Calgary Plumbing: Is He a Plumbing Professional or an Impostor?
Hi, it’s Kyle from Clearview Plumbing. I was recently reading about an imposter in the finance world and it got me thinking about imposters in the plumbing profession.
All things considered, plumbing is a somewhat intimate repair. In essence, you are inviting a stranger into your home, trusting on a van with the right signs, a board, a toolbox and a badge to stand between you and a potential robber, rapist or murderer. Obviously this isn’t a concern for most people or I’d be out a job! However, the reality of being scammed out of money or having shoddy work done on your pipes is a very real possibility, even by those who have all the right gear and act as though they know what they are doing. So how can you tell if you have a professional plumber at your door or a professional scammer?
Identifying a Plumbing Professional
The very first look when you open the door can tell you a lot.
- If his clothes are dirty, it will usually be his pants which are a bit stained. His uniform shirt on the other hand will be extremely clean. This is because most plumbers work on their knees a lot!
- He should look clean-cut. His face and hands should also be clean.
- Take a look at his truck. It should be spotless and well maintained. A real plumbing professional will make sure that he comes off as a professional. After all you cannot entrust someone with the responsibility of your home if they don’t appear to be able to take good care of themselves.
- Notice the way he talks about your plumbing problems. Discuss a small problem with him to see if he has enough knowledge and is capable of solving problems.
- Ask him to solve a little problem that you have and observe him. Notice the way he approaches it, the organization of his work, his etiquette, etc.
- Is he keeping his workstation clean? Is he doing a neat job? Is he showing you and your house respect? Is he making a fuss about you watching him while he works? If the answer to any of these is ‘no’, then he is probably not the one you want to hire. You want to make sure that you are entirely comfortable with the plumber before hiring him as you want to stick with one plumber for a long time.
Although unbelievable, many plumbers will fail these tests. When it comes to your plumbing, you want to hand over the responsibility of fixing your pipes to a true professional.
How to Find a True Professional Plumber
The task of finding a truly professional plumber is not as hard as you think.
- Use the internet to do research. Look for companies in your area and have a look at reviews about the company.
- Avoid companies that have reviews like “he solved the problem in just 15 minutes and charged only $50”. These are good only if you need in and out technicians.
- The keywords that you should look out for in the review should be on the lines of – “He found”, “he could fix” or “he thoroughly”. These will show you companies that focus on teaching the plumbers to find long term solutions.
- When you call the company, schedule a service visit right away. NEVER ask them about their rates. If the company is advertising free estimates, they will not offer a quote over the phone. You do not want a free estimate; you want to find the best plumber to do your job for you.
- To obtain the best value for money with your plumber…
◦ While calling the company to schedule a service visit, let them know what your problem is and the urgency of the problem.
◦ Clearly explain what is wrong and tell the plumber that you’re looking for a long term solution.
◦ If you’ve had bad experiences with plumbers earlier, you may share it with them. There is no need to bad mouth the other plumber, just be clear that you will only settle for the best. The company should see this as a good opportunity and send you one of the best plumbers it has to offer.
Dealing with the Plumber
Firstly, follow the above steps and determine if the plumber is a professional. If you don’t have a small problem to ask him to fix, collect estimates.
It is always recommended to get the plumber to fix something small and minor. This is a test for the plumber; you can take this opportunity to see if your relationship with the plumber will be positive or whether you should show him the door. If you honestly cannot think of a problem, then collect estimates from a variety of plumbers and what kind of work that estimate covers. Optimally, you want estimates that will tie to jobs intended to make your plumbing infrastructure problem free for a long time, even if it will cost more to do it. Discount plumbers are less than useless in all honesty unless you are only looking for an in and out technician.
Ask the plumber to get started on a small job if there is one. Be prepared to face the ‘bump’. The bump is additional fixing that the plumber will offer to do for an extra charge. There is no harm in him doing the work as it may improve the quality of your structure, but be prepared for it. (It’s practically in the How to Be a Plumber Manual to put in a BUMP.) Here are some ways to handle the bump.
- Trust your instincts. If they are telling to give it a day of thought, tell the plumber you will think it over and let him know.
- Does it need to be done that very day? Ask your plumber. Most things don’t need to be done the same day (it’s pretty obvious if a plumbing job NEEDS immediate attention). This will help you know if he is being honest.
- Make sure that you are completely aware of what the plumber wants to do and how it benefits you.
- Weigh the benefits against the cost. Is the job worth getting done?
- Is this the right plumber to do the job? If you know someone better, hire him or her instead
And finally, we have money. Money plays a big role when it comes to choosing a plumber because you have to find one which works within your budget. However, expect to pay a chunk of change for serious repairs; discount plumbers only land people in trouble because the job isn’t as thoroughly done or things get missed or skipped which then turn into larger problems in the future.
So there you have it. Choosing a good plumber is one part gut, three parts research and one part budget. It may take some time and effort to find the right plumber for your needs, but once you find him or her, you’ll be very glad you took the time out.
Clearview Plumbing and Heating is a Calgary Plumbing company based in Calgary, Alberta, Canada which is available round the clock to carry out any type of Calgary Plumbing job.
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Keywords: calgary plumbing professional, professional plumber