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When to camera?

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  • #31
    Re: When to camera?

    Originally posted by pioneer1 View Post
    Hey guys, been MIA for the weekend but glad to see all the info from this thread.

    First of all Bried, an HVAC techs superheat meters are more like 215.00 not 15.00.

    Second, I like to camera every job because I get to see exactly what kind of job I did and if I did it properly, I like to think I have gotten an accelerated class in sewer lines because of the use of the camera. Also the camera gives the customer a chance to see what is causing the problem and that I am really accomplishing something. It also sets me apart from other plumbers, and it is hard to tell how bad someones line is if you don't camera it.

    Scenario: Customers line is blocked, I unstop it but dont camera, charge the customer 140 dollars and go on my way. 2 months later customer calls back and line is stopped up again, go back and clear the line and offer the camera and find that the top of the pipe has collapsed and dirt is just falling in. Give price to repair sewer line but now the customer wants the 140 dollars refunded because it was the same problem from 2 months ago.
    I of course cannot refund the money because I wont make my profit on the sewer repair. Now I have a mad customer who thinks I am trying to screw them when I am really not.

    My point through all of that is that if I use the camera the first time and find the problem, the customer is happy because I found the root of there problem and I am happy because I get to make a repair and not just my hourly rate.

    Does that make any sense?
    Unless you gave a warranty they do not get a refund. You are not responsible and should have a signed damage waiver to show it.

    If I were to recommend a video to all customers at the additional charge they would think I was over selling and not trust me anyway.

    Chances are if the pipe is collapsed you would have trouble running the cable and you can then sell the camera. So offer it and the ball is in their court. Most people will not go for the video if you got the line unstopped anyway. They'll want to wait and see. But its their decision, and if it stops up again they'll know what needs to be done.

    If a problem is not noticed you can still offer a video.

    If I were hitting everybody up for $300 to $500 dollars per cleaning because I insist on a video, I would go out of business. Word of mouth and repeat business would end.

    IMO Video has to have an extra equipment charge, inflated hourly charge, or flat rate to make up for the cost of the equipment and its upkeep. Most people are not willing or able to pay that extra $ unless its absolutely necessary.


    • #32
      Re: When to camera?

      General rule of thumb for my business
      Drain Clean/clear blockage charge them and tell them about possible problem give them the chance to have a look. We diagnose problem from this there is a extra charge on top of drain clean.