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A Guide To The Many Tools Plumbers Use On the Job

What Pro Plumbers Have In Their Fully Stocked Trucks

When a plumbing problem strikes, many homeowners are tempted to take matters into their own hands, roll up their shirtsleeves, and fix the issue themselves. As noble (and, in many cases, downright heroic) as this is, these aspiring DIYers often find that fixing even a seemingly simple problem requires investing in many tools and equipment not commonly found in the average toolbox. 

This is why qualified plumbing contractors show up in trucks or vans packed to the gills with tools, parts, and industrial equipment - so they can be ready for anything the job throws their way. To give homeowners a little perspective before they tackle that leaky faucet or clogged drain, here's an inventory of all the weapons plumbers have at their disposal when they roll up to every job site!

General Hand Tools

toolsEvery plumber's toolkit contains various hand tools and basic instruments. Most homeowners will have some of these in their garages, such as hacksaws, pliers, screwdrivers, adjustable crescent wrenches, buckets, and flashlights/headlamps.

But many plumber tools are more specific to their trade and aren't likely to be found in most homes. This includes special plumbing wrenches, such as pipe wrenches (for nuts and fittings on pipes), basin wrenches (specifically designed for adjusting internal faucet components), faucet keys (used to open and close spigots and sillcocks), and torque wrenches (for tightening nuts and bolts to a specific torque value). 

Other must-have plumbing tools and supplies include pipe cutters, pipe threaders (for cutting new threads into pipes), plumber's torches, plumber's tape (for sealing pipe threads), pipe benders (for bending curves into copper tubing), and, course, a trusty plunger or two - usually different types for unclogging sinks and toilets.

Safety Gear and Personal Protective Equipment

Working on plumbing systems can be dangerous, so pro plumbers also utilize plenty of safety gear and PPE (personal protective equipment). They will wear goggles to protect their eyes from debris, chemicals, and other hazardous materials that can fly around. If soldering or welding, they wear shaded goggles to protect their vision against harmful light rays.

Pros will wear heavy-duty gloves to protect their skin from nicks & scratches, acidic materials, and unsanitary conditions, as well as heat-insulated gloves, mole grips, and heat shields to protect themselves and the surrounding environment when using torches or other heat-generating devices. 

Kneepads or foam kneelers help keep a plumber's knee joints healthy as they spend much time kneeling and getting into tight spaces. Wearing a mask or respirator isn't just standard practice since the Covid-19 pandemic hit; it also helps protect plumbers from the harmful airborne pollutants such as mold, dust, and fumes they may be exposed to during their work.

Specialized Plumbing Tools and Instruments

toolsFinally, every plumber has several more specialized pieces of equipment designed for specific plumbing tasks. A drain auger is among these plumbing tools' most essential and commonly used. Often called a drain snake or a plumbing snake, this is essentially a long, spring-like coil with a corkscrew or blade at the end, which can be fed into a drain to bore through or break up a clog.

A hydro jet machine is another piece of equipment used for unclogging drains, even as far down as the sewer lines. This machine features a long flexible hose with a nozzle that sprays a powerful water jet straight ahead to cut through pipe blockages while simultaneously spraying backward in a cone shape to clean the pipe walls and propel the hose forward. Hydro jetting is often used to remove deep clogs and for preventive drain cleaning.

Plumbers also use advanced diagnostic and detection equipment, such as drain cameras, sewer inspection cameras, acoustic listening devices, and thermal imaging systems to pinpoint clogs and leaks. Plumbers in homes with natural gas appliances rely on carbon monoxide and combustible gas detectors to find leaks safely and quickly. 

Plumbers also have the training and certifications required to properly use all of this specialized equipment - so when plumbing problems arise, it's almost always best to call a pro!

About Charles Krull & Son, Inc. Plumbing & Heating

The experts at Charles Krull & Son, Inc. Plumbing & Heating have provided the Malverne community with award-winning plumbing services since 1910. As a BBB A+ rated business, they take their customers' safety, comfort, and satisfaction seriously - which is why all of their technicians are licensed, insured, background-checked, and drug-tested. They proudly offer transparent flat-rate pricing, personalized solutions, financing, and a money-saving membership plan - so homeowners should look no further for plumbing service in Malverne, NY!

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