Sharkbite Fittings: Why I Don't Use Them on My Plumbing Jobs

Today I’m telling you why I don’t use Sharkbites and why I don’t let my plumbers use them either. I know many plumbers use Sharkbites and swear by them, and …


local_offerevent_note December 6, 2020

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21 thoughts on “Sharkbite Fittings: Why I Don't Use Them on My Plumbing Jobs”

  • Shark bites cost me big time to the tune of $2500 for my liability deductable then higher rates for the next two years. Independant labs (as in two of them) both found that I installed the cap 100% properly on cleaned prepped pipe and the fitting failed damaging a historic home. $18000 in total damages and remediation….insurance went after Shark Bite, they lawyered up, and guess who was stuck with the bill. Never never never use Shark Bite….be a professional and do it right.

  • My policy with push fittings (shark bites) is, don't use them on anything "in wall". I don't prefer them as a permanent fixture even when accessible. They make a nice temperary cap for stubbed up water lines during the project. I have occassionaly used them on a toilet supply that wouldn't drain out in order to be saudered (yes, I know, there are also comlression fittings). The trust level for them isn't real high with me.

  • Can’t argue with anything he said, especially the “it’s not professional” part. But too many of these comments seem to ignore the fact that homes are seldom built with copper anymore. There is not one inch of copper in my 11 year old half-million dollar Texas house. It’s just too expensive now. So I cannot fix a leak or install a device by sweating the fittings in.

    Yes, there are some alternatives. But paying $1000 for a thirty minute job is not one of them. Sometimes you’ve got to do what you’ve got to do.

  • Shark bites are great for transitioning from any pipe to another. works on polybutylene, pex, copper, cpvc and more it’s nice to have a fitting that is universal to all these pipes instead of needing a special tool, like a torch and solder for copper or a crimping tool for pex or special glue for cpvc, and if you wanna transition between 2 different types of pipe you better have a few minutes to grab a male and female adapter and some teflon tape before you through them on a vice… the simplicity of the fitting is genius and the craftsmanship of the fitting is remarkable, if I wanted to make a repair on a leaking fitting and I’m talking about a scenario where it’s just the fitting leaking not the pipe itself let’s say it’s a 90, you would have to cut the pipe in 2 spots and use 2 couplings and another 90 just to repair it properly, if it where a shark bite fitting leaking all you would have to do is plunk it off with there 2$ special tool or even a crescent wrench, and plunk a new one in as simple as that, also you save allot of time working with shark bites, it takes 2 seconds to plunk one in and the water is back on! With copper fittings you have to light up the torch and clean the pipe and flux it good for the solder to hold properly, with glue you gotta wait for it settle and dry, with pex you have to cut and crimp, there is also allot of room for error using other fittings, you use too much glue you could clog a fitting you use to little glue the fitting might burst… same goes for sodder, those flimsy brass rings they use to connect pex together fail much more then any shark bite from my experience, the satisfying double click you get from putting on a shark bite gives you confidence in every connection, a shark bite fitting is beautiful, it’s brass, it feels good in the hand the quality of this fitting is no doubt really good even there little logo that they stamp on them is beautiful, they are built tough and built to last,

  • I make a bucket of money replacing sharks and pex. I’m in the northeast with lots of seasonals as well as year round homes. These two products promote themselves as performing better in freeze mode than hard piping. Utter and complete nonsense. Shark bites can pop like a champagne cork and often does. And Pex pops like bubble gum. I had to replace an entire line , 9 blowouts in one 25’ run on one job. Made no sense how and where either. I’m semi retired now but still get a few dozen calls a year for what I call lazy plumber damage.

  • I've got a house that was built in 1959 and everything is copper so when I need a plumber I make sure they understand I want copper put back where it was taken out. Only one time I had a (child) come out and pretend to be a plumber. He went to home depot and came back with all of these plastic pipes and fittings and when I asked him what he needed all that for, he said "to replace the pipes I need to take out"! He actually argued with me about what I should put in my home! He would not listen until I told him he was fired and to get out. I wish I had never of given him a second chance. The little bastard purposely broke a steel pipe in my laundry room and destroyed all the walls in my basement and asked for an advance of $900 to fix it. He never got the $900 because he was only there to repair pipes in the downstairs bathroom. When I found the broken steel pipe in the laundry room at the other end of the house and the walls all torn up in the downstairs living room, enough was enough he and his helper were thrown out and I kept what little tools he had in my home. Hire an 'old school' plumber and make sure they understand exactly what you want and that they have up to date insurance and a valid license, do not just take their word for it like I did. I got screwed that time.

  • found your videos a few months ago while researching PEX to remodel out bathroom . i've used chinch fittings for all the pressure connections but one sharkbite to go from pex to copper for the tub spout which has no real pressure . thanks for sharing your experience , take care , Jeff

  • There's 2 things I hate for water lines, shark bite fittings and cpvc pipe and fittings. Oh, I also hate plastic pex elbows and tees….so that's 3 things.

  • I looked at Sharkbite fittings back in 2008 when we were re-doing the whole house and they just didn't seem secure or good. We went with stainless locking clamps and they have never leaked. A homebuilder i know said to always use stainless because the copper rings will corrode over time. Brass fittings and stainless clamps are a winning combo. 🙂

  • As a 25-year tile mechanic the copper compression shark bites have worked great as long as you install them correctly. If I don't feel it go right into place snug and have to use the tool to pull it back off the pipe I will not reuse that same shark bite. As long as the copper pipe is cut clean and deburred the shark bite always seems to go on really snug. It saves tons of time and in the five years I've been using them I have never had a call back for water damage. I refuse to use any kind of plastic tubing or PEX pipe I will only use it for copper. I redid my master bathroom 5 years ago and still to this day show no signs of moisture or a leak. Being a tile mechanic I am able to spot out the signs of water damage mold mildew etc. I would love to get one of those super expensive crimping tools but I do not do enough plumbing to spend that kind of money on it tool.

  • When shark bites first came out and they had male and female adapters with PEX pipe that would dry rot I refuse to use them. Once they came out with the copper compression being a licensed 25-year Tile and Stone mechanic I began to use them for behind my Durock only if I'm tiling where the exterior block wall is. I've been in business for 25 years and only just started using shark bites for valves and moving plumbing to different places.

  • I am an industrial HVAC installer. And the only shark bite fittings we keep on site are caps. And we only use them for the reasons that you explained. A valve will not close or we have an emergency situation and we can just slap a cap on there. Totally agree. Solder joints on copper and brass are king! … 2" or lower. Then I like victaulic groove joints. Or uponor. Which we use for snow melt and in floor heat.

  • to me if you preach to not use shark bite, then there should be NO flexible lines EVER on water pressurized lines. I have many more of these failing to zero shark bites. But I agree not to use them in a wall. I use them above my drop ceilings and in my unfinished basement etc

  • Your wrong, I'm a Plumbing Contractor and been in business for 48 years.
    Haven't had a problem since they came out.
    I bet you don't use pex tubing either?
    Sorry but if installed correctly, there's no problem whatsoever

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