Tips on Avoiding Dangerous and Costly Do-It-Yourself Plumbing Mistakes

With the advent of the Internet, pictures, and videos galore, virtually everyone has tried successfully–and unsuccessfully–to complete DIY projects. Naturally, the reason people embrace the DIY approach is to save money and hassles. This is certainly not a bad idea in some cases, but any professional plumber in Laguna Niguel can confirm that there are specific tasks that can literally become a disaster if completed by untrained hands. Below are some of the worst mistakes you can make as a DIY plumber:

DIY Plumber

Failure to Plan

Whether the project is a simple renovation or a large-scale bathroom overhaul, it is important to think of everything in advance. For example, if you don’t pay attention to how something is put together, it can leave you with a jigsaw puzzle when you try to reassemble it at the end of your project. You may also realize too late that an excessive number of fixtures can lead to low water pressure. If you are replacing things like the bathtub and the commode and fail to leave enough space in between, you can create a very difficult situation that is time-consuming to redo. The problems described below are just a few of the ones that come from lack of planning and lack of familiarity with proper plumbing.

Forgetting Your Permit

There are good reasons that local governments often require permits when you’re planning to make repairs. Some of these reasons are to prevent people from tackling jobs they are not qualified for, thus creating unsafe situations for themselves or their neighbors. Cutting this corner typically costs a lot of money in the long run, both in failed projects and fines from your city.

Misusing Tools

Perhaps you don’t want to join the ranks of the many people googling “Plumbers Near Me” in order to find a professional, but making the wrong tool choice is ultimately far more aggravating and costly. Using the wrong tool for the job can cause minor frustration and even major damage, depending on what you are attempting to accomplish. You don’t want to end up needing an emergency plumber because you were hesitant to schedule an experienced person to do the job in the first place.

Plumbing Tool

Over-Tightening Connections

Although professional plumbers in Laguna Niguel would certainly know that tighter connections do not prevent pipes from leaking, many consumers think that the opposite is true. You may want to make connections as tight as you can, believing you’re preventing problems, when in reality this action leads to stripped threads, broken washers, or cracked and damaged fittings. Be sure to use Teflon tape as well.

Mixing the Wrong Pipes

Many do-it-yourselfers have no idea what kind of pipes are in their home and may inadvertently mix pipes made from copper with galvanized pipes. Unfortunately, this leads to leaks, corrosion, and potentially expensive repairs in the future. For a successful renovation project, it is essential to match materials between replacement pipes and the current pipes in the home. Trying to “make it work” with sealants, silicone, or tape is also a bad idea that a professional plumber would never attempt.

Excessive Use of Drain Cleaner

Almost everyone has reached for drain cleaner at one time or another as a quick fix. Whether it’s a blocked-up sink or standing water in the shower, it seems like a fast way to cure the problem. However, excessive use of drain cleaner can result in severe pipe damage that cannot be undone. Employing natural remedies such as baking soda and vinegar, or simply using a drain snake, often leads to better results. The best way to avoid having to call an emergency plumber is to make every effort to prevent clogs in the first place, but serious blockages require the services of a professional.

Forgetting to Turn off the Water

Prior to attempting any DIY plumbing project, you must remember to shut off the water. If this step is forgotten, you may find yourself with major water damage on your hands. Use the local shut-off valve, or turn off the flow of the water main, but one way or another, make sure the water is turned off before you begin, and keep in mind that draining the pipes is a good idea if you’re planning major renovations.

Knowing When to Admit You Need a Professional

Virtually anyone who has ever taken on a DIY project has discovered how easy it is to get in over their head. If you have found yourself in this predicament, don’t try to fix your own mistakes, as this will only lead to added expense in the future. Simply give us a call, and one of our professional plumbers in Laguna Niguel will have the appropriate remedy for your situation.