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  • #16
    Re: why?

    For me plumbing gives me huge money sometimes if there's a lot of customers. But sometimes, there's no customer which means less money to earn in plumbing. But I'm happy in my job.
    How to find the Best Australia Plumbing Services?

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    • #17
      Re: why?

      There is a balance to this issue. Everyone has valid points.
      I limit my free advice to my paying (and capable) customers, under limited conditions:
      1) Trouble with a fixture from the fixture stops to the faucet or toilet tank. Hair clogs. Empty FD trap. Aerator cleaning.
      2) Heating: simple fixes(t-stat, air purging, steam venting)
      They pay me well, so I save them money when I can, especially if I can't get there in time.

      There is plenty of work out there that we do not have to stress if a homeowner wants to change his ballcock, faucet, radiator air vent, or install a water filter. If that is the case, get trained to take the business to the next level. By that I mean learn advances in new technologies that you see in your trade magazines. I need another lifetime to learn and apply all that I would like to. No need to compete with the homeowner. This can apply to people on budgets, too: sell guaranteed fuel savings on heating systems by upgrading existing systems, especially steam. Advertise the benefits of a hot/cold hose bibb. Main drain backwater valve. Battery backup sump pumps.
      My next thing to learn is dry chemical fire suppression systems.
      I believe the larger threat to us is not the homeowner, but the unlicensed contractor. The homeowner will generally do research because he has a vested interest in doing the job right-he/she lives there. The idiots we pay permit fees to are only interested in prosecuting us, so they can justify their job with a fine that gets paid.
      Everyone here has posted something of value-that is why I'm here. Let's stop beating each other up and send pictures of unlicensed "plumbing" vans and ongoing jobs where you lose bids to with legal threats to our incompetent licensing boards.

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      • #18
        Re: why?

        The Kentucky Plumbing Code book is available freely to all to download. A Homeowner is allowed to pull "homeowner permits" in our state. That's all the free advice they need, right?
        But seriously, as a plumber people bounce questions off us all the time. I get asked to do side work frequently - we all do. When I worked for a residential company, I would just put them on our schedule and charge them our rates. The last thing I want to do when I get off work is come to someone's house and work on their plumbing in my free time - for ANY amount of money. So now that I work for a commercial/industrial company, I don't bother with side work. However, I make sure that I refer them to my first boss who still owns his own plumbing company. He's a small shop - three trucks, but he is honest and charges a fair price and has never advertised. I want to make sure that my friends and family members that I don't do plumbing for are taken care of and not just taken (to the bank).
        Free advice = what is a good brand of water heater, faucet, etc. Do you like HD and Lowes faucets (no, I send them to my supply house showroom)
        Crossing the line = tell me how to replace my bathtub with a shower.
        Any advice I give I make sure directs them to local people that I've dealt with for years not the big companies.
        As far as helping people make their own repairs from the forums - I think we should monitor those occasionally to make sure bad advice isn't being given, we could help them identify something, or if someone has already called plumbers in their area and they have a difficult problem (pressure related, volume related, etc.) that hasn't been resolved I can see the benefit steering them in the correct direction. But telling them how to add a basement bathroom, or adding a gas line for a grill is crossing the line. Telling them how to stop a running toilet is easy - shut off the valve and call your local plumber - simple enough for anyone. That is why we installed the shutoff isn't it?
        If people aren't mechanically inclined enough to figure out how to replace a flapper/fill valve/supply tube/rebuild delta 2 handle faucet/shop vac out the lav sink or tub without any assistance, they have no business doing it. My first boss often used this method to teach me - hand me a faucet and a sink and all the parts and tell me to put it together following the MFR directions. When I was done, he would tell me what I did wrong if anything.

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