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Blogs from March, 2021

As a homeowner, caring for your plumbing might seem like a tall task, but it can feel insurmountable when you don’t have the skills or experience it seems like you might need. While it’s true that skills and experience are invaluable to conducting repairs for all types of plumbing services, obtaining these skills isn’t necessarily impossible. In fact, it’s easier than you may have ever thought, and you can do it yourself with just a few simple repairs on some of your home’s most vital plumbing fixtures.

Here are three jobs that are a great DIY way to not only experience the pride of conducting a plumbing repair on your own home, but that can also teach you some of the valuable and important skills you should know as a homeowner so you can address some plumbing issues on your own.

Changing a Toilet Flapper

Changing a toilet flapper is perhaps the easiest plumbing repair you can attempt, and it is one that you will eventually come across with any toilet. Flappers are typically made from very soft plastic or rubber, and those materials both corrode over time and with constant exposure to water. When one corrodes and can’t seal your toilet properly, your toilet will slowly leak, creating an annoying dripping noise that eventually results in your water turning on to refill the tank.

Replacing a flapper is simple, requires no additional tools, and takes just a few minutes to do. However, in doing so, you will get a first-hand view of how a toilet works, and how your flapper stops water from the tank from flowing down into the bowl, which creates the flushing mechanism that washes waste away. Likewise, the parts needed for this job cost only a few dollars, and are nearly universal to just about any toilet.

Removing a Clog from a Shower Drain

Shower drains have the unfortunate burden of collecting all of the soap scum, hair, and other waste that flows down the drain when you bathe. Under normal circumstances, these drains are designed to make quick work of this problem. However, hair in particular is a nuisance and will eventually gum up and get stuck in your drain. The majority of the time, these clogs occur in the trap, or an upward bend in the pipe designed to hold water and prevent sewer gasses from leaking back into your home through your drain.

Removing a clog yourself is not all that difficult—with a clog remover tool from your local home improvement warehouse, you can pull a hair-based clog out of your drain without any disassembly of your shower. Be forewarned: it isn’t a pleasant job. Hair clogs are typically rather smelly and you probably don’t want to touch them with your bare hands or skin. Wear eye protection and rubber gloves, and we wouldn’t blame you if you wanted to wear a mask as well. However, a few simple pulls of the hair remover will have your shower flowing smoothly again. Likewise, you’ll save yourself time, stress, frustration, and hassle of working with chemical drain cleaners that often cause more damage than they actually fix.

Replacing a Toilet Fill Valve

Replacing a toilet fill valve is a great way of getting to know how toilets work even further, and teaching you a bit about more of the procedures and skills that many plumbing jobs utilize. A leaking, inconsistent, or stuck fill valve can waste a ton of water, so replacing a valve that is worn out will save you a ton of money and frustration. This too is an extremely simple service that will require nothing more than possibly a pair of pliers, and that means the expense needed to buy the tools is also extremely minimal.

Removing a fill valve will teach you about how to shut off water to a fixture, how to ensure it is shut off, how parts and components are typically mounted in a fixture, and how to properly connect and secure plumbing hoses. The entire job shouldn’t take you more than about half an hour, and cost no more than $20 to $25 in parts. When you’re done, that obnoxious leaking or stuck float should be a thing of the past, and you’ll be able to go back to using your toilet freely without worry once again.

If you need help with a plumbing problem that requires a professional’s hand, call Smith’s Plumbing Services at (901) 290-1110 today.