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Simple, straightforward and low shipping rates for these solder.
Q. "I can't seem to get my solder to stick to copper?"
A. We are assuming you are using the quality solder and flux that we sell on this page. If not, and you purchased that elsewhere then you might want to look at the products that you're using as an issue as they may not be of the same quality or compatibility and our advice that we are about to give might not mean much. Both of the fluxes that we offer are very compatible with the solder that we offer.
You must first clean both the fitting and the pipe. No matter how clean and new the fittings and pipe look, you must clean them (with sand cloth, mesh pad or brush designed for this). Then use a quality flux specifically designed for that solder. DON'T overheat. Most beginners tend to overheat the fitting/joint. There is a small melting (liquid) range of the solder. Once it flows (the solder gets into its liquid state) do not raise the temperature of the solder as you could raise it to a level where it will no longer be able to flow. Then you will probably assume that since it won't flow, it must not be hot enough and you will continue to heat it. A common mistake for soldering beginners.
Q. "Isn't lead dangerous?"
A. Using lead products for drinking water is against all U.S. codes and not advised. Using lead for flashings is hard to beat as lead is the most durable flashing that we know of (although some areas now do not want you to use it due to children playing with it as well as a small potential is there to contaminate our environment with too much lead). You should wash your hands after using lead products and many recommend using gloves. Lead isn't like mercury and it won't go into your body just by holding it but if a child nibbles on it or you place your hands in your mouth after touching a lead product you could ingest some lead. We don't recommend using lead products for anything.
Q. "What does it mean to have ANSI Certification for lead free plumbing products?"
A. Laws requiring plumbing products that come in to contact with drinking water to be essentially lead-free (0.25% weighted average) have been passed in California, Louisiana, Maryland, and Vermont. In order for companies to ship these plumbing products to locations in CA, LA, MD and VT, they must be ANSI certified lead free.
Q. "What is CA AB 1953, LA Act No. 362, MD HB 372, and VT S.152 and how is this different from previous low-lead legislation?"
A. The United States Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) regulates the amount of lead in drinking water under guidelines established in the Federal Safe Drinking Water Act (passed in 1974; amended in 1988 and 1996). This Act defines "lead-free" as not more than 8% lead in pipes and fixture fittings. PLEASE NOTE: Use of the term "lead-free" varies between the new legislation in CA (AB 1953), LA ( Act No. 362), MD (HB 372), and VT (S.152), and in the current Federal Safe Drinking Water Act requirements. In the new legislation for CA, LA, MD and VT only (as of Jan 2013), it will mean 0.25% or less (weighted average). Similar national legislation is scheduled to go into effect Jan 2014.
Q. "Has lead been used a lot in water lines in the past?"
A. Yes. Even the word "plumber" is a derivative from the word lead. We understand that Chicago required lead water service line until about 1987 (if true, so much for code and local traditions rather than health concerns). The State of California had one of the first strong anti-lead campaigns. Now lead is not allowed in any water service anywhere in the U.S.. If you see a lead water pipe we highly recommend replacing it. If it isn't yours we recommend reporting that to your local health officials.
We hope that we have helped you on this page with solder,
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