Top 5 DIY Plumbing Mistakes – And How to Avoid Them
Easter’s coming up, it’s the first Spring Bank Holiday of the Spring and the start of the DIY season!
Just before you roll up your sleeves, though, take a look at the DIY plumbing mistakes the Simply Plumbing team encounter fairly regularly. DIY plumbing gone wrong can cost you far more than the original problem, so have a quick read before you start!
Avoiding the Top 5 DIY Plumbing Mistakes
Avoid these and you’ve got every chance of fixing the problem:
1. Using Chemical Drain Cleaners
This is an example of the kind of DIY most people use in response to a smelly or slow draining sink. Simply add ‘drain cleaner’ to your shopping list and pour some chemicals down the drain to clear it. This is risky because it can damage plastic pipes, corrode metal traps, and perish rubber gaskets.
Plumber’s Tip: Use a snake, or a plastic barbed cleaning tool instead. These grab hair or food waste that’s clogging the drain and provide an instant, non-toxic solution.
2. Improvising Plumbing Tools
Lots of DIY jobs allow you a bit of leeway when it comes to tools, but not plumbing DIY. Using the wrong tools can leave you with a broken pipe, or a cracked sink/toilet. Whatever you do, don’t try to get away with using what’s already in your tool box.
Plumber’s Tip: Do a bit of research, find out what tools you need and invest in them. If you do a good job, you’ll probably find you have plenty of use for them anyway!
3. Plumbers’ Tape Wound Backwards
Plumbers’ tape, otherwise known as PTFE tape is what we use to stop leaks from joints. You wind it round radiator valves or taps. If you thread it anti-clockwise though, it simply unwinds when you tighten the fitting.
Plumber’s Tip: Make sure that you’re winding it round the thread clockwise and do it 3 times.
4. Over-Tightened Connections
It’s a good feeling tightening up a toilet bolt, supply tubes or pipes and fittings. Trouble is, too much strength applied can leave you with a major problem. Over tightening put too much strain on the fitting, causing cracks that could lead to floods.
Plumber’s Tip. Cracks caused by over tightening don’t always appear immediately. So don’t think that the absence of a crack means you can continue. Once the connection is tight – stop.
5. The Water Isn’t Turned Off
Sounds like a no-brainer but it happens more than you would expect. Usually, it’s because there’s so much to think about as you begin work that the simplest thing of all – turning off the water – gets forgotten.
Plumber’s Tip. You’ll only ever make this plumbing mistake once! Before your first plumbing DIY job, make sure you know how to turn off the water supply to the area you’re working on and test it out before starting.
About Simply Plumbing in Luton
Simply Plumbing is based in Luton and offers a range of plumbing and electrical services to customers across South Bedfordshire. If you feel confident to have a go at plumbing DIY, we hope that our tips have helped. If you would rather have one of the Simply Plumbing team carry out your repairs or install your new shower, we’d be delighted to help.
Need a plumber in South Bedfordshire? Give Simply Plumbing a call today on 01582 250030