Normally, when you go looking for a plumbing company for a project at home or work it is always best to hire the most professional company you can find. The plumbing systems in your home and office are far more sophisticated systems than you might imagine. On the incoming “fresh water side”, they are pressurized so even a small leak can cause be problems in the form of water damage, mold growth, short your electrical systems, etc. When it comes to the “dirty waste side” of plumbing…well we all know what goes down the drains and toilet, you might think that is funny but the fact is that the waste systems at home or work are teaming with nasty bacteria that can cause serious illness. When you need a plumber, these 5 points can help you find a plumbing professional:
- Licenses & Certifications – Most states require that plumbers be licensed and their assistants are either journeymen plumbers or licensed apprentices. NOTE: Not all plumbing jobs require a plumber to be licensed, that varies state by state and within each state as well. One thing that is almost universal; each plumbing company is normally required to be registered with the state and is required to carry business insurance for YOUR protection. So check with the state and see if the plumbing company you’re considering is registered there.
- Reviews – In today’s day and age it is easy to check a company’s on-line reviews and testimonials. You do that for restaurants, hotels, and movies so why not for your plumbing company. Be sure to look at the total number of “good” reviews compared to “bad” reviews. No company is perfect and it is hard to make some people happy no matter how hard you try so look for 98% plus “good reviews” compared to 2% or less “bad reviews”. Another important tip about “bad” reviews, always look for the company’s response to “bad” reviews. If they seem proactive about fixing the problem, if they offer solutions to “make it right” and seem committed to fixing the issue, that is a good sign. As mentioned earlier, no company is perfect, but if they sincerely try to “make it right” that shows a little about their character.
- Phone Estimates – Ethical, professional plumbers will not be willing to provide you with an estimate over the phone, frankly how can they? Call your doctor and ask him to diagnose you over the phone or call a collision shop and ask them for an estimate to repair your car that was in an accident; both the doctor and the collision shop will tell you to come see them. They need to see the problem before they can diagnose it, same for a plumber. A professional plumber will drive to your home or office then perform an diagnostic inspection to understand the problem, only then will he provide you his recommended repair or replacement options. Over the phone estimates are not fair to the client or the plumber, they are simply an educated, wild guess provided to you so you pick the “low bid” plumber.
- Communication – Good communication is key to any relationship, that same goes for your plumbing company. You should be able to talk openly about their previous work history, their website, their licenses, insurance, etc. If you don’t feel comfortable doing that, you should consider looking for a different plumbing company.
- Troubleshooting – A good plumber always strives to get the job done right the first time, but as mentioned before, plumbing & drain systems are far more sophisticated than you can imagine. A good plumber will talk openly with you about the unforeseen issues they encounter and work with you to solve them.
Consider these five points before you hire a plumbing company and you’ll be on your way to a successful, long term relationship with a ethical, professional plumbing company.