Imagine, it’s 11pm and you’re just getting ready to go to bed. You’re about take a nice warm shower that will help relax you, so that you can sleep better. You jump in the shower, turn on the water, and…the next thing you know you’re sloshing about in a 6″ deep mini-swimming pool. Argh…the drain is blocked and the water just won’t go down. Now what do you do? Or even worse, what if you flush the toilet and the water just keeps coming, and coming and coming! What steps do you take to alleviate the problems?
The first thing most of us do is reach for our phones and call a local plumber. If it’s in the middle of the night and things just can’t wait it’s important to find 24-hour emergency plumber, but that could prove to be costly if you don’t select one wisely. So, the worst thing you can do, is wait until you have an emergency to find such a plumber, because in those cases you may not necessarily get the best value when it comes to price. You might be in such a panic that you simply choose the first plumber that is available, rather than worrying about the financial price that you’ll end up paying. So the best time to find and choose an emergency plumber is when you don’t actually need one!
So How Do You Find A Good Emergency Plumber?
Here are a few questions that you may want to consider asking:
- How long has your company been in business?
- Are you licensed and insured in this state?
- Do you offer emergency services?
- Do you charge by the hour or by the task in hand?
- In addition to your normal charges, do you charge extra for out-of-hours calls?
- What sort of service warranty do you provide for work that you do?
- Can you provide me contact details of your customers so that I can get references?
- Are you a member of the local Better Business Bureau?
- Are your employees background checked?
- What qualifications will the technician that you send to me have?
A Few Tips On How You Can Save Money
- Consolidate Your Tasks: Bundle your plumbing requests so that you are paying only one service call cost and not squandering money spending for numerous set-up times.
- Clean Up Yourself: Once the plumber has completed the repair, let him/her know that you will do the clean up yourself. That way, if they are charging by the house, you won’t be charged for that time.
- Offer To Go And Buy The Required Parts Yourself: If the plumbing contractor needs parts he doesn’t have, offer to go to the hardware shop yourself and allow them to carry on with the rest of the task. Otherwise, your plumbing contractor will bill you for the time it takes for him to get them as well as mark up the parts themselves. If you are employing a plumbing professional to deal with a restoration or redesigning job, consider acquiring components yourself, however consult with the plumbing contractor so that you choose designs with which he recognizes.
- Get Multiple Estimates: Get three estimates for huge jobs and inspect references. You might not always select the plumbing contractor with the lowest estimate-you may choose the one with whom you feel most comfy and whose previous work experience suggests his work is of high quality that you can trust long-term. Having it done right the first time will certainly save you money in time.
- Take On The Easier Jobs Yourself: There are many simple plumbing tasks that you don’t necessarily have to call out a local plumber for. If you find you have a leaking faucet, you can fix that yourself, and if you tackle it early enough, you will not only prevent it from turning into a big issue, but you will also save money. If you don’t feel confident enough to take on these small plumbing tasks, ask friends and family members if they can help. You’ll be surprised that you people in your immediate circle who can take on simple tasks such stopping a dripping tab, stopping the dripping toilets and unclogging sink and shower drains.
- Prevention Is Better Than Cure: There are simple steps you can take to prevent some of the problems that will eventually lead you to calling out a plumber. A simple drain screen, can help prevent hair build up in the shower drains and stop a potential blockage. Make sure your pipes are well lagged, especially in those unheated areas during winter, can help prevent burst pipes. Keep a plunger next to the toilet and use it if necessary, rather than continuing to flush the toilet and making the blockage worse.
- Ask Questions: When you have a plumbing technician in your house, ask his recommendations about other precautionary care ideas that you can apply to help prevent future problems. Asking questions will not only help prevent these problems, but you’ll be able to assess the trustworthiness and friendliness of the plumber to see if you would like to use them again, or even recommend them to others.
The bottom line is that you should find a plumber you like and trust BEFORE you face an emergency situation. Once you find one keep the number handy, so that when the time comes that you need him/her, you won’t be scrambling and making bad and costly decisions.