One of the best ways to prevent plumbing problems from arising is with regular maintenance and DIY repair projects. By carefully planning out their projects and having access to appropriate tools, most homeowners are capable of making simple repairs on their own.
Please bear in mind that many of these DIY solutions should only be seen as temporary measures and shouldn’t replace professional help – however they may help keep things running smoothly until a plumber arrives to assist with more permanent fixes.
No matter if it is slow kitchen sink drain or an overflowing toilet, there are simple fixes you can try at home to make things better. Most clogs are caused by hair, soap scum or food particles making their way into drain pipes; but many times these clogs can be prevented by taking extra steps when placing anything down your drain that cannot break down or dissolve easily.
One of the easiest solutions is mixing baking soda and vinegar. Pour this solution directly down your drain, letting it set for several minutes before pouring some boiling water down it to flush away clogs.
An alternative easy solution is using a wire drain snake. Straighten a coat hanger into a long single wire with one hook at one end, push down into the drain, wiggle around until you feel something catch the clog, wiggle again to see if anything catches it and use this snake if your plunger doesn’t work – or remove pop-up assembly and then use snake.
Leaky faucets are an all too familiar plumbing problem, and one that can waste large volumes of water over time. To combat this issue, regularly inspect pipes and aerators for build-up or any sign of visible rusting; with the appropriate tools and knowledge at your disposal, fixing leaky faucets needn’t be a complex endeavor!
Start by turning off the water supply valves beneath your sink, before prying or sliding a screwdriver under the decorative index cap on the handle to disassemble it. Next, unscrew and pull or pry off the handle using either a hex key or Phillips-head screwdriver before finally pulling or prying off its components.
Replace the O-ring or seat washer according to manufacturer’s instructions for your specific faucet, then coat its exterior with plumber’s grease to make sure it doesn’t leak again. If replacing an entire valve stem assembly, be sure to bring along its old components so you get all of the exact right parts from the store.
Un untreated leak can quickly escalate into extensive water damage. Luckily, there are quick fixes you can implement to stop it before it worsens.
Step one in leak repair involves shutting off the water supply valve to an affected pipe (see How to Switch Off Your Water Valve for instructions). Step two involves using temporary fixes like fiberglass tape infused with resin or epoxy putty as temporary repairs until you can reach out to a plumber or find more permanent solutions.
For larger breaks, you should try using a pipe repair clamp with an interior rubber sleeve designed to wrap around and prevent leakage. Prior to applying this clamp, sand down any rough edges on the pipe in order to avoid tearing the neoprene patch; then follow package instructions when attaching and securing two-part clamp.
Pipe leaks can flood walls and ceilings with water, leaving behind stains that cause severe water damage in your home. However, if detected early enough you can often mitigate extensive damage through quick DIY repair methods.
As soon as a leak has been identified, first turn off the water valve at its source. Next, drain and wipe up any existing water spillage from the pipe before wiping down wooden ceiling joists, wires or anything else that might be affected. Protect any wooden joists or wires which could be compromised by any excess leaking.
Once the area is cleared, you should cut out and measure and cut a replacement section of pipe before cutting it to length and coupling them together using appropriate couplings for your type of pipe – some require tightening with wrenches while other, like Sharkbite straight couplings can simply snap into place – just ensure they match with what already exists in terms of size.