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  • #16
    Re: $7000. drain cleaning

    Kudos for getting the line clear. But I can't help but wonder - Plumber Rick, did you camera the line? Is it OK, or have roots cracked it all along its length? And another thing, I don't do pipe bursting, but is $7,000 a lot for the job? Seems as though it saves a lot of trenching and yard destruction.

    I'm certainly no fan of Mr. Rooter, and I have no doubt they'll try to take advantage of somebody, but without confirmation that the pipe is reasonably intact, perhaps we're jumping to conclusions.

    OTOH, I realize that clearing the line once every ten years doesn't indicate a need for sewer replacement. Still, it would be nice to be able to assure the customer, with a video record, that their sewer is sound.

    As to advertising: if you don't need it, you're saving a lot of money - savings you can pass on to your customers. That's not skill - that's luck. It means you have more work than competition, that you aren't being overrun with low-ball Billy Buttcracks and that the economy in your area is still strong enough that some people can afford to hire a plumber. The only "skill" involved is living in the right place.

    Comment


    • #17
      Re: $7000. drain cleaning

      Originally posted by apf View Post
      Rick,kiss my *** with your yellow pages **** you pompous ***.
      Originally posted by apf View Post
      I am new to this city ,don't know a soul ,but am very fair and very good at what I do.How else do I frickin' survive but an ad until the business is built -up.You are keen in observing I have an ad.
      how did you expect to move to a new town and open up shop. unless you're the only plumber in town, grew up there and moved back. what do you expect. the phone to start ringing when you move there.

      an electrical friend of mine got married and moved to his wifes home town in washington d.c. even though he is connected with her family and friends, he still commutes/ flies to los angeles 1 week every month to work. he still has a house here and his truck. that's been 2 years now.

      why not get settled in and work for a company for a year or more

      it took me 15 years of full time new construction before i went off on my own.

      Originally posted by apf View Post
      Rick,at least I have the balls to open shop in a city I"ve never lived in before.Me thinks you would crap your pants in the same situation.I pull permits for everything,inspectors don"t bother me,most work is guaranteed between 90 days for faucet repairs and such to 1 year for new fixtures,service lines,etc.I send thank-you notes after each job listing my other services and state that they should feel free to call if there are any questions concerning work I've performed or new work they are considering.Oh Lord Rick,what else can a humble yellow pages/internert advertising contractor do to prove himself???????????????!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
      i would not move to a town that i didn't know and expect to be as busy as i am in a town that i've grown up in and worked in for 32 years.

      at what point did i ever pick on you or single you out? go back to all of my 3100 post and find 1 post i ever picked on you.

      you make it out that because your phone doesn't ring from the yellow pages, it's all my fault.

      why don't you tell all your yellow page sales reps to start pulling the ads of the dishonest and unscrupulous companies that prey on the desperate, elderly and uninformed.

      maybe your book is different, but any plumber who knows the reputations of other companies already know the good and the bad. the bad can be found in the large ads on 40 pages. most with multiple ads in different categories.

      there are 40 plus pages of yellow page ads just in the local book here. i can't say anything positive about anyone of the large (1/2 page plus)ads. there is a reason why i don't advertise. i don't want to be associated with any of these companies. i can selectively pick and chose who i work for, where i work, and what i want to work on.

      my best referrals comes from another very busy reputable local plumbing co that doesn't advertise either.
      his elderly mother in law who lives in colorodo was also taken on a water heater install because she didn't ask for a referral. i'm going off of memory, but i think it was 1700 to install a 40 gallon heater. after her daughter and son in law found out, it was too late. eventually she did get a refund after some calls.

      ask robert, or adam if i have referred a job or 2 to them?

      if i knew anyone in oaklahoma i would give them your #. but i don't.
      get the people that you know, have worked for, wife works with, to pass your # on to new customers. it's free and a reliable source of clients.
      i always screen new customers, where they got my # from.

      on a closing note, i asked the elderly couple if they looked in the yellow pages for their doctors? she smiled and said of course not.


      rick.
      phoebe it is

      Comment


      • #18
        Re: $7000. drain cleaning

        Originally posted by Herk View Post
        Kudos for getting the line clear. But I can't help but wonder - Plumber Rick, did you camera the line? Is it OK, or have roots cracked it all along its length? And another thing, I don't do pipe bursting, but is $7,000 a lot for the job? Seems as though it saves a lot of trenching and yard destruction. i charge $50.00 a foot including the material. 40' would be $2000. for the pull, plus whatever the digging cost for the 2 locations. this varies based on depth and location.

        I'm certainly no fan of Mr. Rooter, and I have no doubt they'll try to take advantage of somebody, but without confirmation that the pipe is reasonably intact, perhaps we're jumping to conclusions.

        OTOH, I realize that clearing the line once every ten years doesn't indicate a need for sewer replacement. Still, it would be nice to be able to assure the customer, with a video record, that their sewer is sound.

        As to advertising: if you don't need it, you're saving a lot of money - savings you can pass on to your customers. That's not skill - that's luck. It means you have more work than competition, that you aren't being overrun with low-ball Billy Buttcracks and that the economy in your area is still strong enough that some people can afford to hire a plumber. The only "skill" involved is living in the right place.
        i don't camera for free and i don't feel that with a 30 year track record in the house, they need to worry about running a camera at this time.

        i can tell you that every clay line in this 50 plus year neighborhood has roots, including mine. that's no reason to have to change them or camera them.

        until i have a real track record of a sewer, i wouldn't spend the money on camering the line. especially since it took seconds to cut through the stoppage. if i can get a 4'' cutter through a 4'' clay line, how bad could it be?

        anyone who gives them a "free" camera job is not doing it to be a nice guy. they are doing it to sell them something. same reason why they didn't pop in a $1.50 video tape. (price went up since costco doesn't sell them anymore)

        if every time a person went to the dr. with the sniffles, they don't don't do anything free and they don't order expensive test.

        get to know your customers and their issues. everyone of mine has a computer profile including a sewer history with quick notes. until they have serious reoccurring problems, they don't need an expensive camera or fix.

        rick.
        phoebe it is

        Comment


        • #19
          Re: $7000. drain cleaning

          We don't have many clay lines here, though there are some city sewers that are still clay. We do have a lot of orangeburg, and some is still serviceable.

          My experience with clay is that any old clay lines have broken at every hub. I can't help but wonder how much of the sewage actually makes it to the sewer. That said, I've seen water lines so rusted that the only thing holding the water is the surrounding clay soil. (We also have a lot of old water lines crossing sewer lines, so you can imagine the possibilities of contamination!)

          But you're correct that there's no need to panic unless the stoppages become a common problem. I did consider that, in this instance, where the previous company had camera'd the line, it might be warranted to do the same - if only to prove that they were attempting to rip off the customer.

          Comment


          • #20
            Re: $7000. drain cleaning

            If, as Rick says, there are roots in all the lines and they're not posing serious problems, perhaps that's why the other company chose to use the camera.

            If I didn't know any better, and someone came and showed me a bunch of the roots in the pipe and said they needed to be replaced, who am I to argue?

            That could have been part of the sales pitch. If you do that for 20 people and one of them ponies up the 7 grand, then it's worth it, right?

            Comment


            • #21
              Re: $7000. drain cleaning

              I believe Rick is talking more in general terms. The problem is most HO are limited to looking in the YP and anyone including a non-licensed plumber can buy an ad. That of course does not mean every plumber who advertises is a bad plumber.

              Mark
              "Somewhere a Village is Missing Twelve Idiots!" - Casey Anthony

              I never lost a cent on the jobs I didn't get!

              Comment


              • #22
                Re: $7000. drain cleaning

                Originally posted by Wild Weasel
                That could have been part of the sales pitch. If you do that for 20 people and one of them ponies up the 7 grand, then it's worth it, right?
                It is worth it, especially if you only plan to be in business ~ five years and then retire to the Caribbean.

                Around here, backhoes don't charge a whole lot - you can probably get a line like that dug and reburied for about $400. And an hourly plumber charging ~$70 per might come to the same amount, for a total of around $800. I have no idea what a pipe bursting company charges for a sewer replacement, but I'm thinking that I'd opt for something a lot cheaper.

                A number of years back, I read a trade magazine article about a plumbing company that had just picked up a camera. They were selling a lot of repair jobs and they were talking about $2,000 or so to repair a couple of feet of pipe, if memory serves. I was astounded that they could get so much for a couple of Ferncos and a couple of feet of pipe and a hole.

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