18 Essential Tools A Plumber Should Always Have In Their Van

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18 Essential Tools A Plumber Should Always Have In Their Van

As a plumber, you’re aware of the many different situations that can arise on a daily basis. Therefore, it’s important to be prepared for any event so that you can get the job done to the best of your ability. Carrying the correct tools also means you won’t be wasting time trying to source the right tools for the job.

Failing to have the essential equipment could mean that you lose out on jobs which can also affect your reputation as a plumber long term.

Here’s the top tools you should keep in your van during the working day, but remember to remove all tools at night to prevent theft.

1. Assortment of Channel Locks

This is another name for tongue & groove pliers and for many plumbers, channel locks have taken the place of pipe wrenches for many jobs. Its common for plumbers to use two channel locks at the same time:  one to stabilize the pipe with the other to unscrew it.

2. Quality Hacksaw and Hacksaw

Plumbing does not always come apart easy and a good hacksaw is useful when cutting any type of pipe, stubborn bolts, nuts, or screws. Also consider more that one type of saw for different repairs. A small one is popular for work on toilets.

3. Basin Wrench (tap wrench)

One of the most used tools for plumbers, the basin wrench is self-tightening and is used to replace or repair old taps.  More expensive models come with a telescoping shank that allows greater accuracy.

4. Pipe wrench

These are the staple of any good plumbers tool kit. There are lots of different pipe wrenches for lots of different applications, and each of them comes in different sizes.

5. Torch

As a plumber, you’ll often find yourself in attics, basements and under cupboards with minimum light. A good torch allows you to diagnose the problem and do an accurate job.

6. Bucket

The bucket is extremely useful and has multiple applications and uses. Probably the most simple but useful item a plumber could have, especially if you find yourself in a situation with lots of water!

7. Pressure Tester

Checking the pressure in pipes before you carry out work is essential. A simple pressure tester will help you assess the level of water in the pipes before you end up soaking wet.

8. Pipe Cutters

Also known as an Automatic Pipe Cutter, Pipe Slice and Single Handed Pipe Cutter – pipe cutter can cut through most piping with ease and produce a cleaner cut than using a hacksaw. They can also be used in tight spaces with hard to reach pipes.

9. Adjustable Spanners

Adjustable spanners are a fundamental tool not just for plumbers, but for every tradesman and are used to turn nuts, bolts and fastenings. Having a quality pair of spanners will mean you can adjust compression joints without damaging the pipework.

10. Blowlamp and gas

An essential tool for creating water-tight seals and joints, Plumbers use blowlamps for sealing and fixing copper pipes. It is important to purchase a good quality blowlamp that produces a fine flame at a high temperature to provide soldered joints that don’t leak.

11. Emergency valve

Because you never know what situation you’re walking into, an emergency valve is an essential piece of kit to stop the flow of water in a pipe.

12. Jointing Compound/ Putty

Plumber’s putty is used to make watertight seals around faucets and drains. Some of the most common uses for plumber’s putty include sinks and tub drains.

13. Pipe Bender

A pipe bender is the quickest and easiest way to bend pipes. They can be more costly than the manual spring alternative, however they get the job done fast – just what a busy plumber needs.

14. Plunger

Many people have these in their homes already and plumbers consider this iconic tool as their best friend. Plungers are cheap to buy and in often cases can be a simple solution to combat sink, toilet, drain or bath blockages.

15. Assortment of Allan Keys

Having a variety of Allan keys is important as many taps and shower heads are held on with screws that need Allan keys in order to be removed.

16. Radiator Key and Spanner

These tools can usually be found together in tool supply stores and are a crucial staple of any plumbers kit. The kay allows you to bleed a radiator whilst the spanner lets you adjust the valves.

17. Gas Meter Box Key

Because you’ll never know where the next job will be, a universal gas meter key is essential for accessing the gas meter.

18. Stop Cock Key

Another essential that is used for turning off mains water supply, especially in emergency situations.

Checkout this great video for a more extensive selection of tools you could have…

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