Leaky pipes? Burst pipes? Problem pipes in general? You need to call a plumber. If you don’t know the first thing about plumbing, it’s hard to determine if the person you want to hire does. Here are some tips to make sure you get the best plumber for the job.
Never just pick a name out of the telephone book. Ask your trusted friends and family for recommendations on plumbers in the area. Find out what they had done, and how satisfied they were with the person or company they hired and the work they did. Sometimes a friend will refer you to someone they know personally. While a friend’s friend may be a good person, it doesn’t mean they’re a good plumber. Only listen to referrals based on experience.
You can’t just take someone’s word for it. Do a little research yourself to see what you can find out about the company you were referred to. Look for reviews online with sites like Angie’s List, Google Places, and Yelp. Don’t put all your stock into these reviews, however, because they’re not always true. Also check out the plumber with the Better Business Bureau to see if there have been any complaints against the company.
Ask for Licenses and Insurance
Make sure the person you’re considering hiring has all the proper licenses needed to practice as a plumber in your area. Check with state boards and your local municipality. Find out if they have any special certifications. Also ask about insurance. They should have insurance, and you should see a copy of it that proves their policy is current. Never hire a worker who doesn’t have insurance.
Ask for a Guarantee
Before you decide to hire a plumber, ask if they guarantee their work and for how long. You want to be protected by a guarantee; otherwise you’ll be stuck if something goes wrong after the job is finished. Find out the conditions of the guarantee, and don’t hire someone if you’re uncomfortable or unsure of what would happen if there was a later problem.
Discuss the Plan
One of the most important ways to determine if a plumber is right for the job is to simply talk to them. While it’s easy to be swayed by smooth-talkers, that’s not what you’re paying attention to. Discuss the details of the job you want performed, and make sure they get specific. How long will the job take? What materials will be needed? Who will pay for and choose them? What workers will be assisting on the job? What are your options for fixing your problem?
The plumber should be able to discuss in-depth the answers to all these questions and any others that you have. If a plumber is evasive, won’t give straight answers, gives answers you’re uncomfortable with, or seems inpatient with you for wanting to discuss these things, you probably shouldn’t hire them. Above all else, always trust your instincts; no matter what you’re told, don’t hire someone you don’t feel right about.
Written in collaboration with the team from CHS a professional plumbing parts supplier based out of Chicago.