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Wednesday, June 23rd 2021, 2:33pm

Leak in constant pressure irrigation pipe

Hello, I recently found a leak in my PVC constant pressure irrigation pipe (Pic 1 above). The issue is that a lateral for sprinklers is seated right about with not much room in between the two for a union.

So I did try to repair the leaking pipe with 4 couplings (4 elbows), as there is not room for a union. See Pic 2 above.

The issue is due to space and fast acting cement, on of the joints (as seen in the picture) is NOT fully seated in the coupling. As shown in the picture, the pipe should have seated till the pencil mark arrow, but one side is not fully in. I checked for leaks, and so far (a day has passed, and constant pressure water is on), I did not see any visible leak.

Question is would you leave it like that. Should all joints have to be 100% seated.
I used rain or shine PVC blue cement, would using regular cement give me more working time (or do you think this happened because of bad alignment?

Is there a website or video to learn proper mechanics of 4 elbow to repair and underground pipe?

Is there a better way you would have handled this?

Please help, I really appreciate your wisdom and help.



Posts: 2,572

Location: USA


Wednesday, June 23rd 2021, 6:45pm

I don't like to whooptydo the pipe like that unless it's the only option.
But it's not leaking. You might get away with it for many years.

I would have cut the lateral line out of the way. Then used a slip fix to repair the main line.
Then I would have used flexible pvc to go up and over the the slip fix to repair the lateral line.

I've been doing it that way for 25 years. Long before they sold anything at the Home Depot for this purpose. I'll kick myself to the grave for not being the one to market it. I'm the reason that Hydroscape started carrying flex PVC.




Wednesday, June 23rd 2021, 8:28pm

Thanks for your reply and advice. I wish I had posted before trying to fix it :(

I did it this way, because I didn't want to touch what was not broken (the lateral above the leak in my picture). What is not appreciated in the pic are hundreds of thick roots and embedded rocks that make digging really hard, so I wanted to make it without having to dig for hours (this much already took about 4 hours).




Wednesday, June 23rd 2021, 8:35pm

Also can you please explain about fixing the laterals with flexible pipe? Is there a video/tutorial etc somewhere from which I could learn.

Thanks again


Supreme Member

Posts: 5,376

Location: Metro NYC


Thursday, June 24th 2021, 8:18pm

Not a flexible pipe, but a Slip-Fix, which has a female slip connection on one end, and a telescoping extension on the other end. An O-ring provides the seal between the two parts.

As for glue, you really don't need Rain-or-Shine blue glue. For an old-timer like me, it sets up too fast. It never hurts to have the ability to pull apart what you just glued together. I use medium-body clear cement, which sets up ready to pressurize in well under an hour.




Friday, June 25th 2021, 4:07pm

The flex pipe I was talking was for the lateral not the main pressure pipe.

Also next time I will use the medium body cement (I got sold by the big box store guy about the rain or shine cement...and didn't realize how quickly it sets (surprisingly the container doesn't give any idea about the working time.



Supreme Member

Posts: 5,376

Location: Metro NYC


Saturday, June 26th 2021, 6:29pm

The blue glue was intended for really wet situations, like where upstream water can't quite be completely shut off. I can usually allow for the 15-30 minutes it takes for standard glues to set up leak-free under 24/7 supply pressures.

I can't really advise from experience on the flex PVC. If I have a situation where tree roots are in the way, I chop the roots. After all, I'm paid by the hour. :thumbup: In poly pipe land, it's pretty easy to guide pipes around problem ares. Note that flex PVC is different enough from standard PVC pipe, that there exist cements made with flex PVC in mind




Sunday, June 27th 2021, 8:17am

Thanks wet-boots,

I appreciate your advice and time taken to reply. I decided to leave it like it is not (pic 2) since it is not leaking.

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