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Your Work Day---Details of your Work

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  • Re: Your Work Day---Details of your Work

    Originally posted by leak1 View Post
    dunbar- your so crazzzzzzyyyyyyy!!!

    I'm like a bowel movement that never ends!

    Monday - First call was a drain cleaning call/RootX application. Showed her the leaking toilet flange and WHAMO! she committed to reworking that flange for friday. It's going to be some work for sure but she's good to go for the price I gave her.

    Went down and gave a bid on two water softeners for a industrial truck wash building. I didn't hear back on the estimate of a grand but I'm not sweating it. Don't care either. I would of been in some serious pain at the end of that job and I really can't do those. I "bet" they wanted that done overnight to keep from slowing down business.....not going to happen with me.

    I bid that for during the day, total dismantle and rework, no temporary live setup while doing the build. I make sure that statement is thrown IF I got that job.

    Left there and did some banking (give all my damn money away) and loaded up some of my commercial fans to go to a indoor sports complex. I'm letting this guy use them because he's not charging me for the advertising I have down there, these fans of mine aren't making me a dime sitting in hibernation and this just puts this product (even though they are not misting) in people's view all winter long. Brand recognition and why do I not care about wear and tear? Because it's business and a small insignificance in the big picture of all this.

    I'm turning a 4 month/seasonal product into a 12 month operation. Just got an email from a company that has those outdoor inflatables that wants to get in line with me to work out pairings with his product and mine next summer. Saaaaaweeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeet. The distance of time is finally starting to work in my favor and I'm not having to reach out; it's starting to pull towards me in the off season, people preparing.

    Today was a WTF?!?! day where I woke up knowing I scheduled loose, and I basically gave all my money away again. Nice.

    Worked here at the shop but you'd never know it because the messes only got bigger. Bought a 33" flat screen tv for my shop today, even though I cleaned up my once broken tv that wouldn't turn back on. Left it out in the rain right outside the door and it started working again.

    I've had it since 99' and it's on as we speak, flat screen tv directly above it when it eventually breaks.

    Tomorrow is replacement of two hose bibbs, new brain box for a battery backup sump pump I installed 3 years ago. Thursday I have to reschedule because I have a 5:30pm appt. that is a callback and the woman is unreal. Got to get it done and end the work relationship.
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    • Re: Your Work Day---Details of your Work

      Today was an eventful day:

      1st call - Clogged toilet, ask if the vanity or shower is affecting the water level in the toilet, answer was no. I made $160 between 2 toilets in 24 hours and both involved a closet auger. One of those jobs bounced off as a toilet replacement given my recommendation.

      2nd call - Rebuild 2 lav faucets, set the thermostat on a water heater back to 120 and let the customer know that anything above that number is dangerous for children/adults.

      3rd call - Emergency call from a funeral home. Place is packed full of people for a service and the guy who stuffs the dead bodies is sitting in a cesspool of probably one of the most dangerous forms of waste there is; human body fluids of people who have died from disease or accident.

      And here I come to save the day!

      Get it open but last time I was there I bent a hell of a whip to my cable and the cleanings went from every 3 months to 6 months. They was impressed and today I used a very aggressive blade. I must of broke up 7-10 obstructions in that line and I know I won't be back for quite some time. Just the fact I'm saving them money, along with my super fast response embeds guaranteed income. Been working for this funeral home for 3 years, actually did plumbing work for the one fellow who's family to the business almost 18 years ago. I plumbed his bathroom basement when I was early 20's. No license, no nothing. But I plumbed it to code and did it all the way it was supposed to be. I'm starting to realize how much time I have in this profession these days and why I'm so jaded at this point.

      4th call was "supposed" to be a toilet flange replacement that I'm sure this lady is getting pissed with me pushing it off, but I'm doing it sunday. I did put the time in today and bought the material, stopped by and explained.

      I then stopped off way out of my way for a free oil change that never transpired but I did get a phone call I turned into another call.

      5th call was a clogged main drain in a basement. I get there and no walk out basement. I drag the machine down, can't get my attachment down the floor drain, I move to the base of a stack and it comes up another stack...??? Then I go back to the floor drain with my intention to close up my C-cutters. Well that worked for one second when I busted the one side off. I wish it didn't happen but now I have a half cutter that is probably a better application for maneuvering through constricted drains I'll never expand out, given the years of buildup. Got it open around 28' and pulled back tampons galore, wipes.

      I went ahead and ran out all the way 77' and when I took it to the whip anchored in the drum, it took all my might to pull that cable 10' and get the drum rolling where the power feed to start reeling it the rest of the way in.

      This machine fought pulling this cable back the entire way, and with my foot in front of the machine and my hand holding the handle so the machine does all the work,

      I realized how smart I am for knowing my equipment now does the work I don't want my body to do anymore...and I couldn't imagine pulling that entire cable back in that fashion. Too much and I remember those days well enough to never go back.

      6th call - Got done, loaded up and headed to a place to get something to eat, noticed a phone message I didn't check. It was a dance studio that had a screwed up toilet that needed repair. Ace Hardware stayed open past closing to let me get parts, they didn't have all I need so I robbed one of my toilets and headed up the street to get the repair done. Have to tell the lady I've been working for years that there's other repairs needed along with the two water heaters I drain every year for the past 5 years.

      Came home to eat and I've been a zombie on this computer all night till now. Have a disposal replacement at 11am and I guarantee I'll get service calls tomorrow; been getting hammered on the weekends lately. If I can nab a couple to make 3 for the day I'll be content as sunday is already a full day's work. Monday I won't be working.
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      • Re: Your Work Day---Details of your Work

        I smell like the HUGE SH8T the woman took inside the women's bathroom at the indoor sports complex,

        and wouldn't own up to it.

        Anyway I got the toilet unclogged but I'm heading back to replace the internals for the flushometer.

        And in true DUNBAR fashion I told the girls in the team room that if I sh*t that big I'd be running around kicking a ball too.

        That statement went over as well as the 4 pound loaf I was told to get choked down the toilet so they can do it again.

        Toilet is underflushing, ground joint valve was wound all the way out. I'm going to test that to see if buildup is to blame if the cartridge has any debris on it.

        Ran around like a chicken with my head cut off but glad I have one of my jobs out of my hair already.

        Pulled a toilet thinking I was going to replace the entire toilet flange and all, the brass ring was relatively new looking and whoever leaded that flange did a good job, and the leak was due to the idiots who misaligned TWO horned rings over that flange, used steel closet bolts like an idiot.

        Reset the toilet, took pictures of the wiggly worms all over underneath the toilet and the wood floor is destroyed all around this toilet, hiding underneath linoleum that's raised up where the wood swelled.

        Did a full rebuild on the toilet but I worked backwards, paid the price. Should of rebuilt that toilet before setting it down on the flange, didn't know the brass bolts/nuts would have to be hacksawed off, grinded. Totally took me by surprise.

        Set the new bolts, flush valve disc and 400A fill valve, went ahead and rebuilt the 2 handle delta faucet right next to it.

        Easy money, told her the flange should be replaced when she remodels the bathroom along with the floor.
        Last edited by DUNBAR PLUMBING; 12-04-2009, 11:49 PM.
        Northern Kentucky Plumbers Twitter Feed | Plumbing Videos


        • Re: Your Work Day---Details of your Work

          So I havn't chimed in yet so here's my two cents. Sunday got an emergency call during church service. Sorry pastor forgot to turn off the phone. After church I returned the call and had to go to the office. I called the guy back it was a home owner who put 12 lbs of RootX in his toilet . I read my email and responded to a few while in the office.

          Monday: I drank coffee and read and sent emails. Returned calls from my voicemails.

          Went outside to our test facility and relised it was still less than 20 degrees. So I decided that would wait until the afternoon.

          I ended up getting swamped with calls when I got back from lunch. Finally stepped out for a meeting at 2.

          After the meeting back out to the test facility, I snaked some roots out added RootX and then tested out new applicator. It went really well it was still in the 20's outside so I froze my cahoonas off.

          Got back in the office around 3:30 had a bunch of messages. I am supposed to get off at 4pm but again I was in the office until 5:30 ahh the joys of being salary and the manager.

          Found out that I am not going to the Pumper show, I hated Louisville any ways. I couldn't walk down the street with out getting up for money it was annoying the first few times I gave the guys a couple of bux but if kept that up I would go broke.


          • Re: Your Work Day---Details of your Work

            Today started off with me being late for my first call (DOH!) and I made a quick white lie to get around the mistake (slept late).

            Moved the call to 2pm, right on time!

            Had a few things to do and got them done.

            1st call - I expected 2 hours for some strange reason, but got done in 1.25 hours. 600 series Delta Rebuild, tank to bowl bolt replacement. The freaking retarded plumber on this job roughed in the water line....on the right side of the toilet. Stoopid.

            I then went downstairs and removed a 17 year old charcoal filter the homeowners forgot to replace. Talk about flavored water.

            The job went dangerously smooth, and fast, unusual in plumbing.

            2nd call - Leak from 2nd floor toilet into ceiling of 1st floor. Get there and it is a American Standard Cadet 2 with the nuts half off the tank to bowl bolts on one side. ???

            The tank is right up against the wall so I can't make out wtf caused those nuts to loosen up. I tried to see if it was loose to the floor and it was tight. No wiggle room at all.

            Rebuilt the toilet, no leaks.

            Been working on many things internet based so the out-in-the-field work is still there, just doing many things to make a point of talking/writing about my experiences someday instead of physically going out and doing it.

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            • Re: Your Work Day---Details of your Work

              Wednesday - Did a faucet replacement for a police officer that's going to lead to a tankless install and bathroom in the basement.

              Thursday - Unclogged 2 mansfield toilets. 3 figures and on my way

              No work today on Christmas Day but my accountant called me, clogged disposal I have to take care of tomorrow morning.

              I have an itchin' suspicion I'll be getting calls tomorrow for sure.

              I look practically pregnant from what I've eaten in the past couple days. Very thankful some work showed up for the holiday....barely squeaked by.
              Northern Kentucky Plumbers Twitter Feed | Plumbing Videos


              • Re: Your Work Day---Details of your Work

                Here's how it all played out today;

                First call was "supposed" to be a toilet reset. When I got there I noticed that it was an Eljer and the right tank to bowl bolt was leaking down to the floor.

                The customer agreed (as they have had to plunge this toilet profusely during family get togethers and other random occaisions) and they used to poke fun and make the ritual of "put the plunger in the tub!" when someone would come over. This job is on Lloyd Avenue in Florence Kentucky and we told the customer to purchase a toilet of their choice (recommended two toilets) and we would replace her toilet tomorrow. She called and she got the toilet ready for us to install.

                Went and dropped my plumbing rig off and had someone drive me back to the shop. Got in my "Ole Yeller" and off to rod a kitchen sink drain on a slab foundation home. 1st pass I somehow got hard torqued into the basket strainer but I ended up trailing the vent. Pulled out, made a second run and nailed it, got it open at 22' away. This job was on Akerly Drive in Independence Kentucky. I found out beforehand that he used drain chemicals to get the drain open, told him that he could avoid the extra charges if he removed "as much as possible" of the drain cleaning products that could damage my cables. He went ahead while waiting for me to get there and shop vac'd it out, did a great job and I even gave a small discount on the top number for his efforts. Showed off my latest move on the internet and he even let me bookmark the site on his laptop. WHA-BAM! I also took a short video of my equipment in action while I was clearing this drain with the drum machine going top down with the cable going down the basket strainer, using the water backup to my advantage so I could use it as a site gauge.

                Got to get some invoicing done tonight, have to work on my famed kohler toilet tomorrow...
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                • Re: Your Work Day---Details of your Work

                  Saturday - Drained one of two water heaters for a customer, trying to find out what was causing a low hot water pressure issue. Thought it was clogged dielectrics but turned out to be a partially open isolation valve.

                  Replaced one lavatory faucet, then was called out for a garbage disposal that was clogged. This worked out ideal as I needed to run to home depot and pick up some parts for what I was doing and this "paid" trip made it great.

                  Not even 19 minutes and off I go with 3 figures. Nice. Found on google and appreciated my willingness to answer the phone and come out within a 2 hour window.

                  Sunday - Started on two other plumbing websites geared towards products, discussions and product reliability issues with products we use every day. It's nice to finally stop covering new ground so much and get some repetition under my belt...moving a great deal faster. LOL INTERNET!

                  Monday - Started off the day with a truck that would not start. I believe I'm losing vaccum on the fuel pressure and that's horrible. Once I got it started, fuel is pouring out of front of the engine onto the ground, not good. I have 3 leaks on that truck and only one is acceptable in regards to the fact that I'll be fixing the pinion seal leak, with a big damn wrench.

                  Went up and drained my other water heater job, rebuilt a 2 handle delta faucet that was leaking, then head to a kitchen sink clog that didn't exist. I made a wasted trip but I had to keep the peace as I scheduled this job on sunday, couldn't make it there today since my truck was giving me trouble.

                  Rescheduled the laundry tub replacement for thursday. Landed two calls for next week; 75gal gas water heater replacement along with a partial drain stack replacement. Have to get up early tomorrow morning to take the truck back over to the shop to see if they can resolve this matter with the truck. Can't be destroying people's driveways and the road in front of their home with my truck.

                  Start looking at Toyota trucks here soon, time to say goodbye to something I'm very unsure of now.
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                  • Re: Your Work Day---Details of your Work

                    Started out with a late start but once we got rolling it was non-stop from that point on. I went over to get my truck looked at again and turned out it was a leaking o-ring on the fuel filter canister. Two service calls came in and one was a leaking galvanized pipe over the water heater and the other was a clogged main drain.

                    The first call was like most, unexpected in the situation that the ceiling was low but the piping was messed up going to the water heater and the main shut off had been leaking for some time. Once I got the piping reworked over top the water heater, the customer went to turn the main shutoff back on and and damn if it didn't snap off. Gate valves are notorious for this issue so I'm not the least bit surprised. I went and turned off the water at the meter base and pulled the gate out so he'd have water back onto the house. All connections were tight and I have to come back later this week and install a new main water line valve. This will be a one and only time event as ball valves are usually a lifetime valve in longevity and wearability.

                    The second job was the main drain issue. This one was interesting for many reasons as a friend of this homeowner attempted to clear the drain without success. I had an aggressive blade on my drum machine and the last foot is bent like a hard whip. When I arrived, large amounts of old black sewage was present on the floor around where it backed up out of the floor drains. Old black sewage is always evident of old problems. When I ran my cable on the first pass, found one spot around 50+ feet that indicated the clog was there. Took it out 75' and pulled it back, started to move around again, pushed forward back into the area the water started to move around and got it open.

                    Reeled the cable back and right when I was pulling the cable to put it back in the drain, a damn cap off a large bottle of laundry detergent that I use to keep my hands lubricated fell into the hole. We had the water running and sure enough, sent that cap down the main. I always make 2 passes when drain cleaning but when I put my cable in the drain, I got back in contact with the cap around 30 feet, and the fellow who tried to clear the drain before us mentioned he had a problem at that location. So in the end I got the main line open with a good idea of two bad spots in the piping. Customer was glad I made it out and I told him I bought him some decent time before the next time it backs up. Pulled back a tampon so there's something to blame for the issue.
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                    • Doin' it homestyle!

                      First call was a clogged toilet, used a closet auger and removed the problem. Most likely to blame was chronic use by someone who takes blood pressure medication. This problem can get out of hand and clog/restrict the toilet over time, starting inside the trapway of the toilet and leading into the piping system. Blood pressure medication, along with certain meds for allergies are notorious for problems with buildup inside the smooth trapways of toilets.

                      Second call was a toilet problem at a funeral home. Get there and the toilet is leaking profusely all over the floor, toilet seems to be leaking from the front. We removed the toilet to find that the wax seal was mostly intact and couldn't find traces of a wax ring blowout from plunging or sewer gases that were slowly escaping between toilet and ring, ring to flange. Went ahead and reset toilet with curiosity why it leaked. Older toilet and recommended replacement to newer 1.6 gallon flush toilet. This toilet is a 3.5 gallon flush toilet and the toilet randomly flushes at best. Recommended a American Standard Champion 4 for this office bathroom. Also found a dry trap in a shower that was being used for a storage space. ???

                      Third call was a gas line job where there were numerous gas leaks detected by the tenant, which led to the local gas utility company to come and shut off the gas to the building. Our quick response was the difference to this customer and was very thankful that we came abruptly to resolve the issue. Leaks were resolved and customer committed to additional gas line work to remove all blade type gas valves that have a gland type assembly that's prone to leaking. Got the property back up and functional on the furnace, water heater and gas stove. This conglomeration of gas piping is nuts; we are going to use left/right couplings to make the corrections and bring it up to code, to within reason.

                      Fourth call was a main valve replacement that was a follow-up to a job we did a week prior that the main shutoff, a gate valve broke when turning the water back on. The service call happened late at night and the quick resolve was removal of the gate inside the valve to restore water to the structure. When we came back, we removed that non-functioning shutoff with a full port ball valve that solves the problem of a non-working valve over time. We actually gave this fellow a "friday night special" and let him name his own price. Guy has hit a hard spot in life; has worked at the same job for 27 years, it's been 7 years since his last raise, he's a good worker and got favorable ratings for his evaluation...

                      no raise. He's beside himself, stuck in a job that no matter where he goes, he won't make that same kind of money elsewhere. I felt for his situation as I worked at a produce market years ago and knew that dead end feeling of not being able to get above a certain wage....and now you're in the same exact boat as anyone twice or three times your age, powerless in a mistake you cannot correct.

                      Later today we'll be doing numerous tasks at one location that will be one of one of two jobs possibly being done. Sleep would be nice to have at this point before all this begins. It's F'n hard to go to sleep when you're bright eyed awake, getting stuff done and got tons to do. This boat is going to float.
                      Last edited by DUNBAR PLUMBING; 01-23-2010, 04:52 AM.
                      Northern Kentucky Plumbers Twitter Feed | Plumbing Videos


                      • Re: Your Work Day---Details of your Work

                        Whats with the "we"?
                        Did you finally clean out the passengers side of your truck and find an employee under all that?
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                        Sewer main snaking (roto rooting). Sink clogs. Sewer backup. Pipe inspection/locating. No Dig trenchless repair. Root clog removal.We are NOT to replace your local Plumber, as we do not do plumbing. WE ARE YOUR DRAIN CLEANING EXPERTS!!! waterville winslow bangor augusta skowhegan fairfield pittsfield oakland


                        • Re: Your Work Day---Details of your Work

                          I don't know why I forgot to do this yesterday but I'll spit it out:

                          I did a lav faucet replacement yesterday that sucked so damn bad that I'm bruised all over the arms and back from fighting the one plastic nut that I could not get off the brass shank. I ended up taking my torch, under this sink and getting that shank super hot, plastic melting and dripping down and got that nut to finally come off.

                          The further it came down, the tighter it got and a basin wrench and my ridgid special tool was on the verge of breaking trying to get it to come off.

                          Plastic wasn't old enough to be brittle, like most become.

                          12" vanity door, a deep cabinet, 28" I believe with 2 large drawers to the right. Supply connects were way too close to the bottom of the sink top.

                          My eyes never physically saw the underside of this setup, impossible. I barely got the new Delta 522 back in there.

                          After I finished that disaster, headed to a toilet on the other side of the house, Toto Drake that was underflushing and the fill valve was operating every time the shower was used. ?

                          The fill valve was directing water outside the overflow tube, the korky fill valve was malfunctioning which is a common problem with those fill valves. I replaced that fill valve and installed a new flapper to call it done inside the tank, along with a new stainless steel flex supply line.

                          After that I had to replace an old laundry tub faucet that was in dire need of replacement. Had CPVC ran to the faucet about 2 foot away, switched to copper piping and went ahead and installed 2 new 1/4 turn shutoff valves along with new washing machine hoses that were numerous years old. The black rubber washing machine hoses should be replaced every two years, the stainless steel ones every 5, but I seriously do not expect people to replace a braided stainless steel supply line unless it is leaking.

                          On this same job, the customer has a 3 handle price pfister faucet that a plumber prior to me installed, customer got for good price and has had problems with ever since. The diverter keeps malfunctioning which is causing issue with taking showers, wasting water that's flowing out of the tub spout at the same time.

                          I don't have a very high opinion of price pfister...I think some of their older faucets were decent/reliable but the newer ones come with way too many parts, a lot of them being plastic ones as well.

                          There is a possibility that the installer of the faucet either

                          1. Sweated this valve in without removing the internals of the faucet


                          2. Didn't flush out the water lines before water was ran through the faucet, thus clogging the faucet up and possibly damaging the internals.

                          All I could recommend at that point was to contact the product maker, request all new internals. It's good on Price Pfister's behalf to be sending all new parts to resolve this issue on this faucet, but the "buyer beware" scenario comes in when the voice on the other end of the phone said "We no longer make this faucet and the parts will have to be backordered." WTF???

                          Now we know why it was a 'good deal'. The installation actually was illegal because in the state of Kentucky, all faucets used for showering/bathing must be thermostatically protected by pressure balancing, with one exception of a handheld unit with proper backflow protection. <<< Something you would only see in either a hospital or special care application, maybe a hotel room accommodation.

                          Out of all the work that was done above, only one issue has cropped up and that is the pop-up assembly for the Delta 522 faucet is not working properly to get the pop-up to raise high enough to drain quicker. I'll most likely come back tomorrow and try to adjust this linkage but I'm out of rod travel and it's directly on top of the drain going through the wall. Not much room for give. We really appreciate this customer as we just started doing work for them, he's had a bad experience with a plumber and recently a HVAC company and I'm a breath of fresh air to putting faith back into service providers and their reliability to the consumer.
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                          • Re: Your Work Day---Details of your Work

                            Originally posted by Gene Bickford View Post
                            Whats with the "we"?
                            Did you finally clean out the passengers side of your truck and find an employee under all that?
                            I write in a different way when it's in view of my customers.
                            Northern Kentucky Plumbers Twitter Feed | Plumbing Videos


                            • Re: Your Work Day---Details of your Work

                              Originally posted by DUNBAR PLUMBING View Post
                              I write in a different way when it's in view of my customers.
                              My father always said when ever you talk to a customer always say "we" and "us" never say "I" When you say I can do this for you, they will assume you are the owner. But when you say We can do this for you, the know you are talking about the company in a whole.
                              Ron Hasil Lic #058-160417
                              Ron's Facebook
                              A-Archer Sewer & Plumbing specializing in:
                              Tankless Water Heaters | Drain and Sewer Cleaning
                              Sump and Ejector Pumps | Backflow RPZ Testing


                              • Re: Your Work Day---Details of your Work

                                Originally posted by SewerRatz View Post
                                My father always said when ever you talk to a customer always say "we" and "us" never say "I" When you say I can do this for you, they will assume you are the owner. But when you say We can do this for you, the know you are talking about the company in a whole.

                                Correct. I just get it mixed up when I move conversations online and I forget where I'm at.

                                I like to cut right into a conversation that is dragging and say, "When would you like us to come out; I have openings for later today and tomorrow, what time would be convenient for you." <<< Without the raise in voice in asking a question, more like a command.
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