Is there a leaking pipe in your home? Have you noticed some damage to the walls? If so, you must take immediate action by contacting a plumber before experiencing more severe problems. Unless fixed on time, plumbing issues have the potential to damage your walls, ceiling, floors, even your foundation.
Nevertheless, hiring the first plumber you come across isn’t exactly recommended, as you need a professional with skilled hands. These experts should be experienced, educated, trained, and available for their clients. There is a variety of plumbing companies, such as Equity Plumbing, providing quality and hassle-free services.
The following tips will help you find the right one for your plumbing needs.
The qualifications of these professionals are the first aspect to factor in when hiring one for your plumbing needs. While a college degree isn’t necessary for this industry, plumbers are still supposed to go to a trade school or undergo an apprenticeship. In the course of apprenticeships, apprentices are trained either by a journeyman or a master plumber. These programs last between three and five years, during which trainees are equipped with the required knowledge and skills.
In terms of licensure, the largest number of states in the USA oblige these professionals to be licensed. Nevertheless, the licensing requirements aren’t identical in every state, as the government agencies issuing such licenses also vary across states. In general, for a person to obtain a plumbing license, he/she is supposed to be trained, experienced, and up-to-date with ongoing trends.
Homeowners should make a difference between a journeyman, non-journeyman, and master plumber. Journeymen have completed an apprenticeship and successfully passed the state licensure exam. These professionals should carry an occupational license with them when visiting the homes of clients. In contrast, non-journeymen aren’t licensed but undergo training for the purpose of obtaining one.
Master plumbers, on the other hand, have a five-year experience as journeymen, following which they need additional education and training. They also have to pass another exam in order to earn such a certification. These plumbing experts are believed to be the masters of their craft, having mastered all building codes, plumbing skills, and state regulations. Hence, it’s not surprising master plumbers charge higher hourly fees when compared to journeymen. Read here to get familiar with the role of journeymen.
Apart from licensure, homeowners are advised to look at certification when checking the qualifications of candidates. There are several trade associations where experienced plumbers should be listed. Make sure the professional you hire is a member of APHC (Association of Plumbing and Heating Contractors), as well as listed on the gas safe register. The latter association guarantees that plumbers are qualified to work with gas appliances.
Insurance is another aspect worth the attention when hiring a plumber, as accidents are possible in this line of work. It’s paramount for plumbers to be equipped with liability insurance so as for homeowners to be protected from liability in the event of property damage.
Besides property accidents, it’s also common for plumbing professionals to get injured on the job. In order not to end up financially responsible for covering either property damage or injuries, ask the candidates to offer proof of liability insurance. This type of insurance covers all accidents happening at the properties of homeowners during plumbing projects.
Have a look at the services
Once you’ve made sure the candidates are licensed and insured, it’s time to have a look at the plumbing services they provide. When looking for a plumber to fix an issue in your home, make sure he/she specializes in the installation, repair, and maintenance of residential plumbing systems. They need to be able to understand blueprints, manage plumbing tools, and have the required material knowledge.
Some of the most common services offered by residential plumbers include repair and replacement of pipes, drain cleaning, garbage disposal services, sewer repair, sewer line replacement, water heater repair, etc. These experts are also proficient at the installation of dishwashers, washers, clothes dryers, as well as the installation and replacement of fixtures.
Check for warranties
Prior to hiring a residential plumber, homeowners need to learn whether the candidates on their list offer warranties. Even though the largest part of plumbing fixtures comes with warranties, the services provided by plumbers should be warranted as well.
Moreover, plumbers that offer labor and quality warranties are considered more reliable due to their readiness to fix any issues free of charge during the guarantee period. In contrast, those not offering any kind of guarantee on their services cannot be completely trusted.
Consider the cost
Last but not least, the cost of plumbing services is of absolute importance in your choice. The fees of these professionals depend on various factors, such as your location, the condition of your property, the access to your plumbing system, the length of the project, and the quality of materials. Additionally, if you hire a professional out of its normal working hours, you’ll be expected to pay more. Round-the-clock professionals charge more when providing assistance at night, on holidays, or at the weekend.
The cost mainly depends on the type of service you hire. For instance, fixing a leaky tap costs approximately eighty dollars, taking about an hour of work. In contrast, fitting a new toilet costs more, between 180 and 300 dollars, requiring at least two hours of work.
Furthermore, fixing a leaky pipe would cost you approximately $150, while you can have your hot water tank replaced for $700. The latter service is much pricier, as it takes almost a day to get completed. In most cases, the prices include labor and materials, not VAT. Make sure you receive multiple quotes so as to choose a plumber who provides reasonably priced services.
Don’t wait long before you contact a plumber.
The more you wait, the more severe the consequences will be!