How to tell a good plumber from a bad plumber

Not all plumbers are the same. Pipes. To most people, they are the last thing on their minds until something goes wrong. Most of us know very little about plumbing and its inner workings; that is until we accidentally drop a ring down the drain or flush an old toothbrush down the toilet (don’t do this).

As with anything in life, there is good and bad. All plumbers are not created equally. There are some who will steal your money and give you subpar service while others will give you great service at a great price. Here is how to tell if your plumber is giving you quality service:

1) The first way to tell if your plumber sucks…

They come out one day for an emergency call only to return 3 days later with no reasonable explanation.

A plumber should never leave an emergency call unfinished, even if it means coming back a few days later to finish the job. Asking for payment in advance is also not acceptable. A good plumbing company will have systems in place to ensure that they are available when you most need them, and they will provide you with fair upfront pricing with no hidden fees.

2) They come out without all of their plumbing equipment…

Some will show up only to tell you they don’t have what is needed to fix your problem or that parts must be ordered before they can continue working on your job; this is unacceptable. If the plumber says this after arriving on-site they are likely trying to get paid but do no work.

3) The price is too good to be true…

Some will try and offer a crazy low-ball bid for their services or simply do shoddy work in hopes that you don’t notice. If the price seems too good to be true, it probably is! A reputable plumber should provide an upfront written estimate with all terms clearly defined before any work begins on your home. Ask them straight up what the total cost of the job will be before they start working then compare with their original estimate to make sure there are no surprises down the road.

4) They are not licensed…

Every state has different licensing requirements for its plumbers, but if they are not at least licensed in the city you reside they cannot legally work on your home. This is a no-brainer! No license, no work for you! There are also some states that require plumbers to leave their license number with you upon completion of the job, so be sure to ask for this as well.

5) They don’t let you know who will actually be doing the work…

A reputable company should always provide you with clear communication regarding which technicians will service your account, what qualifications they hold and how long they have been working with them. A new hire or unlicensed person should never show up on your doorstep without prior notification. When this happens it may be time to upgrade or find someone else who can give you better service.

What makes a good plumber?

Growing up to the age of two, I lived in a small house with my family. The place was perfect; located about twenty minutes outside town, quiet, and had all the amenities you would expect for a modestly priced property. This changed when my father decided that he should renovate it.

        While renovating the house for what seemed like forever (it really only took four months), we had to live next door with my grandparents. It sucked, but at least there was someone to babysit me when Dad and Mom were busy working on the house during their break from work. All in all, it turned out fine since we ended up getting more than we expected when we sold our old place and moved back in once renovations were finished.

        Shortly after we moved in, my Dad brought home a man who needed help to get his house in order after he had fallen ill. This guy was about fifty years old, tall and muscular with a tan complexion. He extended his hand to greet me, but when I couldn’t reach it, he quickly lifted me into the air and onto his shoulders instead. We went for a tour of the rooms inside while he explained what they were for. When we got back outside he showed us how to fix some leaking pipes under the sink which I thought was pretty cool since it was similar to one that existed in our kitchen back at home. The next time this guy came over was because there were issues with the plumbing again; he fixed that with ease as well so my dad offered him a job fixing our pipes, saying he would pay whatever was necessary to have it done.

        This is when I began to realize what makes someone good at their profession rather than just being average or mediocre. The next time this guy came over he had another three people with him who were all equally strong and muscular, but they still required assistance carrying up the equipment needed for the task ahead of them. Once inside my father quickly showed them where everything was that needed repairs then left them be until my mother told him that dinner was ready. Now you see what makes a good plumber.

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