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  • #31
    Re: I Love The People Here!

    Originally posted by NHMaster3015 View Post
    I believe that there is some form of licensing required in every state. There probably are other factors involved in 3rd world countries but it all boiles down to lack of licensing and knowledge. Rudeness is not really excusable and indeed the best thing to do is not reply which is pretty much what happens here and on most other diy sites. If you are a member of a few you may have noticed a definate decrease in the number of licensed professionals posting advice.
    Regarding your point on the third world countries that's not correct. The knowledge for undertaking plumbing jobs to an acceptable level does exist - however lack of resources to enforce, overcrowded infrastructure etc are far more important factors in what you see over the fact that people are unlicensed. I know many people from the third world and I have to yet hear of someone who suffered as a result of a poor plumbing job.

    I have a friend from India who built a house and I have seen the construction photos and it looks every bit as good as a house built here.

    I have not noticed whether there has been a decrease in people posting advice or not. But I also agree with Frank that pro or not the quality of advice varies and you can get poor and even bad advice. My personal view is that the info to do an acceptable job exists out there for anyone - all of you have to do is go to a bookstore and you can see plenty of good books on plumbing or other aspects of construction.

    Just as a general point hoarding information rarely works - look at the number of proprietory systems that have died a death over open source systems and standards. I doubt people posting less is going to have much overall impact. The info to do the work is out there - the online advice is very useful to the specifics of someone's project but not having that help does not preclude them from doing the work.

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    • #32
      Re: I Love The People Here!

      Its not hoarding information and reading posts and books is in no way a substitute for the training and experience to knowlegably install, maintain and repair plumbing systems. Again, Pumbing is a licensed trade and by your logic I guess we should just do away with all licensing because you can read a book. It takes many hours to fully understand the concepts and principals of proper plumbing along with a knowledge of framing, masonary, roofs, insulation, electrical and even excavation. Reading internet posts and books is not a substitute. There are states that levy some fairly substantial fines for plumbing without a license and I would like to see that trend go nation wide. You defend the practice because you really have very little experience or knowledge of the trade but think that because you managed to complete a couple of projects that that is all there is to it. I liken it to getting your pilots license. The first 100 hours are the most dangerous because you have just enough knowledge but not enough experience. And, why bother to license driving? Hell, most folks can learn to drive in a couple of hours. All licensing does there is make money for the state right?

      As for info in plumbing books, I have just about all of them from Home depots its easy as 123 to college level textbooks. The information in them is correct. What they don't tell you is what to do when things don't look like the text book says they should. As for internet advice, just exactly how do you know that the advisor is qualified or licensed or maybe just lying?
      Last edited by NHMaster3015; 03-25-2013, 02:12 PM.
      sigpic

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      • #33
        Re: I Love The People Here!

        Originally posted by Frankiarmz View Post
        Unfortunately, tradesmen often give "free" advice like it or not. My wife's cousin is a licensed electrician and said homeowners will have him over to bid on a job and ask him how he will be doing the job, you know picking his brain, then they either take a lower bid or do it themselves! I guess you could give out false information if you feel the person is just fishing for tips on how to do it?
        Just had this scenario play out the other day. Was called out to a new customer's house, and husband was picking my brain on how fix a few issues, and I only fixed one item out of 2. He was all set to let me just walk right out the door, until I handed him a bill, and the look on his face was priceless.

        Trying to pick a Professionals brain whether it's to their face or online, and expecting it to be free, is down right ignorant and those people should expect fair play in return.

        My philosophy is.. If someone can't afford to have something fixed in your home because you can't afford it or you're too cheap, move into an apartment where it's covered in your rent.

        That way you can break the superintendents balls till your hearts content.

        Comment


        • #34
          Re: I Love The People Here!

          Originally posted by NHMaster3015 View Post
          Its not hoarding information and reading posts and books is in no way a substitute for the training and experience to knowlegably install, maintain and repair plumbing systems. Again, Pumbing is a licensed trade and by your logic I guess we should just do away with all licensing because you can read a book. It takes many hours to fully understand the concepts and principals of proper plumbing along with a knowledge of framing, masonary, roofs, insulation, electrical and even excavation. Reading internet posts and books is not a substitute. There are states that levy some fairly substantial fines for plumbing without a license and I would like to see that trend go nation wide. You defend the practice because you really have very little experience or knowledge of the trade but think that because you managed to complete a couple of projects that that is all there is to it. I liken it to getting your pilots license. The first 100 hours are the most dangerous because you have just enough knowledge but not enough experience. And, why bother to license driving? Hell, most folks can learn to drive in a couple of hours. All licensing does there is make money for the state right?

          As for info in plumbing books, I have just about all of them from Home depots its easy as 123 to college level textbooks. The information in them is correct. What they don't tell you is what to do when things don't look like the text book says they should. As for internet advice, just exactly how do you know that the advisor is qualified or licensed or maybe just lying?
          The books on plumbing vary from the 1-23 style books to the more complex textbook style. The more complex ones have more info on plumbing systems and in many cases have the necessary info for someone to successfully undertake what they need to do. Do you really need a licensed pro to change out a faucet cartridge or understand how septic systems work if changing the cartridge is all you plan to do.

          Another thing is that due to advances in technology plumbing has become a lot easier and requires a lot less skill than in the past.

          Should the system be so regulated that for example you need to take your car in and have an ASE certified mechanic read the tier pressures in case you do it wrong and due to low pressure you have a blow out and kill yourself along with others?

          I agree there is good and bad advice online from both pros and on-pros online and in some cases not easy to tell them apart.

          I’m not sure what practice you claim I’m defending. I already said I believe that projects should be permitted and approved and I always do that. Clearly that should tell you that even without a license people can do projects to the necessary level.

          I fly myself and I’m not sure you can compare plumbing to flying – with flying and driving split second decisions can result in death so that is a lot more critical in terms of training than an activity that does not.

          Comment


          • #35
            Re: I Love The People Here!

            Originally posted by Flux View Post
            Just had this scenario play out the other day. Was called out to a new customer's house, and husband was picking my brain on how fix a few issues, and I only fixed one item out of 2. He was all set to let me just walk right out the door, until I handed him a bill, and the look on his face was priceless.

            Trying to pick a Professionals brain whether it's to their face or online, and expecting it to be free, is down right ignorant and those people should expect fair play in return.

            My philosophy is.. If someone can't afford to have something fixed in your home because you can't afford it or you're too cheap, move into an apartment where it's covered in your rent.

            That way you can break the superintendents balls till your hearts content.
            Flux, guess there's line between giving a quote and actually fixing something requiring pay for services rendered. I'm reminded of the joke where there's a lawyer and doctor at a party and they start talking. The doctor complains to the lawyer that he hates when he is at these parties and another guest will ask his professional opinion regarding a health issue. The lawyer tells the doctor that he should charge them just the same as if they were in his office because his knowledge is not for free. A month later the doctor receives a letter in the mail, inside is a bill from the lawyer
            Last edited by Frankiarmz; 03-25-2013, 03:53 PM.

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            • #36
              Re: I Love The People Here!

              Originally posted by Frankiarmz View Post
              Flux, guess there's line between giving a quote and actually fixing something requiring pay for services rendered. I'm reminded of the joke where there's a lawyer and doctor at a party and they start talking. The doctor complains to the lawyer that he hates when he is at these parties and another guest will ask his professional opinion regarding a health issue. The lawyer tells the doctor that he should charge them just the same as if they were in his office because his knowledge is not for free. A month later the doctor receives a letter in the mail, inside is a bill from the lawyer
              Being at a party is much different than making an "appointment" for someone to bring their shop with them, so I can't see the similarities with your example.

              But I get what you're saying.
              Last edited by Flux; 03-25-2013, 06:46 PM.

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              • #37
                Re: I Love The People Here!

                Originally posted by blue_can View Post
                In fact I believe some parts of the country do not even adhere to codes - is that correct?
                This is correct. NY does not have a statewide license. It generally follows the IPC codes. Each municipality, if large enough to have a code/zoning/planning board enacts its own licensing program and fee structure. Many of the smaller towns where I live have NO codes, license or inspection program in regards to plumbing. I try to follow at a minimum the 2009 IPC when working in these areas. Sometimes I can't but I will not hack something in, nor would I cause a health hazard. There's always a way to do it right.
                ~~

                ... it was plumbed by Ray Charles and his helper Stevie Wonder

                Comment


                • #38
                  Re: I Love The People Here!

                  Originally posted by Plumber Punky View Post
                  This is correct. NY does not have a statewide license. It generally follows the IPC codes. Each municipality, if large enough to have a code/zoning/planning board enacts its own licensing program and fee structure. Many of the smaller towns where I live have NO codes, license or inspection program in regards to plumbing. I try to follow at a minimum the 2009 IPC when working in these areas. Sometimes I can't but I will not hack something in, nor would I cause a health hazard. There's always a way to do it right.
                  I'm shocked N.Y. Doesn't have a more strict code. You pretty much nailed down Pennsylvania and our lack of the plumbing code. They pretty much dumbed it down by adopting IPC in this state ( except Philly & Pittsburgh)

                  Comment


                  • #39
                    Re: I Love The People Here!

                    Originally posted by Flux View Post
                    I'm shocked N.Y. Doesn't have a more strict code. You pretty much nailed down Pennsylvania and our lack of the plumbing code. They pretty much dumbed it down by adopting IPC in this state ( except Philly & Pittsburgh)
                    I know! They legislate the crap out of everything else. Maybe they're afraid no one will plunge their toilets if the plumbers get mad. Though, a plunger with 2 hand holds and can plunge more than 7 times in a row will have to be registered with the state police...
                    ~~

                    ... it was plumbed by Ray Charles and his helper Stevie Wonder

                    Comment


                    • #40
                      Re: I Love The People Here!

                      I could never understand peoples justification for hording information. Seems like some of you forget it was other people who educated you and guided you in your trade...

                      Some of you guys talk like a license guarantees certain individuals are the "only people capable" of performing a task or job in a specific field. I guess by that token none of us are capable of fixing our own vehicles either. If as an example all an electrician did all day were to install panel boxes then I may be in agreement, but I would wager most of the people who are not licensed electricians on this forum would be "capable" of replacing a light switch and most of the people who are not licensed plumbers could handle replacing a kitchen faucet cartridge...

                      But for you guys who don't want to share, hey I get it, you think you are protecting yourselves and protecting your income but if you think you are accomplishing anything positive by not offering advice to those people attempting a task by themselves I can assure you that you are mistaken. The information is out there weather you share what you know or not. Just check out youtube, they have thousands of videos on "how to" for plumbing work alone. By not answering someones questions on this forum all you are doing is delaying the inevitable.

                      You guys think you are losing work when in fact sometimes educating people can generate work. Not only are you building a positive rapport with people but by taking the educational approach I have encountered situations where people have backed out of doing it themselves once they realized the scope and risk of the task they are inquiring about. I've also had customers successfully undertake smaller jobs themselves yet call me the next time a bigger job comes around because they remember me as the guy who helped them out before. Personally I think this is the opportunity you guys are missing when you deny info readily available to those who seek it anyway.

                      Some of you guys have said you don't offer advice because you feel it's a safety issue. Personally I think by not helping you are actually doing the opposite of what you say. By denying a person information you are actually missing an opportunity to keep someone safe. After all, the more information a person has the better chance they will have at making the proper decisions, and in some case that decision may be to call in a professional.

                      I want to add that I am not advocating letting people take advantage of you but there really is no comparison between giving advice to someone at your leisure on a community forum, or at a party etc vs having someone taking up your time while working. You should have a mechanism built into your service to deal with tire kickers and advice seekers who call you out to their homes anyway. A minimum charge for diagnosing a problem is standard around here. If I need someone to come look at my furnace because I am having issues, they charge $110 to diagnose the problem and if I get them to do the work they apply that amount to the labour portion of the job.
                      Last edited by Supermanofsteel; 03-26-2013, 03:00 AM.

                      Comment


                      • #41
                        Re: I Love The People Here!

                        This is a discussion we will never find middle ground on. We as Licensed Plumbers have one belief which differs to HO's and others. Yes Plumbing has come a huge distance and methods have become easier. Pro-press is one fantastic example of this. Now the older ones amongst us don't necessarily agree with new but adapt under sufferance for survival in most circumstances. Now I have read here that it doesn't really take much to do what we do. Yes that may be the case but we generally do it more often and not every circumstance is identical. That is where we have the "touch" and unexplainable ability to react as we need to when we are thrown a left-ball. I read that education is important, yes it is. So to take a step away from Plumbing let me tell you about our Engineering Teachers over here. Thirty years ago here the bar was set at 70% for a pass. Many struggled, yes Engineers are not necessarily the smartest on this earth regardless of what they tell us, and many failed. This did not go down too well because the Government did not like giving money to failures. So just recently there was a meeting of engineering teachers, yes year 2013, and they were asking how they could lower the bar because the geniuses couldn't even get close to the original 70% let alone higher. How can we solve the problem they ask. I know, says lead engineer, lets make the bar 40% and call it 70%, no one will ever know. So I ask the question, what part of the 40% would you trust in a conversation on a forum site like this. Now I will also admit that this is not, unfortunately, unique to Engineering. Over here we have dumb a--- plumbing teachers who should never have been given a license let alone allowed to teach. I suppose I will concede that talking about water harmless as at most one can only catch cold and die of pneumonia. Gas, however, is a totally different animal. I rad here about many HO,s doing their own gas, good luck I say. However, and I say this seriously and with extreme care and concern, there are many who think they know and yet they really don't. There are many aspects that we look at and comes form a lifetime of training, not a post in a forum. If you want to fool with gas, move your family and loved ones out so you only harm or kill yourself, not innocent humans in the name of saving a few bucks. Herein the lesson finishes for now.

                        Comment


                        • #42
                          Re: I Love The People Here!

                          Originally posted by Supermanofsteel View Post
                          I could never understand peoples justification for hording information. Seems like some of you forget it was other people who educated you and guided you in your trade...

                          Some of you guys talk like a license guarantees certain individuals are the "only people capable" of performing a task or job in a specific field. I guess by that token none of us are capable of fixing our own vehicles either. If as an example all an electrician did all day were to install panel boxes then I may be in agreement, but I would wager most of the people who are not licensed electricians on this forum would be "capable" of replacing a light switch and most of the people who are not licensed plumbers could handle replacing a kitchen faucet cartridge...

                          But for you guys who don't want to share, hey I get it, you think you are protecting yourselves and protecting your income but if you think you are accomplishing anything positive by not offering advice to those people attempting a task by themselves I can assure you that you are mistaken. The information is out there weather you share what you know or not. Just check out youtube, they have thousands of videos on "how to" for plumbing work alone. By not answering someones questions on this forum all you are doing is delaying the inevitable.

                          You guys think you are losing work when in fact sometimes educating people can generate work. Not only are you building a positive rapport with people but by taking the educational approach I have encountered situations where people have backed out of doing it themselves once they realized the scope and risk of the task they are inquiring about. I've also had customers successfully undertake smaller jobs themselves yet call me the next time a bigger job comes around because they remember me as the guy who helped them out before. Personally I think this is the opportunity you guys are missing when you deny info readily available to those who seek it anyway.

                          Some of you guys have said you don't offer advice because you feel it's a safety issue. Personally I think by not helping you are actually doing the opposite of what you say. By denying a person information you are actually missing an opportunity to keep someone safe. After all, the more information a person has the better chance they will have at making the proper decisions, and in some case that decision may be to call in a professional.

                          I want to add that I am not advocating letting people take advantage of you but there really is no comparison between giving advice to someone at your leisure on a community forum, or at a party etc vs having someone taking up your time while working. You should have a mechanism built into your service to deal with tire kickers and advice seekers who call you out to their homes anyway. A minimum charge for diagnosing a problem is standard around here. If I need someone to come look at my furnace because I am having issues, they charge $110 to diagnose the problem and if I get them to do the work they apply that amount to the labour portion of the job.
                          I'm not speaking for everyone, but I have no problems with people asking me for advice regarding Plumbing or Heating. I just have a problem with people picking my brain on how to FIX something because they are too cheap to pay someone to do it, and they don't have the slightest clue on how to do it without begging. I do this for a living and this is what puts food on my table and I'm sure you can understand that concept.

                          I do take issue on your "safety" statement above, as I can tell you 2 stories where the neighbors and a Gas company employee had no business touching a heater. I can tell you first hand my father stop PECO from getting a major lawsuit on their hands cause that employee "thought" he knew gas burners and he shut off all the air on the gas burner. He got the entire family sick and they all went to the hospital, and the homeowner and gas company tried to pin it on my father cause he was the last person to work on it, but yet the Gas company was the one to sign the ticket that the heater running @ 97% efficiency, and that boiler was only rated for 81%.

                          If you saw my post the other week on oil burners, before primary controls had the lockout feature, I saw my 1 and only fireball come out of a vent, and it scared the living crap out of me. That's because the neighbors,homeowners, and even a supposed Professional were button pushers and loaded the chamber up with oil. We were the last in, and pushed the reset button and BOOM!

                          I'm sure many others here could tell you safety issue stories as well.
                          Last edited by Flux; 03-26-2013, 07:49 AM.

                          Comment


                          • #43
                            Re: I Love The People Here!

                            [
                            QUOTE=Supermanofsteel;396135]I could never understand peoples justification for
                            hording information. Seems like some of you forget it was other people who
                            educated you and guided you in your trade...
                            Yep, I was educated initially by my master under the apprentice system and later on by college, again by licensed master plumbers. Not by some internet forum and not by checking out a book from the public library. My experience is not unique.

                            Some of you guys talk like a license guarantees certain individuals are the
                            "only people capable" of performing a task or job in a specific field. I guess
                            by that token none of us are capable of fixing our own vehicles either. If as an
                            example all an electrician did all day were to install panel boxes then I may be
                            in agreement, but I would wager most of the people who are not licensed
                            electricians on this forum would be "capable" of replacing a light switch and
                            most of the people who are not licensed plumbers could handle replacing a
                            kitchen faucet cartridge...
                            You guys always seem to pit oranges agianst apples. Sure, many of you can change your oil and air filter but there are not many that can properly (note the word properly) repair major issues with your car and even less of you have any idea what NATF standards require. Sure, change your light switch. The worst that could happen is you don't get the wires on tight, they heat up and burn your house to the ground. But hey, its as easy as 1,2,3 LOL

                            But for you guys who don't want to share, hey I get it, you think you are
                            protecting yourselves and protecting your income but if you think you are
                            accomplishing anything positive by not offering advice to those people
                            attempting a task by themselves I can assure you that you are mistaken. The
                            information is out there weather you share what you know or not. Just check out
                            youtube, they have thousands of videos on "how to" for plumbing work alone. By
                            not answering someones questions on this forum all you are doing is delaying the
                            inevitable.
                            Again, hell yes, I am protecting myself and my trade as every single licensed plumber should also be doing. As for you tube, you have got to be kidding me. I teach plumbing. I have waded through hundreds of you tube plumbing videos looking for anything that would be useful to my students. Thus far, I have found a grand total of two videos that showed the correct and safe procedure. Everything else is crap.

                            You guys think you are losing work when in fact sometimes educating people can
                            generate work. Not only are you building a positive rapport with people but by
                            taking the educational approach I have encountered situations where people have
                            backed out of doing it themselves once they realized the scope and risk of the
                            task they are inquiring about. I've also had customers successfully undertake
                            smaller jobs themselves yet call me the next time a bigger job comes around
                            because they remember me as the guy who helped them out before. Personally I
                            think this is the opportunity you guys are missing when you deny info readily
                            available to those who seek it anyway.
                            The only "educating" the public needs is the phone number of a licensed plumber. It builds NOTHING with any customer. Giving advice on the internet isn't going to generate one single dime of income for me or any other plumber here. Just for fun, next time you're at the dentist, ask him if he'll give you a step by step procedure for doing your own root canal. Hell, all you need is a Dremel tool and a bottle of Jack LOL. What makes you think that the plumbing profession is any different? Its a licensed trade.

                            Some of you guys have said you don't offer advice because you feel it's a safety
                            issue. Personally I think by not helping you are actually doing the opposite of
                            what you say. By denying a person information you are actually missing an
                            opportunity to keep someone safe. After all, the more information a person has
                            the better chance they will have at making the proper decisions, and in some
                            case that decision may be to call in a professional.
                            Thats absolute crap. Its not my job to police cowboys and idiots. Thats why we have licensing and permitting in the first place. It was all put in place to keep UNLICENSED people from causing harm. If you don't know what harm can be caused then that right there is the reason why unlicensed people should leave plumbing to the professionals

                            I want to add that I am not advocating letting people take advantage of you but
                            there really is no comparison between giving advice to someone at your leisure
                            on a community forum, or at a party etc vs having someone taking up your time
                            while working. You should have a mechanism built into your service to deal with
                            tire kickers and advice seekers who call you out to their homes anyway. A
                            minimum charge for diagnosing a problem is standard around here. If I need
                            someone to come look at my furnace because I am having issues, they charge $110
                            to diagnose the problem and if I get them to do the work they apply that amount
                            to the labour portion of the job.
                            [/QUOTE]

                            I can's speak for all of us but I don't give advice at parties, forums nor do I do it with the customer breathing over my shoulder.
                            sigpic

                            Comment


                            • #44
                              Re: I Love The People Here!

                              Giving advice at least on the forum is a shot in the dark. I'm not the same person I was 25 years ago regarding my knowledge of plumbing, electrical, carpentry and other skills related to house repairs. Give someone with zero skills enough advice to get hurt and you are part of the problem, give someone who knows pretty much how to work safe and follow instructions and you have shared your knowledge in a beneficial way. This forum has been a blessing for myself and others who could take information by experts and properly apply it to our problem. My karcher pressure washer was not working well and thanks to doctordeere I learned about the unloader and fixed it. I feel I have given some good advice at times but there is still the unknown if you don't see and know the skill level and safety behavior of the other person. Maybe we need to ask more questions before trying to help? I have been doing brake jobs for over thrity years, it's not brain surgery but if you screw it up someone could die! I could easily walk someone through the steps, but unless I was there with them I could not be sure they were properly following my instructions. A double edged sword for sure, the only guarantee you have of not being part of someone getting hurt is to not give advice. The willingness to share what we know, to feel good by helping others is part of being good natured, but it has it's price at times.

                              Comment


                              • #45
                                Re: I Love The People Here!

                                Just a general point on educational institutions - I've spent a fair bit of time in academic environments studying for undergraduate and postgraduate degrees. As someone involved in R&D work I also from time to time attend conferences. In general mainstream academic institution are generally quite free with the sharing of information on new research and educating of people in general.

                                I find this quite contrary to NHMaster's view but maybe trade schools are places where people are taught to horde information - having not been to one I do not know the kind of culture that exist in those places.

                                Comment

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