repairing broken plumbing on a hot tub | ehottubsandpools

Repairing broken hot tub plumbing



In this post I am going to give some advice about how to repair broken plumbing in a hot tub. This advice is not about a traditional repair like cutting out the broken piece and replacing it. This is in response to a question posted by David in the question section of this site. The question was about how to repair a hot tub with broken plumbing where there’s not enough room to cut out a section of pipe. These would be areas just before or after pumps or manifolds. Manifolds are where the large plumbing from a pump reduces down to several smaller lines on there way to the hot tubsjets. These areas are very hard to repair without cutting out many connections and many lines. One cracked manifold with 8 lines coming from it could cost upwards of $300.00 in parts and labor to repair. Not only does the manifold have to be cut out but also the 8 lines coming from it have to be cut, coupled, extensions added, and reconnected to the new manifold. Replacing a broken line in a hot tub just before or after a pump can also be quite expensive. If the break goes through a coupler or pump union it can be tricky to get this lined up for reconnection. And then you have to hope that you are able to find the pump union you need. This is not a part that can be bought at a hardware store.

What I’m going to do now is something I don’t usually do on this site. That is to suggest a product by name. The reason I am going to do this is because there is no other product that does what this can do. The product that I use to fix broken plumbing on hot tubs and swimming pools is Plast-aid®. Since I found this product several years ago I have never been in my service truck without it.Plast-aid® has allowed me to make many repairs over the years by simply cleaning the area to be repaired and applying this product. Plast-aid® is a two part system, liquid and powder, that gets mixed into  a paste and applied to the broken pipe. On a hot tub, repairing a pump union or manifold instead of cutting out and replacing them saves my customers a lot of money. If I can do the repair in 1 hour instead of several hours and not have to install new parts my customers appreciate this. This product also makes the repairs permanent. The repaired area almost seems stronger than the original pipe. I have also used Plast-aid® to fix cracks on the wet ends of hot tub pumps that have frozen. This allows me to get a hot tub working right away instead of having parts shipped in.

So to answer your question David ,yes there is a way fix the plumbing close to the pump on your hot tub without cutting out and replacing the union. If you clean the area to be repaired good and apply it properly, this product should save you a lot of time and money.

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  1. I would use sand paper on it lightly then I will use the liquid from the plast-aid or pvc primer to clean it. good luck

  2. usually if a union is leaking it is the gasket or o ring. If it is the union nut that is cracked this will work. I have used it for that purpose before. use the PLAST-AID on the outside of the union nut not on the threads.Good luck

  3. Question, I had a crack on my manifold and tried the plast -aid but it didnt work because the manifold was burried so tight under the spa i couldn’t treat the entire crack. I had to cut it out and replace it. Now some the tubing for the jets won’t reach the new manifold, what shoud I do? IS there an east way to get the old tubing out and replace it?

  4. Thanks for your website and sharing knowledge.
    I have a 10 year old Sundance Optima spa. It is in an enclosed gazebo. During our Ohio winter, the heater failed (tiny crack) and dripped water for a few months.
    Last week I replaced the heater successfully. But noticed the weep holes in the bottom of the frame had water. I exposed the side panels and cut away some urethane insulation. Probably the bottom 4-6 inches of insulation is soaked.
    What’s your recommendation? If I dig out the wet stuff, how can I replace it?

    Cleveland, OH

    • yes you can replace it. I don’t recommend using a spray in foam. the product I have had the most luck with is attic insulation. there is a type that is sealed on both sides so that the fiberglass is not exposed. I cant remember the # but it is available at most hardware stores. just pack some of this in the void and it will insulate great. it will also make it easy to remove if you have a plumbing problem in the future. good luck

  5. Hi, thanks so much for this information! I just placed an order for Plastaid. My issue at hand is I have a crack in a 2″ flex pipe & the crack extends into a manifold. I have cut out a section of the flex pipe. I did not initially know there was a crack in the manifold as well as the flex pipe. My initial thought was to cut out the flex pipe as I have done & repair the section with couplers & a new section of hose leaving a small portion of hose in the manifold to couple to. The small part of flex coming out of the manifold does have a crack. Do you think if I place the coupler into that that & baste it with PVC cement really good it would hold, or should I try to remove that small piece of flex from the manifold? I was going to repair the manifold crack with the Plastaid first as I noticed in an earlier post that Plastaid would not work on flex pipe. Also, is there a special kind of PVC cement I should be using, or is the stuff you get a the hardware store all right to use? Sorry for multiple questions, I just wanted to try & repair it right the first time. Thanks again.

    • do not baste the area with PVC cement. this will not work. pvc cement and primer create a weld and needs a socket to go into. my suggestion would be to hold the area together(the coupler to the manifold) and plast-aid it together by smearing it over the outside of the seam. this will work. just make sure the area is clean and free of any pvc cement. email me back with any other questions. good luck

  6. We are installing jets in a wooden staved hot tub. I think the jets are actually a bit large for the application on a rounded stave. I have added a soft flex washer on the 2 1/4 male valve, but they are still leaking around the holes. Could plast aid be applied around the flanges and the wood to stop these leaks?? The other option was to remove the staves and install smaller jets that would only span the width of one stave. That means total disassembly, re plumbing and moving all equipment. Plast aid an option??

    • plast-aid will only work to join or seal plastic.sorry. you might try the flexible sealer that comes in an areosol can. it might seal enough between the wood and jets to stop the leaks.good luck.

  7. Thanks for taking the time to post this thread. I own Plymouth Hot Tub Service in MA and had looked into Plastaid before, but wasn’t sure how it would work on flex pvc (which is where most of leaks tend to be for whatever reason. It’s good to hear that you’ve had positive results with repairs on flex going into sch. 40 fittings. This is what I really wanted to know. I’ve cut out too many manifolds over the years! Ordering Plast-Aid for my truck today…

    -Jamie Costello
    Plymouth Hot Tub Service

  8. I have a split in a long section of flexible pipe in my tub. will plastaid work on this?

    • Yes, Plast-aid will work for this repair. if the area to be fixed is properly cleaned you should be able to make a permanent repair. good luck

  9. I ordered it from plast aid got it today and it worked. thank you!

  10. where can i buy this? pool store only or hardware store? please advise. thanx!

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