The worst thing that can happen to anyone facing a plumbing project oremergency is discovering a lack of supplies and tools necessary to fix a problem. This lack of preparedness can inconvenience you and your family and could prevent you from fixing a plumbing problem that may be exponentially getting worse. Here are the quintessential plumbing tools every homeowner should have on hand for the most common plumbing problems.
Clogged Toilet and Pipes
- Plunger ($5 - $20)
Proclaimed the most commonly known and used tool for tackling a clogged toilet, sink, shower, and tub, the plunger is an essential tool that should be found in every household due to its simple usability and effectiveness. A “cup” plunger is used for sinks and a “flange” plunger works better for toilets.
- Hand Auger ($20 - $50)
When a plunger just won’t do the trick, you should have a few extra tools at your disposer when faced with a difficult clog. With over 25-feet of bendable steel cable, the hand auger has the capability to clear clogs from showers, tubs, toilets, sinks, and drains.
- Closet Auger ($5 - $50)
The closet auger, while similar to the hand auger, is specifically designed to break up the obstructions that clog a toilet. With lengths commonly ranging from 3 feet – 6 feet, the closet auger’s steel cable has the flexibility to easily navigate through the different twists and turns of your toilet’s drain.
Toilet Water is Continually Running
If you find that a toilet in your home is constantly running, you may need to replace the fill valve, the flush valve seal, or the flush valve. These three critical components can be easily replaced with the following tools.
- Adjustable Crescent Wrench ($20 - $40)
Adjustable wrench used to loosen and tighten a variety of nut and bolt head sizes.
- Metric Combination Wrench Set ($20 - $150 depending on the number of wrenches in the set)
Unlike the adjustable crescent wrench above, a metric combination wrench set provides you with a variety of wrenches of various sizes to loosen or tighten a nut or bolt head of similar size.
- Strap Wrench ($5 - $40)
Usually made of rubber or metal, a strap wrench can loosen and tighten larger plastic or metal nuts that the average adjustable crescent and metric combination wrench cannot. The strap wrench can be a great help when trying to replace the Flush Valve because the valve is generally secured with a very large nut on the bottom of a toilet tank.
A leaky faucet is usually cause by the deterioration of a washer in compression type faucets. This deterioration allows water to slowly escape and drip from your faucet head. To fix this problem, simply replace the deteriorated washer using just pliers and a screwdriver.
- Screwdriver Set ($5 - $30)
- Pliers Set ($20 – $40)
- Basin Wrench ($5 - $35)
If you ever need to completely remove your faucet, you will need to purchase a basin wrench which is purposefully designed to easily loosen and tighten nuts that can be found in the deep, narrow space behind a sink.
Jammed Garbage Disposer
If your garbage disposer ever jams, simply unjam the motor by placing the correctly sized Allen wrench into an opening at the bottom of your garbage disposer and turn in both directions.
- Allen Wrench Set ($7 - $20)
With these ten effective plumbing tools on hand, you will be ready and able to handle the most common plumbing problems at a moment’s notice.