What are Compression Fittings?

Compression Fittings

When it comes to plumbing, there are a variety of tools and accessories that come into play from time to time. Each of them has a specialized use and purpose. One of the most common you will find is compression fittings.

In the guide below, we will find out more and more about compression fittings. What are they? What do they do? What are they used for? Read on to find out everything you need to know when it comes to compression fittings.

What are Compression Fittings?

The first thing to cover is what compression fittings are in the first place. Though there are some that serve specific technological purposes, they are largely used by plumbers. They join tubes and small flow diameter pipes together. Compression fittings are made from copper, brass, stainless steel, and other materials.

Compression fittings can be used to join together materials like copper, plastic, nylon, and PVC tubing. They are quite versatile as well, coming in a wide range of sizes and designs that are perfect for any number of plumbing projects. Compression fittings can also go by the name compression joint, compression pipe fitting, compression nut, compression coupling, and compression type fittings.

How Do Compression Fittings Work?

Compression fittings aren’t all that complicated. They can be used quickly and easily and they have three pieces: the tapered nut with threading, slim brass ring known as a ‘ferrule’ or ‘olive,’ and a tapered insert which is the main body of the fitting. Each of these three components is critical when it comes to creating the airtight seal that is needed.

The nut gets tightened to start, which compresses the olive between the fitting and the nut. The olive ring, which is basically barrel-shaped, gets compressed onto the outer diameter of the pipe. This is what creates the tight seal needed to ensure that water and air do not escape. Though the construction sounds somewhat complex, the process is a quick and easy one.

What are Compression Fittings Used for?

Compression fittings are quite versatile to use. They generally are used by plumbers to connect lengths of plastic or copper tubing as well as pipework to one another. Compression fittings are great because they are very straightforward to apply as well as remove. They are fantastic for pipes that have been laid in a tight space where soldering would become virtually impossible.

Compression fittings can also be used when it comes to gas installations as well as hydraulic equipment. Though they are mostly made for engineering and plumbing projects, compression fittings can work for things like sink and shower unit pipes since they don’t require heat or soldering to seal.

Using Compression Fittings

It is so simple to use a compression fitting with two lengths of pipe. Start by cleaning the two pipes so that there is no grime left over. Place the pipe insert into the end of the pipe that it will be joined into. The inserts are typically made in a fully circular shape so that the connection is much easier to make.

Screw the tapered end of the fitting into the other end of the pipe and slide the compression fitting over the first pipe, followed by the nut. You can use a spanner to tighten the nut over the threaded head. The pressure created by tightening the nut is what presses down on the olive, creating a tight grip between the two pipes. Just be careful not to overtighten because it can cause damage to the thread or fitting. That’s all there is to it and you now have a secure, airtight connection.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *