Whether you’re a professional plumber or just a homeowner looking to DIY some pipes, there are a few distinct tools that are essential to have in your toolbox. A number of these tools are essential for many plumbing jobs, while others are important to work effectively.
You do not have to buy all of these tools at once, but you will need to build your toolbox as time passes from the best plumbing supply company. For those seeking to begin, this is the list to look at.
When you are removing or tightening bolts and nuts at the plumbing, you’ll want several wrenches. In total, there are about four different wrenches you need to do your job efficiently. The majority of these wrenches can be found in a variety of different sizes, so you’ll likely wish to invest in sets of each type of wrench.
If you’re on a strict budget, you may be able to get away with just buying wrenches of standard sizes. However, if you can spend it all, we highly recommend buying sets.
- Pipe Wrench
Every plumber requires a pipe wrench, even if you just do the occasional DIY job. Here is the most massive wrench a plumber likely desires. They are used to tighten and loosen the nuts that hold pipes together. If you are going to work on pipes, you want to get this wrench.
These tools come in a variety of lengths. Most experienced plumbers work with a whole set of these tools — they are that important. But if you are only getting started, you can probably get away with only one for now.
- Basin Wrench
This type of wrench is specially designed for working on faucets. They’re T-shaped and have a clamp mechanism which helps them reach into narrow spaces to tighten hard-to-reach nuts and bolts that are often found on faucet plumbing.
If you plan on working on faucets at all, you need this wrench. It’s not a tool it is possible to live without.
- Adjustable Wrench
An adjustable wrench is useful for a vast array of tasks. If one of the additional wrenches is not acceptable for your task, an adjustable wrench will probably get the job done. It works best for hexagonal nuts, which are commonly found on the plumbing of all kinds.
Most plumbers have various sizes of adjustable wrenches to ensure they can always loosen the wrench that they want to. For beginners, we recommend picking up different sizes, just in case.
- Faucet Key
This isn’t technically a wrench, but it is a necessary part of any plumber’s toolbox. These small tools are designed to open and close spigots and sillcocks. If you want to be a serious plumber, you are likely to need to function on spigots sooner or later. There are various tools for handling distinct stem fittings, so you may choose to invest in a set of them only in case.
As a plumber, you’ll spend most of your time working on pipes. To do this efficiently, you will need several diverse tools. Mostly, these tools will be utilized to reduce pipes and create seals — two items you need to be able to do to work with plumbing efficiently.
Plumbers typically work with pipes. A hacksaw is essential for cutting these pipes. Without them, you may not be able to ultimately complete jobs. They can also be used to cut things like nuts and bolts. If you’re doing any type of plumbing work, you need a hacksaw.
You should need to keep multiple blades nearby, just in case your principal blade breaks. This can be tough work, after all.
- Plastic Pipe Cutters
These days, many pipes are made out of plastic. You’ll need a plastic pipe cutter to operate on plastic pipes, and that you’re going to encounter a good deal, whether you are a professional or a home DIYer. Luckily, these cutters are not expensive, so you should have no issue stocking them into your toolbox.
- Plumber’s Torch
For people who utilize copper pipes, a flashlight created for soldering them is needed. Otherwise, you won’t be able to finish your project effectively. These small, handheld tools may easily solder pipes in tight places, where a typical torch will not reach. They also permit you to solder more closely and precisely, which is essential in work like this.
- Thread Sealing Tape
The tape is used to carefully seal small leaks or prevent possible leaks from happening, to start with. They can be used at a threaded joint link to make them more powerful and prevent potential leaks there too. There is a lot of different sealing tape available, but the high-quality tape is necessary. If you are going to splurge everywhere, tack on this.
High-quality thread sealing tape is resistant to temperature changes, may stretch to form much better seals, and never dries out. The low-quality tape is very likely to wear down faster and needs replacing more frequently.
Clearing clogs is another standard, necessary part of a plumber’s job. If you are a homeowner, then you’ll probably want to learn how to clean clogs yourself. It will save you quite a little money in the long run, since you won’t need to call a plumber each time a stubborn clog grows.
You’ll need a few different tools to clean the most stubborn clogs quickly. It is a fantastic idea to have them on hand.
Plungers are an essential tool used to clear clogs. Every homeowner should have one of them, even when you are not planning on doing much work in your pipes. We advocate a heavy-duty flange and a cup plunger that make more suction than your average plunger. Many will suggest these only for trade professionals, but we recommend them for many homeowners.
Plungers will be able to get rid of most clogs very quickly. This should be your first step to clearing any sort of clog. If a plunger does not work, you’ll need to proceed to stronger tools.
- Snake Machine
These are newer machines. They are bigger, motorized versions of this hand auger. They’re more comfortable to use than a hand auger and can be used for tough clogs. They have quite a bit more power than a hand auger.
Plumbing usually isn’t regarded as a hazardous profession. However, you still need some essential security equipment. You are frequently working with hot equipment like blowtorches, after all. Below, you will find some essential safety gear you will want for the simplest plumbing tasks.
Several things can potentially damage your eyes when you’re a plumber. Contaminated water, pieces of metal, and sparks can all damage your eyes while you’re closely examining pipes and leaks. You need to always wear goggles when doing any plumbing job.
You should also have a pair of fine gloves that you work on at all times. You’ll probably be touching a lot of things that shouldn’t be touched with your bare hands. Heavy-duty gloves are essential because of this.
Gloves will also protect your hand away from potentially sharp metal.
- Heat Shields
If you are soldering, you will need a heat shield to remain safe. You will want them to protect themselves along with the surrounding region from the heat of the torch. Additionally, it prevents unnecessary fires, which can occur when a flammable substance gets too hot near the soldering torch. As you might imagine, this can be a substantial safety hazard.
You should invest in a few reliable heat shields to guarantee that the heat does not harm the surrounding environment through the shields.
Other Critical Tools and Items
There are some other tools you might want to consider for your toolbox too. A number of them are not essential. You could probably do most basic plumbing jobs without them.
- PEX Pipe Expander & Fittings
This is a unique pipe system that’s much easier to operate with than traditional pipes. It’s flexible and can be enlarged with a drill-like tool to widen the mouth of the pipe. Afterward, a metal matching can be added. The pipe keeps its shape after being stretched, so it quickly closes around the metal fitting, creating a seal that water won’t pass through.
These pipes are much easier to work with than other options.
These crimpers are essential for functioning with PEX piping of all sorts. Because this sort of piping is becoming more and more prevalent, it’s essential to have a pair of crimpers in your toolkit just if. You might even use them on different types of piping, like linking two pieces of metal together. You can also use them to deform the pipes to make one grip the other.
In general, they’re just a versatile tool to have.
- Pressure Test Gauges
These are used to test for leaks and water pressure problems. They only perform this one, niche job, so that they probably won’t be used during each project. But they are essential once you need to check water pressure, so even the average homeowner should have these on hand.
While this is not a completely exhaustive list, it is going to get you out of nearly all plumbing predicaments. It is not vital to get all these tools instantly, but most will not set you back a lot budget-wise, so see exactly what you can afford when it comes to augmenting your plumbing tool kit. The next time the bathroom breaks, you’ll be happy you have them.