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A Step-by-Step Guide to Planning and Executing Plumbing Services for Laundry or Kitchen Renovations

Are you a homeowner builder ready to tackle a kitchen or laundry renovation?
These projects can significantly boost the value and functionality of your home, but they require meticulous planning, especially in relation to the plumbing.

This guide offers a comprehensive look at the essential plumbing considerations to ensure your renovation project is both efficient and effective. At the end of the article we give an example of a recently completed project with details including before and after shots.

Designing Your Plumbing System

Begin by mapping out where each plumbing fixture will be located in your new layout. For example, if you’re planning a kitchen island, you’ll need to consider the logistics of running water supply and drain lines to the centre of the room. In a laundry room, think about where the washing machine will be and how the drain and water lines will connect, to ease hose connections and reduce flood risk. If a leak occurs, easier drainage away from the appliance and prevents water from pooling around it. This can be especially helpful in preventing damage to the appliance itself and the surrounding area. Always ensure that your design adheres to local building codes, which may dictate everything from pipe materials to the diameter of drain lines.

Upgrading Plumbing Fixtures

Upgrade to water-efficient fixtures that blend seamlessly with your design aesthetic and offer long-term savings. In the kitchen, consider a deep, single-basin sink paired with a pull-down tap that has multiple spray options such as detachable nozzle heads or nozzles with high-efficiency rating. For the laundry room, a front-loading washing machine is ideal for water conservation and space efficiency. These upgrades not only enhance the space’s functionality but also contribute to a more sustainable home.

Consulting with a Professional Plumber

Even for the experienced DIYer, certain aspects of plumbing are best left to professionals. For instance, installing a new sewer line for a relocated toilet or rerouting pipes for a major kitchen remodel requires expert knowledge to avoid future problems. A licensed plumber can also help you navigate permits and inspections, ensuring your project complies with all regulations. Their expertise might reveal unexpected problems or solutions, such as adjusting pipe layouts to accommodate other renovation elements like new cabinetry or structural beams.

Ensuring Adequate Ventilation

Proper ventilation is critical to prevent moisture problems and maintain indoor air quality. In the kitchen, installing a high-quality range hood that vents to the outdoors can help remove excess heat, odours, and humidity. In the laundry room, consider a combination of passive vents and active exhaust fans to keep air fresh and dry. This strategy is particularly important in tightly sealed modern homes where natural ventilation is limited.

Planning for the Future

Future-proofing your plumbing is a wise investment. For example, if you plan to sell the house, universal design features like a no-threshold. This type of shower does not have a step or raised section at the entry. It is level with the surrounding floor, making it easily accessible for individuals in wheelchairs, those with mobility issues, or anyone who might have difficulty stepping over a traditional shower threshold. This design reduces the risk of trips and falls, making it safer and more accessible. shower or a wall-mounted sink can appeal to a broader range of buyers. Additionally, installing extra shutoff valves or preparing the infrastructure for potential additions like a bathroom or outdoor kitchen can save you considerable time and money in the future.

Taking the time to carefully plan and execute your kitchen or laundry renovation with a focus on plumbing can turn a daunting task into a rewarding investment. By considering both immediate needs and potential future requirements, you ensure that your home remains functional, attractive, and valuable for years to come. Don’t hesitate to leverage professional advice and high-quality materials to achieve the best results.

Common Plumbing Mistakes to Avoid During Your Laundry or Kitchen Renovation

Renovating your kitchen or laundry room is a significant undertaking that can enhance your home’s functionality and aesthetics. However, plumbing, often hidden behind the walls and under floors, plays a crucial role in these spaces. Mistakes in plumbing during renovations can lead to costly repairs and prolonged inconvenience. Below we explore common plumbing errors and provide advice on how to avoid them, ensuring a smooth renovation process for your kitchen or laundry.

Neglecting to Plan Ahead

One of the biggest mistakes homeowner builders make is not planning the plumbing layout in advance. It’s essential to have a detailed plan that accounts for the location of sinks, washing machines, dishwashers, and any water or waste outlets. Planning helps avoid potential conflicts, such as pipes clashing with electrical wiring or structural elements. Always consult a professional plumber during the planning phase to use their expertise in mapping out the most efficient and code-compliant system.

Ignoring Building Codes and Regulations

Each local area in Australia has specific building codes and regulations that govern plumbing installations. Failing to adhere to these codes can lead not only to fines but also major issues that might require redoing the plumbing from scratch. Common code violations include incorrect pipe sizing, improper ventilation, and inadequate drainage slopes. Ensure your contractor is familiar with and follows the Australian Standards and the National Construction Code (NCC) requirements.

Choosing the Wrong Materials

Using incorrect or substandard materials can lead to premature wear and leaks. For instance, using non-waterproof materials in wet areas can cause significant damage over time. Always opt for high-quality, durable plumbing materials that are appropriate for their application. This includes choosing the right type of pipes (e.g., PVC, copper) and fixtures that are designed to withstand the specific demands of kitchen and laundry environments.

Choosing (Cheap) Plumbing Fixtures

It is our view that buying quality plumbing fixtures is a worthwhile investment that last longer as the componentry is superior reducing future plumbing maintenance costs. Buying cheaper or imported  plumbing fixtures can result in the product being incompatible with Australian connections, these can be non-compliant and cost more in the long run.

Overlooking Future Access for Maintenance

During renovation, it’s tempting to prioritize aesthetics and overlook practical aspects like maintenance access. However, valves, drains, and traps should be easily accessible for future repairs and upkeep. Design cabinets and panels so they can be removed if necessary, allowing easy access to shut-off valves and drainage systems without needing to dismantle half the room.

DIY Overconfidence

While DIY projects can be rewarding, complex plumbing work should generally be left to the professionals. Mistakes made during DIY plumbing can lead to leaks, water damage, and costly repairs. Professional plumbers have the tools, training, and knowledge to ensure that the job is done right the first time. Their plumbing work should be guaranteed and insured, providing peace of mind.

Inadequate Waterproofing

In both kitchens and laundries, effective waterproofing is crucial to prevent moisture penetration that can lead to mould, mildew, and structural damage. Ensure waterproofing measures are taken seriously, with appropriate materials and professional application, especially around sinks, dishwashers, and washing machines.

A well-thought-out and properly executed plumbing strategy is crucial for any kitchen or laundry renovation. By avoiding these common mistakes, you can ensure that your renovation enhances your home’s value and functionality. Remember, when in doubt, consulting with a professional plumber can provide guidance and help you avoid costly errors. Take the right steps towards a successful renovation and enjoy a functional, beautiful space for years to come.

Recent Renovation Project – Job Tasks

Before Images

Plumbing works to renovate main bathroom at rough in stage:

  • Demolished existing plumbing fixtures and removed plaster in the main bathroom.
  • Replaced old hot and cold piping with new piping for bathroom fixtures.
  • Installed new waste piping for the shower, double basin, and toilet.
  • Replaced the old sewer stack with a new 100mm pipe to connect bathroom fixtures.
  • Relocated water supply
  • Secured all piping and seal wall penetrations

After Images

Plumbing works to renovate main bathroom at fit off stage:

  • Installed new toilet suite, connecting water supply, securing to floor.
  • Secured vanity stone top and cut holes for fixtures.
  • Fitted basin units and tapware, connecting water supply and waste points.
  • Applied caulking to toilet and basin fixtures.
  • Installed new shower rail and mixer.
  • Conducted water tests to ensure no leaks.

At Doherty Plumbing Solutions, we understand that renovating your home involves a variety of changes, not just to the kitchen or laundry, but also to bathrooms, powder rooms, and even outdoor entertaining areas equipped with sophisticated kitchen setups. Our team of experienced plumbers specialises in a comprehensive range of renovation services, from the basic installation of toilets and basins to more extensive projects involving multiple fixtures, depending on the scale of the work.

Our renovation process typically includes both the “rough in” stage, where we lay out the basic plumbing framework, and the “fit off” stage, where the final installation of fixtures and appliances is completed. Whether you’re upgrading a single room or transforming multiple areas, we tailor our services to meet your specific needs and design preferences.

We provide guidance on costs and work primarily on an hourly rate, offering advice on the most suitable fixtures to match your current setup. We understand that some choices might lead to additional costs due to complexities in installation, and we’re here to help you navigate these decisions to find the best balance between functionality and budget. Additionally, for all works valued at over $750, we provide Compliance Certificates as required by the Victorian Building Authority (VBA), ensuring that our work meets all regulatory standards and quality expectations.

Our commitment to excellence and attention to detail ensures that your renovation project is executed flawlessly, meeting both your aesthetic and functional needs. At Doherty Plumbing Solutions, we pride ourselves on providing professional, reliable, and hassle-free plumbing services, making your renovation a resounding success.

Eager to see where you can start saving on your next renovation?

Check out our various locations in Melbourne right here.

Discover the full range of our offerings right here.

Reach out to chat with our friendly team at Doherty Plumbing Solutions today.

info@dohertyplumbingsolutions.com.au

(03) 9877 5775

0417 577 432

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    We were very pleased with Dohertys. They were quick to get on with the job and did it very efficiently. Very pleasant to deal with and we felt we got good value for money.
    Stephen Pallot Avatar
    Stephen Pallot
    5/20/2023
    Doherty Plumbing is a reliable, quick responding, well priced plumbing service. George was on time, friendly and did a great job. Highly recommended
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    Darryl Symes
    11/30/2023
    Great service, arrived on time and fixed our burst garden pipe quickly. Very happy with the service, would use Doherty Plumbing again.
    Anna Stewart Avatar
    Anna Stewart
    2/29/2024
    For reliable plumbing services, call 03 9877 5775 or 0417 577 432