The best time to choose a plumber is when you don’t need one. Rather than waiting until you’re knee-deep in water or have no water at all, take the time now to vet local plumbers and find the one you’ll call when your time of need arrives. Though the decision may seem common, it’s best not to take it lightly. There’s little that can destroy your house more quickly than uncontrolled water, whether it comes from a faucet, water heater, dishwasher, sink, or washing machine. Find the wrong one, and you’re putting yourself at needless risk of destructive damage to your home or even more costly repairs in the future.
When it comes to deciding who you’re going to ring up in your time of need, you can definitely start off by asking around at your church, business, or around the neighborhood. Check local newspapers, magazines, and business listings, too. Once you have a list of recommended plumbers, contact them or visit their websites to find out about their licensure. The state of Texas requires working plumbers to hold a license.
Any plumber you consider should also be insured and bonded, to protect both you and the plumber, in case of an injury or accident. Ask each plumber how long they’ve been in business.
A larger company will likely have plumbers with years of experience, but you should still ask. It’s a good sign if the company has been in business for several years, because it often indicates a proven track record of quality work.
Although pricing shouldn’t be your first concern, you want a plumber who’s able to offer an accurate estimate, barring unforeseen problems, on any job you may need done. It’s a good practice, when the time comes to hire someone, to obtain at least three estimates. Remember that several variables go into the price, including the time that it takes to complete the installation or repair, the difficulty of the repairs, the quality or number of the fixtures, or any unique specialization required, including camera work or other removal of fixtures. Be wary of any estimate that’s considerably lower than the others. It could mean the plumber is cutting corners or plans to use inferior parts.
Ask potential plumbers how they guarantee their work. Do they guarantee workmanship as well as the parts they use, and for how long? Many warranties cover the plumber’s work for up to one year. If the plumber refuses to guarantee his or her work, move on. Ask any plumber you’re considering for references. If they’ve been in business for any length of time, this shouldn’t be a problem. Talking with past customers is one of the best ways to accurately gauge the quality of the plumber’s work and how well they back up the work they do. If they can’t or won’t provide references, consider looking elsewhere.
And of course, you can investigate their ratings and reviews online. Plumbing is an old craft, but an important one. There’s nothing more annoying than low water pressure, contaminated water, leaky fixtures, or slow-draining tubs. Finding the right plumber can be the key to keeping you happy and keeping your home safe.