Since indoor plumbing was first invented, the human race has become more and more dependent on it. This means that when something interferes with the plumbing in a home or office building, like when you want to deal with a running toilet, it becomes vital that it gets fixed as quickly as possible. Some plumbing problems are fairly simple and can be fixed by the average person. You could, for example, follow the steps on a diy guide on replacing toilets. Other problems are much more complex and require the expertise of a professional to repair. The most difficult part is knowing where the line between the two exists. If you are not familiar with plumbing, it may be best to rely on a professional, but if you are learning, it is important to understand what you can easily handle and what requires a higher knowledge. Here, you will find information that will help you learn how to do simple plumbing repairs and how to find an excellent plumber when needed.
There are many things that can go wrong where plumbing is concerned. Pipes can burst, seals can break, clogs can occur, and the various attachments and parts can fail. Each of these things requires a different approach, different tools, and different knowledge. If you are going to be taking on small plumbing jobs on your own, there are a few tools and supplies that you need to have on hand at all times. Keep in mind that these tools and supplies are vital to many plumbing repairs, but they will only get you so far.
The more serious repairs will require more extensive tools and supplies along with the knowledge of how to best use them. This provides a somewhat definable line between the simple and the complex. First, it is a good idea to have seals of various types and sizes on hand at all times. This is one of the most common areas to fail, but it is also one of the easiest to fix. It is important to have different types and sizes because all plumbing will need different seals for different pipes and connections. If you always have a variety available, you will have a much better chance of having the one you need. You will also need plumbers tape. This is not like other forms of tape, it does not have a sticky side. This type of tape is used to seal the threads where two pipes join. Next, you will need a pipe cutter.
There are different sizes and types of pipe cutters. There is a type specifically for copper pipes and a type that is designed for PVC pipe. There are also different sizes based on the size of the pipe you are dealing with. If you happen to have multiple sizes of pipe for any reason, it is wise to have multiple sizes so that you are covered regardless of which pipes you are working on. You will also need pipe cement and a drain snake. If you have copper pipes, you will need solder and a soldering iron. Although, these tools are often difficult to use, and can be dangerous if you make a mistake. Unless you are comfortable using solder and have at least some experience, it is generally best to let a professional work on copper pipes.
A clog ?
The first repair to consider is a basic clog. There are different levels of clogs, the method of unclogging will be dependent on the severity. The best way to assess the severity of the clog is by looking at whether water is able to run out at all and if so, how fast. For a small clog, a drain snake is generally the way to go. This is a long flexible tool that you feed into the drain until you find the clog. When the clog is small, you should be able to work the snake around whatever is causing the clog and then lift it out of the drain. For small to medium clogs, consider a drain cleaning chemical. These can be found at most stores for varying price ranges. The thing to keep in mind with these is that they only work on certain types of clogs. Specifically, they are meant to work on natural clogs such as built up hair or food particles. For severe clogs, it may be necessary to take apart that section of pipe if at all possible. If none of these things work or if you do not feel comfortable taking apart the pipes, it is best to call a professional plumber. There are many websites where you can get more information. One website that is worth taking a look at is www.colepepperplumbing.com.
The next type of repair to consider is a broken or failing seal. This is by far the simplest of repairs to complete. If the only problem is the seal, all you need to do is replace it. To do this, you will first need to take the connection loose. Generally, this can be done by hand, but if it has not been taken loosely in a very long time, it may be stuck. If this is the case, you will need the assistance of a pipe wrench to get the connection apart. Once you have separated the connection, remove the old seal completely. Then wrap the threads in plumbers tape, insert the new seal and reconnect the pipes. Make sure the connections are even and tight.
A Burst Pipe
Next, a burst pipe. This is the most difficult repair that will be discussed here. There are two options when dealing with a burst pipe. You can either try to patch it or replace it. Patches are only a temporary fix, meant to provide a solution only until you can replace the section regardless whether you replace it or you call a professional. If you choose to patch, you will need a special plumbing adhesive to fill in the crack in the pipe. The best choice is to replace the burst section of pipe. To do this, turn off the water supply first. Then, use your pipe cutter to remove the damaged section. Remember to take out a section the goes at least an inch beyond the damage. Use sandpaper to file down any rough edges from the cut area. Use a pipe adhesive to coat the inside of your connector and place it on the end of your new pipe. Do this on both sides of the new pipe. Then, coat the inside of the other end of the connector and then slide it onto the existing area of the pipe. Leave the water off until the adhesive has time to set.