DIY plumbing projects can be fun when buying things off the shelf of a hardware store to fix a broken part of your plumbing system. But a simple mistake in your plumbing work can result in repairs that may cost thousands of dollars.
So, it’s crucial to learn the different types of pipes, fittings, joints, solder, and glue or sealants first and have the right plumbing tools at hand. You should also ensure that you consult a professional plumber for advice since they know what plumbing materials are needed. With an expert’s guidance, you won’t have to worry about redoing the whole plumbing system. Of course, you can always search for more info online to prepare for your DIY plumbing project.
Below are seven DIY plumbing mistakes you might be making unknowingly.
Not Turning Off The Water
It’s easy to start your DIY plumbing project without turning off the water first. The impact of such a mistake can be disastrous since high-pressure water can flood a room in seconds and can be dangerous if you have electric cables on the floor.
Therefore, it’s critical to find the main valve that supplies water in your house and turn it off. You can counter-check by opening taps in your home to drain what’s left in the pipes before you start fixing the broken part. This way, you’ll avoid additional costs of primary repair of your plumbing system or other house fixtures.
The term ‘watertight’ can be confusing if you’re new to plumbing; you might end up overtightening connections in your plumbing system. Most plumbing connections are watertight, so adding force will lead to more harm than good.
You risk damaging threads on the pipes and cracking the plastic or rubber washers that help to keep the connections watertight. In addition, when you apply force to tighten lines, you’ll need to do the same to replace them, which will only break the whole plumbing system. Hence, you shouldn’t overtighten connections.
Forgetting How Things Connect
Disassembling and assembling fixture parts in your plumbing system requires utmost attention. When fixing a leaking drain trap, for instance, a simple mistake will make your floor wet and slippery or leave your house with a foul smell from the sewer line.
It’s advisable to take pictures of the parts you intend to repair. Alternatively, you can label each piece as you disassemble the fixtures to back up the pictures you’ve taken before starting the project.
Using Drain Cleaners Improperly
Obstructions in pipes and drain traps can be frustrating and may need constant efforts to unclog. Using drain cleaners might be the best solution to such problems, but use it as a last resort. Drain cleaners have harmful chemical components that can become respiratory hazards.
Furthermore, drain cleaners are corrosive and can damage your pipes if used in excess. The negative impact on your plumbing system might lead to a replacement of the whole unit.
You can make alternative drain cleaners, which are a mixture of hot water, vinegar, salt, and baking soda. But if there’s still a clog, call in a professional plumber who will review your plumbing system and determine what might be causing obstructions in your pipes.
Missing A Plan
Plumbing requires planning from the beginning to ensure you have the right tools and materials ready. Moreover, a plan will help guide you through your tasks and help you figure out what kind of repairs a DIY project will and won’t help you achieve.
Thus, it’s necessary to do your research and gather important information about the project.\
Mismatching Parts And Pipes
It’s easy to assume that since there are several pipes and parts, you can just pick a few from the hardware store and make them work. However, you’ll be making a colossal mistake by mismatching or connecting pipes that aren’t similar in size or material. Besides, using tape and silicon to cover the gaps will only make things worse.
Contemporary plumbing practices use pipes and parts made of steel, copper, brass, or plastic materials. Mixing them can lead to a disastrous end and may mean redoing the plumbing work. So, make sure that you consult a professional plumber to avoid problems in the future.
Plumbing is physically demanding and requires protective gear. For instance, you need to wear safety goggles and face shields to protect yourself from hazardous liquids, dust, and debris. Aside from using eye and face protection, put on a helmet and gloves to avoid injuries caused by falling or flying objects and skin diseases. Respirators and earplugs or earmuffs are necessary too, as they keep you safe from fumes or other dangerous substances and high-frequency noise.
Online sources, such as videos, make DIY plumbing projects look easy, but nothing could be further from the truth. If you aren’t prepared, you could miss a simple step, a connection, a pipe, or a part and end up ruining your plumbing system. Thus, you should do your research and consult a professional plumber.
- About the Author
Alex Grigoryan is a Professional Home Improvement and Lifestyle Writer. He has been in the industry for over 6 years and has been writing for Chique Home Living since 2019. His work has been featured in prestigious blogs such as Spruce Home, Better Homes & Garden, and more.