To save money, handy homeowners can carry out general plumbing maintenance and minor repairs around the home without the need to call a plumber.
You’ll need the right tools for the job. We’ve compiled a list of essential items for your DIY plumbing kit that will allow you to carry out simple plumbing maintenance.
This one is a no brainer. Everyone knows you need a plunger! They’re great for clearing blocked drains and toilets. There are several different sizes and types of plungers and to keep everything hygienic you should have at least 2 in your DIY plumbing kit - one to use specifically to unblock the toilet and one for kitchen/bathroom use. Look for a standard plunger (typically a red ball on the end of a stick) which is excellent for drains and showers and a flange or toilet plunger for use in the toilet.
A good wrench will allow you to get maximum grip and a smooth release of fixtures and fittings. Go for a pipe wrench over a monkey wrench as it has teeth which makes it easier to grip. Tip: use a soft cloth between the pliers and your tapware to avoid scratches.
Washers and O rings
These are great to have “just in case”. It’ll save you a trip to the hardware store when you do need them. Have a few spares in your kit suitable for your taps to quickly fix dripping faucets. Pick up a multipack of O rings with different sizes.
If you need to cut through pipes, a hacksaw is a tool for the job. While not exactly an essential item as pipe cutting is probably best left to a professional and qualified plumber, a hacksaw is still a handy little tool for the experienced Do-It-Yourselfer.
Spanners and Pliers
An adjustable spanner is an essential item. You’ll not only use a spanner for plumbing jobs, but you’ll also use it for many other DIY jobs around the home.
Pliers will also be handy. Make sure you select tongue and groove pliers and have two different sizes in your kit.
Locking pliers can be used instead of an adjustable spanner.
Plumber’s tape is used to get a watertight seal on the threads of screwed fittings such as showerheads and stops water leaks. Beware - there is a right way and wrong way to use this tape! Always wrap the tape in the opposite direction of how the pipe will turn in the fitting.
It’s also a good idea to have some duct tape in your kit as this is great for quick leak patch-ups in emergencies.
Drain cleaner is readily available from supermarkets and always handy to have to keep your drains clean and clear. Blocked drains are a common issue that many diy experts will tackle themselves.
Caulk and Caulking gun
Grab some silicone and a caulking gun to apply it. Make sure you’re using the right silicone for the job - in toilets, bathrooms and the kitchen, you should use a sanitary grade silicone.
So there you have it! A list of essential items for your DIY plumbers kit. These tools are excellent for essential plumbing maintenance and repairs around the home. Always contact a licensed plumber for anything other than general maintenance. A DIY job gone wrong can be expensive to fix and sometimes illegal if not performed by a qualified professional.
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