How to Marry PVC Pipe to Brass Pipe

Written by amelia allonsy
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How to Marry PVC Pipe to Brass Pipe
You can marry PVC pipe to brass pipe with a PVC male adaptor and a brass female adaptor. (plumbing image by Inger Anne Hulbækdal from

Many older homes have brass plumbing pipes, but they aren't as durable as polyvinyl chloride (PVC) pipes. Brass is prone to corrosion and damage from commercial chemicals, such as drain cleaners. This type of damage is not a problem with PVC pipes. Brass pipes can wear thin as water and sewage flow through them. If part of your brass plumbing pipes need to be replaced, you should replace them with a more durable pipe, like PVC. Sometimes homeowners only have the money to replace part of the brass pipes in the house, so the "marrying" of PVC and brass pipes is required.

Skill level:

Things you need

  • Emery cloth
  • PVC primer cleaner
  • PVC male adaptor
  • PVC cement glue
  • Brass female adaptor
  • Soldering flux
  • Propane torch
  • Clean rag
  • PTFE Teflon thread-sealing tape
  • 2 adjustable wrenches

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  1. 1

    Wipe any plastic burrs off of the PVC pipe with an emery cloth. Small bits of PVC will curl up and cling onto the end of a PVC pipe after it has been cut.

  2. 2

    Clean the joint end of the PVC pipe with PVC primer cleaner. Primer also prepares the PVC surface for glue by softening the plastic to make it easier for glue to adhere to it. The primer also helps to form a tight seal.

  3. 3

    Apply PVC primer cleaner to the inside of the coupling end of the PVC male adaptor. Do not apply primer cleaner to the threads of the adaptor.

  4. 4

    Apply a liberal amount of PVC cement glue to the end of the PVC pipe and the inside of the coupling end of the PVC male adaptor.

  5. 5

    Push the male adaptor onto the PVC pipe. Make a 1/4 turn to ensure the pipe fits tightly into the adaptor.

  6. 6

    Sand the end of the brass pipe with the emery cloth to create a smooth and clean surface. A clean brass surface will create a tighter seal.

  7. 7

    Sand the inside of the coupling end of the brass female adaptor to make sure it is clean.

  8. 8

    Apply a liberal amount of soldering flux to the inside of the female adaptor and the end of the brass pipe. Push the adaptor onto the pipe.

  9. 9

    Heat the adaptor--brass pipe joint with a propane torch, keeping the tip of the flame on the coupling to draw the heat into the coupling. Continue to hold the propane torch at the coupling until the joint is sealed.

  10. 10

    Touch the solder to the brass pipe at the joint to test the heat. When the solder begins to melt, rub the solder around the joint to create a visible seal around the pipe.

  11. 11

    Let the pipe cool completely. Wipe the excess soldering flux off of the brass pipe and fitting with a clean rag after the pipe has cooled.

  12. 12

    Wrap polytetrafluoroethylene (PTFE) Teflon thread-sealing tape around the threads of the PVC male adaptor three or four times. Wrap it clockwise to follow the direction of the threads because wrapping it counter-clockwise will cause the thread-sealing tape to unravel itself.

  13. 13

    Tighten the PVC male adaptor onto the threads of the brass female adaptor by hand.

  14. 14

    Tighten the threads completely by holding each adaptor with a wrench and turning in opposite directions to generate the optimum amount of torque. Be careful not to over-tighten because it could strip the threads on the PVC adaptor.

Tips and warnings

  • PVC primer and PVC cement glue cans come with cotton daubers to make application easy.
  • This activity is best suited for do-it-yourself plumbers with some plumbing experience.
  • Overheating the brass with the propane torch can actually burn the brass pipe and cause it to reject the solder.
  • Keep the propane torch away from flammable materials such as insulation, glue and wood.

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