Use a five gallon bucket as a tool holder. If a leak springs mid-project, it'll catch the
water. A tool caddy can also be attached to the bucket providing a place for everything.
Keep a forced cup and a regular plunger handy. Each plunger has its own specific use and provides
extra unclogging power.
Wrenches are essential in plumbing. A pair of medium sized slip joint pliers and an adjustable
pipe wrench should cover most jobs, along with various sized wrenches.
A multi-bit screwdriver can reduce the number of tools that need to be carried around on the job.
An assortment of Allen keys is very handy and has many uses.
Duct tape and leak sealing tape can help out in a plumbing emergency until a permanent fix can be
made. Teflon tape will seal up leaks from around threaded connections.
A variety of blind caps can help you see your way through repairing a broken valve.
Heavy duty paper towels or rags will help clean up water from small leaks.
If you find yourself in “deep water” give Jim T’s Plumbing a call. We will bail you out. 860 666-7663
Always know where the main water shut-off valve is located in case of a major leak. Know
how to turn off the water heater. If it's a gas water heater, turn the switch to the "pilot" position.
Isolation valves located at each fixture will stop the flow of water to that location. This allows water
to continue to service the remainder of the house while the leak is being repaired. It's a good idea to turn
on and off each isolation valve in the house at least once a year to keep them in good working condition.
Using two wrenches at once turning in opposite directions is called "backing off" and allows the wrench to absorb
the stress and not the plumbing. Slip joint pliers can be used to loosen the collar nuts on a drain line.
If a supply tube break off is causing a leak, screw in a blind cap to seal off the leak until it can
be fixed. Occasionally, the ferrules in a supply tube can get scratched or dented causing water to leak. Use
Teflon tape around the ferrule until a permanent repair can be made. Use duct tape or pipe sealing tape to
pull together a crack in a pipe, reducing the leak as a temporary solution.
A cup plunger can be used for small drains like bath tubs, showers and lavatory sinks. Forced cup plungers
have a funnel that can apply extra force down the drain, which is good for sinks or toilets. When
unclogging a kitchen sink, use a second plunger to cover the other drain to get the most force to remove the
clog. To unclog a toilet, use a forced cup plunger. For bathtub clogs, unscrew the chrome cap — this
exposes the entire drain. Once the mechanism is removed, you'll be able to see the clog. Put
the plunger on the drain, and then use the second plunger to plug up the tub's overflow. Plunge the drain
to remove the clog.
Allen wrenches are useful for working on a faucet and garbage disposals.
If the water from your faucet has an undesirable taste or odor, installing a water
filter can make a noticeable difference. For the most part, water provided by public-utility systems
is safe to drink. But whether you're connected to city or well water, trace contaminants may give
the water a discernible taste or odor. Categories of contaminants include rust, sediment, bacteria, heavy
metals and other chemicals. Low-cost water filters will remove some of these impurities and can give
the water a more neutral taste.
For DIYers, the best place to start is with one of several varieties of cartridge filters designed to
remove particulate matter. These are less expensive and easier to install. Filter cartridges
use fibers to trap rust and sediment. Some of the more specialized ones incorporate activated carbon
to reduce odors as well as remove chlorine and bacteria. Some others also reduce lead.
All cartridge filters require periodic changing of the cartridge. If the cartridge is neglected for too
long, it will become saturated with particles and eventually begin leaching impurities back into the
water. Check the manufacturer's recommendations for your model.
The main varieties of cartridge-style filters are countertop (or faucet mounted), whole house, under sink
and icemaker filters.
The easiest filter to install is the faucet-mounted type. If you have a threaded faucet spout, you can
install one in seconds and without using any tools. Unscrew the aerator tip on the spout and attach the
filter. Like the others, this filter's cartridges should be replaced periodically as directed by the
manufacturer's instructions. One drawback to this kind of filter is that it may put pressure on
the O-rings and gaskets inside your faucet and could shorten the faucet's life.
If you choose one of the types that are more difficult to install, call us, we will be glad to schedule
Most bathroom faucets receive heavy daily use, so don't choose one that simply looks good -- also
consider ease of use, safety, and durability. A faucet's price is a fairly accurate measure of
quality. A warranty is a good indication of a higher-quality faucet. The best sets are made of
brass and come in various finishes and designs. Some brass faucets can contain relatively high levels
of lead. If lead in your water is a concern, look for lead-free brass faucets and always allow the
faucet to run for a little while before drinking the water. Faucet finishes include chrome, polished
brass, colored epoxy coating, pewter, nickel, and gold. Polished brass finishes usually are coated
to keep them from tarnishing. Chrome is the standard finish for most faucets because it is durable
and cleans up easily.
Make sure the faucet set is the proper size and design to fit your plumbing fixture. Most
sinks have holes predrilled in their rims to accommodate standard faucets and plumbing.
Faucets come in four standard types: center-set, widespread, mini widespread, and
Center-set, widespread, and mini widespread faucets are similar: They have separate control handles for
hot and cold water, plus a spout. The difference among them is that center-set faucets are
connected above the sink deck and appear to consist of a single unit; widespread faucets have no visible
connection between the controls and the faucet because the valves and mixing chamber connect
underneath the sink. With a mini widespread, the spout and handles are designed to mount in
center-set holes with the handles 4 inches apart to resemble a widespread.
Single-control faucets also consist of a single unit but have one central control device (usually a prominent
lever or knob) instead of two separate control valves. Although single-control faucets can be elegant
and convenient, they sometimes are trickier to operate. Choose them with caution for bathrooms
intended for use by either the very old or the very young. To prevent the possibility of
hot-water burns, choose a faucet with a built-in temperature-limiting valve.
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