By Jude Njoku
Although it is advisable to consult qualified professionals to handle major plumbing works and repairs in your home, nothing stops you from taking on simple things like fixing a dripping faucet (tap). With a new washer and a spanner, you can make the repair yourself in less than 20 minutes and save the money that would have been paid to a plumber.
You may even decide to use a professional plumber to effect the repair but knowledge of the scope of work and what is required will not only assist you in making the right decisions when asked but will make it impossible for you to be shortchanged.
For those who intend to handle minor plumbing repairs and installations in their homes, acquisition of plumbing emergency kit is should be given top priority. The kit will assist you to handle your leaking faucets or a clogged toilet with relative ease.
You should have a basic knowledge of where the shut offs are for each sink and toilet as well as the whole house. You should acquire a good plunger which should be made of a heavy rubber with good suction power.
Again, you should get a good quality snake that can help free clogs that are deeper in the system than a plunger.
Other necessities include assorted pipe wrenches and offset screwdrivers. The most common pipe wrenches required for household repairs are ten and eighteen inches. A big adjustable wrench could also be of help in some cases.
Having a couple of offset screwdrivers will help penetrate difficult places such as behind sinks and toilets.
It might interest you to note that petroleum jelly, cola and a magnet, things you thought unimportant, will be of immense assistance to you when carrying out plumbing repairs in your home. While the petroleum jelly will lubricate sticky threads on an aerator or rejuvenate a dried up valve seat in a toilet, the cola will help to loosen a sluggish drain or eat away the rust on a stuck bolt. The magnet, tied to a string will assist you to retrieve fish clippers, and pin -like objects from the drains.