There are certain tools that can be found in every plumbers repair kit. Teflon tape, also referred to as plumbers tape, is a common tool used by plumbers and homeowners to stop pipe connections from leaking. This tape is stretchy to maximize tight connections, thin, white, and is effective at stopping leaks because it does not gunk up in the plumbing connection threads.
You can buy Teflon tape in the form of a roll at plumbing supply stores, hardware stores, and home supply stores. It is an inexpensive tape that is much like a ribbon and is long lasting. It is used not only used for water leaks, but also to stop gas leaks.
It is quite easy to apply Teflon tape to a pipe fitting connection. You just pull the required amount of tape from the roll and wrap it a minimum of three times around the end of the pipe fitting. You must apply the tape to avoid wrinkles, bubbles, or creases in the tape which can cause bubbles. It should also be wrapped securely to ensure it is completely leak and air tight. As well, when wrapping and handling the tape, your hands should be clean of any dirt, debris, and grease to prevent tape degradation. Once the tape is securely wrapped around the fitting, it is important to press firmly to ensure a complete firm and secure fit.
Once you have the tape firm and secure around the pipe connection threads, you will then place one end of the pipe fitting into the other end. It is the male end into the female end. You will then tighten the two connections. It must be tight enough so that it is completely secure. If you have to take them apart to adjust the fitting, it is easy to do as the Teflon tape acts as a lubricant.
In most cases, Teflon tape is used to wrap around threads of pipe fittings when there is low water pressure and around pipes that transport oil into the home heating system. It is also used to wrap around gas pipe fittings but will be wrapped more times to make it thicker. Teflon tape should only be used to wrap around threads and not the actual pipe because just wrapping around the pipe will not stop the leak as it is less secure and tight. Do not use white Teflon tape on iron pipe gas fittings as it will degrade and cause leaks. Yellow Teflon tape is used for iron pipe fittings because of their double density. Green Teflon tape is used on copper which is used with pipe threads or bolts in mechanical devices. If you are unsure about the leak and whether applying the tape will fix the problem, you should enlist the services of a qualified plumber, especially if you have a gas leak which can be dangerous. A professional plumber is trained and certified to locate the problem and provide a quality repair that is quick and efficient.
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