Superb little lifesaver gadget: Shark’s Bite

by admin on December 23, 2008

Much like the rest of North America, we have a had one heck of a cold snap here in Vancouver, with temperatures well below zero for days. Yesterday we had a bit of a thaw.

So I'm sitting in front of my computer at home, putting the finishing touches on a logo for 1080p HDTV store, when I think it might be a good idea to take out the trash. We have a shed in the back near the bins. I hear a hissing noise and I open the shed door to investigate. One of the pipes leading out of the house has burst.

I head back into the house to shut off the main water valve. Did I mention that while working on the computer, I'm also suppose to looking after my three kids and two kids of my neighbours? Oh yeah, we are in a bit of mess. I phone the wife of a friend of mine who is a plumber and ask her to relay a message that I need help. He eventually phones me back and says he is in Whiterock, which about 40km away from Vancouver. Things are not getting any better. Vancouver is under 2 feet of snow, and Vancouver is not like other Canadian cities. We have maybe 2 snowplows in the whole metro area.

So he gives me some advice.  Cut off the pipe and seal it with a sharkbite coupling At this point, I'm skeptical, I've got a bust copper pipe and I'm not good at soldering. But I phone a plumbing store in Vancouver and ask if they've got any.
There's been a run on Sharkbites, because of all the pipes bursting, none in Vancouver. So I have to hump it over to Burnaby and I pick up two of them just before the store closes. I nag the guy for 5 minutes. All I have to do is twist them on and it will hold under 60 psi? Are you kidding me?
Eventually I get in the car and drive home, thinking if this doesn't work, we would be looking at having no water for at least the night, as every plumber in the city is busy, busy, and the roads truly suck.
The moment of truth, I cut the pipe off, file the edges to remove any burrs, and twist it on. It makes a little pop and there you go. I give it a tug. Huh. I turn the water on a little. It doesn't leak. I turn on the water all the way. Doesn't leak, doesn't pop off the end like a bullet. Amazing.

Merry Christmas, everybody.

{ 1 comment }

Dan December 24, 2008 at 8:17 pm

Hi, i live in Vancouver too. I’m in a bit of a jam right now. Stupid pipe bursted and now I’m out of water to use. Wondering where in Burnaby you got the coupling?
Can you please give me a phone number I can call?



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