Plumbing repair often strikes fear in the heart of the home owner and often leads to excessive costs being paid to a professional. What you may not know is that professionals are required in some cases, most repairs can be completed by the home owner with little knowledge and the right tools. This article will inform you of what you need to have on hand to ensure you can complete any plumbing task that does not require a pro in no time at all with little money out of pocket.
The main thing you should have on hand is a variety of washers and/or o-rings to fix leaking faucets and fixtures. The key here is to either look to see what type you have by removing the faucet handle and stems by popping the cover off the handle, unscrew the handle and with a wrench, removing the stem and looking at the bottom of it. The water needs to be turned off to do this. This can be done on every faucet and draw a picture of the rubber washer or ring you see. Because you won't know the size, simply buy an assorted pack or two of the ring or washer. This will prevent you from wasting money on, let's say, a pack of washers when all of your faucets take o-rings.
It is always a good idea to have not only a spare flapper for a running toilet, but a full kit. In most cases, the flapper simply needs to be rotated slightly to seat properly or the chain adjusted as excess chain can often prevent it from closing. The tower looking piece that you see in the toilet where the water enters the tank is the most common culprit for toilet repairs so make sure you have the complete kit to replace all internal components if necessary.
Every home owner should have a how-to manual for plumbing. Obviously a beginner doesn't need to be replacing pipe behind the walls but these books will show you how to make all those repairs you paid excessively for someone else to make in the past. The internet also has a lot of fix-its and images online where you could print these out and make your own manual.
You need a durable pipe wrench set meaning those which have three sizes as well as a set of adjustable wrenches and standard open end wrenches. The set of pipe wrenches is due to the fact you may choose a large wrench which is too big and heavy to use under a sink while a small wrench may not be large enough to open a drain pipe to snake it out.
Finally, a good spray can of your favorite lubricant for loosening nuts bolts and rust will round out your shopping list. Do not use this on plastic parts or PVC piping as it won't assist much. This is to be used on metal components you may find along the way.
These suggestions will allow you to make the necessary plumbing repairs in your home if you so desire. The work is not difficult at all and the manual will guide you through first time repairs with ease. Make sure you have the necessary tools and parts on hand and before you know it, you will be looking for more home improvement jobs to handle yourself.