Archive for September, 2013

Installing An Ice-Maker Line

September 26, 2013 4:34 am
posted by Bob Gallup

21739766_sMany refrigerators come with ice makers, which need to be attached to a water supply. The most difficult aspect is locating a water supply close to the refrigerator.
Most installations involve drilling a hole through the floor and attaching the tubing to a nearby supply line in the basement.
An ice maker is one of those luxury’s you cannot live without once you have it. You quickly get used to serving iced drinks whenever you want them, especially when you can enjoy crushed iced or cubes.
Once you have the ice maker, you have to hook it up. Out of the back of the fridge you will see a fitting or small tube you will connect to an ice maker pipe, which in turn connects to a stop valve in a valve housing in the wall or through a hole in the floor to a valve in the basement water line. Parts for ice-maker installation are available separately, or as kits containing saddle valve, tubing, and compression fittings. Appliance stores, plumbing service centers, and home centers have kits available with copper or plastic tubing.
The plastic tubing can become brittle over time and possibly break, so most appliance centers recommend using copper tubing.
• Cut in a T-fitting into a cold water line and take a small-diameter line to the valve in the box.
• Typically the valve has a 1/2-inch threaded shank that takes 12-inch female fittings.
• You can also sweat a copper extension directly to the inside of the shank.
• Mount the box, using the 2X spacers called “scabs” to close up the stud opening to the width of the housing flanges.
• Connect the pipe to the interface fitting you installed on the threaded shank. Now it is time to connect the tubing.
• Connect one end of the supply pipe to the valve.
• Connect the other side of the pipe to the fridge.
• If the fridge has a cable, connect to it instead.
• Tighten all connections, turn the water on at the valve, and check for leaks.
• You will have ice in a few hours, once all the air has purged from the line.

PLUMBING TRADE SECRETS: Refrigerator ice makers use water from a nearby supply riser to make ice. When improperly installed, ice makers are notorious for leaking.
WHAT CAN GO WRONG: Make sure to install a high-tower faucet. They are several inches taller than standard faucets.
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17959777_sFalse trips’ in mechanical accelerators generally occur at night, commonly due to obstructions in the restricted orifice between Chambers #1 and #2. The dry valve and accelerator are located in a heated area, and higher air pressure from elevated daytime temperature (heat expands air to cause higher pressures) is trapped in Chamber #1. As night falls and the temperature cools in the unheated building, the system air pressure drops (air decompresses when it is cooled). If the higher pressure in Chamber #1 is blocked by an obstruction, pressure cannot be relieved into chamber #2, and an imbalance results. The device will trip when the pressure differential is approximately 2 psi (0.14 bar) between the two chambers.
Example: First, assume an unheated warehouse where a dry pipe system has been installed due to cold winter temperatures. Now assume a normal system air pressure automatically maintained at a minimum pressure of 40 psi (2.8 bar) and an ambient temperature of 70F (21C) during the summer. As the daytime temperature slowly increases to 100F (38C), the pressure slowly rises in the system to 54 psi (3.7 l). Likewise, Chambers #1, #2, and #3 slowly increase to 54 psi (3.7 l). Chamber # 3, however, increases even more slowly due to the communicating port (between the chambers) being partially clogged. As night falls, so does the ambient temperature. The system rapidly cools, but most of the excess pressure is trapped in Chamber #1 due to the inability of the restricted orifice to compensate (balance the chamber pressures) because of its being obstructed.
With a differential between Chambers #1 and #2, where Chamber #1 is at a higher pressure than Chamber #2, the accelerator will false trip when the differential reaches an approximate 2 psi (0.14 bar) difference. False trips of accelerators can also be attributed to the failure of anti flooding devices within the accelerator, and excessive drain-back water after a dry pipe sprinkler system is reset. In all cases, the false trip is a result of the inability of the restricted orifice to compensate (equalize) normal pressure variations between two chambers. Ironically, in the mechanical accelerator, it is the restricted orifice that is critical to maintaining the pressure variation within the accelerator due to a sprinkler operation and for the proper operation of the device.
Frequent maintenance is required and necessary with mechanical style accelerators. By count, there are 3 sliding pistons, two diaphragms, two restricted passageways, and one restriction that all have to be in operating condition for the accelerator to function properly. Without this maintenance, it is likely that the mechanical accelerator will cause false trips or worse, cause a failure in a fire condition. Too many mechanical accelerators that are necessary to qualify installations are soon removed from service due to maintenance issues. Removing an accelerator from service is a violation of the code, and will most likely place the water delivery of the dry pipe system into an unacceptable time period. An increase in delivery time above code is unacceptable and could cause a system failure.
PLUMBING TRADE SECRETS: In contrast to all manufacturers’ mechanical accelerators, electronic accelerators have no moving mechanical parts to stick or become obstructed, and no small-restricted orifices to become clogged. In addition, resetting the accelerator is accomplished by simply pushing the reset button on the accelerator control panel.
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Debra D. Santavicca, PR, SMM, WebIT
Multimedia Development for Smaller Budgets
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9788534_sWithin the autopsy room in a morgue, odors and fumes may be present.  To increase the safety of the area, particular attention should be paid to the installation of an efficient ventilation system.  Downdraft ventilation tables provide a passageway for fumes to be exhausted by drawing air from the work surface to a roof vent.

Typically, a duct extends from the base of the table through the floor.  Waste water and air separate in the table pedestal.  Air drawn by the facility-supplied fan vents to the roof of the building.  The underside of the pedestal is open to allow for the optimal placement of utility tie-ins.

Vacuum breakers protect water supply, and the water lines on an autopsy table, are equipped with a special in-line vacuum breaker to act as an anti-siphoning device.  The vacuum breaker protects the potable water supply by making it impossible for water to accidentally re-enter the supply line.

Some types of assemblies are common in commercial and agricultural applications but are rare for residential uses. The appropriate type of backflow preventer for any given application will depend on the degree of potential hazard. The primary types of backflow preventers appropriate for use at municipalities and utilities are:

Double Check Valves:  These are commonly used in elevated tanks and non-toxic boilers. Double check-valve assemblies are effective against backflow caused by back-pressure and back-siphonage and are used to protect the potable water system from low-hazard substances. Double-checks consist of two positive-seating check valves installed as a unit between two tightly closing shut-off valves, and are fitted with testcocks.

Reduced Pressure Principle Assemblies:  These are commonly used in industrial plants, hospitals, morgues, chemical plants, irrigation systems, boilers, and fire sprinkler systems. Reduced pressure principle assemblies (RPs) protect against back-pressure and back-siphonage of pollutants and contaminants. The assembly is comprised of two internally loaded, independently operating check valves with a mechanically independent, hydraulically dependent relief valve between them.

Pressure Vacuum Breakers:  These are commonly used in industrial plants, cooling towers, laboratories, laundries, swimming pools, lawn sprinkler systems, and fire sprinkler systems. Pressure vacuum breakers use a check valve designed to close with the aid of a spring when water flow stops. Its air-inlet valve opens when the internal pressure is one psi above atmospheric pressure, preventing non-potable water from being siphoned back into the potable system. The assembly includes resilient, seated shut-off valves and testcocks.

Backflow may occur under the following two conditions:  Back-pressure is the reverse from normal flow direction within a piping system as the result of the downstream pressure being higher than the supply pressure. This reduction in supply pressure occurs whenever the amount of water being used exceeds the amount of water being supplied (such as during water-line flushing, fire-fighting, or breaks in water mains).

Back-siphonage is the reverse from normal flow direction within a piping system that is caused by negative pressure in the supply piping (i.e., the reversal of normal flow in a system caused by a vacuum or partial vacuum within the water supply piping). Back-siphonage can occur when there is a high velocity in a pipe line, when there is a line repair or break that is lower than a service point, or when there is lowered main pressure due to high-water withdrawal rate (such as during fire-fighting or water-main flushing).

 

PLUMBING TRADE SECRETS:  The modern preparation room requires a host of specialized plumbing devices.  These “behind the scenes” products serve many critical functions including sufficient and uninterrupted water pressure for aspirator operation and backflow protection to prevent cross-contamination.

 

There’s a reason they call us Mr.™

 

Ambassador Media Solutions
Debra D. Santavicca, PR, SMM, WebIT
Multimedia Development for Smaller Budgets
Thoreau said, “Simplify.”

724-553-9510
ambassadormedia@comcast.net

 

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How to Install a New Sink Spray – Part One

September 5, 2013 6:05 am
posted by Bob Gallup

19821264_sAll sorts of things can happen to a sink spray.  It may leak, adding to your water bill.  It may dribble water instead of supplying it with some force.  It may spit out tiny bits of rubber with the water.  It may work when it feels like working – not at all a good situation and exasperating when you want to finish with the dishes.

 

It’s easy to put in a new spray.  The first step is to remove the old one.  First, turn off the faucet.  The spray head is held in place by a plastic collar.  This collar is ribbed so you can hold it more firmly, (in most models).  Hold the collar with one hand and turn the spray head with the other, and the spray head will then come off in your hand.  Put the spray head aside and examine the end of the rubber hose to which the collar is attached.  On top of the collar assembly you will find a rubber washer.  Remove it.  Note:  On some models the plastic collar is an elongated handle that screws directly into the spray head.  If a brass fitting holds the hose to the head, unscrew this fitting.

 

Now that you have removed the rubber washer, you will be able to see a retaining clip.  This clip holds the collar in position.  You can force the retaining clip off with a flat blade screwdriver, but be careful you don’t jab the palm of your hand when doing so.

 

Once you have the retaining clip removed, you will find the plastic collar will come right off.  Put a pan or a bucket on the floor and put the free end of the hose into it.  The idea here is to let any water remaining in the hose dribble out.

 

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