How To Remove Olive From Copper Pipe

How To Remove Olive From Copper Pipe: A Step-by-Step Guide


olive on copper pipe

Copper pipes are widely used in plumbing systems due to their durability and ability to withstand high pressure levels. These pipes often have fittings called “olives” that secure them together. However, there are instances when you may need to remove an olive from a copper pipe, such as during renovations or repairs. This article will guide you through the process of removing an olive from a copper pipe, ensuring a smooth and hassle-free experience.

Step 1: Gather the necessary tools

Before you begin, ensure that you have the required tools for this task. You will need a pipe cutter, a deburring tool, an olive removal tool, a wrench, and a rag or towel to catch any water that may spill during the process. Having all the tools handy will save you time and frustration.

Step 2: Turn off the water supply

To prevent any water spillage while removing the olive, it is crucial to turn off the water supply to the pipe. Locate the main water valve in your home and shut it off. Then, relieve any remaining water pressure by opening a faucet connected to the pipe you are working on. This step will ensure a dry work area and prevent any accidental water damage.

Step 3: Measure and mark the pipe

Using a tape measure, measure the section of the copper pipe that needs the olive removed. Make a mark on both sides of the olive to ensure you accurately cut the correct section later on. This step will help you avoid cutting unnecessary parts of the pipe and limit any potential damage.

Step 4: Cut the pipe

Using a pipe cutter, align the blade with the mark you made in the previous step. Rotate the cutter around the pipe, tightening it after each rotation until you make a complete cut. Be cautious not to cut too deep, as it may damage the pipe. Once the cut is complete, use a deburring tool to remove any burrs or rough edges from the freshly cut pipe.

Step 5: Remove the olive

At this stage, you will need to use an olive removal tool specifically designed for this purpose. Insert the tool into the open end of the pipe and push it against the olive. Twist the tool to grip the olive securely, and then pull it back towards you. The olive should slide off the pipe easily. If it’s stuck, apply a small amount of lubricant such as WD-40 to help loosen it.

Step 6: Clean and reassemble

After successfully removing the olive, clean the pipe thoroughly using a rag or towel. Ensure there are no remnants of the olive or other dirt or debris before proceeding. Once cleaned, reassemble the plumbing system using the appropriate replacement fitting, such as a new olive or a compression fitting, depending on your specific needs.

Step 7: Turn the water supply back on

Once the new fitting is securely in place, it’s time to turn the water supply back on. Slowly open the main water valve and allow the water to flow into the pipes. Check for any leaks as water pressure is restored. If you notice any leaks, tighten the connections further or consider seeking professional assistance if necessary.


Removing an olive from a copper pipe can be accomplished with the right tools and a systematic approach. Remember to turn off the water supply, measure and mark the pipe, cut it accurately, and use an olive removal tool to gently remove the olive. Clean the pipe thoroughly, install the necessary replacement fitting, and ensure there are no leaks before finishing the job. With this step-by-step guide, you’ll be able to remove an olive from a copper pipe safely and effectively, saving you time and money on professional plumbers.

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