There are so many plumbing companies out there; when you need a trustworthy professional, what are the points on which you should base your choice before any work is done? There are several reasonable steps you can take before you hire, and we can also offer a few tips on what you have a right to expect from an excellent plumber when he’s on the job.
Before You Hire
To begin, have you heard of the Texas State Board of Plumbing Examiners? It’s the agency responsible for licensing and regulating plumbers throughout the state. Among other steps, they recommend you check prospective plumbers’ records with this board and also the records of your municipal plumbing inspection department to make sure your plumber has met the requirements to do business in your area and that they have no complaints filed against them.
While you’re at it, it’s a good idea to check whether the work you need done requires a permit and/or city inspection.
It’s reasonable to expect your plumbing company to be licensed, bonded and insured, and for them to be able to easily provide proof. You should ask for references, which should be quickly and easily provided; when you call the references, don’t forget to ask about the plumber’s work ethic and professionalism as well as the end result of the work. Along the same times, check with the Better Business Bureau and do a quick search of the company on social media.
Your plumber should provide cost estimates and warranties in writing and in enough detail that you understand exactly what work will be done (including labor costs) and also how the company expects to be paid. Your written estimate and invoice should include both the Responsible Master Plumber’s license number and the name, address and telephone number of the Texas State Board of Plumbing Examiners for your reference.
On the Job
Beyond the basics, here are six qualities you should expect to find in your professional plumber when he’s on the job.
He is prompt and respectful.
Your plumber should arrive at your scheduled appointment time. If he’s going to be late or even early – by even a few minutes — he should show respect for your time by calling you. On the site, he works quickly and efficiently, and knows his craft so well that the procedure looks seamless. Part of this is for him to arrive every day with all the tools and parts he expects to need to complete the job; if complications arise, he should arrange for new equipment and/or parts to arrive quickly.
He speaks professionally and politely.
Good manners and professionalism never go out of style; your plumber should address you courteously as sir or ma’am and use other respectful modes of speech. In addition, he should put you first in his actions and explanations, refraining from getting overly technical but also keeping his conversation professional. And all questions that you ask should be answered fully and to your satisfaction and comfort level.
He’s upfront about diagnostics and repair costs.
Before any work begins, you should be provided information about any diagnostic work recommended and any possible repair costs.
If repair options are available, they should be provided as well so you can make the most appropriate choices for your household.
He’s a plumber, not a salesman.
Repair options are important, as they allow you to make the best decisions, but no item should be mentioned or offered unless it is needed for the repair. Sales pitches are pushy and uncomfortable, and your plumber should not put any pitch ahead of the reason he’s really there – to fix a problem in your home.
On the other hand, a professional plumber would be remiss if he didn’t do all he can to help you protect your investment. He should be proactive and at least ask about, or even offer to thoroughly inspect, the rest of your plumbing systems to determine the need for any routine maintenance and head off any potential problems. If he discovers any additional issues, he should explain what the risks are and offer repair options as well as available warranty programs.
At Horizon Plumbing, our philosophy is that our customers will use us again, and will refer us to their friends and family, when we build our business around professionalism, integrity, and transparent pricing.
He works tidily.
It may be a job site for your plumber, but it’s still your home; his general mentality should be to respect your property while he’s on site. He should wear shoe covers or put down a long mat on walkways and restrict himself to those paths.
If any of your property could be damaged during the job, he should work with you to protect it or move it from the area. When the job is done, or at the end of every work day, he should clean up after himself; at Horizon, we use vinegar as a safe yet effective disinfectant when we clean.
He follows state and city codes.
Here’s one that you might not have thought about, but a professional plumber keeps in mind: Dishonesty, even if it benefits the customer, has its repercussions.
You can reasonably assume that a plumber who will ignore the applicable codes may also see no problem with taking short cuts on your job, leading to doubts about the quality and longevity of the work he has done in your home. Further, from the standpoint of company reputation, any dishonesty can lead to the kind of problems that cause homeowners future problems with their municipalities, and that often leads to exactly the kind of word of mouth that can ruin a company. Therefore, at Horizon, our goal is to gain brand promoters (not detractors) through professional integrity and good honest work.
After the job is complete, it’s not unreasonable to expect a call from the plumbing company to ensure that everything is working well and that you were satisfied with your plumber’s service.
Although finding a truly professional plumber can be nerve-wracking at the beginning, taking a few minutes to research your choice will really help you get the complete repair your home needs for the long term. Further, we hope these tips on what to watch out for during the repair will help you feel confident in your choice. If you need any further details, or would like to learn more about Horizon Plumbing so you can be ready to call us in case of emergency, please get in touch today.