For aspiring and practicing home Handymen (and women!), learning DIY plumbing is a rewarding challenge. The prospect of saving precious pounds by taking matters into your own hands sounds ideal – but do be wary, and make sure you have all of the essential knowledge before you begin. To help get you started, here are our favourite tips and tricks for getting started on any DIY plumbing project.
Have A Basic Toolkit
It seems obvious, but when commencing a project you should make sure you are prepared with all of the equipment to do so. Makeshift plug snakes or Personal Protective Equipment can be substituted in a last minute fix, but for most projects you will need to have a basic plumbing toolkit.
Be Familiar With Your Piping
It is wise to be familiar with your property before commencing any projects – so try and anticipate problems before they occur. If you don’t have a blueprint plan of your property, use a strong magnet to find the pipes within your floors, ceilings, and walls, and create a map of them so you can begin work easily when faced with a project. You’ll thank yourself after managing to disconnect the correct pipes later!
Switch Off The Supply
After you’ve become acquainted with all of the piping in your property, learn where the necessary shut-off switches are for your water and electricity. For water, you should have a stopcock on both the inside and outside of your building, so find these and add them to your internal blueprint, ready to shut off in case of emergencies. Also familiarise yourself with the electricity power board so you can shut off the electricity supply prior to commencing work, to remove the risk of fatal electrocution.
Protect Your Surfaces
Another potentially overlooked point – be sure to protect your surroundings where you are working! Either remove the carpet or cover it with plastic sheeting prior to starting work in a carpeted area, and be sure to prepare yourself with a mop, bucket, some pails of water (before you shut it off) and cleaning supplies should there be any mishaps.
Finally, remember that sometimes there will be complex problems and you may have to admit defeat – so it’s wise to keep a professional’s number to hand, just in case.