Your trusted neighborhood plumber is definitely a godsend. It is a relief to know that you can rely on his services should you be faced with any problems with the plumbing at home. From replacing washers to remedy a dripping tap, to replacements and repairs of faulty plumbing fixtures and pipes or extensive remodeling that may require laying new pipelines, local plumbers are the domain experts.
Not all plumbers are equally skilled or experienced
If you are planning to hire a plumber, make sure that he can handle the specific task you need to get done. Here are just a few thoughts to get you started on the hiring.
Is the plumber a specialist at remodeling or repairs?
While almost any self-professed plumber can fix a faulty tap, more elaborate or specialized plumbing tasks such as extending an existing water pipeline to a different part of a room or home, or handling laying the water pipes in a new bathroom definitely requires more expertise.
How much does the plumber charge for a specific job?
Knowing what the plumber is likely to charge for a specific job will help with the final decision if costs become the deciding factor. As with other services, self-employed local plumbers are likely to charge higher fees based on their experience, knowledge and skills, should expert services be needed. If you are confident with the service quality, (based on previous jobs, referrals, or even a gut feel), paying a higher fee may prove worthwhile, doing away with the need to repeatedly address the same problem in case handled by a novice.
Don’t skimp for expert services
For how long has the plumber been on the job and in which locality?
Verifying the plumber's experience and locality can help establish trust, which can further be built upon in case the plumber through references. In case the plumber has remedied an plumbing problem a couple of buildings away, on the same street or the next one, he is sure to be familiar with locality and common problems faced by residents there, hardware shops in the area from where parts and fixtures can be procured etc. This information also helps verify the plumber’s credibility.
In India independent service providers, such as plumbers, do not usually charge for their commutes, in case they travel from one part of the city to another. There are exceptions though and it is safe to ascertain if travel costs are to be reimbursed. Also it is common for hired plumbers to first visit the home, inspect the problem and then shop for the parts or components for repairs/ remodeling in consultation with the client. You’ll need to factor in the extra time and effort for buying the materials need to fix the problem!
Extensive remodeling will need the attention and expertise of an experienced plumber
Do note that extensive remodeling like laying out a new water pipe from the main line will need the attention and expertise of an experienced plumber, or plumbing contractor as the process is elaborate and needs to be handled appropriately lest you violate local municipal regulations!