When asked what a plumber does, the most common responses are “unclog drains,” “patch leaks,” and “fix clogged toilets.” But there’s so much more that can be accomplished by a professional plumber. If you’re having trouble figuring out what to look for in a plumbing service, we’re here to help. Here are some things to think about when selecting a plumber.
Factors to Consider When Choosing a Plumbing Service
Ask for a License or Certification
More often than not, people assume that all plumbers have licenses. Many plumbers give the impression that they are licensed when they are not. After all, if you’ve been working on a skill long enough, you’re bound to know all the bells and whistles.
A plumber’s license should be verified whenever possible. You can verify a plumber’s license by asking for the appropriate paperwork. Knowing that your problem is being handled by a trained professional can be reassuring.
To become licensed, a plumber must first register with a regulatory agency. Don’t just take a plumber’s word for it. Always get proof of licensing or certification. A licensed plumber should always have their credentials on hand to present to potential customers.
A license is required for everyone, even trainees. So don’t hesitate to ask before asking them to work on your home.
Ask about Their Range of Plumbing Repair Options
There are so many things that could go wrong with your plumbing, so it’s best to make sure that the plumbing service you hire can handle any issue that may arise, both now and in the future. Additionally, if they can offer a lot of plumbing services, you can just keep having the same plumber work on your home.
You shouldn’t hire a plumber just based on whether or not they are licensed and insured. You should also look at the range of services they offer. Some of these options are preferable to conventional techniques of repair because they are more efficient, economical, and secure:
- Kitchen sink/faucet repair
- Sewer relining
- Pipe bursting
- Sectional point repair
- Lateral reinstatement
- Toilet repair
- Manhole-to-manhole lining
- Realty services
- Bathtub repair
- Drain cleaning and clog removal
- Hot water heater repair/installation
- Commercial and residential plumbing
- Video sewer and drain inspection
- Cured-in-place pipelining
- Line and utility locating
The greatest plumbing repair services have at their disposal not just plumbing instruments, but also cutting-edge approaches to plumbing problems. It might save you a ton of money on pipe repair if you can find a local plumber who provides the services you require.
Of course, you still have to make sure they’re not just trying to sell you stuff that you don’t need. It’s best to try and collect opinions from other experts or do your own research about the services that they’re pitching.
Ask for Insurance
Try asking, “Are you bonded and insured?”
If they say yes, this could indicate that the plumber is ready to provide you with proof of licensing and insurance. If the plumber asks why, tell them you don’t want to be held liable if they are hurt on the job or in your home while fixing the plumbing. You are perfectly within your rights (and duties) to inquire about this. Likewise, if a plumber causes damage to your home, the insurer will pay for it.
If you want, you can also ask for their specific plumber’s insurance.
The term “plumber’s insurance” is used to describe a specific type of business insurance that is tailored to the specific dangers that plumbers face. A specialized insurance agency may tailor policies of this type to meet the specific requirements of plumbing businesses and freelance plumbers.
Plumber’s liability insurance is a subset of commercial general liability insurance, however, the two terms are often used interchangeably. Some businesses and contractors face unique dangers that necessitate specialized insurance, so asking about what their insurance covers can also give you peace of mind.
Additionally, don’t hesitate to ask for a guarantee or warranty. The majority of licensed plumbers will guarantee their services. If something goes wrong or if you’re unhappy with the results, knowing you’re covered by this guarantee or warranty can give you some much-needed peace of mind.
Check Their Experience
When having work done on your property, you want the most experienced professional possible. A reputable plumbing business that has been around for decades will have experienced plumbers on staff. Additionally, they are less prone to vanish in the midst of a repair job.
Ask how long they’ve been in business or how long a particular plumber has been working.
If you claim to be the most qualified plumber in the area but have no actual experience, you might as well be an apprentice. It takes years of practice to become an expert plumber, so it’s best to hire someone with plenty of industry expertise to avoid any unpleasant surprises.
A plumber with a lengthy history in the industry is a solid bet because it shows they know what they’re doing and consistently delivers satisfactory results. A larger company is also more likely to employ plumbers with extensive experience, but specific recommendations can be helpful.
Be Specific about the Price
You’d want to make the most out of what you’re paying for and you don’t want to be liable for any missed payments and extra charges, so be sure to ask the following questions:
“Is It an Hourly Rate or a Flat Rate?”
Find out if the plumber charges by the hour or if you’ll be charged a flat amount when you obtain your estimate. You’re usually expected to pay for all incidental expenses that arise throughout the course of a project or as stated in the contract.
The time it takes the plumber to complete the service is factored into an hourly rate, but not a flat rate. A disadvantage of paying by the hour is that your bill will increase if the job takes longer than anticipated. There’s also the risk that they might be intentionally working slowly just to run your bill. Before you employ a plumber, read over the contract carefully.
“Is This the Best Price?”
As with any service or product, the price plays a significant role in the final verdict. To ensure you get the greatest price, it’s best to seek quotes from at least three different plumbing service providers. However, you should be wary of any quote that is significantly lower than the others. It’s possible that the plumber is using subpar materials to keep the price low.
“Can You Give Me an Estimate?” or “What is the estimated total cost of your service?”
You should always exercise extreme caution if not skepticism when considering phone estimates. The best plumbers will always request visual confirmation of the issue with your pipes before providing a quote for fixing them.
The price of any replacement parts used to fix the problem is also factored in by seasoned pros. Ask the plumber you’re thinking of hiring if the quoted price includes the cost of all necessary parts and labour. A documented estimate, including labour and part costs, should be requested after the problem has been identified but before any work is undertaken.
“When Is Payment Due?”
Find out the plumber’s payment terms and how much they expect up front. Never fork over the full price at once. Some plumbers will require partial payment as they complete certain stages of the task. Some plumbers may want milestone payments, such as a certain percentage of the total paid every week or two.
It is possible to pay the plumber at the completion of the job if they don’t anticipate a lengthy project. If the job ends up taking longer than expected, it’s in everyone’s best interest to pay the plumber in stages as they complete each section. As a result, the plumber is incentivized to increase his productivity.
Research Their Reputation
A reputable reputation is its own reward. So, it’s safer to hire a plumbing service that has received numerous great evaluations. In the plumbing industry, recommendations are everything. A happy customer is always willing to recommend your services to others. Before scouring the internet for reviews, you might want to ask your friends or neighbours for recommendations.
At the same time, do your own research and check the plumber’s website and social media pages for feedback from previous customers. The Internet is so public that it compels service providers to be honest with their customers. If a plumber is known to provide poor service, it won’t take long to find out about it online.
You can also ask for referrals for a plumber from your electrician, HVAC person, or other tradespersons. They usually have recommendations for reliable local plumbers, and if you mention their names, you may even get a discount.
Find Out Their Locations
If you want to do your part to aid the community, it’s preferable to hire a plumber from within your area. Hiring a local plumber also has a lot of benefits.
Pipes rupture, water heaters leak, and flooding are all common issues that require an emergency plumber. It’s great to hire plumbers in the area because they can react swiftly to emergency calls. You can also come up with a list of plumbers in your area to learn more about their service hours, pricing, and policies, as well as whether or not they charge extra for calls made outside of normal business hours.
Hiring a local plumber also has the benefit of them being familiar with the area. Local plumbers are familiar with these details and can solve any problem effectively. Your home’s water system may also be impacted by the local water supply and municipal regulations.
A quick Google search for “plumbers Burlington” or “plumbers near me” can also help you quickly find plumbing services in your area.