Contractors can be a lifesaver. If you’re worried about replacing a line on your electric panel, you can call an electrician. If your HVAC system is acting up, you can contact a trained technician to help.
And if your plumbing has issues, all you need to do is find a good plumber.
“Good” is the operative word here, though. Just because a contractor can help you unclog a toilet or repair a leaky pipe doesn’t mean it will be a pleasant experience. You want to ensure you’re working with a plumber who knows their stuff and will provide you with fair pricing and quality services.
With that in mind, here are some plumbing FAQs to ask your next plumber before you sign on the dotted line.
- Can I See Your Credentials, Please?
As with all contractors, you want to ask a plumber if they’re licensed. What training have they gone through, and is it official?You also want to ensure they’re properly insured to protect both parties from potential mishaps. If the plumber is insured, it’s also a reassuring sign that they’re operating a professional and established business, not just a side hustle.The credential conversation is also a good time to inquire if a plumber’s work comes with a warranty and any other guarantees they might offer. Consider asking for references, too.
- How Long Have You Been in Business?
There’s nothing inherently wrong with a young plumber. Even if a plumber is older, you may not know their level of experience in their field. Asking how long a contractor has been in business can help you gauge if they’re reliable and have a good track record.This is also the right time to ask if they will do the work themselves and if they will work alone. Are they going to subcontract the work out to someone else? Do they have any peers or superiors they can call if they encounter an issue they can’t solve?
- What Kind of Services Do You Specialize In?
Plumbing may appear simple, but there are many different areas a plumber can specialize in throughout the industry. For example, they might know how to run pipes but are unfamiliar with the inner workings of a well pump. Likewise, they could offer bathroom plumbing services but are inexperienced in getting inside the water filter in a refrigerator.It’s always important to ask for a list of plumbing services before signing with a contractor. If they’re a quality service provider, they should have a website with more information available. At Paraco HVAC, we include our list of services on our website.
- Do You Mind If I Get Another Quote?
Always request an estimate in writing before a plumber starts a project. But don’t stop there. Instead, conduct research to determine if the quote is close to the average for that particular job. For example, if you’re replacing a water heater, the cost should usually be between $800 and $1,650.Let the plumber know you’d like to obtain another quote. Their reaction can be telling. If a plumber is confident in their pricing, that shows they believe their rates are fair. If they respond by pressuring you to make a decision, it’s a sign they may be overselling themselves.
Asking the Right Questions to Find a Good Plumber
There are many more questions you can ask a plumber. What are their hours? Will they clean up after themselves? Will they wear pants that don’t sag?
These questions are an essential starting point. Inquiring about credentials, quotes, and specific services can help you quickly separate the good from the bad and ensure you hire a professional to fix your plumbing quickly, efficiently, and affordably.