How to Loosen a Black Pipe Union Fitting – Gas Pipe Unions

Dec 20, 2023 | NEWS

Loosening a black pipe union fitting requires patience, the right tools, and careful execution. By following the step-by-step instructions provided in this guide, you can safely and effectively loosen a black pipe union fitting, ensuring successful maintenance or repair of your plumbing or gas system.

Tools and Materials Required:

  1. Adjustable wrench
  2. Pipe wrench
  3. Penetrating oil or lubricant
  4. Wire brush
  5. Safety goggles
  6. Gloves

Step-by-Step Instructions:

Safety First: Put on your safety goggles and gloves to protect yourself from any debris or splashes.

Identify the Gas Pipe Union: Locate the black pipe union fitting that needs to be loosened. It typically consists of two threaded ends connected by a nut or coupling.

Apply Penetrating Oil: Spray penetrating oil or lubricant onto the threads of the union nut or coupling. Allow it to soak for a few minutes to loosen any rust or corrosion.

Use the Adjustable Wrench: Place the adjustable wrench on the nut or coupling of the union fitting. Turn the wrench counterclockwise to loosen the fitting.

Apply More Penetrating Oil: If the fitting is still tight, apply more penetrating oil and let it sit for a longer period. You may need to repeat this step several times.

Use the Pipe Wrench: If the adjustable wrench is not effective, use a pipe wrench for better grip and leverage. Place the pipe wrench on the nut or coupling and turn it counterclockwise to loosen the fitting.

Break the Seal: If the fitting is extremely tight, you may need to break the seal between the threads. Gently tap the union fitting with a hammer to loosen the bond.

Continue Turning: Keep turning the nut or coupling counterclockwise until it is completely loosened and can be removed by hand.

Clean the Threads: Once the fitting is loose, use a wire brush to clean the threads of the union nut or coupling, removing any rust or debris.

Reassemble the Fitting: After cleaning, reassemble the union fitting by hand-tightening the nut or coupling. Use the adjustable wrench to snugly tighten the fitting, but avoid over-tightening.

Additional Tips:

  1. If the galvanized malleable iron is still stuck, you may need to apply heat using a heat gun or torch. Be cautious when using heat, as it can damage the fitting if not applied properly.
  2. Avoid using excessive force, as this can damage the fitting or the pipes.
  3. If the union fitting is severely corroded or damaged, it may be best to replace it with a new one.
  4. Always follow safety precautions when working with plumbing and gas systems. If you are unsure about any step, it is advisable to consult with a professional plumber or gas fitter.