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How to plumb yourself out of difficulty

Tools you will need from Thompson & Parkes:

  • Spirit level

  • Steel Wool

  • Pipe Cutter

  • Sealants

  • Adjustable wrench

  • Tape Measure

  • Bucket

  • Screwdrivers

  • Drain cleaner

  • Hack saw

Turn Off the water supply

With most plumbing jobs you will need to turn off the water supply. Once the water is turned off, open the taps on your sink until the water stops running.

Unblocking the waste trap

There a few different waste traps. The most common are the ‘S’, ‘P’ and ‘shower’ traps. They’re all pretty similar and can be disconnected by removing the large nits at the bottom of the trap to release them.

Put a large bucket underneath the trap to catch any discharge. Unscrew the nuts.

To unblock the waste pipe, remove the trap and clear the blockage into the bucket.

Check the rubber washers are in place and reconnect them into position.

Finally, pass some water through the waste trap and check for leaks.

Changing a ball valve

Ball valves control the level of water in your cold water tank. They can seize up over time. If the overflow pipe on the tank has water dripping or flowing from it, it’s a sign that your ball valve might need changing

  • Firstly shut off the mains water stopcock to stop the water flow to the ball valve.

  • Undo the nut connecting the supply pipe to the ball valve body

  • There are two big nuts on the ball valve, either side of the tank wall, that hold the ball valve in place. Unscrew the back nut on the outside of the tank. You can then remove the ball valve.

  • Fit the new ball valve and screw on the back nut. Make sure the ball valve is secure by tightening the back nut with a pair of grips.

  • Replace the washer on the nut connection and tighten it.

  • Finally, turn on the mains stopcocks and make sure there are no leaks.

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