You might be tempted to deal with a clogged pipe, leaky faucet, or other plumbing issue within your home, but that temptation could come back to bite you. Most of us simply don’t have the tools, experience, or knowledge to do the job right on our own. Attempting to do the job yourself can even make the problem worse, costing you more time, money, and stress than necessary to get the job done.

Do You Know What the Problem Is?

You might think that the leak is coming from a specific area of the home because that’s where you see water dripping or pooling. However, water moves through the path of least resistance, which means the location of pooling could be quite a distance from the source of the leak. You might spend an afternoon and a lot of money to remove and replace a pipe that’s in good working order because you were mistaken about the origin of the leak.

By calling a professional, you benefit from the knowledge and expertise of someone who knows how to diagnose the problem and fix it properly the first time. A professional will also be able to discover other issues that might be contributing to a leak or clog that might help save money on maintenance costs in the long term.

Do You Know What Materials to Use?

Let’s say that you want to use a PVC pipe to replace a copper pipe. While you can use copper and PVC pipes together, you have to know how to do so properly. This typically involves using a fitting or tape to connect the PVC pipe thread to the copper pipe thread.

If you don’t know the difference between copper and PVC pipe, call a professional. The same is true if you don’t know how to connect the two materials. Trying to do this yourself could result in hours of aggravation without any guarantee that you’ll be able to avoid a future leak.

Using the right materials is also important if you’re dealing with a blocked or slow drain. If you think that the clog is caused by organic material, you might be tempted to use a caustic chemical to remove it. Of course, this won’t work if the clog is caused by a child’s toy, a wedding ring, or some other solid object.

That caustic drain cleaner could also damage your pipes and allow fumes to spread through your home. A plumbing professional will instead use a snake to eliminate organic material in a pipe or dismantle the pipe to remove the physical object. They might also use a camera to diagnose the problem before beginning any major work, ensuring the problem is diagnosed and addressed correctly the first time.

Can You Do the Work to Code?

A gas leak can be even more dangerous than a water leak because you might not be able to smell, see, or otherwise notice anything is wrong immediately. Instead, you might only notice that there is a problem because you’re feeling dizzy or because you notice an increase in your heating bill.

Water heaters are often powered by gas, which means that you might have issues with water and gas at the same time. If pipes aren’t welded or otherwise installed properly, the gas to your home will likely need to be shut off. At that point, we recommend that you call a professional to inspect your work and fix any errors that you made.

In some cases, simply calling the plumber to inspect your work could cost hundreds of dollars in service call fees. If there are problems that need to be addressed, you could spend thousands of dollars to have your gas turned back on promptly.

Can You Do the Work Safely?

You will need to consider many variables when deciding if you can do a job safely. For instance, you’ll need to make sure that the clogged pipe or drain is in an area that you can access easily. Otherwise, you may need specialized tools to cut away drywall, brick, or other materials that might not be easily removed.

Even if you can easily access a pipe or drain, you’ll need to make sure that you can remove it safely. This means knowing how to use a saw, knife, or other cutting device without the risk of injuries. You might also need to know how to use a heat gun or similar machine to melt pipe or weld two pieces of pipe together.

In addition, you’ll need safety equipment such as gloves or a hood to keep your hands and eyes safe from debris or heat. If you are trying to resolve a water leak, you might interact with hazardous waste, needles, or other hazardous items that you shouldn’t try to remove on your own.

You should also consider whether you’ll remember to turn the water, gas, or electricity off before you get started on a plumbing project. In some cases, you’ll need to shut all three off to do the job safely and without causing damage to your home.

Finally, you’ll need to consider whether you can do the work without pulling a muscle, hitting your head, or otherwise injuring yourself. As you get older, the risk of injury increases even if you are physically fit and generally healthy. Ideally, you’ll call a professional who can get the job done without getting hurt.

Do You Want to Do the Job Yourself?

You might consider it a badge of honor to fix your home by yourself, and this may be especially true if you caused or contributed to the clog or blocked drain. However, you probably don’t want to miss your child’s soccer game or a day at the movies with your spouse to prove a point.

You might also worry that calling a professional will cost more than you can justify spending even if you can afford the cost. Of course, the truth is that you’ll probably get a better result in less time by spending the extra money. In addition, you will likely get a warranty or service guarantee that can help protect your investment for years to come. In some cases, calling a plumbing pro first will even be more cost-effective because while the upfront costs might be higher, you’ll save on repeated trips to the hardware store, extra tools, and sheer frustration.

Working with a professional also allows you to learn about the benefits of upgrading your plumbing system instead of just repairing it. Ultimately, you may be able to invest in your home to improve its safety, efficiency, and value both now and in the long run. The best part is that all this can be done while you are at work, on vacation or otherwise making the most of your time.

If you need plumbing services in Tucson, AZ, give the team at Cal’s Plumbing a call today! We can also help with water filtration and purification systems or install a tanked or tankless water heater to help your home run efficiently at all times.

company icon