Six simple bathroom repairs all new homeowners should know

Bathroom repairs homeowners should knowGuest post by Brooke Chaplan.

When it comes to home repairs, a lot of people are put off by the thought of tackling anything related to the plumbing. If something goes wrong, there could be a flood, water damage, and a long repair time. Many minor plumbing repairs in the bathroom can be made with little to no risk, and some repairs don’t involve water or technical plumbing know-how at all.

Change an Aerator
If you turn on the bathroom sink and water comes out in several separate streams rather than one full stream, the solution is as simple as changing the aerator. To do so, simply unscrew the head of the faucet, pop out the old aerator and put the new one in. You should also check to see if the washer needs to be replaced.

Unclogging a Toilet, Sink, or Bathtub
Almost everyone is going to need to unclog some drains at some point. A plunger is the best bet for toilets in most cases. Makes sure to start gently to avoid making a mess, then apply more force as needed. A drain auger can be used for tougher clogs in the toilet, but should usually be the first choice for sinks and bathtubs. With sinks, it is sometimes necessary to take apart the pipes beneath the basin and a bathtub might need a chemical drain cleaner to use on stubborn blockages.

Caulking and Grouting
If caulk starts to look grungy, it should be pulled off and new caulk applied. It is a very simple process, but getting the hang of applying a tidy line of caulk can take practice. When grout gets dirty, it should be scrubbed down to get the grime off, then a new coat applied over the old to give it a bright, fresh appearance. A wet sponge can be useful to help keep either job looking tidy.

Change the flapper in a toilet
If a toilet won’t stop running, South West Plumbing says it is usually the flapper. You’ll find it in the tank and it is very easy to take out and reinstall. To replace this, simply detach it and put the new one on.

Replace a Sink Faucet
This may seem daunting, but it is simply a matter of turning off the water, unscrewing a few rings, and then attaching the new one in its place. You can get all new hardware, or simply upgrade to a better style that works better in your bathroom. All you need for this job is a few tools.

Stop a Dripping Handle
While this is a simple job, it does require some special tools. Anyone attempting to stop a dripping handle on a faucet should have a pair of channel locks and if it’s the bathtub handle, a special socket that will allow them to unscrew the inner part. Once the handle is taken off, stopping the leak is usually a matter of tightening the packing nut inside.

While plumbing repairs can be daunting due to the consequences if something goes wrong, many are simple enough that homeowners can try them with little risk of causing damage to their bathroom. Usually all you need is a few tools and the advice to know where to start.

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