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How To Connect PVC To Copper Pipe

Note: This post may contain affiliate links. This means that at no cost to you, we may receive a small commission for made purchases.

PVC pipes are commonly used in plumbing systems because they are flexible, durable, and inexpensive. They also come in a variety of sizes, shapes, and colors.

The problem is that PVC pipes are incompatible with copper piping. If you try to connect them together, you’ll likely damage or break the copper pipe.

To prevent this from happening, you should use a special adapter that allows you to connect PVC pipes to copper pipes. 

The most common type of adapter for connecting PVC pipes to copper pipes is called an elbow connector.

It has two sections: one section that connects to the copper pipe and another section that connects to the PVC pipe. You can buy these adapters at your local hardware store.

You may be wondering why it’s not possible to just simply use PVC pipe instead of using an adapter. This is because PVC does not have a standard size.

Instead, PVC pipes are measured by their internal diameter (ID). For example, if you want to install a 1/2″ ID pipe, you would need a PVC pipe with an ID of 1/2″.

However, there are many types of PVC pipes, so you will need to measure each one carefully before buying it.

Can You Actually Connect PVC To Copper?

Yes, you can! Attach a PVC pipe to a Copper Pipe easily using a Push-fit connection.

Make sure to measure the thickness of the insertion of the two pipes before attaching them together. Then, use the appropriate size push-fit connector. Cut the PVC pipe clean and debut it if necessary.

Push fittings are used to connect pipes together. There are many types of push fittings available.

Some are made specifically for connecting copper piping, while others are designed for plastic piping. Connectors come in various shapes and sizes.

Some are meant to be reused, while others are disposable. Disconnecting tongs allow you to remove the pipe easily.

PVC cement takes about 2 hours to dry. PVC pipe can be cut without tools using a hacksaw or an electric saw.

PVC is a cheap plastic that is most often used as pipes. It is a flexible plastic that can be bent easily without breaking. It is a great insulator, and it is also cheaper than steel or copper.

Best Types Of Fitting To Connect PVC To Copper Pipe

Compression fittings are the best type of fittings to use when connecting PVC to copper pipe. Solder fittings require the use of an open fire, which is dangerous for DIY people.

Plastic push-fit fittings aren’t generally recommended for most PVC-to-copper pipe connections. Copper fittings last longer than PVC fittings but require more skill to install.

Push-fit fittings are good for short connections up to about five meters long. But if you need to make a connection over ten meters long, you should consider using a compression fitting instead.

Compression fittings are more expensive than push-fit fittings, but they last much longer. 

You must use a compression fitting for any connection over ten meters long. With compression fittings, you push the pipes together until they fit tightly together. Then you heat the joint with a torch and solder it.

Things To Consider Before Connecting Copper Pipe

Common Types of Copper Piping

Verify the pipes run straight or perpendicular, depending on your configuration. If one pipe is angled with respect to another, install an elbow on that side.

You can actually connect the PVC or CPDVC to your copper pipes in several ways.

One of the most common methods involves actually soldering a female threaded fitting style onto the copper pipe, then going ahead and screwing in a male style threaded plastic fittings and finishing off with glue.

This isn’t the safest method, however, because you can’t properly tighten your fitting in case it starts leaking.

The best and most secure option is to use a Copper-to-Plastic Adapter. Those with moderate DIY skills can complete this project, but there is a risk involved.

You can also use a compression fitting to connect two pipes together. Before you put the steps to connect PVC to copper pipes (see also ‘ What Is The Difference Between L And M Copper Pipe? ‘) into practice, you need to prepare yourself.

These preparations will help you save more time and avoid frustrations.

Some plumbing tools are needed such as a pipe wrench, wrench sets, adjustable spanner, four-in-one screwdrivers, slip joint pliers, cinch clamps, and plumbers tape.

There are also some required materials including pipe adapters, couplings and fittings, solder and flux kits, and pipe dope.

Some old towels and rags are also needed. Plumbing jobs are not actually too hard to do. You should know how to use the correct tool for each individual job. 

Some fittings need soldering, while others need just a good push. A few fittings need you to use specific crimp tools, while others need a wrench or pliers to be installed.

Connecting A Copper Pipe To PVC

The ends of the pipes should be cleaned before joining them together. A metal file can be used to remove burrs from the end of the copper tube.

Burrs are created when the copper tube is cut with a saw. Cleaning the ends of the tubes helps prevent leaks.

Plastic pipe primer should be used on both PVC and CPVC pipes. A plastic to copper tube adapter should also be used when priming the pipe.

Plastic pipes should be installed by using plastic pipe cement. This cement is used to make sure the plastic pipe is properly sealed.

Once you’ve finished installing the plastic pipe, give it a little twist, and hold it for about thirty seconds.

Unscrew the compression nut and remove the compression ring from the copper side of the fitting.

Slide the nut and compression ring onto the end of the copper pipe. Push the end of the pipe completely into the fitting. Screw the nut to the fitting tightly.

Tighten the nuts using a pair of tongs. Don’t over-tighten them. Use pipe thread tape if you want to, but don’t worry about it too much.

Using Push-Fit Fittings

Push-fit fittings are simple to use. There are many types of them available. They are easy to install and remove. Copper to PVC fittings allows you to connect copper pipes and PVC pipes together.


The second method is perhaps the best for joining the pipe to the copper pipeline.

Why? Because it uses the right kind of glue and requires less skill than other methods. Everything is possible when you use the correct glue. 

For the gluing task, you will need the correct adhesive, since using the wrong type will only damage the valve used.

Go to the hardware store and search for the specific-formulated adhesive. Brush the glue evenly onto the surfaces you wish to join.

Hold them together for three minutes and then let them dry for one hour. Press them together and leave them for at least 48 hours before removing the tape.

A solder is used to join two pieces of metal together. You use it to connect wires to a circuit board. The copper wire must be soldered together using a torch.

A male thread fits into a female thread. Plastic pipes must be glued together.

Threaded Adapters

Copper to PVC connections should be tightened using pipe dope or a Teflon tape. Over tightening can lead to cracks in the connection.

Plumbing repair can be done by yourself or by an expert plumber. If you want to do it yourself, you need the right tools and knowledge about pipes and fittings.

You also need to know how to fix leaks and prevent them from happening again. If you don’t feel confident enough, you should hire a professional plumber.

How Can You Connect Copper To Compression Style Fittings?

How Can You Connect Copper To Compression Style Fittings?

You must turn off the main water supply valve first. Next, you must open the tap to let the excess water out.

After that, you should choose how to connect the copper pipe (see also ‘How To Measure Copper Pipe in No Time‘) to the PVC pipe. There are several ways to do this. See the methods below.

Make Sure To Use A Liner On The Pipe End

Liners are inexpensive attachments that increase the strength of a pipe by preventing cracks from forming. Plumbers recommend always using liners when connecting pipes together.

PTFE Tape 

Plumbing tape is commonly used among plumbers. It helps make sure pipes don’t leak. It’s made out of plastic and should be applied over three or four layers.

It’s recommended to wrap it around the pipe 3-to 4 times before you break it off. It’s also widely used among plumbers.

The fitting should be attached to the pipe first. Then, the olive should be crimped to the fitting. Thereafter, the fitting should be tightened using a spanner.

How Does A Compression Fitting Compare To Solder Fittings?

A solder fitting is a specialized piece of equipment used to connect pipes. Flux is applied to the pipe before inserting the fitting into place.

After the fitting is inserted, solder is placed around the fitting and onto the pipe.

This is done by heating up the solder until it melts and then applying it to the fitting. Once the fitting is soldered to the pipe, the connection is glued together using epoxy cement.

How To Connect Copper Pipe Without Welding

Compression fittings are used when connecting pipes together. In this case, the compression fitting is the best option because it lasts longer than a push-fit fitting.

Push-fit fittings are used when making temporary connections. A compression fitting is similar to a solder fitting, but a solder fitting is easier to use than a compression fitting.

Welding requires more equipment than either of these two methods.

Final Thoughts

If you’re planning to install plumbing fixtures such as sinks, tubs, toilets, etc., you’ll need to consider the type of fixture you’re installing.

The type of fixture will determine which method you’ll use to connect your pipes. For example, if you plan to install a sink with a faucet, you’ll need to use a compression fitting.

On the other hand, if you’re going to install a toilet, you’ll need to connect it to a sewer line using a solder fitting.

author avatar
Anthony Barnes
Anthony Barnes is the founder of Water Heater Hub and a second-generation plumber by profession. Before developing Water Heater Hub, Anthony Barnes was a full-time plumber, and he has undertaken a wide variety of projects over the decades. As a second-generation plumber, it was easy for Anthony to get used to the technicalities of all from a tender age


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