You are currently viewing DIY Tips for Common Plumbing Problems 

DIY Tips for Common Plumbing Problems 

Sooner or later, you are bound to experience plumbing issues at home. These problems leave you in a fix: On one side, you have a plumbing issue that will most likely blow up to become a catastrophe later. While on the other side, you cannot afford to call a plumber, or you are struggling to find one available, especially if the plumbing emergency happens in the middle of the night. 

So, what do you do? 

The solution is simple: Learn how to diagnose and repair your toilets, sinks, faucets, and pipes. Here is how you can improve these common plumbing problems yourself.  

Clogged Toilets 

When faced with clogged shanks, a plunger is the first thing that comes to mind. Often, a few plunger pumps down the loo can resolve the blockage. At times, however, the clogs are too much for your plungers. When that happens, you need to run a snake line.

Crank this long metal plate while twisting it clockwise. Repeat the snaking process until you remove the clog. 

Alternatively, introduce vinegar and baking soda solution in the toilet bowl. Flush this solution to dissolve the trapped coffee husks, hair, debris, and other obstructions. 

Running Toilets

Running toilets are a common plumbing problem you can resolve without calling plumbers. This problem can cost you hundreds of dollars in waste. Furthermore, the sound of this constant leaking is quite irritating. To repair, first turn off the toilet’s main water supply. 

Look for a small knob resting on the toilet’s wall. Rotate it to the right or clockwise to cut off the water. Remove the toilet tank’s lid to troubleshoot the different parts. These parts include the flapper, fill tube, flush valve, and fill valve. 

1. Faulty Flappers 

Test whether the flapper is okay. To do so, pour a dye into the toilet bowl and leave it for 20-30 minutes. If the paint seeps into the toilet bowl, this part is damaged and needs replacing. So, you must flush to drain all the water in the toilet tank. Proceed to un-clip the faulty flapper from the base of your tank.

Carry the removed flapper with you to your local hardware store. Ask the staff for a replacement that matches your toilet’s make and model. Follow the instructions in the detailed installation guide to fix the new flapper

You’ll need to adjust the flapper’s chain for optimal performance. Ideally, the chain should leave a half an inch allowance when the flush lever rests. 

2.      Float Balls Adjusting 

Alternatively, your float ball could be wrongly adjusted, resulting in leakage. This ball should always rest at the right level to control the water flow. The first step to diagnosing a faulty float ball is identifying your exact float type. 

Here, the goal is to adjust the float ball to align it with the recommended water line. This line is usually indicated on the tank. To do so, loosen the float ball with a screwdriver to adjust it downwards. Tightening the screws, in turn, raises the float level. Fill up the tank to test whether the float is now aligned correctly. 

3.      Replacing Fill Valves 

Or perhaps, the fill valve might be responsible for the leakage. To replace a faulty valve, turn off the toilet’s water by tightening the hose’s handle. Then, flush to drain your toilet’s tank water. Unscrew your valve’s lock nut at the bottom of your tank to remove the damaged fill valve.

Visit your local hardware with the toilet part you have removed. Then, request a similar replacement. Carefully read the instructions when positioning the new component. That should fix the leakage. 

Garbage Disposal Repairs

Garbage disposal systems often get jammed, leak, or become clogged. Here is how you can troubleshoot and repair this common issue.

1.      Disposal Not Powering 

Suppose your disposal refuses to run when powered. Push the reset button at your disposal. Restart the equipment to check if it’s now functioning. Check the power cables. These might have come loose. The circuit breaker could have automatically turned itself off. If so, you’ll need to reset it. 

2.      Jammed Disposal 

Alternatively, the disposal is jammed and needs unclogging. To do so, get a hex wrench (quarter inch) and insert it in a hex-shaped hole on its underside. 

Do not worry if you do not own a hex wrench. Use a broomstick to rotate the impeller and resolve the blockage. At times, the issue is the disposal motor. A spoilt disposal motor causes the garbage to only hum, but it does not grind. If that’s the case, do not power the machine. Instead, replace the malfunctioning motor.

3.      Blocked Disposal 

If your disposal causes water to stagnate on your sink, its drainage is clogged. To undo this issue, clear its drain pipe by taking it apart. You then snake a line in the problematic drain and flush water to resolve the blockage.  

Low Water Pressure 

Sometimes, the water pressure of your kitchen faucets or showers drops. This weak water pressure indicates a bigger underlying plumbing problem. Sediments may obstruct the continuous water flow in the showerhead or faucets. Dip the affected parts in vinegar. Then, clean them with a thistle brush to restore proper water pressure. 

If the cleaning procedure fails, you need to inspect your drain pipes. Flush the pipes with drain cleaners or use a drill. It helps to dissolve and break apart the obstructions. 


These relatively easy processes will help you quickly and efficiently resolve plumbing problems. It’s a good idea to call a licensed plumber if you encounter a complex plumbing problem you cannot fix yourself. 

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