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Plumber's Toolbox for the Home

A comprehensive assortment of plumbing tools is essential
for the do-it-yourselfer

Walking the aisles of a home improvement store can be a daunting experience unless you know the basics - and know just how far your own experience will carry you.

For this article, we will assume you have the basic demolition and measuring tools such as hammers, pry bars, level, tapes, and so forth. Don't forget the power tools and assorted safety equipment. But, wait - what self-respecting do-it-yourselfer would not have unclogging tools? These are must-haves for two major reasons: 1) you may be able to prevent a plumber's visit and 2) plumbing problems don't usually wait for the morning or weekday working hours.

Plumbing problems are best tackled with the right tools. What's in your toolbox?

-Flanged lip plunger - toilets/kitchen sinks
-Stander plunger - lavatory
-Plumber's auger - clearing hard clogs and long runs

Every job requires wrenches and not only the standard sizes. Tools for loosening, tightening, and just plain reaching will make the task go better.

-Pipe wrenches - at least two sizes for cast-iron pipe
-Channel pliers - handling an array of fitting sizes and angles
-Adjustable wrenches - at least two sizes
-Basin wrench - a must for reaching faucet nuts
-Strap wrench - makes easy work of large pipe
-Seat wrench - use this L-shaped device when removing and/or installing seats on faucets

Cutting tools will always be required, regardless of the type of pipe you are working with.

-Hacksaw, standard - this is an "I can't live without it" tool
-Hacksaw, mini - allows for cutting in tight spaces
-Tube cutter, standard - cuts copper pipe cleanly
-Tube cutter, mini - again, the "mini" is for tight spaces

Sweating (soldering) when working with copper pipe and compression fittings are not possible.

-Propane torch
-Wire brush/emery cloth for cleaning
-Leadfree solder and flux
-Torch igniter

Additionally, when copper piping is the target, a flaring tool and a tubing bender are two specialty items you should have.

Don't forget the materials!

-Teflon tape, plumber's putty, and pipe joint compound, all for sealing. These prevent leaks when completing a joint.

You may never need your plumber's toolbox, but having it on hand in an emergency will save time and money before you have to call the plumber.

 

 

 

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