Plumbing Tool Basics and You: Top 5 Tools for New Homeowners

Home > Plumbing Tool Basics and You: Top 5 Tools for New Homeowners

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Most plumbing problems arise unexpectedly, leaving many new homeowners scrambling for a solution before the issue escalates. With the right plumbing tools in hand, however, you can potentially stop the problem from progressing or fix it altogether. Know just what to put in your toolkit to ensure you’re ready for anything plumbing-related that might occur, day or night. Here are five helpful tool ideas to get you started:

Tongue-and-Groove Pliers

To service the plastic pipes under the sinks in your kitchen and bathroom, you’ll need a pair of tongue-and-groove pliers. With these pliers, you can open up the drain pipes to clear out clogs or retrieve lost items. If you dropped your ring down the bathroom drain, for example, you can use tongue-and-groove pliers to carefully loosen the slip nut and disconnect the p-trap. With a tip of the p-trap to the side, your ring will come tumbling out and you can tighten everything back up—as good as new—using these pliers.

Basin Wrench

When you need to service or replace the faucets in your home, you will need to have a basin wrench on hand. This wrench has a low-profile design that perfectly slips into the tight area under the sink in order to reach the screws for the faucet. This will come in handy if your faucet ever starts to leak water onto the counter, which often occurs as the gaskets and O-rings break down. You can elect to replace these elements or simply install a new faucet to fix this problem.

Thread Sealing Tape

If you want to replace your malfunctioning showerhead or any other basic plumbing components with threaded joints, you will need to use thread sealing tape to prevent leaks. Although this tool may seem like a minor thing, it can actually ensure your plumbing part installation goes according to plan. Simply pull this tape taut and wrap it around the threads two to three times in a clockwise direction. With the tape filling in the gaps in the threads, you can rest assured that water will not leak out of that fitting.


Plungers can save you a lot of heartache and frustration, but only if you have the right ones on hand. You’ll need to have two types of plungers available to help clear clogs of all kinds. The first type has a flat bottom and works for clearing sink drains, while the second has a tapered end which is the one for the toilet. Each plunger’s design creates a tight seal against the bottom of the drain to generate the pressure needed to push the clog through.

Drain Auger

When a plunger just won’t get the job done, you’ll need to pull out the drain auger to clear out clogs. The drain auger uses a flexible yet rigid and round boring head that reaches at least 25 feet into the pipes. As you rotate the handle by hand or by using a drill, you can drive the auger through the material, causing the clog to break free. Continuing to push through the pipe with the auger helps to clear the material out of the pipe and restore the function of your basic plumbing system.

You can handle the basic service needs of your home’s plumbing system when using these tools. But if you face a problem that exceeds your comfort level, please reach out to your trusted Tucson plumber, RAM Plumbing, at (520) 747-8089. We’ll help you diagnose any issues that arise and complete the repairs to promptly restore the condition and function of your beloved home’s plumbing system.

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