Go and ask some homeowners which house-related problem they dread the most, and you will likely get the same answer – plumbing. Unlike other concerns of the house, plumbing requires a certain level of expertise that not everybody reaches. Sometime, even men who usually prefer to do handyman jobs around the house like electrical repairs cringe at the mere mention of plumbing.
If you are among those who have zero plumbing knowledge, then this blog is for you. Here, we give you some tips on how you can avoid messy plumbing conundrums:
- Build your plumbing tool box. Never start a plumbing project without a complete plumbing tool set, no matter how simple the task may seem. It can be really frustrating, not to mention disastrous to find yourself halfway done with your job and finding out that you are missing a required tool. When it comes to tools, it is better to have more than you think you need.
- Study your home’s plumbing system. Map out the system in your house to make troubleshooting easier. Also, do not forget to do a lot of research to learn the basics of plumbing, including how big drain lines should really be, how much pitch a waste pipe requires, and the function of vent pipes. The more you know about this, the better you’ll be at it.
- You have to be aware where your shutoff valves are located before you begin any plumbing work. If you live in a house with a well-thought system, you probably have shutoffs for every bathroom. They are usually found in your basement or behind access panels. If it is your first time to see these valves and have no idea which controls which, close one and check your faucets. You should do this until you know which is connected to what. Of course, you have to know where the main house shutoff is, too. If it helps, it is usually where your water line enters your home.
- You should learn how to sweat copper pipes. You are going to need solder, a few copper pipes, and a torch. The basic steps are quite simple. Clean the copper pipe, add flux, heat the joint, and finally apply the solder. It may seem complicated when you haven’t tried it yet, but once you do, you will see that it is not. You will not have to do the piping for the whole house, but it is a useful skill for some small fixes.
If you are into DIY, do not include plumbing in your list of projects unless you are mentally and physically prepared for it. Believe us when we say that it is a league of its own and requires a certain level of expertise to be done correctly. These tips are just the basics that you should know to avoid disasters. For major repairs though, it is still best to call your trusted plumber!