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Faucet from ****

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  • Faucet from ****

    This little old lady has been bugging me for the past 2 weeks if I would replace her kitchen faucet. Well I got some free time (last Monday) and figured I'd be done in an hour hour and a half at the most. Nope!!!!!

    Spent an hour just trying to get the nut to crack a 1/4 turn, neither nut wanted to budge. Now I'm pissed, but I have to watch my language. So I had two answers to go at it at this point, pull the sink or pull the counter top w/the sink. For me its easy to pull a counter top (six screws and done, less then the sink guys), also helps because it was only a single piece and no longer than 7'.

    5 minutes later I had the counter top sanding on edge. Now I'm looking at the under side of this faucet, of course both bolts are stripped, they ran the nuts up all the way, while stripping them. Still took me another 15 minutes to get the nuts off, but I did.

    Got everything replaced and back into place and not stripped. So it took me about 3 1/2 hours after running around to get this and that, I don't have a plumbing van. My intention was to never charge this lady from the very beginning, I will do that from time to time, some of them just don't have the dough. So when she asked me how much does she owe me, it took every once of energy to say no, and I mean every bit of energy. She refused to take no for an answer, but I refused even more so to take her money.

    She took a hundred dollar bill and put it in my bucket, when I wasn't looking. She said thanks for the wonderful work and I went on my way. Today, I needed my tubing cutter and found the hundred dollar bill in my bucket, I knew right away that it was her. So I ran to Pamida and found a X-Mas card and wrote Merry X-Mas etc., etc. and put the c-note in the card and mailed it to her.

    I know that my next phone call from her won't be about her faucet. But she will be a loyal customer and she will be treated very fair. I won't be getting rich off of her, but I took a liking to her and I don't want to see her get ripped off. Sometimes we need to do things like this, even though I do believe you must run your business like a business. But damn, you just end up feeling good when you do stuff like this, even though I was pissed at the job part, but this lady no longer has that to worry about.

    So do a good deed and make yourself feel proud, I know Tom W does this from time to time, anybody else? Lets here them stories.......

    Oh, and the new guy who joined up here, I believe he won the Ridgid tools, now that was a great gesture to donate his winnings, it really was....
    Great Link for a Construction Owner/Tradesmen, and just say Garager sent you....

    http://www.contractorspub.com

    A good climbing rope will last you 3 to 5 years, a bad climbing rope will last you a life time !!!

  • #2
    Re: Faucet from ****

    that was very nice of you to do that but like a wise man said "call a plumber '

    you did good

    over my 25 yrs i have helped so many and not charge them and it does feel good to help ,like my saying is below help others you may need help your self some day .
    Charlie

    My seek the peek fundraiser page
    http://observatory.mountwashington.o...nal&fr_id=1040


    http://www.mountwashington.org/weather/conditions.php

    new work pictures 12/09
    http://public.fotki.com/hvachawk/

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    • #3
      Re: Faucet from ****

      Garager,
      Nice story. Glad to see others doing that. While times are tough for all of us right now, times are even tougher for those who have little or nothing or are now on fixed incomes.
      I put in a subpanel for a young guy about a week ago. Got most of the parts, panel and breakers for free. He bought some needed parts. Job was to get his house ready for an air conditioner install in two weeks. Spent a few hours on this project and since he is young, with new baby under 6 months old, and just bought this house about 2 years ago, I figured he's probably going to be pretty well strapped for cash. (House has hot water heat, no forced air, so no ductwork. Air conditioner install will be the flex tubing run from attic down to rooms, so it's going to cost him plenty.)
      When payup time came, he asked me for a bill. I told him he had to pay it forward. He looked at me dumbfounded. I asked if he'd seen the movie. Yes he had. Well then, I said, some day, some young guys going to come to you in the future looking for your help, advice, whatever skill you've acquired up to that point. Whenever that happens, you're going to remember this conversation, and you'll help him out. That's your bill.
      Another young guy (do you get the drift that I'm old here?) comes to me one day and needs his house re-worked for a high speed internet cable so he can start a business from home. He had lost his job at the same place my wife works. He got downsized and was beside himself on how he was going to pay his way now. I got the cables fished in. I wired up two separate phone lines for his home office. Spent a day or so doing that. Also fixed some high-voltage stuff that was stuttering or something, I forget. Anyway, bill time comes and he had asked my rate before I started. I tell him the same thing. You're going to have to pay it forward some day in the future. Help somebody out. He almost fell over. Didn't take a nickel but felt like I was rich as a king as I drove home that cold January afternoon. I've got a few more but don't want to bore you with a bunch of sluck stuff. Anyway, that's what I do when I see somebody who really needs a hand.
      Jim Don

      PS. On little jobs that people call me for, a lot of times I don't charge if I spend an hour, hour and a half, or less than an hour fixing something for them. Most companies won't even turn the key for these small, PITA jobs. I'll go do them, and not tell the customer I'm not going to charge. When payup time comes, I ask them if they'll just remember me next time they need something, or have a bigger job, or give me a referral to a friend, neighbor, relative or whatever. Pays off in spades later with bigger jobs that are lucrative.

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      • #4
        Re: Faucet from ****

        I support being nice and all, but many of my jobs as a service plumber are small jobs, I charge for ALL of them. If I didn't, me and my family would lose our house, the business and everything and we would be the ones in need! If you can afford to do these small jobs for free, then more power to you. I can't.
        Water Heater Reviews & Water Heater Information

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        • #5
          Re: Faucet from ****

          If that happens, call me , I'll make a house call.
          Jim

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          • #6
            Re: Faucet from ****

            Originally posted by JimDon View Post
            If that happens, call me , I'll make a house call.
            Jim
            For what? Bring a bag of money to pay my mortgage?
            I do small services (like replacing faucets) DAILY, and if I didn't charge for them then NOBODY would be volunteering to pay my bills. I don't work for free. I have gotten where I am today by sweat and blood and nobody has given me anything free, not since I was a kid.
            Water Heater Reviews & Water Heater Information

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            • #7
              Re: Faucet from ****

              Originally posted by Service Guy View Post
              For what? Bring a bag of money to pay my mortgage?
              I do small services (like replacing faucets) DAILY, and if I didn't charge for them then NOBODY would be volunteering to pay my bills. I don't work for free. I have gotten where I am today by sweat and blood and nobody has given me anything free, not since I was a kid.
              From what I remember reading you are only in business for about a year, and it sounds like you are a good plumber. I too am a service plumber but I do bathroom/kitchen renovations as well as boiler installs for my customers. I have done many "free" jobs over the years, and I'm positive at some point when maybe you're a little more established, you will too. It makes you feel good inside, and it can be the best form of advertising possible. help someone when they're in a tight spot and (1) They'll never forget it (2) They'll tell everybody and (3) Someone will oneday help you out when you are in a tight spot.

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              • #8
                Re: Faucet from ****

                Originally posted by Masterplumb View Post
                From what I remember reading you are only in business for about a year, and it sounds like you are a good plumber. I too am a service plumber but I do bathroom/kitchen renovations as well as boiler installs for my customers. I have done many "free" jobs over the years, and I'm positive at some point when maybe you're a little more established, you will too. It makes you feel good inside, and it can be the best form of advertising possible. help someone when they're in a tight spot and (1) They'll never forget it (2) They'll tell everybody and (3) Someone will oneday help you out when you are in a tight spot.
                maybe.
                Water Heater Reviews & Water Heater Information

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                • #9
                  Re: Faucet from ****

                  Sure, charge for every thing on every job. But, when you hear that VOICE inside say that widow with 4 kids has got a special place in HIS heart, you had better say, NO CHARGE, just keep me and my family in your prayers.
                  "Man will do many things to get himself loved, he will do all things to get himself envied." Mark Twain

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                  • #10
                    Re: Faucet from ****

                    My immediate family gets free work, provided it's a reasonably small job.
                    I had this discussion on another forum about a year ago and got jumped on for mentioning a freebie, I just couldn't charge for tightening a dripping packing nut and walk away feeling good about it.

                    Those who jumped on me had a good point, and I have to admit I adopted the idea by discounting work for seniors.

                    When I'm rich and famous, I'll maybe do a free job here and there, but with the cost of living, insurance and gas, I have to be able to look my ten year old in the face when I tell him money's too tight for the Six Flags vacation this year and at least know I do all I can to provide my family with a reasonably good life.

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                    • #11
                      Re: Faucet from ****

                      Originally posted by DuckButter View Post
                      My immediate family gets free work, provided it's a reasonably small job.
                      I had this discussion on another forum about a year ago and got jumped on for mentioning a freebie, I just couldn't charge for tightening a dripping packing nut and walk away feeling good about it.

                      Those who jumped on me had a good point, and I have to admit I adopted the idea by discounting work for seniors.

                      When I'm rich and famous, I'll maybe do a free job here and there, but with the cost of living, insurance and gas, I have to be able to look my ten year old in the face when I tell him money's too tight for the Six Flags vacation this year and at least know I do all I can to provide my family with a reasonably good life.
                      Most seniors that I work for have much more assets than I do. But, there are always those who are put in our path just so we can help them. And it helps us in the process. And it is a major impact on the life of your 10 yr old when he happens to be with you during one of those jobs and you say "no charge" or when he hears of your generosity through another.
                      I doubt the occasional goodwill job will keep you from Six Flags (the price of gas might!)
                      "Man will do many things to get himself loved, he will do all things to get himself envied." Mark Twain

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                      • #12
                        Re: Faucet from ****

                        I'll bet we could rename this thread "Obama vs. McCain" and nobody could tell the difference!
                        spodelee

                        Until lions have their own storytellers, stories of the hunt shall always glorify the hunter

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                        • #13
                          Re: Faucet from ****

                          Originally posted by Service Guy View Post
                          I support being nice and all, but many of my jobs as a service plumber are small jobs, I charge for ALL of them. If I didn't, me and my family would lose our house, the business and everything and we would be the ones in need! If you can afford to do these small jobs for free, then more power to you. I can't.
                          What happened to the guy I convinced to believe in karma?


                          That whole thing got lost during the outage by the way
                          I love my plumber

                          "My Hero"

                          Welcome, Phoebe Jacqueline!

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                          • #14
                            Re: Faucet from ****

                            Lady calls up late one night with water coming down through the living room ceiling and doesn't know what to do as she has very little money. By the time I get there it is 10:00. Pull the toilet thinking it is just the wax ring. To my suprise no flange and just a lead bend coming through the floor. Full of pinholes so I begin tearing up the living room ceiling dropping plaster and lathe everywhere. Lead drain lines also going to the lavatory and tub off of the closet bend. Tied back into lavatory line as it went up through the wall and seemed in pretty good shape. Installed a new PVC closet bend, flange, flange support, PVC line to tub and new tub drain. Left about 1:30 in the morning with a 4' x 8' hole in her ceiling. Total price $100 for parts. Sometimes it feels good to not just work for money.
                            Last edited by Devine Plumbing; 06-11-2008, 09:29 PM.
                            Distractions are everywhere, don't lose sight of your dream.

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                            • #15
                              Re: Faucet from ****

                              I don't know how I choose to pick them.Obviously the liitle old lady and the church(gotta be careful or they will have me pulling weeds and washing cars).

                              Sometimes it's different because of the reasons.
                              A handy man that wants to believe he's a general I would give a shower valve so I could use the time spent with him to reveal that there is so much more involved than just Home Depo'ing some fittings and hoses together.

                              A buddy that could use a quick hand.

                              Someone that is new to the area and knows he is in a shark infested atmosphere.And would appreciate the time postponement till he can build his network outside of his profession.

                              I've always been a believer that God sees these givings and returns ten fold.When I don't brag on it(very tough).

                              Plus it helps me sleep better at night knowing I have tried to offset all the chaos I cause on my not so giving days

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