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Pipe extraction method

Updated on August 18, 2012

_ _ it happens

Scenario 1: So, you decided to unscrew that piece of galvanized, black iron or brass piping to make a repair or alteration, and while using both wrenches opposing each other and to keep the other parts of the piping from moving, the pipe you desire to remove snaps off at the end of the fitting. Now what?

Scenario 2: You just finished gluing the PVC pipe into the fitting and you realize it is too short in length and you can't twist it out, what to do?

Scenario 3: You have found a piece of your plastic piping broken (PVC or ABS) between two fittings. You have new piping and glue, but no fittings and the closest store is umpteen miles away can you still fix the break?

Large diameter (1.5") broken off pipe

Arghhhhhh !!!!

Broken PVC fitting on A/C Evaporator

Alternative to the file

If that doesn't work with the file method try taking a hacksaw blade with electrical taped wrapped on one end, for comfort or a mini-hacksaw,( the kind with blade protruding from one end) and cut starting as close to the end of fitting as possible (you may need to cut off more piping to make the end of pipe even with the end of fitting for ease of cut with the chisel) start cutting at the inside of the piping (whether PVC, ABS, or metal) being careful not to cut through into the fitting making at least two and perhaps several cuts.(Whether threaded or smooth) and you will need a chisel; cold chisel, small, for metal or wood chisel, small, for plastic, to pry away the broken piece from the fitting. You can use a screwdriver, but I found they are more work. WHEN DOING THIS, PLEASE USE PROTECTIVE EYEWEAR!

If you can make two cuts close to each other, depending on the size of the pipe, this would be best and start beating in the chisel there between the pipe and the fitting.

Internal Pipe Wrench

If you can afford and/or have a store close enough that sells these they work like a champ, and unlike the file, they wont shear off and hurt you with excessive torque applied.

Eccentric cam action engages wrench against the walls of the pipe. Ideal for removing broken threaded pipe ends and fittings. Installation and removal without thread damage. Made from hardened steel and plated to help prevent rust. Hex body allows for use of adjustable wrench for added torque.

Internal Pipe Wrench


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