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What Plumbing Issues Can You “Do-It-Yourself”?

Woman standing by the sink holding a wrenchDepending on your level of familiarity with DIY repairs, with the right tools, there are several minor plumbing jobs you can complete yourself. A good plumber will even walk you through the steps, without a service call, especially if you’re an existing customer.

For basic plumbing tasks, you’ll want to have the following plumbing supplies on hand:

  • 2 plungers (one for your toilet and one for your sink)
  • An adjustable wrench
  • A screwdriver
  • A pair of pliers
  • A utility knife
  • A roll of plumbing tape
  • A caulking gun

The following simple tasks should be manageable without a plumber:

  1. Repairing a Leaky Faucet – Depending on the type of faucet you own, repairing a leaky faucet should be relatively easy. Become familiar with various types of faucets and learn how to take them apart. A slow drip usually implies that all that’s needed is a new washer, but be sure you know exactly which size you need before buying and installing a new one.YouTube videos can walk you through the steps.
  2. Unclogging a Drain – Keep in mind that a slow or clogged drain could be a plumbing vent issue, which regulates the air pressure in the pipes. Plumbing vent issues should be addressed by a plumber, but using a sink plunger or plumbing snake with a cable auger, you should be able to clear any debris caught in your drain pipes. These can easily be found at a hardware store.
  3. Repairing your Garbage Disposal – Repairing a garbage disposal that has become clogged or jammed is one of the easiest repairs to make. Because every new garbage disposal usually includes a hex wrench attached to the disposal itself, you won’t even need additional tools. Your garbage disposal should have also included instructions on how to properly repair it if it gets jammed, but in a pinch, these manuals can be found online. Always make sure you’ve turned off the power supply to the disposal before attempting any repairs. Make sure you know what types of foods are acceptable for your garbage disposal, and run it often to prevent clogs or jams.
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