How to make the right choice of soldering iron for

If you decide in your home to change the metal pipes of the heating or plumbing system to more modern polypropylene products, then you need to know how to connect them and what tool to do it. In this case, a soldering iron for polypropylene pipes is used. Instructions for its use is quite simple, so everyone can operate such a device. The main thing is to make the right choice, since the convenience of working with a soldering iron and the quality of the connections created will depend on it.

The device of a soldering iron for polypropylene pipes

The device of a soldering iron for polypropylene pipes.

The device and the principle of operation of the soldering iron for polypropylene pipes

Almost all modern devices for soldering polypropylene consist of the same nodes and element. They can differ only in appearance and installation method of nozzles. A soldering iron constructively consists of such nodes (Fig. 1):

  • housing with handle;
  • tubular electric heater (PETN);
  • thermostat;
  • nozzles of various diameters.
Soldering iron for polypropylene pipes

Figure 1. A soldering iron consists of a body with a handle, a tubular electric heater, a thermostat and nozzles of different diameters.

In its principle of operation, such devices are similar to an ordinary iron. First, the electric heater heats the plate in which it is installed. The plate gives off its heat to the nozzles with a Teflon coating, which, heating polypropylene, soften it to the desired viscosity. This process is controlled by a thermostat that maintains the required temperature of the nozzles and does not allow the elements to be melted more than needed to make their high-quality connection.

Very much depends on the quality of the manufacture of the thermostat. If it works incorrectly, then such a soldering iron will not be able to create reliable connections. In many cheap models, unstable temperature controllers are installed, due to which the tool will constantly overheat or underheat the connecting sections. For an experienced master, this is not a big problem, since it works more intuitively, but for beginners plumbers the poor performance of the thermostat can bring a lot of problems. Therefore, the choice of a soldering iron for polypropylene pipes should not be saved. It is recommended to buy a tool with a function of smooth temperature control and an accurate scale of degrees.

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Choosing a soldering iron for soldering polypropylene pipes

When choosing such a tool, you should pay special attention to its following characteristics:

  • power;
  • number and dimensions of nozzles;
  • manufacturer
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Power of a soldering iron for the soldering of polypropylene pipes

The main characteristic of a soldering iron is its power. It determines the maximum diameter of the pipe with which it can work.

The greater the power, the larger the pipe can be welded.

Polypropylene tube welding time table

Table welding time of polypropylene pipes.

For example, with a 1500 W power tool you can solder a pipe with a diameter of up to 32 mm, and with a more powerful device (1700 W) you can connect pipes with a diameter of up to 63 mm. It should be noted that this relationship is not linear. Not always high power means that the soldering iron can cope with large pipes. For example, a Dytron soldering iron with a power of 0.85 kW allows you to get a quality connection of polypropylene pipes with a diameter of up to 63 mm, whereas a Cobra with 1500 W cannot cope with this.

Another characteristic, depending on the power, is the speed of work performance - the more powerful the equipment, the faster the welding will occur, since less time will be spent on heating the plastic. In this case, the choice of a soldering iron should be carried out depending on the tasks: if you need to make several connections, then it is quite possible to do with a low-power device (up to 0.75 kW). If you have a lot of soldering, it is best to buy a soldering iron with a capacity of at least 1.5 kW.

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Nozzles for soldering plastic pipes

Well-made nozzles for plastic pipes must (Fig. 2):

  • have high mechanical strength;
  • maintain their dimensions at high temperature differences;
  • have greater thermal conductivity.
Nozzles for soldering plastic pipes

Figure 2. Nozzles for soldering plastic pipes should be durable, have a high thermal conductivity, sustainably tolerate temperature fluctuations.

Practically all modern soldering irons allow using several nozzles simultaneously. This allows you to significantly speed up the welding work, because you do not need to wait until the coolant cools to replace the nozzle. Structurally, they consist of 2 parts, which are used for internal and external heating of the pipe surface of a certain section. Nozzles are available in diameters from 20 to 63 mm, which corresponds to the most popular sections of plastic pipes that are used in private homes and apartments.

When choosing nozzles, consider the following:

  1. Power soldering iron. The smaller it is, the smaller should be the size of the nozzles used.
  2. The material of manufacture. It is recommended to choose nozzles that are made of a material with high thermal conductivity and Teflon coating. This coating will protect the tool from sticking molten plastic.
  3. Personal needs. If you are professionally engaged in laying gas and pipelines, then you need to choose a soldering iron with the ability to install nozzles from 10 to 110 mm. If the tool will be used only for domestic purposes, then you will only have to work with 16, 24 and 32 mm pipes, so you should buy a soldering iron and nozzles.
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Soldering iron selection by manufacturer

Not only the quality of its assembly, but also the price will depend on the country of manufacture of the soldering iron. Therefore, in order to choose the right soldering iron, you should also pay attention to this parameter. Today, the rating of manufacturers of soldering irons for pipes looks like this:

  1. Germany.
  2. Czech.
  3. Turkey.
  4. Russia.
  5. China.
Plastic pipe soldering scheme

Plastic pipe soldering scheme.

The most reliable equipment is manufactured in Germany, although the price for it will be quite high. Such a tool is perfect for professionals for whom soldering pipes is a daily lesson. Czech soldering irons are characterized by good quality and excellent functionality, so they are also very popular with professionals.

Russian and Turkish models have a slightly lower price than the German and Czech, but their technical characteristics will be slightly worse. For domestic use, they are best suited. The largest line in the domestic market are Chinese models. They are the cheapest, but their reliability is not at a high level. Although, if you work them infrequently, while respecting all the rules of operation, they can work out their warranty period.

When choosing a soldering iron for pipes, one should also pay attention to its configuration, which, in addition to nozzles, may include various additional accessories: pipe cutting scissors, protective gloves, etc. If the purchase of such a tool will take into account all the conditions of its operation, then you can be sure that it will serve you for more than one year.

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