An easy way to do this on copper or steel pipes is by using a special shutoff fitting known as a saddle valve or needle valve. These valves are designed to work with brass, copper, or steel pipes—they do not work with PVC, CPVC, or PEX plastic pipe.

Correspondingly, how do you tap into a PEX water line?

1 Answer. First you need to cut the PEX tubing at the access spot. That can be done with a PEX tubing cutter. Then you acquire the correct type fitting (your size requirement may differ from picture) to rejoin the cut PEX with “T” fitting and a branch connection for an added PEX tubing to go off toward the ice maker.

Also, how reliable are saddle valves? Most of them don't leak, but they have a much higher chance of leaking than a properly installed water valve. My advice is to not use saddle valves. When installing an ice maker or whole-house humidifier, tap off of an existing water line with a proper tee fitting and have a proper shutoff valve installed.

Likewise, people ask, how does a piercing valve work?

Saddle valves are self-tapping devices. Once mounted on a line, with the included rubber seal in place, all that is required is to turn the valve clockwise until it pierces the water line. When the valve handle can no longer be turned, it is done tapping the pipe. Turning the handle counter-clockwise opens the valve.

Are saddle valves up to code?

Answer. Most state and local codes prohibit the use of a saddle valve, also known as a piercing saddle valve, saddle tap or needle valve, consisting of a clamp that punctures a hole in an existing water intake pipe. It is a shortcut used instead of installing a more permanent and secure connection.

Related Question Answers

Why is PEX banned in California?

Church, executive director of the Plastic Pipe and Fittings Association. Uponor Wirsbo said its PEX pipe was introduced in California in 1990 and that the product helps solve problems in areas with aggressive soil conditions that copper pipe cannot solve.

Can PEX be connected directly to a water heater?

PEX can‘t be directly connected to a water heater. First extend a pipe 18 in. from your water heater and connect the PEX supply to the pipe.

How long does PEX pipe last?

50 years

Should I replace copper with PEX?

The installer recommends replacing my copper pipes with PEX. If so, you could get another 23 years out of your copper pipes and spare the cost to replace plumbing. If it's a small area that's leaking, you could just replace that section with either PEX or copper. Both types are interchangeable.

Can I use blue PEX for hot water?

Red PEX pipe carries hot water. Blue PEX pipe carries cold water. White PEX pipe can be used for either hot or cold water. Gray PEX pipe, like white, can be used for either hot or cold water (although not all DIY centers carry gray).

How long do SharkBite fittings last?

25 years

What size PEX should I use?

PEX Diameter

PEX tubes range in diameter from 3/8-inch to 1-inch for residential applications. For adequate water flow, it's a good idea to install 1/2-inch or 3/4-inch PEX for your main lines. The standard when replacing old water supply lines with PEX is to use the same size.

What does PEX stand for?

Cross-linked polyethylene, commonly abbreviated PEX, XPE or XLPE, is a form of polyethylene with cross-links. It is used predominantly in building services pipework systems, hydronic radiant heating and cooling systems, domestic water piping, and insulation for high tension (high voltage) electrical cables.

What is a piercing valve?

The Supco® bullet piercing valve is a line piercing valve with a permanent type, patented gasket that provides up to 50 times more sealing area than competitive O-ring types. Piercing needle is designed for concentricity and hardness to insure perfect seating every time.

How do I know if my saddle valve is open or closed?

When the handle of a ball valve is parallel to the valve or pipe, it's open. When it's perpendicular, it's closed. This makes it easy know if a ball valve is open or closed, just by looking at it. The ball valve below is in the open position.

Why do saddle valves leak?

It is saddle valve. Generally they're used to supply ice makers. It is dripping because the valve is either not closed completely, or because the valve has developed a leak. Now, shut off the house water supply.

How do you take a self piercing saddle valve off?

After locating the saddle valve, turn off the water supply to the refrigerator by turning the saddle valve handle clockwise. You may get a little bit of water from the valve's packing nut as you close it. If so, it should stop leaking once the valve is fully closed.

Are saddle valves legal in Illinois?

Saddle valves are not allowed in Illinois. The bad thing about most saddle valves is that I can guarantee they will eventualy leak. When used with copper they have a tendency to crush the copper pipe they are being used on.