The top 5 DIY home plumbing fixes

We are renovating at the moment so I am here to proclaim that I’ve got a big list to get through before hubby and I can call our home the dream home we intend it to be. But to those who may not be renovating, a simple

Wouldn’t it be great if everything just worked and kept on working or if home renos got done with a simple wiggle of the nose?

Oh well, dreams are free….

The good news is there are plenty of well-trained tradie professionals out there who are all ready to tackle those pesky jobs for you. And trust me, when it comes to most jobs big or small, you would be well-advised to bring in a professional than attempt the job yourself.

Sure. You could probably install a showerhead yourself with you but if you need to hook up a gas oven you most certainly will want to call in professionals like Capital Plumbing to get the job done.
And since delving into pipes, tanks and fitting is my ‘topic of the day’ (yes – a new showerhead is currently on my ‘to-do this week’ list), read on to discover the five most common DIY jobs you can have a crack at yourself.

The top 5 DIY home plumbing fixes

1. Blocked sink or drain

This is one of the most common plumbing issues but fear not – it’s relatively easy to resolve. If you’d rather not pour environmentally unfriendly drain cleaner down the plug-hole, there are other options available. If a plunger won’t do the trick, try using a drain snake (you can pick one up at most hardware stores). Twirl it around a few inches down the plug-hole and retract it slowly. There’s a good chance you’ll catch what is blocking the hole and most likely it will be a build-up of hair! Alternatively try using a straightened piece of wire or a coat-hanger if you really want to save money.

2. Blocked or overflowing toilet

Let’s hope its clean water that is overflowing from your toilet, otherwise you might be in for an unpleasant and also unhealthy experience. If it’s a simple overflow issue, find the cut-off valve, which is usually at the base of the toilet and turn it off, usually in a clock-wise direction. Alternatively, open up the top of the toilet and lift the ball-float to a horizontal position. This should give your toilet time to drain. However if it is blocked, the plunger option may work. Beware, this could get messy and you may need to call in the professionals. Remember: These are temporary solutions and you may need to turn the water off at the mains in case these tips don’t work.

3. Replacing washers

WARNING: Definitely turn the mains water supply off before attempting this tip. Once the water is off, turn a tap on to check the supply has been properly cut off or you’ll risk flooding your house and wrecking precious belongings. Dismantle the tap using an appropriate sized spanner. If you’re lucky, the tap fitting will be a pretty simple affair. Locate the washer, which is likely half way up the spindle of the tap and the ‘O’ ring. Replace. Put the whole thing back together and turn the water back on.

4. Changing a showerhead

This is a simple operation if you’re leaving the existing hose in place. Ensure the taps are turned off and unscrew the old showerhead from the end of the hose. Make sure you have previously checked that the new showerhead fits the existing hose. Once the old showerhead is removed, screw the new one onto the hose. Ensure it’s on tight. Job done!

5. Redirecting greywater

Purchase a pipe of appropriate length from your local hardware store. Either feed the existing pipe into the new pipe and secure with plumbing tape or replace it with the new drain pipe. Rather than directing the pipe into the sink, feed it to the garden where you wish the water to flow. Make sure you research the effects of greywater on your garden before proceeding with this tip.

Have you recently completed your own DIY plumbing project? What challenges did you face?

Share your answers in the comment box below.