saying you represent big copper.


Charlielx t1_j73qyzr wrote

Yeah if the rest of their arguments didn't seal it for you that they're an idiot, the "omg ur a shill" comment really locks it in huh


BigSquatchee2 t1_j73k3z9 wrote

I mean, the data is pretty clear when you search for joint failure in copper pipe and see what people complain about.
If sharkbite is such a great fitting, why don't they warranty it for more than 25 years? The expected lifespan of a solder joint is 50+.


ApizzaApizza t1_j73m330 wrote

That’s not data, that’s anecdotal evidence.

Copper isn’t warrantied at all…sooooooo…😂


BigSquatchee2 t1_j743ovo wrote

The copper in a sharkbite isn't either. But good plumbers will warranty their work. ¯\_(ツ)_/¯


HonoredMule t1_j73d5lo wrote

I await your data with bated breath.


BigSquatchee2 t1_j73ji9h wrote

I mean, all you have to do is google joint failure of copper pipe and see what type people are complaining about. And then extrapolate that most people STILL have soldered joints.


HonoredMule t1_j73n2ra wrote

Sorry, I thought you said data, not anecdotes.


BigSquatchee2 t1_j743mcv wrote

I'm sorry that no one has collected data on every single installation ever.
You can however extrapolate data from anecdotes.


HonoredMule t1_j748qzx wrote

Of course you can. Even better, you can extrapolate whatever result you like!

Most people will at least feign credibility and hide their incompetence, but you just said the stupid part out loud. 😆

Thanks, it's been a long week and I needed a laugh.


BigSquatchee2 t1_j77emz6 wrote

If there were massive regular failures in soldered fittings, you'd see this discussed on forums, you'd see videos about it, etc etc.
You don't. But you know what you DO see? Sharkbite failures.


williamwchuang t1_j73dud9 wrote

I'm not trying to be a twat but a lot of it lies in installation. I would believe that sweated joints are more reliable than a Sharkbite. But I've really seen a lot of shitty welds that leak. Sharkbites also need to be installed properly, and Sharkbite failures are all installation error and not mechanical failure. The pipe was deburred or pushed in far enough.

I've always been against PEX v. copper pipes but apparently PEX is better! The original fittings were crap but the new ones are apparently very reliable and the PEX is less likely to burst when frozen.


Charlielx t1_j73pzcp wrote

>How dare you want data to back something up, you must be a shill!


BigSquatchee2 t1_j743rso wrote

Well, the way the person was defending sharkbites like its their firstborn child is why I said they sound like a shill...


Charlielx t1_j74415f wrote

I think it was more about that you shouldn't take anecdotal evidence at face value than it was about defending sharkbites


Great68 t1_j747pcm wrote

Thank you!

It seems completely forgotten that I said this line in my first post of this entire chain:

>"I'm not saying that it's impossible for sharkbites to fail more frequently, I'm just saying there has been no objective proof to this day that they actually do."

Reddit sometimes.


FixBreakRepeat t1_j73wn5n wrote

Welder/mechanic here, o-ring seals are commonly used in 3000 psi hydraulic systems and can have service lives of decades in some cases under brutal conditions.

I've seen fully welded connections fail under the same loads and conditions.

O-rings fail, welds fail, solder fails. Mode of failure is different for each one and you want to pick the one that best fits your situation, but an O-ring fitting isn't inherently worse than solder or weld for a residential application and requires a lot less skill to do correctly.

The main modes of failure that I see for o-rings are being cut on install, dry rot, or a connection not properly cleaned. If you leave a sharp edge on your pipe and it cuts your o-ring even a little bit, it very well might leak. But that's poor install, not o-rings being garbage in general.


Chrgrfan55 t1_j73s77q wrote

Fun fact: it takes very little water for drywall to show signs of a leak. It bulges almost immediately. I've never had a callback of sharkbite connectors. The key is to install EXACTLY ACCORDING TO MANUFACTURER INSTRUCTIONS


Kyanche t1_j734awy wrote

Eh some builder probably hangs out here and swears by sharkbites - they use it in every connection in every house they build. Just not the one they live in. :D


ChesswiththeDevil t1_j73d4vd wrote

Drywall is easy to repair and replace. When you notice a leak, you immediately cut out a hole and fix the issue. Then you patch, texture and paint. Don't be obtuse. There is no such thing as forever with anything.


80000000000000000855 t1_j73dzl6 wrote

No, but I’ve seen more copper failure than shark bite in my life.


adisharr t1_j746kzy wrote

Do you know what I've seen more gas engine failures than electrical vehicle failures in my life.


Drownerdowner t1_j73i3hw wrote

While yes everything eventually breaks down and leaks but there are pipes I've installed like cast iron and copper that will more than likely last longer than my career and maybe even my natural life.


Drownerdowner t1_j736jgr wrote

I'm a licensed plumber and I would never put one behind a wall or ceiling


Lurker_81 t1_j73bfah wrote

I know it's anecdotal, but my new house was plumbed almost entirely with Pex pipes and push-fit fittings 15 years ago.

In that time, the only thing that has failed is the jointing on the copper shower riser assembly.


Drownerdowner t1_j73blam wrote

Shark bites and pex are very different.


Lurker_81 t1_j73euk5 wrote

How so? Shark bite's website makes reference to PEX pipes and PEX fittings everywhere...


jeffersonairmattress t1_j73in5g wrote

Sharkbites actually work better with PEX than with copper. Especially near a shower or other closed areas prone to getting condensation on the pipe. The little stainless teeth bite nicely into PEX and the OD of PEX stays smooth against the O ring and can't abrade it. Moist air near a sharkbite on copper puts two dissililar metals in a weak electrolyte- the stainless and copper battery causing copper oxide buildup that can eventually ruin the O ring seal against the pipe or erode the copper until there is nothing solid to bite and the assembly leaks.


OP6iLRWB6ir4 t1_j73hhe1 wrote

Crimped PEX and shark bite are two completely different things. Just like how copper can be connected with both shark bites and soldering.


williamwchuang t1_j73fgq9 wrote

Copper elbows are the shittiest. Always bursting and fucking up and shit. I try to clamp elbows down but they are always a PITA.


Porkkchops t1_j73kbqn wrote

I just realized last night that my outdoor faucet is a sharkbite piece. Would you recommend changing it out? I haven't had issue with it, but I also haven't had to use the faucet much since I just bought the house in September.


JonJackjon t1_j73x1wd wrote

Sorry I'm not a plumber, just an informed homeowner. I cannot suggest what you should do from my experience. However we have high water pressure in our house. I've removed all plastic plumbing parts. I do have the stainless braided faucet connections which are technically plastic, I was careful to purchased from a "premium" mfg (if there is such a thing).

We had a new furnace installed last March. The plumber was a very knowledgeable guy who was recommend by a friend who is a maintenance leader in a mfg company. This guy has done a lot of work for them and it has always been to notch. When asked about sharkbite he will only use them for temporary installations.

While not the same exactly, I personally look at sharkbites as similar to the aluminum wire used in homes in the 1970's. Now aluminum wire does not meet code except for services.

Having said that I would put it on my list of do do things.


who-really-cares t1_j74pr9n wrote

There is nothing in the NEC limiting aluminum to service entrances. You can wire a whole house with the stuff if you want.


The_OtherDouche t1_j73txds wrote

To be fair I’ve had a sweat brass ball valve fail this exact same way. Faulty merchandise is always a risk


GalacticVariable t1_j734x0k wrote

Agreed. Shark bite, pro press and the like are a problem waiting to happen. Torch copper or compression fittings. If you can’t do it then hire a plumber and specify soldered copper. You’ll be much better off in the long run.


mcarterphoto t1_j739knm wrote

Heck, I fell in love with PEX for remodeling my old house, but I've gone the extra mile to not have PEX fittings/rings inside a wall. And they seem much more reliable than Shark Bites with their moving parts and seals.


lusciouslucius t1_j73idcb wrote

Sharkbites are garbage, but IMO pro press is legit. They hold well, and though I have seen them leak through improper installation, that is always a risk. I haven't seen enough old pro press fittings to really see how well the joints hold up over the decades, but I have seen enough failures in sweat fittings to appreciate the larger radius and thicker material of the pro press fittings. You can argue that failures in sweat fittings are due to improper hydraulic design, but excessive water velocity is almost an industry standard, as the math behind water sizing is very fudgy, if the installer even bothered in the first place. Also, pro press installations have considerably better water pressure. I wouldn't install pro press in my house, but only because I know how to sweat, and pro press fittings are expensive.

That being said, the best domestic water system is expansion pex, which is cheaper and easier than copper anyway, so if you have the opportunity, just go with that.


adisharr t1_j7475qs wrote

I'm a big fan of expansion PEX and I'm replacing a lot of 80-year-old copper plumbing with it. Back then a half inch copper line supplied the entire house.


redirdamon t1_j72hei3 wrote

For us in exposed locations only in my opinion.


bmc0877 t1_j72d9yr wrote

Which type of fitting did you use? Sounds like the O ring didn't fail, is that correct?

All types of joints (including sweated joints) can fail. A big advantage of long runs of PEX is that there are fewer joints in the walls.


Pabi_tx t1_j72va4h wrote

Anything can fail if the right (wrong?) forces are applied. We had a couple of straight copper pipe runs fail in a crawl space, between sweated joints. Plumber's guess was because of movement in the pier-and-beam foundation.


InfiniteCurrency8 OP t1_j72h8o2 wrote

Seeing as the metal broke, I am guessing it was a flaw in the casting. I do not think it was the O-ring but also had a heck of a time getting the one end off the pipe. Rather than wreck or scar the pipe I ended up sawing off the fitting. Will be replacing with a sweat fitting as I have never had one of those leak.

I know a lot of folks love PEX, but I am not yet sold on it. So far, the fewer joints argument and the cost argument are strong but the fact that it is a petroleum based product and that it can not be recycled, except into lower graded products, leaves me on the fence about it. That said, I do have a couple PEX lines in our home and will keep an open mind about it for now.


Kahoots113 t1_j72kwqy wrote

Aside from it being super easy to use the big advantage of PEX is that if it freezes it can get almost 3x its size and not burst, when it thaws it will return to its natural state. With copper, if it freezes it is likely to burst because the metal is rigid.


Odd-Cartoonist-288 t1_j72jg5v wrote

My brother was looking into it and sent me a bunch of studies on chemicals leaching into your water lines and it seems pretty bad as well. The problem is PVC is much worse and that's often how it gets to your home.


Disastrous-Nothing14 t1_j739e4s wrote

If you live in the US and your supply lines are PVC I've got some serious questions about the plumber who did the work.


jobyone t1_j73ckdj wrote

One of my old coworkers lived in a whole neighborhood where the builders ran the main supply lines for every house under the living room slab, some sort of questionable plastic line (I don't remember what kind), and the whole neighborhood basically had all their main supply lines burst under their living rooms over about a two-year period.

My point is never underestimate the corners builders will cut to save like $50 or whatever even when they're building an entire house.


sidusnare t1_j73jv5s wrote

My supply line was upgraded to PVC, it was PBT. The house is still PBT, but the supply line and about 6' inside the house is newer PVC.


Odd-Cartoonist-288 t1_j7518eg wrote

Maybe I shouldn't have said often, but they used PVC for a bunch of the supply lines in my brothers neighborhood as they were building it. Honestly it's probably mostly old cast iron or something, but I don't know.

Got any links, because now I'm curious and the only thing I could find said PVC is used, but not how often. I've seen a few systems done in plants made from PVC so I figured it was used pretty often. Also, I wasn't even specifically talking about traditional PVC, just some sort of Polyvinyl Chloride because it's cheap ... or used to be.


Disastrous-Nothing14 t1_j752dp2 wrote

Links? Ya I'm sure there's some Harvard study that pins it right down. No dude, just go in literally any house and there's a nearly 100% chance it's copper or pex, occasionally old cast/lead


Odd-Cartoonist-288 t1_j7559kl wrote

I was talking about before the home. However, I've worked on a few homes and the majority are PVC with older homes being zinc plated steel. House I'm in now is 100% PVC and CPVC, and the house I was in before was the exact same as well. Just went and looked at a home the other day and it was probably 80% PVC and CPVC. This is in the Houston area as well.


Disastrous-Nothing14 t1_j755rnr wrote

Huh, interesting. Must be regional thing, I'm up in northern new England and have basically never seen that. TIL


Odd-Cartoonist-288 t1_j757d1m wrote

Probably has a lot to do with freezing if I had to guess. You should see all the homes down here during the freezes in the past few years. All the PVC in the house I'm renting busted in December.


cardcomm t1_j72odq6 wrote

>All types of joints (including sweated joints) can fail

I've heard that, but having a soldered joint fail has got to be rare as hen's teeth!

How would that even happen?


Rcarlyle t1_j72t79r wrote

Copper fails due to freezing, corrosion, or movement fatigue. To some extent you can control all these by using the right solder, cleaning off flux, insulating, strapping pipes properly at stub-outs, accommodating thermal expansion, damping water hammer, etc.

Most houses in the US are expected to be replaced after 70-100 years of use. And all in-wall utilities have a finite lifespan. So the critical question is how often they need to be replaced, and how much damage occurs during a failure. In my experience/opinion soldered copper is proven good for 50-100 years typical between repipes, and PEX is probably good for 30-50 years between repipes. Accelerated-aging studies using high temps show it should hold up better than older stuff like orangeburg or CPVC that have clear reliability problems. Unfortunately, modern connections like propress and sharkbite don’t truthfully have enough field service history to know if they’re 20 year fittings or 50 year fittings or 100 year fittings.


ILikeLeadPaint t1_j72w4s3 wrote

Too much flux can cause a soldered joint to eventually fail too.


Hagenaar t1_j72ss4d wrote

Sweated drain plumbing maybe. They're harder to get right, and harder to test.


DukeofVermont t1_j72z8b6 wrote

I work in flood restoration and I see it pretty often, but it's usually on older pipes from the 1960s or older. The most interesting ones are when the water or minerals in the water have worn through the corner of the pipe.

The ones that I've seen pop off or separate are due to poor installation.

But also you have to think about how often the above occurs compared with how many joints exist. Something can be both incredibly rare and happen consistently. As in a failure rate of .05% is great , but .05% of 1,000,000 is still 500.


cardcomm t1_j73iral wrote

>but it's usually on older pipes from the 1960s or older

so those are brass pipes though, not copper, right?


cardcomm t1_j73iuc9 wrote

> .05% of 1,000,000

is rare as hen's teeth


lusciouslucius t1_j73jkyu wrote

The big thing with sweat fittings are the pinhole leaks. They can occur from excessive flux, or from the fact that sweat fittings are just copper pipe stretched into a 90 or 45 or whatever. That means the material is not only weaker but exposed to more wear and tear from the water, as it has to more actively direct it. In cases with high water velocity, that means that the backside of 90s can be eaten away much quicker than the rest of the pipe. It's most common on the fitting immediately after pump.


metalgod55 t1_j7383nk wrote

Usually corrosion from dissimilar metals. I’ve seen a few failed joints in my tine. One, a few weeks ago.


Kent_Knifen t1_j72v7wl wrote

If the metal is snapping in your hands, it sounds like a defective piece rather than a systemic design flaw.

We installed sharkbite fittings in our house several years ago because of unique hazards a torch would pose, and they haven't had any leaks.


iRamHer t1_j72mmlr wrote

i will not use shatkbites beyond a temporary cap. just like I will never use pex unless the system had a need for it and it's properties, and leaching is worth the risk. just like I won't use press fittings unless the area would benefit from it. but sharkbites ARE permanent [for the life of the system] fittings, when installed correctly. this really sounds like a turbulence/wear issue.

but there's nothing wrong with sharkbites. this sounds like an improper install.

this could be lack of installed depth

lack of surface prep,

lack of proper deburring

lack of proper grounding/jumpering


poor choice of metallurgy for system

one or none of the above and you damaged the o ring

poor castings do happen, but rare. and manufacturer o ring/teeth assembly could've been improper, but rare, and no one will know because no one checks the inside before they use the fittings.

this is 99.9% of a time user error. and without pictures, I have to assume as much.

funny story, I had a sw x sw Mueller or watts lead free ball valve leak. installed vertically in a tight spot and couldn't get proper heat on it. clearly the problem is the valve, couldn't have been the excessive heat. good thing those valve have that blue and white self healing properties that saved it until I could get new seals.

point is, this stuff is usually user error and the only play is, regardless of how easy the system is, you will have to prep the pipe, mark depths, check sealing surfaces prior to install, etc etc etc. and do we know what kind of pipe was mated? was this ACTUALLY a sharkbite brand fitting or did you buy a Chinese knock off to save $$$?

GOOD pictures speak a thousand words. I hate to defend shark bites, but there's nothing wrong with them.


InfiniteCurrency8 OP t1_j73373n wrote

In this case the fitting was separating at the threaded portion. Will grab some pics later if I get a chance.


reds91185 t1_j73nbz8 wrote

I've used dozens of Sharkbite fittings in the past 10+ years and none have failed. During that same timeframe a regular copper fitting in the wall of a bathroom did fail.


LeKy411 t1_j73kom4 wrote

I'm not advocating for shark bit fittings, but at the end of the day a shutoff valve has to be in an accessible area. You can't close it up in a wall regardless if its a sharkbite or not. A shutoff valve has the potential to go bad, leak, and so on because its a bunch of seals and moving parts. A sweat joint is the way to go if your closing it up in a wall. You should check on your shutoffs once in a while anyway and "exercise" them especially your main shutoff. The last thing you want is a leak and not be able to shutoff the water because of a bad shutoff that wont budge.


No_Bass_9328 t1_j73at4n wrote

A while back I repaired a leaking connection on my daughter's shower using sharkbite and closed up the wall and retiled. Was super pleased to find how easy these type of fitting are. Since then, I'm hearing a lot of anecdotal info about their unreliability including from plumbers. I now have this nagging worry.


MicroBadger_ t1_j74lbfw wrote

I will say from a DIY perspective, I do like that the crimping tool comes with a gauge that I can check the joints afterwards to know they are sealed before flipping the water on. Shark bites are a bit more push and sure, guess it's good. That and the cost aspect of crimp rings and fittings vs shark bite fittings favor crimping (assuming you have the tools required).


No_Bass_9328 t1_j74r79r wrote

I guess, but I'm an old timer DIY and done more copper plumbing than Starbucks got latte and think I have had one leak in 55 odd years, and that my own stupid fault, so think I'll stick my ancient plumbing torch :).


AVBforPrez t1_j73fng4 wrote

My neighbor does RV repro and swears that Sharkbites are a guaranteed leak in the future. It's not hard at all to do regular clamps, do that.


InfiniteCurrency8 OP t1_j73lov2 wrote

I would not trust them in an RV application. I also wouldn't put copper in an RV application. Too much vibration, thinking soft (non metallic) tubing and clamps would be best in most cases.


AVBforPrez t1_j73m60l wrote

Yup, that's what he uses - that blue plastic type tubing and traditional clamps.


DirtyPolecat t1_j73ty0l wrote

I don't think I have ever seen or heard of an RV with copper pipes, and I've lived full time in two of them.


GarbanzoBenne t1_j73n95o wrote

For what it's worth I have a new leak coming from within a wall in my 20 year old house. The piping is CPVC so either a glued joint failed or a pipe cracked.

Nothing is 100.00000000% reliable. I can understand being a bit worried by the sharkbite, but the question is more about the failure rate which you can't get from a single failure.


One_Car_142 t1_j73ploq wrote

Sharkbites may not be perfect but they are way better than cpvc. Nothing is worse than cpvc because it gets brittle and cracks. You should really get it replaced before something bad happens.


GarbanzoBenne t1_j73rcax wrote

I'm not disagreeing that CPVC can get brittle but you might be thinking of polybutylene pipe. That's the worst plastic pipe and isn't insurable in some places.


Orangutan t1_j72wn5w wrote

Too good to be true?


chancewitt21 t1_j72yu58 wrote

This same thing happened to me just yesterday with my shutoff valve under the sink. I had to replace a small leaking PTrap washer and I noticed small drip coming from the sharkbite shut off valve. I have also sworn by these and I know this was replaced right before we moved along with all the sinks in the house. As soon as I touched the valve it started a steady drip. Glad I was already down there and I just switched to compression and not push in.


dacripe t1_j73euxp wrote

I used Sharkbite fittings when redoing my water filter for the entire house. They were just easier to do vs sweating those fittings. The filter is in my standup area of the crawlspace, and if a leak happens it will not hurt anything. I hear horror stories about Sharkbite failings, but I agree they need to be in accessible areas and not hidden behind walls. Those I would only do sweat fittings for peace of mind. Anything can fail, but Sharkbite are not as effective as sweat fittings.


DrJoth t1_j74bgaz wrote

The way you describe it, this failure has nothing to do with the press-on connection type that's made popular by Sharkbite. This is a failure of the valve that can happen with any brand.

Meaning, if you're just using a coupler your experience is not indicative of a larger chance of failure.


Dire88 t1_j72ywng wrote

>Had this been in a wall cavity, this would have been a nightmare.

Which is why pretty much everyone except the manufacturer advocates for not installing in a wall/floor.

I'll also note that their warranty is very explicit that they will only pay for property damage, resulting from a failure in workmanship or materials, if the fitting was installed by a licensed professional. And on the case of use in a wall cavity, if there is proof it was pressure tested before sealing in. And even then, only for the materials (lumber, drywall, etc), and not the actual labor costs.

End of the day, the only time you should be using a sharkbite fitting is for a temporary repair when you lack the materials/ability to properly repair via sweating or the clearances to be comfortable doing it yourself.


Tileguy0425 t1_j736iom wrote

I do not use shark bites for jobs. I only have them for shutoffs for when I get to a bathroom job or something, just incase there is shut off issues with old plumbing. It’s a quick temporary fix to me. Never trusted these things long term.


eviltrain t1_j73amv1 wrote

I've never had any luck with sharkbites. I attempted to a use a few all the way back in 2011 and more than half leaked during the 24 hour pressure test. I have heard that the early sharkbites were prone to leaking.

Either the products are lacking or I was not applying them correctly. Either way, that's a problem.

I've only had one soldered joint ever leak. just my two cents.


nzdennis t1_j73eyjh wrote

Do you think the quality of the tubing is important with the sharkbites?


eviltrain t1_j73gtsh wrote

That's entirely possible and a very good counterpoint.


nzdennis t1_j73d4v6 wrote

Thank you. What tubing did you use? PEX?


Carlweathersfeathers t1_j73pbp3 wrote

Where I live, sharkbites are not allowed to be enclosed in a wall unless covered by an access panel. Even the plumbing supply house will tell you they aren’t permanent solutions. But they are handy as fuck


SarpedonSarpedon t1_j73rdff wrote

I've seen shark bites blow off when houses get struck by lightning. Never seen that with soldered copper or galvanized.


aaraujo666 t1_j73tvio wrote

Was this “evolving” failure of the shark bite a result of USING the shutoff valve?

I ask because, in my home, there was an old,non-functional, water softener. I removed it, made a “loop” with the in and out pipes and sharkbited them. This was, at least, 5 yrs ago and it’s still holding strong.

Maybe the stresses of operating the shutoff valve caused the failure? Just wondering, not criticizing in any way.


Strandom_Ranger t1_j73vwzi wrote

You want permanent and no flame? Propress. The crimping tool will set you back some $$ though.

I work in an old hotel, we have a few sharkbite valves on hand for emergencies. We will solder or now Propress, a "real" valve on later.

I have never seen a sweat copper joints can fail, it's a workmanship issue for those.

I have 3" copper joints that have weeped for years, decades. Big joints are hard to heat up and solder properly. They haven't gotten worse and some day we'll shut the whole building down to fix.


gadget73 t1_j73wdn4 wrote

Not a fan. Anything relying on an O ring to seal it is going to fail eventually. I do copper plumbing with fire, and if that isn't an option it gets PEX or PVC.


shockencock t1_j73zjs4 wrote

I remember years and years ago the end of the world was coming when pex came out. We were all going to drown and get herpes from pex. Now a plumber wouldn’t use anything else.


Dralladin42 t1_j743cm1 wrote

Apparently they have the biological equivalent of this for human organs now.


creesto t1_j743fbf wrote

I appreciate this as I've been thinking of having all my 70yo shut off valves replaced


darkfred t1_j744gs5 wrote

Sharkbites == never again for me.

I've had two pipes in our house fail due to rapid temperature variations. Both were (insulated) copper hot water pipes in an exterior wall. In both cases the sharkbite fitting blew out it's sealing ring within a year of being installed and caused thousands of dollars worth of damage. Neither was connected to an exterior tap.

We have relatively high pipe pressure in these parts but well within the range of the fittings. They simply don't work, I wouldn't trust any sharkbite fitting in-wall, and won't ever risk it again.

Insurance won't pay for anything but cleanup. Sharkbite won't pay for their, used as instructed, failures. And the siding contractor who hit the original lines and fixed them with sharkbites is not willing to pay for sharkbite's failure to function as advertised and instructed.


Prototype9 t1_j74913x wrote

A 3-pack water sensor is like 70$. A water leak will cost you will cost you many many many time this if not caught soon enough


piedubb t1_j74aprq wrote



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codyummk t1_j74gepm wrote

I thought you weren't supposed to use these in a wall.


Diligent_Nature t1_j76mggb wrote

The worst plumbing part is the plastic nut on my toilet flex supply line. It broke when I was on vacation and flooded my finished basement. I installed a Floodstop water leak alarm with whole house shutoff valve. I put a leak sensor in each bathroom, the kitchen, and laundry/water heater area. It has alerted me to a few minor leaks and shut off the water before they could cause any damage. It cost me less than $200. I think it should be standard in a new home.


Dan_Thundercock_496 t1_j731ahe wrote

Good call keeping them out of walls. I personally don't use sharkbites for anything. Same with PEX pipe. Probably being overly cautious but I have never seen PVC or properly soldered copper leak which is all I use.

Alot of the stories of pex and sharkbites leaking probably has more to do with its reputation for being easy attracting less experienced people to DIY it than it being an inferior piping method.


Tom_Traill t1_j72yiil wrote

I've had two people I know have flooding damage from Sharkbite type plumbing.

Not gonna ever use it.


Great_Bodini t1_j73htxv wrote

I think this would be a serious problem if you only know 2 people.


Tom_Traill t1_j73jcgr wrote

Another way of looking at it is this:

I know more than 3 people. Probably 100 people, give or take.

Of the 100 people I know, 3 of them have had expensive plumbing problems.

Two were from using Sharkbite connectors.

One had PVC water lines in their home, installed by the builder.



Discoveryellow t1_j72gaf8 wrote

Sharkbite are temporary fixes, that's what a plumber told me. Easy to DIY until a professional can get to it in a few days or weeks.


Great68 t1_j72qgae wrote

Have had sharkbite braided water heater hoses to my hot water tank going on 8 years now with no issues. Maybe one day I'll get around to making it "permanent" lol.


Discoveryellow t1_j72updy wrote

:-D to be fair 8 years is not that long compared to PEX pipes fitted in a 1990s house.


CocodaMonkey t1_j731qe6 wrote

They're long term temp fixes. If you use Sharkbite correctly it should last a minimum of 25 years. I think they're great for first time DIYers. Lets you learn basic plumbing and build up some confidence then you can transition to something else once you understand their limits.

Although quite honestly if you really want you could use Sharkbite forever. Just check them over every decade and replace them if you see a problem. You could literally replace one every 5 years for the rest of your life and it would still be cheaper than calling a plumber out once.


InfiniteCurrency8 OP t1_j72idjt wrote

To be fair, this fitting was at least 5 years old, possibly older.

The plumber that installed our water heater had a heck of a time with getting sweat joints to seal up in one section, so ended up having to use them and was very apologetic about it. Those are just butt connectors and are still fine.

I am not saying Sharkbite are bad, just want folks to be aware tgat they may want to keep an eye on them.


Discoveryellow t1_j72uwz0 wrote

I am not saying Sharkbite is bad, I'm just adding to your point with what I was told by a trusted plumber.


nw0915 t1_j737j5c wrote

A trusted plumber who wants to keep a steady stream of business by bad mouthing the easier DIY solution?


InfiniteCurrency8 OP t1_j73l095 wrote

Our plumber would have said the same, as long as things are typical. Certain installations require atypical solutions. I am fine with it as long as they cleared it with me prior to installing. Ultimately, it is my choice to accept or reject the proposed solution.

In the case of our butt connectors that a plumber installed, the soldered fittings would not seal and he had two days into the last few fittings.


Kent_Knifen t1_j736kim wrote

> that's what a plumber told me.

Plumber wanted to make sure he got return business lol


PM_ME_UR_BIKINI t1_j72qxn9 wrote

Sharkbite is a scam and a hack and used by many licensed plumbers to steal money from you. I wouldn't even use them for an outdoor hose bib.


Ponk_Bonk t1_j72vg39 wrote

LOL who hurt you? Show us on the shut off valve where the plumber hurt you


PM_ME_UR_BIKINI t1_j73foiy wrote

Licensed plumbers and sharkbite fittings hurt me. I thought my comment was obvious.

So much property damage caused by these dogshit fittings. Defrauded customers paying thousands for 'skilled labor'.


Ponk_Bonk t1_j73h3k4 wrote

You wanna round up the townspeople and get a plumber purge going? Take it all the way to sharkbite HQ? Find those dastardly deadbeat deceiving defrauding dung flushers and give them all the pent up rage you're still holding on to or just wanna let it fester inside you until it turns into prostate cancer?


triangulumnova t1_j72t0q2 wrote

I mean that's just dumb. Sharkbites absolutely have their uses. They definitely aren't a permanent solution, but to call them a scam is just willful ignorance.


iSheepTouch t1_j72w4nc wrote

Right? They will last a long long time in most cases. Sure, they might start leaking eventually but 90+% of the time that will probably take a decade or more to start happening. It's not worth the gamble of course but if you want to apply a more permanent fix at a later date they will work fine. Funny enough an outdoor hose bib is probably the best application for one since those take a beating and need to be replaced pretty often anyways and likely need to be replaced well before the sharkbite collet and o-ring wear out.