Whether you’re a novice home handyman or a professional DIY specialist, you no doubt have a home “handy kit” that contains a variety of tools for various purposes. We’re all big on having a hammer, pliers, cutters and a hand-saw in the kit, but few of these can help you perform plumbing services when the need arises. Problems such as a leaky faucet and a clogged drain are relatively simple to repair, if you have some basic tools. Here are X tools that every homeowner should have on hand:
A tool such as a wrench is used in almost every type of work, from plumbing services and repairs through to mechanical activities. You’ll need either several different sized wrenches or an adjustable wrench to be able to tighten pipe joints, change washers and turn water mains on and off. You might also need a basin or sink wrench, which has a spring-loaded jaw to prevent it from slipping when you have to remove very tightly fastened (or frozen) nuts.
The most basic tool is also one of the most important. The proverbial plunger is the first go-to item for home handymen and professional plumbers alike, and many plumbing service problems can be resolved with it. Get a sturdy plunger with a large, flexible rubber cup that won’t damage the toilet if used in the bowl, but will provide enough suction to shift the blockage in a clogged drain. Modern plungers come in a variety of shapes, including new splash-proof plungers made from a plastic “concertina-style” shape from polyethylene material.
One of the most common problems that require plumbing service is a clogged drain. Much of the time, you can repair the problem yourself using a plumber’s auger, commonly known as a snake. You need a snake that is both narrow enough to pass down through the sink or toilet without getting stuck, and also strong enough to break up the blockage without damage to the snake itself. The snake is usually made of a coiled metal wire attached to a crank, which drives the snake through the blockage to break it up.
A drain rod is a set of rods that can be screwed together end to end to make one long rod, which is inserted into a blockage. This process is called “rodding.” It’s useful to put boots of some sort onto the end of the rod, especially if it is used in a toilet bowl because of the perceived fragility of the bowl surface. The discovering of rodding gave rise to Roto Rooter, which still uses the same technology today (among others!)