There are many things that can go wrong with any given plumbing system. If there weren’t, the plumbing industry wouldn’t still be as lucrative as it is. However, some plumbing problems can at least be temporarily solved without the help of a professional — if you have the proper tools and know how to use them.
One such useful tool for a home plumbing project as well as automotive projects is the hose clamp, invented by Lumley Robinson in 1921. Hose clamps are a small simple device often used for quickly fixing damaged pipes in an emergency. They can be made of several different materials and come in many sizes.
Hose clamps have a circular shape and their primary function is to wrap around the connection of a hose and barb, sealing it with even pressure applied on all sides to prevent leakages of any kind. The types of hose clamps include worm gear, wire, spring, and mini hose clamps. The most effective type of hose clamp will depend on the specific project.
Worm Gear Hose Clamps.
A worm gear hose clamp functions like a zip-tie, and can be made of plastic, nylon, or a flexible metal. The size of the clamp is adjusted by snaking the length of the clamp through a locking device. Once the device is snugly wrapped around the pipe it can be locked into place. One downside of worm gear clamps is that they typically need to be re-tightened over time. Be careful not to tie it too tight, though!
Wire Hose Clamps.
Wire hose clamps can be thinner or thicker depending on the type of wire used, but they all function similarly. One or two heavy wires are typically wrapped around a screw in a “U” shape. The screw is then tightened or loosened depending on the size of the pipe the clamp must wrap around.
Spring Hose Clamps.
Spring hose clamps are similar to wire hose clamps, except that they usually rely on pliers to tighten and loosen them as opposed to a wrench or screwdriver, since spring hose clamps don’t use screws or locking devices.
Mini Hose Clamps.
Mini hose clamps are basically smaller versions of all types of hose clamps, used for smaller, thinner pipes. These clamps are most often used to fix air and fuel lines in automobiles.
Whatever the project, hose clamps are one of those everyday devices that are easy to use and incredibly useful for quick repairs. It’s important to measure the diameter of the object being clamped before choosing which type of hose clamp you’ll need!