Every pro plumber has a plumbing toolkit with specialized pieces. That’s because plumbing requires a great deal of skill and equipment that’s specific to the task. Every plumber’s tool has a dedicated purpose, and here’s an overview of the best plumbing tools that are essential for every plumber’s toolkit, organized by use categories.
Safety equipment makes for the most essential of plumbing tools because if you can’t keep yourself, your staff, and your clients safe, you won’t have a job or business very long. There are three pieces of safety gear that are critical inclusions in every plumbing toolkit.
29. Face Masks and Safety Goggles
Plumbing jobs always mean getting up close to pipes and fixtures where some pretty unhealthy and sometimes downright dangerous substances collect, so it’s important to protect your eyes and face.
28. Heavy-Duty Gloves
Gloves will likewise keep your hands from coming into contact with dangerous contaminants. They’ll also give you some extra grip while you’re working and help protect you from injuries.
27. Heat Shields and Pads
Use these to protect both yourself and your surroundings from harm caused by heat. This is vital when you’re working on hot water and hydronic heating systems as well as hot water pipes.
Wrenches of various types are essential hand tools for plumbers. These are the top five types to include in your plumbing toolkit.
26. Pipe Wrenches
The pipe wrench, often the largest wrench in a plumber’s toolkit, is for loosening and tightening fittings on pipes.
25. Adjustable Wrenches
An adjustable wrench is an important plumbing tool for loosening and tightening fittings and nuts that have hexagonal shapes.
24. Basin Wrenches
These have a T-shaped design and are great for work on faucets and in tight spaces.
23. Specialized Wrenches
There are also wrenches specifically designed for working on garbage disposals, shower valves, and other fixtures, so you’ll likely find it useful to have a full set of specialty wrenches in your kit.
22. Faucet Keys
Faucet keys aren’t technical wrenches but they’re in the same family. These small plumbing tools are used for opening and closing spigots and sillcocks.
A large number of plumbing jobs involve unclogging something, be it pipes, drains, garbage disposal units or something similar. These three plumbing tools are essential for those jobs.
Plumbers use industrial-grade varieties of this plumbing tool because they have more sucking power than the average household plunger does.
20. Hand Auger
The plunger is among the basic tools for plumbers, but when it can’t get the job done, a plumber turns to the hand auger as one of the essential plumbing tools. This hand-held tool sends a cable deep into drains to clear out the worst clogs and blockages.
19. Snake Machine
This is a larger, motorized version of the hand auger that brings even more power to a job.
Hand Tools for Plumbers Working on Pipes
Almost all plumbing jobs will require you to do something with your customer’s pipes. So, it’s going to come as no surprise that the biggest category of plumbing tools is related to those tasks.
Pliers are also among the best tools for plumbers. Because they’re smaller than wrenches are, they work well with smaller nuts and in tighter spaces.
17. Pipe Cutters
When you need to cut and/or resize a pipe, pipe cutters are your go-to tool. Compact in design, their open end has a cutter specifically designed for use on pipes ranging from plastic to copper.
Pipe cutters are safer, but sometimes the task calls for a hacksaw.
15. Plumber’s Torch
This compact, handheld tool will be your best friend when you’re soldering to seal copper pipes.
14. Metal File
Customers won’t be happy if they cut themselves on rough metal edges. So a metal file is a very handy thing to have in your plumber’s toolbox.
13. Hose and Tube Cutters
Specialty cutters designed for specific tasks are a part of every plumber’s kit.
12. Tape for Sealing Threads
Use this to patch or prevent leaks where there are threaded joint connections. The best tape resists high and low temperatures and doesn’t dry out.
11. Press Fitting Systems
These systems secure pipe connections by creating a connection or seal that’s impermeable.
No good plumber ever forgets that caulk and a caulk gun are simple ways to create seals.
Once cutting-edge but now mainstream, these are tiny cameras mounted to a long, flexible cable. Plumbers use them for a good look into piping and what might be the cause of obstruction.
Crimping joins separate pieces of metal or other materials. To do so, they change the form of one piece so that it can hold another. These tools are critical for joining pipes in a variety of circumstances.
7. PEX Piping
Flexible and resilient, this type of piping is becoming more popular because it’s so reliable and convenient. PEX expanders widen the mouth of the pipe, and then the mouth closes back in to make a perfect seal, making them great for applications that need to be watertight.
6. Stubby Screwdrivers
Not exactly fancy, these tools can be game-changers in hard-to-reach places.
Marketing Tools for Plumbers
Very few plumbers can build a thriving business without doing some form of marketing. Thankfully, you don’t need many tools for this.
5. Graphic Design Software
Most of your marketing and advertising materials will include one or more images. So basic graphic design software will be one of the best plumbing tools you can add to your arsenal. Something basic and free, like Canva, should be enough.
4. Social Media Schedule Tool
Modern plumbers are usually more successful when they advertise to and engage with prospective clients on social media. The thing is, you don’t want to be wasting time on social media in between jobs (or worse, while you’re on the job). A social media scheduling tool will enable you to schedule posts for publication ahead of time.
Business Management Software Designed for Plumbers
You don’t get paid to market your business, but if you’re doing it right, it should lead to revenue. The same cannot be said for regular administrative tasks. They may be necessary for running your business and providing a great service to your customers, but they just aren’t going to generate an income. So, the more quickly and efficiently you can get your business admin done, the better! These tools will help with that.
3. Finance Management Software
If you don’t know how much money you’re spending and earning, even if you’re a sole trader, you’ll almost certainly get into trouble at some point. Every business owner should have software they can rely on to track incoming and outgoing money and help them prepare for tax time.
You’ll save the most time and have far fewer money headaches if you look for software that integrates invoicing, payments, and receipts with financial reporting so you don’t have to manually enter payments into a cashflow spreadsheet.
2. Customer Management Software
It’s far cheaper and more profitable to convince existing customers to keep coming back to you than it is to be constantly looking for new customers. But providing a great service to repeat customers means you have to remember everything you’ve done for them in the past. If you only have a few customers, that’s not such a problem. When you have lots, it becomes nearly impossible. That’s why customer relationship management (CRM) software was invented.
A CRM will enable you to keep track of all the work you perform for each customer as well as their invoices and payments, so you can delight customers and keep them loyal to you. It’ll also increase the chances they’ll tell their friends and colleagues to choose you for all their plumbing needs.
1. Field Service Management Software
The more customers you have (and the more employees you have), the harder it gets to manage job scheduling and dispatch to emergency jobs. You could invest in software specifically for those tasks, but if you need help with that plus customer management and finance management, you’ll find it much easier to go with a single tool that has specialist capabilities in all those areas and more.
Field service management (FSM) software is software specifically built to help businesses that operate ‘in the field’ — like plumbers, electricians, and HVAC technicians. FSM software includes absolutely everything you need to handle quotes, invoicing, payments, scheduling, dispatch, reporting, customers, inventory, and more, both in the office and at the job site.
Optsy for Everything
Optsy’s FSM software includes all that and, as a bonus, is fully customizable to suit the exact needs of your unique business. It’s also super easy to use as we’ve built the interface to resemble tools you’ll already be familiar with.
Working with this user-friendly, familiar platform, you’ll also have free expert onboarding assistance to ensure you get all your data in and are up and running as soon as possible. Once you’re up and running with Optsy FSM software, you’ll be saving you, your staff, and your business time, money, and a great many headaches.
We offer a free demo and charge no setup fees, so there’s nothing to lose by making the switch to Optsy. Schedule your obligation-free demonstration now.