If you’re a handy type, and like to fix things, chances are you have a box full of tools to help you fix plumbing problems around the house.
Every homeowner needs to deal with plumbing issues eventually, and you can save yourself some big bucks if you know how to do simple things like auger a toilet, plunge a tub or sink, or change a washer.
Every home should have a few basic plumbing tools in the tool box, such as a flanged plunger for your toilet and a cup plunger for the tub or sink. They’re two different tools for two different jobs, and while you can try doing either with one or the other, it’s really easier to use the right tool for the job.
If members of your family have a habit of throwing things down the toilet that they shouldn’t, you should probably acquaint yourself with a toilet auger and how to use it. Same goes for a sink auger or plumber’s ‘snake’.
Basic screwdrivers and an adjustable wrench should be enough to change a washer, and if you’re really ambitious you can get yourself a faucet valve seat wrench and a faucet valve re-seating tool. They’re both pretty easy to use once you know how.
A lot of people say the iconic pipe wrench is still a plumbing necessity, but you’re not likely to need one given that most water piping these days is a form of plastic that doesn’t use threaded joints. You’re better off with a couple of adjustable wrenches for tightening compression fittings, or for removing valve stems.
Teflon tape is a great ‘tool’ to have as you’ll need it any time you have to re-attach something like a shower head (that you removed to clean) or a sink’s tailpiece that you need to seal before attaching the p-trap.
Having these few basics at home, and knowing how to use them (that’s what the Internet is for unless you have a cousin who’s a plumber to show you), means you should probably be able to save money by taking care of some basic plumbing problems.
Remember, however, that If these tools won’t do the trick, or you’re not feeling confident in your abilities, the best tool you have in your arsenal is your telephone, because then you can call your plumbing superhero, Pete the Plumber.