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5 Plumber Tricks to Avoid

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5 Plumber Tricks to Avoid

By Laura Foster-Bobroff, Networx

Chances are you need a plumber in your life on a regular basis. Plumbers not only take care of common household repairs like leaky pipes and clogged drains, but some are also responsible for maintaining heating and cooling systems. Some specialize in commercial or residential projects, or in a particular type of plumbing application, such as natural gas lines or fire suppression systems. While the majority of plumbers are reputable, the plumbing industry has its fair share of sub-standard contractors who employ shady business practices. Here are the most common problems and recommended cures to prevent a leaky wallet.

Trick #1: Inaccurate Estimates

“Inaccurate estimates are the most common way a plumber can get more money out of you,” says plumber Dave Buteau of OnDemand Plumbing located in Concord, New Hampshire. He admits, “The hardest part of the job is convincing a potential customer that a low-ball quote is probably not an accurate reflection of the work involved.” Buteau says he charges flat-rate fees for standard work and gets calls regularly from people complaining about plumbers who quote them the lowest price, but end up charging twice as much for “additional work” in the long run.

Cure: Unless you’ve got an emergency situation, take the time to get several quotes and make sure the scope of services is clearly outlined, so you aren’t comparing apples to oranges. Get clarification if a contract is not clearly spelled out, and don’t be shy about asking a plumber why a price is higher (or lower) than everyone else’s price. Most of the time, quotes at extreme ends reflect inaccurate estimations of labor time.

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62 comments

+ add your own
8:04AM PST on Feb 21, 2013

thanks

5:55AM PDT on Nov 3, 2012

Thank you for sharing.

6:12AM PDT on Oct 1, 2012

thank you

6:00AM PDT on Oct 1, 2012

Good tips .thanks.

8:22AM PDT on Jul 31, 2012

One always has to do some research and keep an eye on things, this is not hostility as one commented, just common sense. There are people in various professions that will over charge and try and get more money if they can get away with it, this is nothing new. Check everything out be it plumbers, mechanics and a variety of other costly work orders.

4:53PM PDT on Jun 20, 2012

good advice, thanks.

11:50PM PDT on May 30, 2012

good advice

2:45PM PDT on May 30, 2012

thank you =]

3:57AM PDT on May 29, 2012

DIY then you don't have to worry about unscrupulous plumbers.

6:41PM PDT on May 28, 2012

Thanks for the tips! :)

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Disclaimer: The views expressed above are solely those of the author and may not reflect those of
Care2, Inc., its employees or advertisers.

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