7 Plumbing Tools Every Do-it-Yourselfer Should Have in Their Tool Box
Do-It-Yourselfers can often fix simple problems easily and quickly if they have the right tools. If you want to fix a plumbing problem, here are seven basic tools you should have in your plumbing tool box.
1. A closet auger feeds into a toilet and releases a clog when folded out. This tool is used when a plunger will not work. An auger can retrieve toys or other objects that somehow manage to get down a toilet and can cause clogs. Of course, going along with this, a plunger is a must. It is inexpensive and most often does the trick for clogs in the toilet.
2. A pipe wrench is available in several sizes (18, 14-, and 10-inch lengths), and they are adjustable. They can grip the pipe so that it can turn and they can be used on either side of the pipe so that it can turn in either direction. If possible, buy two or three wrenches in different sizes. This way you can hold the pipe with one wrench and turn the other pipe or fitting with another. Wrenches come in aluminum or steel. The aluminum are lighter and more expensive, but they work just as well as the steel. The wrench is a must-have tool.
3. A basin wrench has a long handle with jaws at the end. They are designed to reach the nuts behind the basin where the faucet attaches. This is an indispensable tool if you're replacing a basin or a faucet or just fixing a leaky faucet.
4. Adjustable wrenches come in three sizes (6-, 10- and 12-inch lengths) and have smooth jaws. They can be used on any nut where you do not want the metal marred, like the chrome nuts you see on fixtures.
5. Teflon tape is a thin white tape used to seal pipe threads where the pipes are joined together. The tape has no adhesive but clings with pressure instead. It is easy to apply and remove and can be easily repositioned. You simply wrap a piece of tape around the threaded end of the pipe and then screw on the connector.
6. A pipe cutter for PVC pipe is a useful tool for any kind of sprinkler repair and for some plumbing applications in the home where PVC pipe is used. It will cut pipe up to 1 "in diameter with a clean cut.
7. PVC glue is essential when you are fitting PVC pipe together. You just swab a light amount of glue onto the fitting and the pipe and then insert the pipe into the fitting, twisting slightly so that the pipe goes all the way into the fitting. Hold it together for a few seconds, and then immediately wipe off the excess glue with an old rag.