Some things are easy to do around the house, while others are best left to the professionals. If you want to avoid leaks or even floods, it’s best to hire a plumber.
But in a market saturated by cowboys and rogue traders, it is often hard to find a reliable plumber at a reasonable price. So here’s a short guide to help you find the best plumbers in your area, and to make sure they do a professional job that lasts.
- First thing first: identify the problem. Get a friend or neighbor to help if needs be. It will be worth learning some basic terminology in order to communicate your issue to a prospective plumber. If you know enough about your own system you should be able to tell if a plumber knows their trade.
- You’ll want to conduct some thorough research before making a commitment to any one plumber or firm. The internet is a great source for information, but be wary. As a rule, don’t trust peer review sites; many big companies hire reputation management companies to make sure any bad reviews are covered up.
- Asking friends or relatives for recommendations is a good place to start. Alternatively, Top Tradespeople is a great website for finding reliable local tradespersons. Ideally you should compare quotes from at least three different contractors before coming to a decision.
- Ensure your plumber has the right qualifications for the job. Officially, in order to be a plumber you must hold a City and Guilds National Vocational Qualification (NVQ) Level Two and Three in Mechanical Engineering Services-Plumbing (Domestic). For small tasks a Level One NVQ should be enough, but for more integral plumbing such as heating and boiler systems, settle for no less than Level Two.
- Remember, however, that these courses are very expensive so some plumbers choose not to take them in favor of an apprenticeship or other vocational training. If they don’t have qualifications, ask for at least two references and make sure to follow them up.
- Where gas is involved, the plumber must hold a Level Three NVQ, as well as being gas certified. Don’t take their word for it, double check with the awarding body.
- It is strongly advisable to ensure the plumber is insured to cover property damage and personal injury. Should anything go wrong, this will protect you against any financial losses which you may otherwise be held accountable for.
- Make sure your plumber has plenty of relevant experience. If you choose to go through a big firm, ask their representative for details of the plumber they are sending. If they can’t provide this information, it’s best to avoid them altogether.
Hopefully now you are better equipped to make the right decision when it comes to hiring a professional plumber. Just make sure to draw up a contract which is both fair and achievable in order to avoid disputes, and you’ll be having hot showers again in no time.
Author Bio: Kathryn Ward is a Freelance creative writer and loves be up to date about everything related to fashion, beauty, home goods and trendy places in the city of London.