As professional plumbers, we understand your enthusiasm for DIY plumbing. In fact, minor repairs like replacing a faucet, unclogging a pipe, replacing broken toilet levers, etc can be done without professional help. The problem starts when you become over enthusiastic about getting things done by yourselves. It’s good if you are keen on accepting challenges, but make sure you avoid these common mistakes:
- Joining mismatched materials:
When different metals come in contact (in the presence of an electrolyte), one of the metals corrodes quickly- this is basic chemistry. In your DIY enthusiasm, it is quite possible that you may forget this. Corrosion makes your pipe brittle and prone to breakage. Use the same metal if you can, or, consider using dielectric unions that acts as a barrier between the two materials.
- Doing things in a hurry:
What may seem as an easy 5 minute job can become ugly if you aren’t focused or rushing things. Common mistakes like forgetting to shut off the water valve, over tightening (and not tightening it enough) plumbing components, etc. are common consequences of things that go wrong when you are in a hurry.
- Leaving things midway because it seems good enough to go:
It is alright to fix things temporarily until the plumber comes. The problem starts when you forget to call the plumber, or when you forget that yours was a temporary arrangement. Using glue to fix leaky pipes is a common example.
- Ignoring the local plumbing codes and standards:
The plumbing codes are there for a reason. They help to make your life easy. A botched up DIY job can leave you with problems that cannot be managed by a plumber. Severe water leakage can cause structural damage and cost thousands of dollars in repairs. Since you have contributed to the problem, insurance companies will refuse to bail you out. And at the end of it all, you’ll be fined for working without proper permit.
- Dismantling things and forgetting how to place them back:
This is far more common than you think and especially occurs when you are in a hurry. If you have to disassemble a component, make sure you take pictures while doing it, or make a note of the process. Also, keep the instruction manual handy for reference.
We’re happy that you like to help yourself, but remember, a little learning can be a dangerous thing.