There is a difference between choosing a plumber
and choosing a builder, a joiner or a painter. The main difference is that most of the time you need to call a plumber after an emergency. This does not give you a lot of time to look for a decent one. Here are tips for finding good plumbers no matter what the situation is.
No matter how well you do your research, you will find that every trade, plumbing included, has its renegades. There are always going to be horror stories about people being ripped off. But plumbing concerns the type of work no DIY enthusiast has lots of experience doing so they are a necessity.
If you are a fan of DIY, you might like painting and decorating or be putting up cabinets or other projects like these. Soldering pipes or cleaning out sewer lines are not likely to be on your list of favorite projects. You need a good plumber but how do you know you have found the right one?
How to Find the Right Waukegan Plumber
An excellent way to start is by getting recommendations. This gives you something good to go from and lets you more readily vet the plumber. This is not always possible after a burst pipe situation.
Find a Plumber in an Emergency
The first step is to start looking online or if you have a local telephone book, a phone book. The UK offers easy searches through the Chartered Institute of Plumbing and Heating Engineering or IPHE. This is a charity that aims to improve many areas of plumbing including its practices and its engineering. Using your postcode, you can find plumbers who are registered and meet various criteria.
Once you find a few companies to phone or contact online, be clear about the questions you must ask of them before hiring them. These questions include:
How long have they been in business?
Do they have a physical office they work at which you can visit?
Ask for references.
Have they done this type of plumbing work before?
Do they have insurance to cover your property and your neighbors?
Will they guarantee the work they do? Does insurance back it? If they go out of business are you covered?
Is the plumber to be hired as a member of a professional trade organization? If you can, contact the organization or look them up online to see that they are still registered.
If it is a real emergency, you may not have time to comb through your short list of plumbers and ask all of these questions. Do your best to ask what you can. It will give you a better idea of how good the plumber is.
How Not to Hire the Right Plumber
Unless it is a dire emergency and the toilet is backed up and overflowing, you do not want to hire the first plumber you call. Try to contact a few and tell them the problem. Then ask for a quick quote. Once you have a few quotes to compare, contact the companies that have offered the most favorable. Now ask them:
What are their service call charges?
What are the hourly rates?
When do they start billing?
How Much Does a Good Plumber Charge?
There are no guidelines that set exact prices for plumbing work. You should get written quotes from various companies and notice that they are all in a similar range. Some charge for materials and some do not.
You should be prepared to pay a deposit but never feel you must pay the fully quoted price up front. Let them complete their work and then, once it is satisfactory to you, spend the remainder.
Hiring a Plumber for Routine Jobs or Renovations
If you are ready to redo your bathroom or you want to install a central heating system, you need to do more research for the right plumber. That’s all right because you will have plenty of time to do this. Get recommendations, get quotes, ask for customer testimonials and so on.
For All Plumbing Work
Get a contract in writing. This includes a description of the work to be done, the price, and the start and finishes dates of the project. Make completion dates clear if they are essential to you.
Get details on any guarantees related to parts or work.
Keep notes about how the work is going once the project starts. You do not need to be incredibly detailed, but records can help if a dispute arises in the future.
If You are Unhappy with the Plumber’s Work
If you are unsatisfied with the plumber’s work, contact them and discuss the matter calmly. If you can, put your complaint in writing first and then follow up with a call to discuss. Let them know exactly what you think was done wrong. Use your notes from the project to provide evidence. A reputable plumber will do whatever it takes to solve the problem and make you happy. Their reputation is critical to them especially if they are part of a trade organization.
If you cannot work it out with the plumber or the plumbing company
, try taking the matter up with their organization. They should do whatever possible to help you resolve things. You might also take it up with the Better Business Bureau. Always be ready to provide details of the work including copies of the contract, the start and finish dates and any photos you have of the problem. If this does not work, you might need to take the plumber to court.
While there is, unfortunately, unscrupulous plumber
out there, most plumbers want to do a good job and make customer’s lives better. It is not that hard to find a good plumber if you follow these tips.
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