Interested in becoming a plumber? Then you are going to need a lot of tools and equipment. Good thing we created this list of 11 Plumbing Tools every plumber needs, plus a few items that are useful for homeowners.
Now, to make it as a plumber you are going to need more than 11 tools. But if you get all the items on this plumbing tools list then you’re off to a great start in your career as a plumber. Or you will at least be prepared to unclog any sink drain. Some of these items may appeal to you if you’re a newer homeowner, or will help you know what you need to address certain plumbing issues in your home.
So, let’s take a look at the top 11 plumbing tools every plumber needs.
Wrenches are a plumbers go-to tool. They will be used during almost every jobs. You’re going to want a quality set with a lot of variety so you are prepared for every scenario.
- Recommendation: RIDGID 3-piece Straight Pipe Heavy-Duty Wrench Set
- Features: Includes a 10 in., 18 in., and 24 in. straight pipes with hook jaws and self-cleaning threads.
- Where to Buy: $124.39 at The Home Depot
This might be a bit much for a homeowner, but a plumbing camera is a worthy investment for a professional plumber. It cuts out guesswork and gets a clear shot of the issue so you can get to work. It also provides a great visual for sharing with clients so they understand any problems in their plumbing.
- Recommendation: Vevor Sewer Camera with 9 in. Display and 200 ft. Snake Cable
- Features: 9 in. LCD color monitor, 200 ft. snake cable with LED light, and includes 8 GB SD card for video storage.
- Home Depot Review: “I have nothing but nice things to say about this camera. I use it almost every day at work and it has saved me from a lot of callbacks and sold bigger jobs. Worth every penny” – Michael
- Where to Buy: $769.99 from The Home Depot
- Homeowner’s Alternative: Vevor Sewer Camera base model with only 100 ft. snake cable for $306.79 on Amazon.
In addition to wrenches, you will need some basic hand tools to tackle issues as they arise.
Plumber’s tape is a quick and easy way to seal pipes. This stuff will be a staple in your tool case. It’s readily and affordably available at most hardware stores.
- Where to Buy: Buy for less than $10 on Amazon
When a clog just won’t go away, reach for an auger. An auger will come to the rescue when an inexperienced DIY’er install includes a sharp 90° pipe, and in older homes that need a new waste stack. In the second scenario, you will ultimately need to replace the pipe, but an auger can buy you time before taking on that kind of construction project.
Basically, if a plunger can’t do it, an auger can.
- Recommendation: RIDGID K-400 Drain Cleaning Snake Auger
- Features: Clears 1.5 to 3 in. pipes, includes 75 ft. of cable.
- Home Depot Review: “Recently started my own small plumbing company. This is the first sewer machine I’ve had and while it may be small compared to others, it’s perfect for most of what I do.” – Jimi the Plumber
- Where to Buy: $597 from The Home Depot
- Homeowner’s Alternative: RIDGID Power Spin+ Hybrid Drain Cleaning Snake Auger for $53.98 from The Home Depot.
You are dealing with sewage and other items that contain a lot of bacteria, so make sure you have the proper PPE. Also, knee pads. Sure when you are young it’s not an issue. But if you don’t take care of your knees now, you will be dealing with them when you are older.
- Recommendation: Browse Plumbing PPE on Amazon
7Torch & Heat Shield
Not only is a torch good for soldering copper but this tool comes in handy when loosening pipe. Remember some of the pipes have been attached for decades, they won’t easily just turn. Sometimes a little heat goes a long way.
8PVC/PEX and Copper Tube Cutters
You will need a variety of different cutters. They don’t have to be battery-powered unless you are in the trades, you will want to invest in battery operated cutter. As a homeowner, you will need to be able to cut both copper and PVC pipes.
Here’s a great option from DeWALT:
I know I said wrenches are one of the most used tools but the bucket is right up there. A bucket is great for taking all your tools to one location and then it can be used to catch dripping water. Plus it’s a great seat for lunch.
- Recommendation: Home Depot Buckets work great
10Press Fitting Tool for PVC/PEX and Copper
Not a homeowner tool but if you are looking to get into the trades, a quality press tool is worth the investment.
Part of plumbing is also demolition so a quality reciprocating saw will make your life easier. It doesn’t matter if you are cutting galvanized pipe or 2x4s to get into tight areas, a reciprocating saw is a must.
- Recommendation: Milwaukee M18 SAWZALL Reciprocating Saw
- Features: Cordless 18V reciprocating saw with efficient brushless motor.
- Home Depot Review: “Excellent power! But still runs very smooth and quite!” – Iamhe
- Where to Buy: $129 from The Home Depot
Plumbing Tools Wrap-up
So there we have it, 11 plumbing tools that every plumber needs. Again, you still have a long list of tools and supplies to get. But get these items and you’ll be able to start answering calls and taking plumbing jobs.