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Home Skills. Plumbing, Install and Repair Your Own Toilets, Faucets, Sinks, Tubs, Showers, Drains

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veRYhomeowneRshoulD have a good basic understanding of the plumbing system in their home. HomeSkills: Plumbingguides you through the layout of the standard plumbing system, the materials used, both past and present, the tools necessary for repairs and projects, and numerous projects and repairs you can easily accomplish. The plumbing system, like the electrical system, may seem deeply mysterious at first glance. 

How does this seemingly jumbled assortment of pipes (especially in an older home that may have been updated many times) make any sense. You will see that it actually does make a good deal of sense. While not as dangerous as the electrical system, improperly installing or repairing plumbing systems can cause serious damage to your home through water leakage. It is important to follow current code and building practices to assure a dry, functional installation.

because most oF a plumbing system is hidden inside walls and floors, it may seem to be a complex maze of pipes and fittings. But the information in this book will help you gain a basic understanding of your system. Understanding how home plumbing works is an important first step toward doing routine mainte‑ nance and money‑saving repairs.

 A typical home plumbing system includes three basic parts: a water supply system, a fixture and appliance set, and a drain system. These three parts can be seen clearly in the photograph of the cut‑away house on the opposite page. Fresh water enters a home through a main supply line 

. This fresh water source is provided by either a municipal water company or a private underground well. If the source is a municipal supplier, the water passes through a meter  that registers the amount of water used. 

A family of four uses about 400 gallons of water each day. Immediately after the main supply enters the house, a branch line splits off  and is joined to a water heater 

. From the water heater, a hot water line runs parallel to the cold water line to bring the water supply to fixtures and appliances throughout the house. Fixtures include sinks, bathtubs, showers, and laundry tubs. Appliances include water heaters, dishwashers, clothes washers, and water softeners.