7 Questions to Ask When Hiring a Plumber

August 18, 2021
Plumbing Questions in

There’s never a good time for a plumbing emergency, but it’s crucial to know what to ask when hiring a contractor. By asking these seven questions and carefully considering the answers you receive, you’ll find it easier to set realistic expectations and to plan the next few steps in the process. Here are a few things to ask when hiring a plumber in Somerset, Kentucky.

1. Are You Licensed by the State?

Before beginning work in the Bluegrass State, plumbers must become licensed. This license is the state’s seal of approval, proving that the contractor has earned the qualifications necessary to work on commercial and residential plumbing.

If the plumber you call can’t (or won’t) provide license documentation, you’re better off taking your business elsewhere. An unlicensed plumber may provide a much lower level of service or may hit you with surprise fees amid a complex job. Unlicensed plumbers usually have no one to answer to, so there’s no recourse for a job poorly done. Avoid the hassle and expense by hiring a licensed plumber from Jeffries Heating & Air + Plumbing.

2. Will the Estimate Cover Everything?

Payment issues aren’t the exclusive domain of unlicensed plumbers; even a less ethical licensed contractor may try to add fees that should have been part of the preliminary estimate. Our contractors only provide estimates after they’ve assessed the condition of your plumbing.

If a contractor attempts an over-the-phone estimate, it will likely be inaccurate. These estimates are sometimes used as sales techniques. In such cases, plumbers know that, after they’ve already started to work, they can charge more. While we can typically provide ballpark estimates, we only give exact prices after we’ve evaluated your unique plumbing needs. When hiring a plumber, be sure to ask if the estimated price covers unexpected delays and the cost of labor and materials.

3. Are Your Rates Flat or Hourly?

Before signing a contract with a plumber, ask if they’ll be working for an hourly or a flat rate. Contractors who charge hourly rates might not work as efficiently, which can quickly bring a job over budget. Hourly rate plumbers may withhold vital information until the work is almost finished, which can extend the completion deadline and take more money out of your wallet.

Our plumbers charge a flat rate because, by the time we start working, we know just what to expect. We’ll work hard to get things done!

4. When Is Payment Due?

For complex projects, plumbers typically ask for installment payments that are spread along the completion timeline. For instance, pipeline cleaning, repair, and replacement can take up to a week or more. Each day, you might pay a set rate that equals the job’s total charge.

During smaller projects, such as line clearing or shower system installation, a plumber will typically accept payment upon completion. If a contractor asks for full, upfront payment, walk away. Upfront payments are risky because some contractors cut corners, knowing that their money is already in the bank. We don’t take shortcuts, so call us today to schedule service.

5. Is the Company Insured?

Any legitimate contractor in Somerset will have an insurance policy that protects workers in the event of an on-the-job injury. If a company has no such coverage, you may be held liable for an injured worker’s medical bills, even if the accident was the other person’s fault.

Avoid unpredictable expenses by verifying that your chosen plumber has a valid insurance policy. This coverage doesn’t just protect you when things go wrong; it also protects the company. A plumber that’s not insured may forego medical treatment because of the high cost of emergency care. To protect everyone involved, be sure your plumber is insured.

6. Is a Warranty Available?

Before beginning a plumbing project, ask the contractor about warranty coverage. These plans are typically time based, but some projects carry lifetime warranties. This coverage can be invaluable when things go wrong shortly after the work is done. With a good warranty, you’ll protect your investment and ensure that the job is done right the first time.

7. Have You Done Similar Jobs in the Past?

If a plumbing project is labor-intensive or complex, it’s important to choose a contractor who can get it right. Ask your plumber to provide references from clients who’ve had similar jobs done in the past so you’ll know what to expect.

In Kentucky, new plumbers must first serve as apprentices. When contractors skip this all-important step, it may lead to bigger problems later. Eliminate the guesswork and uncertainty by hiring an experienced Somerset plumber.

Are You Looking for a Reliable Plumber? Give Us a Call!

We’re proud to help homeowners in the Somerset area, as well as the surrounding towns, by providing the area’s most reliable plumbing, heating, and cooling. To hire one of our licensed, bonded, and insured plumbers, call or click today.

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