No-mess basement cleanout

When opening an overhead cleanout in the basement, tie a heavy-duty plastic trashbag around the cleanout, leaving room to get your hand in to remove the cleanout plug that you previously loosened. Cut a small corner of the trashbag bottom and put a 5-gal. bucket under the hole. Carefully open the cleanout and all the water and debris is funneled through the bag into the bucket — with no mess on you or the floor.


Dave Torville
Mr. Rooter Plumbing
Holyoke, Mass.


PVC spacer for rough-ins

Send Us Your Tool Tips

If you have an idea that has saved you time and money, Plumbing & Mechanical would like to share your tip with our readers.The first-place winner each month will receive a RIDGID Prize Package worth $200. Read here for more details.

When roughing in a large, underground area, you’re bound to miss a wall with some of your PVC risers.  Normally it’s only by a small amount but it can be a time-consuming fix. One easy solution is to wrap the riser with PVC pipe insulation before the cement is poured. This will leave a spacer around the PVC. Once the cement floor is poured and a wall is missed, cut the riser flush with the floor, dig out the insulation, glue the fitting on and move  back it into the wall.


Jeff Jaruszewicz
Longo Plumbing
Erie, Pa.


Pipe storage in van

Fence posts can be used in your work van or trailer to store pipe. I use full-length, 5-in. posts to create a false floor in my trailer. I am able to store my linear stock and keep my working height in the trailer. Once the posts are in place, I attach them to the floor with lag screws. I lay plywood over the posts, securing it with some liquid nails to keep in place. Since most fence posts come in longer lengths, it’s easy to accommodate a 6 ft. by 12 ft. trailer. This keeps the stock organized and in good condition.


Greg Szumowski
Miller Place, N.Y.