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Today’s plumbing systems may be emblematic of advanced civilizations, but performing plumbing maintenance and repairs can feel downright unrefined when you become covered in dirty water and grime. Of course, many homeowners do prefer to perform their own plumbing work if they have the know-how and don’t mind getting a bit dirty and wet. In fact, many small repairs can be easily achieved by do-it-yourselfers. However, for a major plumbing repair, it’s always safest to call in the experts at bluefrog Plumbing + Drain. We have certified plumbing technicians on staff along with all the necessary equipment to tackle all types of plumbing jobs, including emergencies. So, if you run into a problem while fixing a plumbing issue yourself, you can always count on our plumbing pros.
Before you embark on your DIY plumbing repair or maintenance task, you definitely want to prepare well before you start adjusting valves or loosening seals. Use the following tips to ready your setting for plumbing repair work. Whether you’re cleaning a drain or draining a water heater, you should always provide the ideal preparation for the job so that you’re ready to provide your DIY repairs.
Try to Be Tidy but Prepare for a Mess
Even the most fastidious of professional plumbers cannot always avoid a mess. However, one thing you can count on an experienced plumber to do is to prepare for the messy inevitable. When you are preparing for a plumbing repair, be sure to have at least one bucket and a few old towels on hand in the event of a leak or ruptured pipe. In fact, the first step to get ready for your next plumbing project is to know where the shut-off valves are for your water supply. In the event of a repair emergency, you may need to turn off the water.
Next, you want to ensure that you have some personal protection against a mess, especially if you’re dealing with a bad drain clog. Rubber gloves that extend up your forearm will help you keep your hands and arms dry during the repair process. Definitely wear old clothes that you don’t mind getting soiled with grime and water from your pipes. You may also want to wear eye protection like goggles, rubber boots, and a plastic poncho-style garment over your shirt.
After you take care of your own personal gear, consider the site in question. Remove any items that you can if they’re at risk of water or sewage damage. If you have plastic tarps, you should have them on hand. Even if you don’t think you’ll be needing them, it doesn’t hurt to have them at the ready just in case. If carpeting is nearby, you should definitely try to protect it from any seepage that could possibly occur as a result of your DIY repair. Next, open a window or two, especially if you’re dealing with drains or any area with backed-up sewage. Good ventilation is essential for airing your home from those unpleasant sewer gases.
You’ll also need to have plenty of rags and cleaning supplies ready to use for cleaning up the area after you complete your plumbing repair. Always wear your rubber gloves and other protective wear when disinfecting an area that has been contaminated from grime from your pipes or sewage backup.
Gather Your Tools–All of Them
Before you perform any plumbing work, it’s always wise to gather all the plumbing tools you could possibly need for the job. This can include items such as:
- Plungers (all the sizes/types you have on hand) designed for sinks/toilets
- Pliers: a basic pair of pliers might do for some DIY plumbing jobs, but investing in a decent pair of channel lock pliers is ideal.
- Pipe wrench: a pipe wrench that opens up to 55mm in width is useful for plumbing repairs.
- Screwdrivers: no matter the household job, you should plan to have both Phillips and flat head screw drivers on hand–and it never hurts to have them in multiple sizes.
- Plumbing tape: PTFE tape can provide a fix that’s both short term or long term depending on where it’s used. It may help you stop up a leak until you can replace the pipe in question.
- Other items that may come in handy include a utility knife, caulk and caulk gun, drain snake or auger, and Allen wrenches in assorted sizes.
Ideally, you will have these tools just at hand when you address your plumbing project.
Do Your Research
Don’t wait until you’re mid-way through a plumbing project and hit a roadblock to perform some online research. These days, you can visit YouTube to learn how to perform a wide range of household and plumbing repairs. Unless you’re quite certain of the DIY repair at hand and understand the potential problems, you could face, you should acquaint yourself with the repair work in question by watching a few troubleshooting and how-to videos associated with your needed repair.
Many videos provide specific tips for addressing virtually any type of home plumbing problem. Also, check into what might go wrong so you can be on the lookout for problems as soon as they arise. The better you prepare yourself with research, the easier your task may be. Researching ahead of time may also let you know if you’re getting in over your head. It doesn’t pay to begin a project that you don’t have the skill sets or tools to complete. Your research should help you troubleshoot the issues you’re having with your plumbing system so you can prepare adequately for the work.
If you are concerned that your plumbing repair may prove to be too extensive for you, don’t panic. Just contact bluefrog Plumbing + Drain. Sometimes a repair is just too extensive for DIY solution. You could actually wind up doing damage to your plumbing system if you don’t have the necessary skills and equipment for the job. Call us and let us provide you with a fair, upfront cost for our expert plumbing solutions.