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Solve your clogs: Hire a plumber

Developing a relationship with a good plumber is almost as important as the relationships with your accountant or lawyer.

To get started on your plumbing repair or installation you will want answers to the following questions:

  • How long has he been in business? What is his plumbing specialty? Residential? New construction? Remodeling?
  • How much experience does he have with your type of project?
  • Can he supply copies of licensing, insurance, worker’s comp insurance, and bonding?
  • What guarantees does he offer?
  • Does he have references you can check?


Your plumber helps keep
your home in tip-top shape.

When you call to check references, make sure that, in addition to verifying the quality of work, the time to complete it, and the costs associated, the plumber was tidy and respectful of the work environment.

Check with the contractor’s board to ensure that licensing is current as well as with the Better Business Bureau to see if any complaints have been filed against the company.

Project cost

Get a detailed estimate. Make sure you’re clear about whether the project is estimated based on an hourly fee, or by fixture, which is becoming increasingly common.

Depending on your area, rates may run from $45–140 an hour. Find out if the cost is for a single plumber with a truck or a team of two plumbers. Extra charges for transportation or extra men could easily overrun your budget. Some companies have flat-rate charges for common jobs.

Guarantees and Service Agreements

The work and equipment should be guaranteed by the contractor and manufacturer respectively. Also, it might be worthwhile asking about a maintenance agreement. Regular inspections over time could prevent an emergency that costs you much more than the agreement itself.

Getting your money´s worth

To save both time and money, combine jobs for the same project. Many plumbing contractors give a break on costs if they can save travel time and reduce trips to purchase fixtures and supplies.

Make a list of all the plumbing-related projects you would like completed. Your plumber can then prioritize efficiently, which could reduce your bill.

Add projects that you might not have considered such as:

  • Hooking up washing machines, dishwashers, as well as gas appliances.
  • Installing gas lines and shut-off valves.
  • Adding drains for air conditioning units.
  • Installing water-based heating systems.
  • Installing storm drains.

Finally, clear work areas so the plumber can spend his time on your project, not on moving cleaning supplies or clothes hampers.

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