You’ve met them before: people who believe they can fix everything in their home, regardless of their qualifications. You may even be one yourself: a self-proclaimed DIYer. While there are many plumbing issues that can be fixed without calling in professionals, you should at least be aware of the most common household plumbing mistakes before attempting to remedy the issue yourself.
Forgetting to turn off the water.
This may seem like a no-brainer. About 90% of plumbing projects require you to turn off the water before beginning work. However, it’s easy to forget this simple task and be subsequently drenched with water when attempting to begin the repair.
Not only is being sprayed with water a nuisance, but it also creates a mess that, if left alone, could cause water damage. The last thing you want when making repairs is to create future repairs in the process.
Trying to tackle a job without the proper tools or skills.
You’re about to start a DIY plumbing project. You watch an online tutorial only to find out you don’t have the necessary tools to complete the job. What do you do?
You definitely shouldn’t try to make do with whatever tools you have around the house. Plumbing fixes require specific tools to be done correctly. A good starting place for your plumbing starter tool kit is to purchase a hand auger, basin wrench, and plumber’s wrench. Those tools will see you through the majority of plumbing repairs.
Overusing drain cleaner.
The kitchen sink is draining a little slower than usual. Your first impulse is to pour a bit of drain cleaner down to make the problem disappear. It is a convenient solution; however, using drain cleaner too often can cause damage to your pipes. The chemicals in drain cleaners slowly erode your pipes. Meaning, they’re safe to use every once in awhile but, if used frequently, can leave you with even bigger repairs than a clogged sink.
Next time your sink is draining slowly try one of these solutions as opposed to drain cleaner: hand auger (remember this tool from the short-list of plumbing tools you need?), natural drain cleaner, or a rental drain snake. Or, you could just call a local plumber!
Joining mismatched pipes.
You cannot join two pipes made of different materials and expect a long-term fix. If you do, the chances of leakage is higher meaning you’ll need to keep an eye on it in the future.
We applaud people who like to tackle DIY projects in their spare time. However, certain projects are better off handled by the professionals. When you encounter one of those problems or accidentally make one of the mistakes listed above, you know who to call.