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  • cleaning drains not sewers?

    Can one be a drain cleaner and not clean sewers? i have been thinking about this for a few weeks. Could I just clean drains and not sewers? What equipment should I have If I am not doing sewers, just drains. Can one make Money just doing drains.

  • #2
    Re: cleaning drains not sewers?

    yes you can. 1/2 my drains are sinks, showers, interior drains. the other half are sewer mains and storm drains.

    problem is that the customer is not going to be happy if you can only solve 1/2 their problems.

    truthfully, sewer mains tend to be more profitable and for me, outdoor work is nicer than indoor work.

    i doubt that you can stick to just the drains, and ignore the sewers.

    rick.
    phoebe it is

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    • #3
      Re: cleaning drains not sewers?

      Dont try to limit yourself. When we opened our business my wife was concerned about buying several thousand dollars worth of rodding machines. I explained that we have to have them. Well, they are paying the bills right now.

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      • #4
        Re: cleaning drains not sewers?

        Originally posted by handybull View Post
        Can one be a drain cleaner and not clean sewers? i have been thinking about this for a few weeks. Could I just clean drains and not sewers? What equipment should I have If I am not doing sewers, just drains. Can one make Money just doing drains.

        Yes, But.
        Don't handicap yourself. Many back ups are due to the sewer. If you can't do the job word will get out that you can't handle 100% of the calls and people want full service. Toilet auger can be a sewer problem, Laundry line, floor drain etc. All can be a sewer clog. Keep a sewer machine with you. Without one it can really hurt your business. Plus you maybe wasting a lot of gas.
        Last edited by UnClogNH; 01-08-2010, 09:45 AM.
        Rod
        MT. Washington Sewer & Drain Cleaning
        Serving Berlin, NH and North Conway, NH areas
        http://unclognh.com
        http://mtwashingtonseweranddrainclea...m/default.aspx

        Charging less does not mean more call volume it just means you have to work harder to reach your goals.

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        • #5
          Re: cleaning drains not sewers?

          My guess is the words are used interchangeable by most people,

          I really doubt if the average person, and maybe even professional, even categorizes the difference,

          if the home owner would categorize them differently I would think the difference would be the "CITY SEWER" and the Houses "drain pipes",

          I have heard many call drains sewers and sewers drains,

          http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sewer
          Sewer may refer to:

          A system for transporting sewage:
          Sanitary sewer, a system of pipes used to transport human waste
          Storm drain, a collection and transportation system for storm water
          Combined sewer, a system performing both the functions of a sanitary sewer and a storm sewer


          A drain is the primary vessel for unwanted water to be flumed away, either to a more useful area, funnelled into a receptacle, or run into the sewers as waste.
          I think it would be confusing to most if you did not do the normal of home drain/sewer cleaning,

          Slogan on the truck,
          WE SPECIALIZE IN SINKS AND TUBS AND NOT MUCH PAST THE TRAP
          Last edited by BHD; 01-08-2010, 09:55 AM.
          Push sticks/blocks Save Fingers
          ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
          "The true measure of a man is how he treats someone who can do him absolutely no good."
          attributed to Samuel Johnson
          ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
          PUBLIC NOTICE: Due to recent budget cuts, the rising cost of electricity, gas, and oil...plus the current state of the economy............the light at the end of the tunnel, has been turned off.

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          • #6
            Re: cleaning drains not sewers?

            Thats a great point BHD! I get sump pump calls and it can turn out to be the ejector! Try re-quoting that one!

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            • #7
              Re: cleaning drains not sewers?

              I agree, the biggest problem with not doing sewers are that you will go to a kitchen sink clog(happens all the time), or you name it, and it will end up being the main. That would be very frustrating to not do the job!

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              • #8
                Re: cleaning drains not sewers?

                A guy who used to work for me went out on his own and wanted at first to do just internal drains. I advised him at the time he'd better get a decent sized snake at least because he would inevitably get calls for a plugged toilet that turned out to be a main line. And after you drive out and look at it and don't have what you need, what do you do then?

                Most customers don't even know that there is a distinction in the industry between drain/sewer cleaning and plumbing. Sink's stopped up? Call a plumber. So I have ads under 'plumbing,' 'drain,' and 'septic.'

                I don't plumb, I don't pump, I don't do boilers or heating. But I have people I can refer customers to for those things. I think what sticks in their minds is 'I called Ace, and it got done,' even if it got done by someone who I called in or referred them to, and they go away remembering me and will call me next time.

                This model is so nice because after a few years the other good guys in the area stop viewing you as competition; it becomes collaberation. Someone sends me a drain call, and while there I get asked about some other issue that turns out to be some sticky zone valves, or 6 mo later they are doing a remodel or an addition or need their tank pumped, and that work comes back to the right people, and the customer gets taken care of, and everyone is happy.

                It's a service industry. To me that is fundamental. You can specialize, but you've got to have good backup in the areas you don't cover or you are not providing service; you are just tossing them to the yellow pages, and you can't do that and make them your customer.
                This is my reminder to myself that no good will ever come from discussing politics or religion with anyone, ever.

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                • #9
                  Re: cleaning drains not sewers?

                  Ace, that might be the best thing I've read on here in awhile. Well put!!

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                  • #10
                    Re: cleaning drains not sewers?

                    every plumber here does drain cleaning. i do drains and very light plumbing.
                    no one to refer too. as i said every plumber does drain cleaning here. other wise i'd be able to recomend someone and not loose a customer.
                    the only dumb question is the one that is not asked!

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                    • #11
                      Re: cleaning drains not sewers?

                      yeah. I will agree they do go together. It would be like calling a plumber that does not work with gas lines. Just got a few calls the past couple of weeks where the customer asked if I cleaned sewers? I considered it strange. Drain cleaning, sewer cleaning, seems to all go together to me

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Re: cleaning drains not sewers?

                        Originally posted by Jerad View Post
                        every plumber here does drain cleaning. i do drains and very light plumbing.
                        no one to refer too. as i said every plumber does drain cleaning here. other wise i'd be able to recomend someone and not loose a customer.
                        Yeah, I hear you, and there is that fear.

                        It might just be the way it is around here. It's a small community, and eventually you are going to get to know everyone and they are going to get to know you. Most plumbers here don't own a closet auger, let alone a snake, and don't want to so long as they can keep busy doing new houses or remodels or additions. Heating guys just want to do heating, and sevice guys and handyman guys bleed over, but if you start trying to take work from people it's going to get around how you are and you will be on your own.

                        I'm careful not to step on anyone's toes if they send me work, and try to send them some back if I know their work and repect it. I had a potential customer call me cold to come out and bid some maintenance cleaning a direct competitor has been doing for them. Thought they were getting overcharged. We discussed it and I ended up telling them that I'd come out and bid it, but that it sounded like they were getting charged a pretty fair price. I could have jumped all over it, but what's the point? I know those guys. They do decent work. I start going around underbidding them by $100 and pretty soon we're all working our buts off trying to make enough to cover the bills.
                        This is my reminder to myself that no good will ever come from discussing politics or religion with anyone, ever.

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Re: cleaning drains not sewers?

                          We do both plumbing and drain/sewer cleaning. Keeps me very busy, What recession?

                          Had one on Monday in the basement, floor drain backing up when laundry sink is used. First thing I always do is tell them to go flush the toilet. Yup, black yuck and floaters! LOL
                          Grabbed the Spartan and had it done in 45 minutes.
                          While there sold them a re-pipe, new laundry tub and faucet, did that one today. Customers do like full service.

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                          • #14
                            Re: cleaning drains not sewers?

                            I'll clean the windows if you'll pay the rate.

                            J.C.

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                            • #15
                              Re: cleaning drains not sewers?

                              Originally posted by JCsPlumbing View Post
                              I'll clean the windows if you'll pay the rate.

                              J.C.

                              AHHH... so thats what the JCs of JCsPlumbing stands for.....Just Can't Stop At.... Plumbing.

                              It would be a good business model really.
                              Go to a customers home to fix a leaking pipe and also end up grooming the dog, cleaning the carpet, and washing the windows.
                              INSIGHT PIPE is now Maine Drain Serving most of ME with no charge for travel! 207-431-6232 is nolonger a working # our NEW # is 207-355-1476
                              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!!! www.sewermaine.com waterville winslow bangor augusta skowhegan fairfield pittsfield oakland

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