Every homeowner and every real estate investor should have at least a rudimentary level of plumbing. Such knowledge is useful during initial inspections(not to replace a professional inspection) prior to purchase and to be able to describe needed repairs to a licensed plumber after purchase. Many dollars can also be saved over the years by doing basic plumbing repairs and upgrades yourself instead of hiring a professional.
“Plumbing”, published by Sunset Books as part of their You Can Build series, is an excellent do-it-yourself book. It is written clearly and concisely by Esther Ferington and the editors of Sunset Books. All major topics are covered in depth along with illustrating color photos. This book is a good starting place for those with no knowledge of plumbing and also a good refresher for anyone that is out of practice.
A lot of money can be saved by doing simple plumbing jobs like installing a new faucet yourself instead of hiring a licensed plumber, especially if a problem occurs during the weekend.
The book starts by surveying the tools and materials used in common plumbing systems. The specific use of each tool and pipe material is covered, as well as the reasons for using them. Basic bathroom and kitchen repairs and upgrades come next, followed by a thorough chapter on sinks, clothes washers and water heaters. The final chapters are about installing new plumbing lines and outdoor plumbing projects.
For any homeowner, real estate investor and/or landlord trying to save money on simple plumbing repairs or upgrades, this is a great book that will get you through fixing a leaking toilet, replacing a faucet set or installing a low-flow shower head. Those more confident of their abilities will find detailed instructions and illustrations for replacing/installing new sinks, toilets, clothes washer connections, etc… At the very least, enough plumbing information can be gleaned from a thorough reading to know if a hired, licensed plumber is on the right track.
Suggested retail price for “Plumbing” is $24.95 in soft-cover. Amazon.com has it available for $18.21 new. Many local libraries will have it in stock as well.