Whether you’re a keen amateur or are fascinated by the tools a professional plumber pulls out of their toolbox when completing a repair at your home, plumbing requires an interesting range of tools. Although it’s always a good idea to rely on the experience and expertise of a professional plumber
, here, we will explore some of the most important plumbing tools you may wish to consider adding to your toolbox.
The pipe wrench is a staple in many toolboxes and is an iconic tool for plumbers around the world. This type of wrench has been around for years, and it is a tool of choice for a multitude of situations. Pipe wrenches are available in a variety of sizes and configurations for different applications. For example, an end pipe wrench is used on pipes that are close to a wall, while an offset wrench is handy for odd angles or tight spaces.
This is a more industry term for tongue & groove pliers. Channel locks can be used in place of a pipe wrench. In some cases, a plumber may use two channel locks simultaneously; one to unscrew the pipe, while the other is used to stabilize it. Even if your plumber has a decent selection of pipe wrenches, they are also likely to have at least one or two sets of channel locks.
This is a self tightening tool that is used to repair or replace an old faucet. Professional grade basin wrenches are available with a telescoping shank that will hold a 90 degree position to allow greater accuracy.
As the name suggests, a hole saw is used to cut holes in masonry, concrete or wood. If you’re having a new fixture installed, the plumber may need to use a hole saw to conceal new pipes in the wall for a neat finish.
This tool has a somewhat deceiving name as it is not used for cutting hoses; its primary purpose is for cutting shapes and sizes of copper tubing. A hose cutter provides accurate and neat cuts in tubing to make stronger seals and joints.
Rib Joint Pliers
This is an adjustable tool that can be used to turn bolts, nuts, pipes and even fittings. It can also provide great grip if the plumber is having difficulty unscrewing a troubling connection.
A metal file is vital to smooth out any rough edges on a cut pipe. The last thing any plumber wants to do is leave rough burrs on metal pipes that could hurt them or you, particularly if the pipe is exposed. A metal file allows a neat finish that can be perfectly sealed.
Dealing with clogs is a major part of most plumber’s day, and when a plunger just can’t handle the job, then the drain auger will come out of the toolbox. The auger or drain snake is a coiled up metal cable that can be cranked, so it can rotate inside the drain. The plumber will push the auger into the clogged drain and rotate it to break up or pull the clog out and restore water flow.
By Giovanni Longo President Flood Brothers Plumbing
Giovanni Longo is a 3rd generation master plumber who has been practicing his craft and trade in the greater Los Angeles area for well over a decade and a half. A plumbing and hydraulics-engineering innovator, Giovanni’s particular world-class expertise focuses on dealing with challenging sewer system designs as well as resolving complex commercial and residential draining issues. As a certified Flood Mitigation expert, he is also well versed in a wide variety of water damage and remediation solution.