Plumbing problems can arise at any time and that is when you need to contact a skilled plumber. For instance, you could have a leaking faucet, broken pipes, or flood from the water heater. Perhaps you want to install an additional bathroom in your building. Whatever the case may be, whether minor or major, you will need a professional to ensure the success of the project.
In this article, we will give you in-depth knowledge about plumbers as this will help you when you want to hire one. But first, let’s see some general tips for hiring plumbers.
General Tips for Hiring Plumbers
Here are some tips to remember when thinking of hiring plumbers:
- Consider plumbers with an updated license. Most states require licensing.
- Ensure they have proof that their company or business is insured.
- Find out how long they have been doing the business. The contractor you hire has to be an experienced person.
- Ensure they analyze the project and provide an accurate estimate of what it would take to do the job.
- Request a guarantee for their work and ask about their fees.
- Request contact of previous customers, visit or call them to find out the quality of service the plumber offers.
You should seek to find more info on important questions homeowners should ask before deciding to hire any plumber.
Levels of Plumbing
Every state has a special training requirement for plumbers, but it must comprise the capacity to troubleshoot and a good knowledge of math and mechanics. Different plumbers will have different levels of training; therefore, you need to know the certification and training methods that are obtainable in the plumbing industry. Also, the plumber’s competence level is sometimes directly proportional to their training level.
Here are the levels of plumbing:
1. Apprentice Plumber
At this level, the plumber is still learning the ropes of the trade through classroom training and on-the-job training. Most apprentices enroll for this level through a union in their locality or by working with a company that is licensed. When an apprentice works with an expert, they will learn how to handle several plumbing jobs using best practices.
2. Journeyman Plumber
The plumber in this level has spent four to five years in an apprenticeship. The requirements may differ, depending on the state, but an ongoing education as well as an examination to renew their license is necessary.
3. Master Plumber
This is the highest stage in the profession. Each state has a minimum requirement based on how long the plumber would have worked with the journeyman status. As soon as they achieve that requirement, they become eligible to join the Contractors’ Board of their state. They can join by applying and writing an exam consisting of practical and theory knowledge-based questions.
Types of Plumbing Services
Plumbers are usually prepared to deal with almost any issue. The supplies and tools they carry in their truck or toolbox imply that they are ready to take up any job at any point in time. Additionally, most of them offer their services 24/7 and this comes in handy especially when an unplanned leakage occurs; one that will require turning off the main water supply in your building.
Although each workman will have a different skill set, most of them are trained in the following areas:
- Repairing and replacing of faucets and toilets
- Repairing and replacing of pumps and valves
- Repairing and replacing tankless and tank-style water heaters
- Installing or repairing gas lines
- Repairing or replacing water lines, outside and inside the building
Although some people are DIYers, when it comes to plumbing, homeowners need to find and hire a professional. When you work with a skilled plumber, it means that they will handle the job perfectly and give tips to prevent the issue from reoccurring in the future. They will also explain what you need to take note of that could be a sign of a plumbing issue.
Furthermore, it is important to ask a lot of questions if you have doubts at any point. It is a job that you are paying for and professionals are always happy to explain things to you. The extra knowledge you will gain will make the plumber’s visit more valuable.
Regulations for Plumbers
The plumbing profession is surrounded by strict regulations. This is because they play critical roles in safeguarding the water supply to the public. Most life-threatening illnesses can pass through unclean water. Hence, plumbers are licensed and properly trained to prevent such issues.
In some states, plumbers require registration rather than obtaining a license. The plumbers need to demonstrate their competence or knowledge in the industry to become registered.
Most states require a license to operate as a plumber. They must show proof that they have completed the required training and education. They will also write an exam to demonstrate their competence. After that, the state will grant them legal permission through a license to work. After issuing the license, the plumber must attend continuous training to maintain the status of the license. There is a regulatory board that ensures the regulations are not violated. When you hire a licensed plumber, it will save you a lot of headaches because they will do the job correctly to prevent the regulatory board from revoking their license.
Insured vs Bonded
Liability insurance for businesses covers claims that relate to damaged property or injuries on the body if the fault is from the contractor. A bond, on the other hand, will pay for the damage that the insurance does not cover. If the plumber you hire does a poor job and they are bonded, the bond will cover the cost of fixing the errors. It will also take care of any damage that occurred as a result of any mistake. And if the plumber stole anything, the bond would cover it, too. Therefore, you need to be sure that a contractor is insured and bonded before hiring. A good contractor will have both to not only protect their business but also their workers. You can request to see proof of bonding and insurance before hiring.
Now that you know the tips for hiring a professional plumber, you can start looking for one. Emergencies do not announce themselves, so get one to inspect your plumbing unit to ensure that everything is alright.