Top 5 DIY Plumbing Tools Every Homeowner Should Own
Plumbing is one of the things most homeowners dread, but I’m here to show you the 5 DIY plumbing tools every homeowner should own that can tackle the majority of household plumbing issues and save you from making expensive calls to a plumber.
Learning to tackle your own plumbing jobs around the house can add up to hundreds or even thousands of dollars over the life of your home and don’t worry. I’ve got your back with plenty of DIY plumbing projects to get you started.
#5.) Water Pressure Testing gauge
This tool costs around $10 and isn’t something you’ll use all the time but it’s definitely worth having in your arsenal and here’s why. If you have public water, the pressure that the town/city sends to your home is substantially higher than the pressure the valves and fixtures in your home are rated for. Your house/apartment has something like this which is a pressure regulator valve that converts the pressure the city sends to your house to levels that are safe for your valves and fixtures (usually <60 psi). Using a water pressure gauge can help you dial in your water pressure to suitable levels for your home and also help diagnose a problem like if your regulator fails like mine did last year. If that happens, the water pressure in your house spikes and can cause problems with your fixtures and create a dangerous situation with your water tank if the T&P valve is not working properly. Bottom line is, having this tool around and checking your water pressure periodically is a good way to stay on top of problems before they start.
Since the advent of PEX, DIY plumbing has gotten significantly easier, but if you watch some of my other videos you know I still like to use copper in moderation. Using copper requires soldering joints together and you can’t do that without a torch. Even if you aren’t comfortable or interested in soldering your own copper joints together, a blowtorch plumbing kit ($35) is still a useful tool especially if you live in an older home with galvanized piping. These pipes are threaded together and over time they can be extremely difficult to get apart. Applying heat to them with a blowtorch can help loosen them but be careful not to breathe in the fumes that come off them as it can be dangerous. They’re also helpful for loosening stuck cleanout caps which brings me to my next tool.
#3.) Pipe Wrench
A pipe wrench ($27) is a must have if you live in an older home. There’s no way you’re getting old galvanized pipes apart without a pipe wrench and even with a pipe wrench it can be a pain in the ass. Also, the drain cleanout caps around your home are likely larger than any typical wrench you’d have lying around your home. Having a pipe wrench handy means you can easily take off a cleanout cap to access otherwise difficult clogs.
#2.) Shop Vac
A shop vac is one of my absolute go-to tools when it comes to DIY plumbing. Not only is a shop vac great for cleaning up water spills and messes from overflows, but it can also be used to clear most clogs in sink and shower drains. See the video above to see how it’s done. A shop vac is a cheaper and much more effective alternative to using costly (and often times useless) drain cleaning chemicals.
1.) Channel Locks/Adjustable Pliers
A pair of channel locks ($15) is THE tool I reach for and use in every single DIY plumbing project that I tackle whether it’s loosening up slip joints on trap assemblies, or installing shut off valves. Without a pair of these you’re pretty much not going to be able to tackle any plumbing projects which is why I’d consider them the most valuable tool in my tool pouch when it comes to plumbing.
You can grab all these tools for less than $100 which is less than you’d pay a plumber to come out for a single visit and with them you can tackle probably 90% of household plumbing issues.
Thank you guys so much for checking out this content. If you enjoyed it, consider checking out some of my other DIY Plumbing Projects.