How to find a good plumber - woman asking questions for plumbers

Tips For Hiring a Trustworthy Plumbing Contractor

As a homeowner, you’ll need to know how to find a good plumber to keep your plumbing handled quickly, expertly, and affordably. It’s a cliché, but you need someone you can trust.

No doubt, you will experience a plumbing problem in your home when you least expect it. Happens to all of us. If you’re not prepared to deal with a clogged pipe, dripping faucet, or basement flood using a reputable emergency plumber, you could find yourself dealing with an expensive water damage issue.

Aside from plumbing emergencies, you’ll also need a professional plumber when you decide to have a little remodeling and renovation to increase your property’s value. In case you want to upgrade to an energy-efficient tankless water heater or eco-friendly faucet, you will have to hire a plumber to get it installed right. 

So how can you trust that you’ll hire a good plumber? Here are some things you need to do.

Scour the Internet for Online Reviews

A good place to start looking for plumbers and drain specialists in your area is the internet. A lot of plumbing contractors and suppliers, especially the more tech-savvy ones, use social media and review aggregator sites to advertise themselves.

These sites — like Google Reviews or Facebook Reviews — are very strict about their review systems so that they remain a credible source of information for consumers. It’s where previous customers can post their feedback on a plumber’s work. Use this information to look for plumbers in your area with high ratings and favorable reviews. 

PRO TIP: Also make sure they have plenty of reviews. For example, let’s say you are deciding between a plumber with a total review score of 4.8 stars with 9 reviews versus one with 4.8 stars with 100 reviews. Go with the latter. The more reviews the better as it makes the review score more accurate.

How to find a good plumber - man making online review on mobile phone
Checking online reviews in today’s world is the best way to find a reputable plumber. People are not shy about giving honest reviews with warts and all. The more 5-star reviews a plumber has, the more sure you can be that you’ve found a good one.

Ask Friends and Colleagues for Recommendations

Plumbing contractors mostly rely on word of mouth to do business. Their reputation is part of their capital. They know that if they do a great job, their customers will recommend them to relatives and acquaintances.

So if you need to get your drains, pipes, and fixtures fixed, ask a family member, neighbor, or colleague if they have someone to recommend. They will be more likely to give you a trustworthy review of the plumber they hired.

PRO TIP: Always back up your friend’s referral by checking their online reviews. It’s quick and easy and will prevent you from resenting your friend for a bad referral.

How to find a good plumber - man whispering referral to another

Three Very Important Questions for Plumbers

After you’ve asked for referrals and researched reviews on Google or Facebook, you’ll still need to do a bit more to find a good plumber. Ask these are game-changer questions. If they can’t answer satisfactorily, don’t even consider them.

1. Are You Licensed in My State?

After making a shortlist of contractors, the next thing you need to do is contact them. The first question you should ask is if they are licensed to work in the state.

In the state of Ohio for example, plumbing is a regulated profession. Having a license means that they passed the examination prescribed by the Ohio Construction Industry Licensing Board and have the necessary skills and knowledge for the profession.

Ask for their license numbers and verify them using your state’s verification website. If any of the license numbers do not check out or if they don’t have a license at all, you should think twice about hiring them. 

2. Do You Have Insurance?

As with all home improvement and repair projects, a plumbing job has a risk of injury for the contractor, a third party and you. In addition, there may also be damage to adjacent properties. Plumbing professionals need to be prepared for these risks by carrying insurance.

In general, plumbing companies need to have liability insurance and worker’s compensation. Liability insurance protects the contractor from claims against their work while worker’s compensation gives medical benefits to an employee if they get injured on the job. 

3. Do You Guarantee Your Work?

If a plumber does not carry a warranty that guarantees his work for a set amount of days, then simply walk away. The risk of an expensive problem that doesn’t get fixed properly is too great to leave to chance. Make sure you get a guarantee.

Questions for plumbers - are you certified
Always, always, always make sure your plumber or drain technician is licensed in your state, carries the proper amount of insurance to cover any risk, and guarantees his work with a warranty.

More Questions to Ask Your Plumber

Here are three more important questions for plumbers that you need to ask. These extra questions will help you determine how to find a good plumber and determine those who are not quite right for your particular project.

  • Do you have a speciality? Some plumbers specialize in service, installations, and/or emergencies? Others in drain cleaning and clearing (which require a different skill set that not all service plumbers have).
  • Can you provide an estimate before I approve any work? Make sure your plumber is okay with providing an estimate upfront, including how long he thinks the job will take. The best plumbers offer this without asking for it.
  • How soon can you get here? When it comes to plumbing and drains, especially problems with water or sewer leaks, time is of the essence. The longer the problem goes unattended, the more costly the fix and damage that results. Some plumbers and drain specialists, like 1-Tom-Plumber, are on-call 24/7 every day of the year. Those are the best for emergencies.

Conclusion: How to Find a Good Plumber

Plumbing done well is extremely important. Your home is probably your most prized investment and you want to leave the plumbing jobs to capable hands. The damage done by faulty plumbing fixes or ill-equipped plumbers is super expensive. So prepare in advance.

You’ll know how to find and hire a good plumber — one who is reliable, expert, trustworthy, and fair —by looking at his online reviews and asking the questions we’ve listed in this article.

Call 1-Tom-Plumber

Don’t hesitate to contact us here or call us at 1-Tom-Plumber (1-866-758-6237) with any of your plumbing questions. We immediately handle any emergency plumbingdrain cleaning and drain clearing, and water damage problem, including excavation of underground water lines and sewer main lines.

About the Author

Guest author Chris Woodard is the Co-Founder of Handle.com, where they build software that helps contractors, subcontractors, and material suppliers with late payments. Handle.com also provides funding for construction businesses in the form of invoice factoring, material supply trade credit, and mechanics lien purchasing.

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