If you’re in the market for a new bath or kitchen product, finding that perfect fixture is only half the battle. Plumbing products require a certain amount of installation expertise to make them as good as their catalog pictures. Whether you’re installing a bathtub or a wall-mounted kitchen faucet, the right plumbing contractor will ensure that your project is completed efficiently, successfully, and within your budget.
Not only does your plumbing contractor make sure that your shiny new fixture functions properly, he or she can also guide you through the nearly limitless variety of plumbing products available today. Your plumbing contractor works hand-in-hand with Crawford Supply Group’s knowledgeable showroom consultants to help you choose faucets, bathtubs, and other fixtures that harmonize with your bathroom’s décor and suits the needs of your household. Read on to learn how to select the best plumbing contractor for your bath or kitchen!
How do I find a reputable plumber?
Selecting a plumber can seem like a daunting task: how do you choose the one who’s right for your project? Fortunately, there are a variety of guidelines you can follow to make sure you pick a reputable plumber.
- Friends, coworkers and family. When beginning the search process for a plumbing contractor, it’s usually best to start with your own network. It is likely that your friends, family, and coworkers have used a reputable plumbing contractor before. Ask for recommendations and if they have any examples of their work.
- Plumbing associations. Trade professional associations such as the Plumbing-Heating-Cooling-Contractors Association and United Association are a great resource for reputable, experienced plumbing contractors. You can also look through your local Chamber of Commerce for reputable plumbers.
- Review websites. Check for potential plumbing contractors on websites like Yelp or Google+, and see if they have any reviews up. If a plumbing contractor has several positive, authentic reviews (steer clear of plumbers whose reviews use similar wording and are posted anonymously), they might just be the right plumber for you!
What should I look for in a plumber?
Good plumbers proudly display their licenses and awards, and have a variety of references that provide glowing praise about their work. Here are some traits you should look for in a plumber:
- Check for a plumbing license. Make sure to check that any potential plumbers you hire carry their plumbing licenses and full insurance that protects you in case the unexpected occurs.
- Ask about their experience. How long have they been in the business? Have they worked on a variety of projects, or focused on one type of project? Do they regularly attend continuing education events to learn about the latest technology and techniques? You want a plumbing contractor who is confident in his/her experience and constantly staying up-to-date on the latest technology/techniques.
- Check their references. Check to see if potential plumbing contractors are on websites like Yelp or Google+, and see if they have any reviews up. You should also ask for a specific set of references to contact—it’s best to ask for references at different stages of project completion: one who has recently had a project completed, one who is in the middle of a project, and one who had a project completed one year ago. That way, you can check to see if the plumber’s work is durable and long-lasting, and to see how they treat clients throughout the remodeling process.
How do I determine a fair project price?
As with any other purchase, you want to make sure you’re being charged fairly for the quality of the work performed. Plumbing installation errors can be costly and timely, so make sure not to sacrifice quality for a low price. Here are some ways you can determine a fair price for your project:
- Get multiple bids for a comparison. Get multiple bids on your project from different plumbing contractors in order to compute the average cost of the project. For plumbing contractors who quote higher bids, ask why their price is at that level—it’s possible their work is more detailed and durable, and thus longer-lasting. Don’t automatically go for the lowest possible price—inquire why the plumbing contractor charges the price that they do.
- Inquire if they have a guarantee. Find out from the potential plumber if they have a money-back guarantee, and if it’s written on your bid.
What kinds of questions should I ask during the interview?
The plumbing contractor interview is important in determining if you and your potential plumbing contractor mesh well in terms of communication, work style, and expectations. How the plumber handles your questions predicts how he’ll handle communication during a project. You want a plumber who is good at explaining technical details in laymen’s terms, patient in answering questions, and gives honest answers.
Some good questions to ask include:
- Are you licensed?
- When do you want payment? (Never pay 100% of the cost upfront!)
- How do you charge—hourly or flat rate?
- Who will be performing the work?
- Do you clean up after you complete the project?
- What is your policy if something breaks?
The right plumber will ensure your project is completed efficiently, smoothly, and to your satisfaction. On the hunt for a plumber? Visit a Crawford Supply Group website for Illinois, Michigan, or Pennsylvania and visit “Locate a Trade Professional” under the Homeowners section.