Pool PVC pipe cracked near concrete - how to fix, and what is the black PVC pipe glue?

tron

Well-known member
Feb 4, 2020
52
Utah
Pool Size
14500
Surface
Plaster
Chlorine
Salt Water Generator
SWG Type
Pentair Intellichlor IC-40
My pool plumbing has a crack in the PVC elbow in the return line close to concrete in the equipment pad. I tried to patch it using the epoxy + fiberglass tape leak fixing kit from home depot, but I have a strong suspicion that it will leak when I pressure test it tomorrow.

Is there a way to fix it when don't have much length of pipe above concrete to cut and glue new fittings? In the attached picture, the elbow is cracked, and it's glued to the shut off valve beneath, which is just about 1 inch above the ground. Is there a way to remove a glued fitting or is there some other way to fix this?

Also, I see black glue used for the PVC fittings. What is this black PVC glue? I've seen black glue only used for ABS in the past. So, I'm trying to understand what type of glue was used by my pool contractor who installed these fittings.

Thank you!
 

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Poolbreh

In The Industry
Jul 31, 2021
1,044
San Diego
Why does it keep cracking? It looks like it was done multiple times? It looks like they cut coupling and stuck a pipe extender in there for god sake why didn’t they give you more play? You can use a heat gun technique I’ll post below.
 

tron

Well-known member
Feb 4, 2020
52
Utah
Pool Size
14500
Surface
Plaster
Chlorine
Salt Water Generator
SWG Type
Pentair Intellichlor IC-40
Planned obsolescence I guess. I would get them back to fix it even paying my own money for their poor installation. But they are not even returning calls to come out to do the work. So I want to find my own way to fix this.
What is this black PVC cement? Is there such as thing or did they use ABS cement on PVC pipes? Home Depot guy says the black compound must be ABS cement.
 

tron

Well-known member
Feb 4, 2020
52
Utah
Pool Size
14500
Surface
Plaster
Chlorine
Salt Water Generator
SWG Type
Pentair Intellichlor IC-40
If I use the heat gun method and remove the fitting, then should I use some solvent to remove the remnants of the pipe glue before I use new pipe glue to install the new fittings?
 

Poolbreh

In The Industry
Jul 31, 2021
1,044
San Diego
Sorry I posted that prematurely, I feel for you. So abs is good at filling gaps and works well under cold conditions so I assume they thought it was due to freezing? I just wish they would have brought it up a bit and removed coupling and used a bell end. They kind of left you between a rock and a hard place. You can strip old existing fittings using the heat gun shown here.https://www.troublefreepool.com/wiki/index.php?title=PVC_Repair
 

Poolbreh

In The Industry
Jul 31, 2021
1,044
San Diego
The issue is, if I’m right the pipe extender is between the coupling and the ball valve, so if you cut at the bottom of ball valve you will cut through pipe extender. You will than have to heat gun coupling off very methodically. I would use a bell end of rigid pipe over if you can but coupling would do fine and give yourself more pipe to work on in the future. If it fails again down the road you will have to repeat, if it doesn’t work the second time you will have to chip concrete. Last thing you want to happen is that pipe to crack downwards towards the concrete so be careful and take your time.
 
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tron

Well-known member
Feb 4, 2020
52
Utah
Pool Size
14500
Surface
Plaster
Chlorine
Salt Water Generator
SWG Type
Pentair Intellichlor IC-40
I'm planning to cut above the ball valve - between the ball valve and the cracked elbow. Hope that prevents from having to cut close to the concrete. I'll be extra careful, thanks for the heads up.
 
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tron

Well-known member
Feb 4, 2020
52
Utah
Pool Size
14500
Surface
Plaster
Chlorine
Salt Water Generator
SWG Type
Pentair Intellichlor IC-40
I'll get a pipe extender ready - thanks!

The wiki page you linked mentions both a 'socket saver' to drill out the pipe from the fitting and also the heat gun method. Between socket saver and heat gun, which method is better?

Update: After checking out a few videos like this, heat gun it is.
 
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SoDel

Well-known member
May 27, 2022
373
Coastal Sussex Delaware
Pool Size
15000
Surface
Plaster
Chlorine
Salt Water Generator
SWG Type
Hayward Turbo Cell (T-CELL-5)
Where my mind goes is cut the pad as neatly as possible in a rectangle around the plumbing, excavate and repair the plumbing conventionally, fill the mini-excavation and rectangle with marble chips so it looks neat and tidy, drains well, and remains accessible for future repairs. Maybe fix it with socket savers and heat gun for now and cut the pad if it ever cracks again?
 
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tron

Well-known member
Feb 4, 2020
52
Utah
Pool Size
14500
Surface
Plaster
Chlorine
Salt Water Generator
SWG Type
Pentair Intellichlor IC-40
Where my mind goes is cut the pad as neatly as possible in a rectangle around the plumbing, excavate and repair the plumbing conventionally, fill the mini-excavation and rectangle with marble chips so it looks neat and tidy, drains well, and remains accessible for future repairs. Maybe fix it with socket savers and heat gun for now and cut the pad if it ever cracks again?
this sounds like a great approach. For now, I'll use heat gun to remove the elbow above the ball valve and replace that part of the plumbing. If this happens again, I'll cut the concrete the way you mentioned.
 

jedigrover

Gold Supporter
Sep 13, 2010
331
Plano, TX
Pool Size
21000
Surface
Plaster
Chlorine
Salt Water Generator
SWG Type
Hayward Aqua Rite (T-15)
My pool plumbing has a crack in the PVC elbow in the return line close to concrete in the equipment pad. I tried to patch it using the epoxy + fiberglass tape leak fixing kit from home depot, but I have a strong suspicion that it will leak when I pressure test it tomorrow.

Is there a way to fix it when don't have much length of pipe above concrete to cut and glue new fittings? In the attached picture, the elbow is cracked, and it's glued to the shut off valve beneath, which is just about 1 inch above the ground. Is there a way to remove a glued fitting or is there some other way to fix this?

Also, I see black glue used for the PVC fittings. What is this black PVC glue? I've seen black glue only used for ABS in the past. So, I'm trying to understand what type of glue was used by my pool contractor who installed these fittings.

Thank you!
Try to cut / chip out the concrete around that pipe. They didn't do you any favors running concrete through a slab like that. If it is to be done at all, it should be sleeved with a larger pipe so there isn't going to be pressure on the water pipe, or stresses due to slab movement.

The "black glue" looks to me suspiciously like JB Weld -- a steel-impregnated epoxy. If that is the case, the heat-gun method likely won't work.

The only grey or black PVC cement I know of is meant for non-metallic (PVC) electrical conduit.
 

tron

Well-known member
Feb 4, 2020
52
Utah
Pool Size
14500
Surface
Plaster
Chlorine
Salt Water Generator
SWG Type
Pentair Intellichlor IC-40
Try to cut / chip out the concrete around that pipe. They didn't do you any favors running concrete through a slab like that. If it is to be done at all, it should be sleeved with a larger pipe so there isn't going to be pressure on the water pipe, or stresses due to slab movement.

The "black glue" looks to me suspiciously like JB Weld -- a steel-impregnated epoxy. If that is the case, the heat-gun method likely won't work.

The only grey or black PVC cement I know of is meant for non-metallic (PVC) electrical conduit.
Thanks for the pointers. I'll find out this weekend if that black glue gives way to a heat gun. If it doesn't, I'll have to resort to a socket saver. Hope it doesn't come down to cutting/chipping concrete. It's outside my comfort zone with tools. If I have to do it in the future, I might hire someone to do it.
 
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