For most newbies, being sent on the first commercial plumbing assignment can create a feeling of anxiety. Although it is normal, especially if a project is relatively complex, such anxiety might lead to errors and consequently substandard work. Therefore, it is critical that every new plumber is well prepared for the first day. This article highlights a few tricks that you can put to use to alleviate anxiety on your first commercial plumbing task.
Can't Cut Pipe? Reheat Solder -- One common situation that new plumbers find themselves in is not having all the right tools for their first solo job. For instance, if you have to cut a pipe, but you do not have the right cutting tool, then you might be left wondering what to do next. Since going back to your workshop for the right device is not an option, you need to get smart in such a case. If the pipe in question is connected to another one by solder, you can heat the solder using your propane blow torch to loosen the joint. As the solder melts away, pull off the piping slowly. However, you need to be careful because if you do not wipe off the molten solder immediately, it will harden and the process will take you longer than necessary. Finally, use sandpaper to grind off any remaining weld.
Wrap Thread Tape the Right Way -- As you already know, pipe threads make connections tight enough to prevent leakages. However, the use of tape improves the integrity of such sealing. On your first day, it might seem to not matter if you wrap the thread tape whichever way. However, such innocent mistakes could lead to leakage-related damage to a client's premises. Ideally, you are supposed to wrap a plumber's tape in the clockwise direction to prevent it from unwrapping once you start to screw the joint together. Wrapping threads the right way will generally improve the longevity of your work.
Always Carry a Flame Resistant Rug -- As mentioned earlier, there are moments where you might need to use a propane blow torch as a workaround solution. In such instances, you need to protect the surrounding surfaces because some will be made of plastic or ceramic. For this reason, you should remember to carry a flame-resistant cloth on your first job. Wrap the fabric around nearby surfaces before you use your blow torch.