8 Questions to Ask a Plumber Before Hiring Them
Not all plumbers are created equal. From specialty services, licensing, service warranties, and more, every plumbing provider provides a unique quality of service for every client they take on.
So how do you know if a plumbing service is right for your home or business plumbing repairs? If you’re experiencing plumbing difficulties and need professional troubleshooting or repair, it’s essential to find a plumber you can trust.
At Advantage Plumbing & Sewer Co, we believe in helping our clients make informed decisions. In this blog, we cover some of the essential questions to ask a plumber when you’re deciding which company to hire for your plumbing needs.
Question #1: Are You a Licensed Plumbing Provider?
Every state handles the requirements for professional plumbing licensing differently. In Illinois, aspiring plumbers must first have completed at least two years of high school and some qualifying college-level credits. After apprenticeship applications have been filed and approved, all aspiring plumbers must complete a sponsored plumbing apprenticeship of no less than four years.
After the apprenticeship time has passed, a plumber must complete continuing education requirements and renew their license annually.
These requirements may seem a little steep, but they’re there to ensure that plumbers have the knowledge and experience to provide quality services. Protect your plumbing investment by asking every plumber about their licensing as part of the vetting process.
Question #2: Do You Carry Insurance?
Any licensed plumber or plumbing apprentice who performs paid work for another person is known as a plumbing contractor. In the state of Illinois, plumbing contractors must have and maintain liability insurance, bodily injury insurance, worker’s compensation insurance, and property damage insurance.
These policies are in place to protect both the plumber and the client. A plumbing company that is unlicensed or uninsured could mean professional trouble, lack of experience, or worse. When considering which plumbing contractor to hire, asking about current insurance is one of the most important questions to ask a plumber.
Question #3: What Services Do You Specialize In?
Not all plumbing companies specialize in the same types of services. Commercial plumbing contractors often specialize in large-scale plumbing projects for office buildings, retail shops, and other large developments. Residential plumbing services, by contrast, offer more experience with standard residential plumbing systems and issues.
When vetting plumbing contractors for your plumbing needs, be sure to ask which types of plumbing services each contractor specializes in. Whether you need professional plumbing help for a residential or a commercial system, finding a plumber that specializes in that specific type of work will increase your chances of finding trustworthy, experienced service.
Question #4: Do You Provide a Warranty for Your Services?
Even the best plumbers can sometimes miss the mark. Between human error, faulty parts, and unpredictable plumbing difficulties, even the most well-planned plumbing jobs can have problems.
When plumbers are out to do the best they can for their clients, they guarantee their work. Licensed, insured plumbers who offer warranties or service guarantees protect the client as well as the plumber’s professional reputation. Within reason, most professional contractors should offer some degree of warranty or guarantee for every plumbing service performed.
Ask potential plumbers which guarantees or warranties they offer for their services. Take it a step further by asking for the details and limitations of those warranties or getting the fine print in writing.
Question #5: Can You Provide Client References or Testimonials?
While no serviceperson can please everyone, a trend of positive or glowing customer reviews is a strong indicator that a plumber is providing quality, reliable services.
Great plumbers have the service records and client reviews to prove it. Always check out a plumber’s website for reviews, testimonials, and client feedback to gauge the contractor’s overall success.
If the plumbing service doesn’t offer reviews on their website, check Facebook, other social media, or google business pages. If you’re not turning up any results, ask the plumber about potential customer reviews or feedback. If they have none, it could be a sign that the plumber is inexperienced or, far worse, bad.
Question #6: How Are Your Fees Determined?
One of the most significant determining factors when choosing a plumber is affordability. Experienced plumbers know the ins and outs of their work and can make reasonable predictions about plumbing service costs. However, no plumber will be able to give an accurate quote without first inspecting and diagnosing the plumbing problem.
The good news is that many companies provide quotes for reasonable prices or free. Check to see if they provide free or affordable plumbing quotes before hiring them.
Bonus Question: Travel Fees?
Many plumbing contractors have large service areas, sometimes spanning multiple cities or counties. Ask any plumber upfront if travel fees are included in their billing schedules.
Question #7: Will You Pull Any Necessary Permits for Your Work?
Some plumbing jobs require special permits. An experienced plumber will know which permits are needed for a given job. If you think your plumbing services may require a specific permit or multiple permits, ask the plumbing contractor if they will file for the necessary permits themselves.
Question #8: What Are Your Business and Service Hours?
Every respectable business has designated service hours. During these service hours, clients should be able to reach office staff or a technician within a reasonable timeframe. While some plumbing companies have limited office hours, those companies may still offer a 24/7 service line.
If you’re experiencing a plumbing emergency or are looking to retain the services of a 24/7 plumber, make sure to ask about business and service hours upfront. Check websites or reach out to the business by phone for the most up-to-date information.
Quality Plumbing Services in Elgin, IL
At Advantage Plumbing & Sewer Co., we’re respected plumbers in Elgin, IL, and believe in quality service from start to finish. If you still have questions to ask a plumber, reach out to us today at 847-453-3311. We’re a reputable plumber service proudly serving Elgin, IL, and we’re ready to tackle your plumbing problems today.