In the list of best construction jobs, the plumbing industry is ranked 4th. Not just that, the plumbing role paid a median salary of $56,330, making it one of the highest-paying jobs, which doesn’t necessarily require a degree.
If you’re employed in the plumbing industry, the role can pay you as much as $75,730, as the top 25% got paid the same in 2020. So if you want to increase your earnings, you must ensure that you stand better than the rest. You should keep upskilling and use the best available tools to achieve this.
In this article, we have mentioned all the tools you can use to get your job done easily and efficiently and gear your career to a new dimension.
Without further ado, let’s take a look at the best plumbing tools.
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What is the Role of Plumbers?
Plumbers install and maintain piping systems for water, gas, and other materials in homeowners, workplaces, and factories. They install plumbing fixtures such as toilets and bathtubs, as well as appliances such as water heaters and dishwashers. They unclog drains, repair or replace damaged fixtures and pipes, and clean drains.
Plumbers require the best tools in order to carry out their small or large repair works. Let’s find out which tools and equipment are mostly preferred in the plumbing industry.
25 Best Plumbing Tools & Equipment
When purchasing the best plumbing tools for the business, remember that purchasing everything at once is unnecessary. Generally, starting with a few key services you excel at and become well-known for is best. Then, as you can afford more tools, gradually add more services.
While you will need to select tools based on the plumbing services you choose to provide, here is a list of the best plumbing tools required for your business:
You’ll need a variety of wrenches when removing or tightening bolts and nuts in the plumbing. To complete your task properly, you’ll need about four different wrenches. You can get by with just standard-sized wrenches if you’re on a tight budget. However, if you have the means, we recommend buying sets.
1. Basin wrench
The purpose of this wrench is to repair faucets and it is T-shaped. They have a clamp mechanism that allows them to reach into tight spaces and tighten nuts and bolts found on faucet plumbing that are difficult to access.
2. Faucet key
This isn’t a wrench, but it’s an important tool in any plumber’s arsenal. These are used to open and close sillcocks and spigots. You’ll have to work on fixtures at some point if you want to be a serious plumber.
3. Pipe wrench
This is the most common wrench you’ll need. Plumbers use these heavy tools to loosen and tighten pipework nuts and fittings. They typically use two of these wrenches at once, one to hold the pipe in place as they rotate the nut or fitting into the correct position. The majority of plumbers employ a full set of pipe wrenches in various lengths.
4. Adjustable wrench
An adjustable wrench can be used for a variety of tasks. It works best with hexagonal nuts, commonly found on various pipes. The adjustable wrench tightens and loses hexagonal nuts and pipe fittings.
As a plumber, a major part of your time will be spent working on pipes. To complete this task successfully, a variety of tools will be required. Knowing how to use these tools to cut pipes and create seals is necessary in order to work with pipes.
5. Tube and plastic pipe cutters
As a plumber, you will frequently have to deal with copper or plastic pipes, and you will have to remove and replace them. Pipe cutters, also known as tubing cutters, are used by clamping them onto the pipe and rotating them completely around it. The tubing cutters should be tightened every couple of rotations, and the tube will be cut through.
6. Plumber’s torch
Many plumbers use solder to seal copper piping. Heat is required for soldering. Plumber’s torches will allow you to apply intense heat to specific areas while soldering and sealing new piping for installs and replacements. They should be on your tool list.
Plumbers use hacksaws to cut through various hardware such as pipes, nuts, bolts, and screws. This is difficult work, and you must keep their blades tightly secured and spare blades in the truck. A hole saw is another useful tool to have in your toolbox.
8. Thread sealing tape
The tape is used to carefully stop small leaks or, in the beginning, prevent potential leaks from happening. They can also be used to strengthen and prevent potential leaks at threaded joint connections. Although there are numerous types of sealing tape, only high-quality tape should be used.
You need pliers to work on pipes. You will use them frequently, just like with a wrench. Slammer pliers are a good choice because you’ll probably work in small spaces. These are great for getting to bolts and nuts that wrenches can’t reach.
Get the smallest size you can since you’ll primarily use these pliers for cramming into tight spaces.
10. Press fitting systems
You’re only a plumber if you can connect pipes. These fitting systems will help you make a watertight seal that stops water from leaking by physically pressing two pipes together. They enable plumbers to connect to them more quickly than they can weld or solder the pipes, saving them both money and time.
11. Tube benders
A tube or pipe bender is used to bend pipes into various shapes in order for them to fit into the space where they will be installed. It can be used to shape a pipe to match an existing pipe that needs to be replaced or bend pipes around corners.
12. Reaming tools
This is a tool that enlarges pipe openings and holes. Even though most projects won’t need it, at some point, it will be necessary. It’s a good idea to keep this tool close by at all times. You can put off purchasing this tool if you have a tight budget. They aren’t cheap, so you won’t be saving much cash.
13. Acid flux brush
This brush is necessary to apply the proper paste to copper pipes before soldering. Even though it’s a basic tool, it’s essential whenever copper pipes need to be soldered. You don’t need to make a sizable investment to use this tool.
14. Metal file
When cutting pipes, metal files are an excellent tool to have on hand. After the pipe is cut, a metal file is used to smooth the rough edges. This can be used on all types of pipes, including plastic and metal.
Clearing clogs and blockages
Sometimes the issue isn’t with the pipe but with what’s inside, and drain cleaning is essential to any plumber’s job. A good plumber knows how to work around a stubborn clog and which tools are required to keep a homeowner’s plumbing clear and run smoothly.
15. Borescope or drain inspection camera
These small cameras are attached to a long, flexible cable and inserted into drains and sewer lines to provide a better view of the piping and whatever obstructs it. These cameras can be directly connected to your smartphones, making them convenient.
16. Hand auger
These circular, handheld devices can drive a cable through a pipe. It comprises a flexible metal wire with a corkscrew auger on end, which is used to unclog drain lines. In recent years, these tools have become a standard on a plumbing tools’ list.
There are numerous models available, each with its own set of capabilities. Choose the one that best meets your requirements.
17. Drain snake machine
They are more powerful and larger versions of the hand auger. They’re easier to use than a hand auger and can handle tough clogs. They have significantly more power than a hand auger.
Plungers are an important tool for clearing clogs. Most clogs can be removed quickly with a plunger. This should be your first step in removing any clogs. If a plunger is ineffective, you must advance to more powerful tools.
Plumbing safety tools
Plumbing is not typically considered a dangerous occupation. However, you will need some proper safety equipment. After all, you frequently use hot tools such as blowtorches. The following list contains essential safety equipment for even the most basic plumbing jobs.
19. Heat shields
To keep yourself safe while soldering, use a heat shield. You’ll need them to shield yourself and the surrounding area from the torch’s heat. It prevents unnecessary fires from starting when flammable materials become too hot near the soldering torch. You should invest in dependable heat shields to ensure that the heat does not harm the surrounding environment.
As a plumber, your eyes can be harmed by various factors. While inspecting pipes and leaks, contaminated water, metal shavings, and sparks can cause eye damage. Always wear goggles when performing plumbing work.
You should also have a nice pair of gloves on hand at all times. You’ll most likely be touching things with your bare hands that you shouldn’t. So, we suggest that you buy heavy-duty gloves.
Other essential tools
Consider adding some additional tools to your toolbox. Many of these are superfluous. You could get by without them for the majority of basic plumbing tasks. They can make your job much easier if you have the extra money and space.
22. Putty knife
This is an easy-to-use tool. It is used for applying and removing caulk and toilet wax residue. While this is a low-cost tool, it is also required when working with putty.
23. Stubby screwdriver
Despite its simplicity in comparison to other tools, plumbers should consider the stubby screwdriver to be a must-have on any plumbing tool list. It could be a lifesaver for a plumber who needs to loosen or tighten a screw in a hard-to-reach area that a standard or electric screwdriver cannot reach.
24. PEX pipe expander and fittings
This one-of-a-kind pipe system is far more user-friendly than traditional pipes. It is malleable and can be expanded to widen the pipe’s mouth. The metal fitting can then be inserted. Because the pipe retains its shape after stretching, it quickly closes around the metal fitting, forming a seal that prevents water from passing through.
25. Propane torch
Plumber’s propane torches are the most common type of torch in a plumber’s toolbox because they are one of the inexpensive types of torches, and the propane used for fuel is easy to store. Look for a torch that you can easily operate to meld metals together using a process known as “sweating.”
Switch to Upper and Get the Best Routes for Your Daily Visits
Businesses associated with deliveries or daily visits often spend more time on route planning. So, if you can switch to an automated route planning process, you don’t have to spend time planning routes. Just use your resources to the fullest, get the job done in a timely manner and win customers’ satisfaction.
Finding the best routes can be a tough task for any business since this is a tiring job that requires hours of manual work and is prone to errors. But we have advanced software that takes all of your stress out of planning and helps you boost your business productivity.
Here’s how Upper can be your best bet in terms of route planning.
Upper comes equipped with an intelligent and powerful algorithm that quickly finds an optimal route for your daily visits. This route will consider locations and will come up with a route that will help you reduce time and up to 40% of your fuel costs.
If your plumbing business has more than one plumber, it will get tough to assign jobs to different plumbers. Upper’s algorithm can help you create different routes for different plumbers. This will reduce your stress and will help you accommodate more jobs.
Proof of job
Upper comes equipped with a feature to get the clients’ signatures digitally. You can also add pictures. This reduces the need for any manual work regarding the job’s status and helps you keep proofs saved in the cloud-based storage.
If you are running a plumbing business and have multiple plumbers working with you, it may get a little tricky to keep track of all the plumbers and assign jobs to them. The dispatch option will let you send the routes to your plumbers with just a single click, thus reducing the task of manually addressing them.
Upper Route Planner
A simple-to-use route planner
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Its main function is to provide a watertight seal for pipe connections without a rubber seal, such as when a metal nut is needed to tighten the threaded end of a metal pipe.
SmartDraw is a quick and easy tool for designing piping and equipment. The program includes many industrial templates and mechanical engineering symbols for HVAC, ducts, instrumentation, and piping.
Faucet keys are a necessary tool for opening and closing spigots and sillcocks. They are tiny, X-shaped instruments with different-sized stem fittings.
Like any other business, plumbing also relies on customer experience. This is one of the businesses where word of mouth will increase the customer base. To achieve this, ensure you keep upgrading your skills and are equipped with the essential plumbing tools and software that will help you stand out from the crowd.
If you are handling a large team and want to get rid of frequent call-ups, Upper is all you need. Upper aims for providing a better customer experience with its unique features and ensures your team completes the tasks in the given time window.