It’s happened to us all, even the best of us. Whether it’s your home, apartment, or mobile home, it WILL happen. The toilet backs up. Brown water comes out of the faucet. Coming home to a soggy basement. Maybe it’s a pipe you thought you had fixed a few months ago. Or perhaps it’s a ever-growing stain on the ceiling, right underneath the upstairs bathroom. It’s times like this that it’s best to bite the bullet and call a plumber.
Should you DIY for plumbing problems?
First thing to do is avoid the temptation to do it yourself again. A broken pipe or a clogged drain can seem simple, right? But after your third trip to the hardware store to finally get the right size part, and realizing that you just don’t want to by that super expensive specialized the job requires, you usually find that the time and money you wanted to save by doing the job yourself if gone. Not to mention that your plumbing isn’t really something you want to leave in the hands of amateur: you.
Just to give you an idea, here are some repairs that should be left to the professional, lest they cost you more then you bargained for:
- Drain Clearing: Cleaning drains, blockages, and sewer mains.
- Faucets, Fixtures & Pipes: Repairing or replacing faucets, fixtures, and any gas piping.
- Water Heaters: Servicing, repairing and replacing all water heaters, including electric, gas, solar, tankless and hybrids.
- Pumps: Replacing an existing, or installing a new, well or sump pump.
- Septic Tanks: Installation, maintenance, and repair of any septic tanks.
- Sprinkler Systems: Including installation, regulation and repair of sprinkler and mist cooling systems.
- Water Softening & Purification: Repairing or installation or filters, dispensers, neutalization, ect.
- Other Plumbing Installation & Repair Jobs:
- Radiant floor heating systems
- Hot tubs
What do you think? Do you want to know how to find a good plumber in Carlsbad, CA?
It’s not such a big deal if you doing new construction. You would simply go through your contractor and all the plumbing would be checked adn signed-off on by the building inspector. But when it’s just you, finding the right plumber is a lot easier following some of these simple tips.
Your best bet, if you have time: Try to get a referred to a Carlsbad handyman. Call someone you know who’s had work done, they can probably start to lead you in the right direction. If you know any builders or contractors, that’s a great way to go. They have tons of experience with plumbers, and are going to have a few favorites they like to use. Another person to try would be your local real estate agent. This is another person who is going to be dealing with plumbers frequently, and as they will want to keep repeat business or land new clients, they will find you the best one they can.
Once you’ve gotten a few names and numbers, there are is some information you can get, before you make a decision, that will save you a lot of heart-ache in the long run.
Are you licensed?
All legally working plumbers just about anywhere need a license, and to be able to provide proof they’ve had all the proper training. Now, there are plenty of good plumbers who learned everything on their own who don’t have a license, but without anything to back it up, how are you to know this isn’t their first time? Also, if you are going to turn the claim into your homeowner’s insurance, then your definitely going to need a license number.
Are You Insured?
A good, professional plumber will be insured, just in case. Things happen, like floods, pipes bursting, fires, and so on. You should make sure the person you hire is going to be covered for such things before they happen. A reputable plumber will have no problem giving you that info up front.
Do You Have A Service Warranty?
When a plumber won’t guarantee his work for an acceptable amount of time, you thank him for his time and call the next one on the list. There may be a few mitigating situations, such as if your house has very old pipes, but for the most part, he should be willing to come back an fix a leak or problem that was his error.
Can You Provide References?
This is one of the best ways of figuring out a plumbers experience and reliability. Don’t stop at just asking for them, though; you need to follow up and call past customers, asking them about how satisfied they were, and what, if any, issues there were. You should try to avoid a plumber that can give you a list of solid references.
What’s The Cost?
This is the big one. Some plumbers will give you a free estimate over the phone, other’s will want to take a look at the damage and calculate repairs, charging you an estimate fee. Regardless, before any work, you should know the cost upfront. Beyond parts and labor, some things you want to know about are a charge for travel time, if they have an hourly rate and do they charge overtime, all of which should be estimated in the initial write up. Understandably, it can be difficult to nail down an exact price, but any plumber worth his salt should be able to give you a reasonable estimate with a ceiling or worst case scenario price, as well as an estimated time frame. It is there responsibility, not yours. And most importantly, you need to get all this in writing, well before he starts anything.