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  • Question for rick and co.

    To all Professionals,

    Ive read and some previous post that has sparked my attention, in which has encouraged me to post this. Someone stated in a recent post that other trades such as elec, and HVAC has drawn the line on their industry by limited the typical homeowner to purchase paticular items unless they are a licensed professional. Which got me thinking, that the plumbing industry doesn't have that. It seems to me that all the manufacturers and Dept stores are cheaping the trade of Plumbing, Dont you think? Think about it, their is no restrictions on the purchase of anything plumbing related. Now with the sale of the CSST pipe at Lowes or Home Depot. That pretty much seals the deal. its the reason why that Harry Homeowner has the guts to go out an tackle any plumbing job there is. I mean why not. You can the cheapest material at your local Hardware store and install it anyones house thats willing to pay you have the price of what a professional would charge. The average homeowner only cares about the bottom line, "the price". They dont care how it looks or if its installed per code or sometimes how it looks. they want to know if it works and does it leak. After that their fine. They got it done for cheap and they dont have to worry about anymore. Now there are still the homeowners out there that still want it done by a professional and make sure its done right. But as the world grows I feel the plumbing industry will slowly decline. Now mind you there will always be plumbing work, but as you have more and more Hacks enter the market, homeowners will say "hey I can do this on my own, and if it gets to big, then Ill hire a "cheap professional". this may not apply to all but I myself have lost a fair share of jobs who were cheaper. Most of them unlicensed in the trade but they learned on the fly and just were doing plumbing. There are those "Who do plumbing and those that Know plumbing" There are a lot of those guys out here and its getting worst. I think something definetly has to be done to preserve the plumbing trade. I was told 12 years ago before I started that a plumber could make a good living for himself, He still can if hes willing to work longer and take less money. The future just doesn't look bright for the plumbing trade if you ask me. What do you Think?
    Wise man said "Hot on the left, cold on the right,
    crap flows downhill, and checks come on Friday"

  • #2
    Re: Question for rick and co.

    I think that you are preaching to the choir and that no matter what you throw out there for rationale there will always be a few that will justify their actions. If they really cared about the trade and the future of the trade instead of their ego they would be able to see that not giving advice is at the very least the lesser of two evils but.........that ain't gonna happen.

    The usual argument is that " if I don't give advice then they will get it from some unlicensed hack anyway" which sounds good except I believe that most folks are a bit smarter than that and the ones that are not should forge ahead and learn the lesson the hard way and if enough people get sick or die then maybe the plumbing boards will start doing their JOBS for a change. We regulate plumbers for a reason and it ain't generation revenue for the state. We are licensed to protect the health and safety of the public. How in hell can we do our job if everyone else is more concerned with making things as cheap, fast and easy as possible and ignoring the laws and rules that keep people safe and healthy?

    Maybe I should have been serious with the idea to pull licenses for giving advice

    This issue is nothing new, it's been going on now for over a hundred years.


    The Baltimore Resolution of 1884


    In regards to shoddy plumbing practice and inferior materials a group of Master Plumbers drew up this resolution which was the foundation of professional plumbing standards and practices. See how times have changed.


    Whereas, the manufacturing and wholesale firms in plumbing materials persist in selling to consumers, to our injury and detriment, placing us toward our customers in the light of extorsionists, causing endless trouble; and

    Whereas, The system of protecting us from this wrong, which draws in it's wake other wrongs, is innefective; it is absolutly necessary to perfect such a system, by united action, which will remove these evils from which we have suffered for years; therefore be it

    Resolved, That we withdraw our patronage from any firm manufacturing or dealing in plumbers material selling to others than master plumbers.

    Resolved, That the manufacturers of gas fixtures, selling to consumers shall not recieve the patronage of any master plumber.

    Resolved, That the master plumbers shall demand of the manufacturers and wholesale dealers in plumbing materials to sell goods to none but master plumbers.

    Resolved, That this association shall keep a record of all journeymen and plumbers who place in buildings, plumbing material bought by consumers of manufacturers or dealers.

    Resolved, That and manufacturing or wholesale dealers, dealing in wrought iron pipe, who sell to consumers shall not receive our patronage.

    Resolved, That a commitee be appointed by this association in every state and county, for the purpose of reporting to the proper officer at it's head in the state any violation of these resolutions.

    Resolved, That these measures are just and necessary to our welfare, and a rigid enforcement is demanded.

    Resolved, That this convention endorse the above, and urge upon the national association to perfect and adopt a uniform system of protection for the trade over their entire jurisdiction.

    So what ever happened to the "governing body"? Did the PHCC take the reins?
    Last edited by NHMaster3015; 06-22-2012, 02:00 PM.
    sigpic

    Comment


    • #3
      Re: Question for rick and co.

      Originally posted by Mr. Green View Post
      To all Professionals,

      Ive read and some previous post that has sparked my attention, in which has encouraged me to post this. Someone stated in a recent post that other trades such as elec, and HVAC has drawn the line on their industry by limited the typical homeowner to purchase paticular items unless they are a licensed professional. Which got me thinking, that the plumbing industry doesn't have that. It seems to me that all the manufacturers and Dept stores are cheaping the trade of Plumbing, Dont you think? Think about it, their is no restrictions on the purchase of anything plumbing related. Now with the sale of the CSST pipe at Lowes or Home Depot. That pretty much seals the deal. its the reason why that Harry Homeowner has the guts to go out an tackle any plumbing job there is. I mean why not. You can the cheapest material at your local Hardware store and install it anyones house thats willing to pay you have the price of what a professional would charge. The average homeowner only cares about the bottom line, "the price". They dont care how it looks or if its installed per code or sometimes how it looks. they want to know if it works and does it leak. After that their fine. They got it done for cheap and they dont have to worry about anymore. Now there are still the homeowners out there that still want it done by a professional and make sure its done right. But as the world grows I feel the plumbing industry will slowly decline. Now mind you there will always be plumbing work, but as you have more and more Hacks enter the market, homeowners will say "hey I can do this on my own, and if it gets to big, then Ill hire a "cheap professional". this may not apply to all but I myself have lost a fair share of jobs who were cheaper. Most of them unlicensed in the trade but they learned on the fly and just were doing plumbing. There are those "Who do plumbing and those that Know plumbing" There are a lot of those guys out here and its getting worst. I think something definetly has to be done to preserve the plumbing trade. I was told 12 years ago before I started that a plumber could make a good living for himself, He still can if hes willing to work longer and take less money. The future just doesn't look bright for the plumbing trade if you ask me. What do you Think?
      With the exception of some mechanical equipment, which requires you to be a registered dealer I am not aware of anything that is not available to a DIY's. I quit giving DIY advise a long time ago because I do not want to aide and abet a project gone wrong. Today it is a ballcock, tomorrow in it a water heater and then they're running gas lines. Still I don't know a tradesman who has not worked out of his profession .

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

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

      Comment


      • #4
        Re: Question for rick and co.

        Yes Mark; I think that guys giving advice make a lot of assumptions as to the posters true abilities, tools and willingness to permit and inspect. How many times have you seen someone post a line drawing of a proposed DWV layout without knowing anything about the framing of the structure and then assume that someone will be able to give the thumbs up or thumbs down?
        sigpic

        Comment


        • #5
          Re: Question for rick and co.

          Originally posted by NHMaster3015 View Post
          I think that you are preaching to the choir and that no matter what you throw out there for rationale there will always be a few that will justify their actions. If they really cared about the trade and the future of the trade instead of their ego they would be able to see that not giving advice is at the very least the lesser of two evils but.........that ain't gonna happen.

          The usual argument is that " if I don't give advice then they will get it from some unlicensed hack anyway" which sounds good except I believe that most folks are a bit smarter than that and the ones that are not should forge ahead and learn the lesson the hard way and if enough people get sick or die then maybe the plumbing boards will start doing their JOBS for a change. We regulate plumbers for a reason and it ain't generation revenue for the state. We are licensed to protect the health and safety of the public. How in hell can we do our job if everyone else is more concerned with making things as cheap, fast and easy as possible and ignoring the laws and rules that keep people safe and healthy?

          Maybe I should have been serious with the idea to pull licenses for giving advice

          This issue is nothing new, it's been going on now for over a hundred years.


          The Baltimore Resolution of 1884


          In regards to shoddy plumbing practice and inferior materials a group of Master Plumbers drew up this resolution which was the foundation of professional plumbing standards and practices. See how times have changed.


          Whereas, the manufacturing and wholesale firms in plumbing materials persist in selling to consumers, to our injury and detriment, placing us toward our customers in the light of extorsionists, causing endless trouble; and

          Whereas, The system of protecting us from this wrong, which draws in it's wake other wrongs, is innefective; it is absolutly necessary to perfect such a system, by united action, which will remove these evils from which we have suffered for years; therefore be it

          Resolved, That we withdraw our patronage from any firm manufacturing or dealing in plumbers material selling to others than master plumbers.

          Resolved, That the manufacturers of gas fixtures, selling to consumers shall not recieve the patronage of any master plumber.

          Resolved, That the master plumbers shall demand of the manufacturers and wholesale dealers in plumbing materials to sell goods to none but master plumbers.

          Resolved, That this association shall keep a record of all journeymen and plumbers who place in buildings, plumbing material bought by consumers of manufacturers or dealers.

          Resolved, That and manufacturing or wholesale dealers, dealing in wrought iron pipe, who sell to consumers shall not receive our patronage.

          Resolved, That a commitee be appointed by this association in every state and county, for the purpose of reporting to the proper officer at it's head in the state any violation of these resolutions.

          Resolved, That these measures are just and necessary to our welfare, and a rigid enforcement is demanded.

          Resolved, That this convention endorse the above, and urge upon the national association to perfect and adopt a uniform system of protection for the trade over their entire jurisdiction.

          So what ever happened to the "governing body"? Did the PHCC take the reins?
          This is a great reply, When I made this inital post, NHMASTER you were one of the guys in mind when I stated Rick and Co. For I have read several of your post recently and I agree with alot of the statements you have made defending our profession. I really appreciat guys who take pride in our profession, The same profession that has provided food on our tables and a good living. So I totally understand why you say you will not give out free advice to ppl that are damaging our profession. I also agree, for I have stopped posting free advice on the "ask a Professional" forum. I cant see why others dont understand this as well. Your post above clearly shows a time when men took pride in the profession and cared about how it would be affected. Now like everything else its about the bottom dollar. I cant lie and say that I have never given out free advice. I have, but its usually to a customer that I have had that may ask something simple, like changing the flapper or maybe their faucet. But when a person that comes out and ask " hey I trying to change my electric HW to Gas, how do I do it" Right there I draw the line. We as professionals have to know that we have a responsiblity as well to help preserve our profession and not cheapen it by given out sound advice to novice and DIY that have never even picked up a tool in their life. Were also responsible for the consequences of the advice we give. Because as soon as somthin happens, surely your name will come up as a person of interest. I mean if I told someone to commit a murder and they do it , wouldn't I be considered an accomplice? Doesnt that apply here as well. If someone asked about installing a gas line and they blow up something, Aren't I as a Licensed professional responsible to some degree? We plumbers have to wake up and see where the future of this trade is going. Thanks for the Baltimore Resolution of 1884, wish they had one for 2012
          Wise man said "Hot on the left, cold on the right,
          crap flows downhill, and checks come on Friday"

          Comment


          • #6
            Re: Question for rick and co.

            I'm not worried about our trade that much, cause we will never be replaced.

            The phone will always ring when a homeowner gets in way over their head.

            Case in point, I had a mechanical engineer who installed a Fluidmaster and it leaked all over the place. He was embarrassed and out $95.00 as well to the PLUMBER!

            Comment


            • #7
              Re: Question for rick and co.

              I suspect that percentage is pretty small. Most that get in over their heads will continue to hack away until they at least think they have fixed the problem. I have literally thousands of pictures of plumbing and electrical work done by DIY'ers that "solved" the problem.
              sigpic

              Comment


              • #8
                Re: Question for rick and co.

                I'm just curious, where do most of the professional plumbers feel like the line should be drawn for DIY plumbing work? Sure, major repairs are probably above the capability of the average homeowner, but if you have reasonable capabilities, not every thing justifies the cost of a professional.

                Comment


                • #9
                  Re: Question for rick and co.

                  How about an easy icemaker line? Oh wait, they will use saddle valves.

                  Well everybody has used them, right? How about this one....I get a call from the wife as they were loading up for the beach, trying to get ice. The icemaker wasn't working and had a foul oder. I asked for how long and who did it? The husband, two days ago. I told them to get out of the house and I would be right over. Yes, they hooked it up to the gas line.
                  AllurePlumbing.com
                  • leak detection
                  • drain cleaning
                  • utility locating
                  • conductor fault locating
                  • and other specialties.

                  Greensboro NC, Winston-Salem NC, High Point NC, Thomasville NC, Kernersville NC

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Re: Question for rick and co.

                    Holy exploding icemaker batman
                    sigpic

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Re: Question for rick and co.

                      To the prof plumbers:

                      There is, in my opinion, a very positive business aspect to giving advice to DIYers such as myself. You get to build trust with potential customers, and you get a reputation for knowing your work.

                      A homeowner getting plumbing help is essentially letting a stranger into the house, who has a bunch of tools and may, for all he knows, creating more problems than solving, for lots of money. The homeowner's best defense is education. Part of education is asking advice such as on this forum. As a homeowner, I can decide if I want to tackle the job myself or hire it out. A reasonable fraction of the time, I hire it out, after all I have a day job and it is not plumbing. My most likely hire I would be the plumber who helped me the most in past questions (hiring from within the forum, geographically permitting!) Price is a factor, but trust trumps price, within reason...

                      I have always treated at arm's length those who do not readily share their knowledge. I can't help but think that such ppl are hiding something, perhaps their actual ignorance. After all, what other info can I go on when selecting someone, if I wasn't comfortable that he knew more than I did? And the only way to determine that is to share knowledge. The phone book is full of choices, and splashy ads in the yellowpages do nothing for me.

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Re: Question for rick and co.

                        I see nothing positave at all. Do doctors lawyers eft give free advice? The best you will get is see a professional.
                        sigpic

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Re: Question for rick and co.

                          Originally posted by NHMaster3015 View Post
                          I see nothing positave at all. Do doctors lawyers eft give free advice? The best you will get is see a professional.
                          For minor issues, they sure do give free advice. Most folks wouldn't go to the doctor fo every bruise or scratch, or every time they get a runny nose. The same thing applies with plumbing.

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Re: Question for rick and co.

                            Originally posted by bml View Post
                            For minor issues, they sure do give free advice. Most folks wouldn't go to the doctor fo every bruise or scratch, or every time they get a runny nose. The same thing applies with plumbing.
                            So your saying, when you get a bruise or a scratch, you call up the doctor, & he or she, then gives you free advice, on how to take care of that bruise, scratch, or runny nose?

                            I had a lady call me one time, & said her water heater was leaking out the top, very bad, & the flame was on underneath. I directed her to shut off the gas & water, & walked her through step by step. When she told me she turned the gas valve off, but the flame kept going. What she actually did, was turn the gas on, to a fireplace above. I was only about a mile away, so I came over, & could smell gas coming out of fireplace. Could have been ugly. Thats just one reason I don't like the free advice issue.

                            Another one, was a friend that was asking me for so much advice, over the phone, I decided to drop by his place one day. He was installing a basement bathroom. He was telling me the pipe was cast iron, & thick, among a whole bunch of other questions. It didn't even dawn on me, that he was tieing the bathroom into the storm drains. He had a combination sewer system, but all that poo, & pee, would have been leeching into his soil, under the basement floor. IMHO, its impossible to give proper advice, when your basing all the info, on what is seen through the eyes of the amateur, & described by their perception, of what he/she think exists.

                            I had a tile man removing a step to kitchen, just this week & cut through a gas line, that was running through the step. He insisted it was copper pipe. When I got there, it was reg 1" black pipe. Then he tells me they want to eliminate this step, so I can just reroute this gas line up in attic space. Well the only access to attic, is on opposite end of house, & guess what? ...............They just had 12" of that loose grey insulation, blown in the whole attic, about a week ago. I take the access panel off, & there is a cheaply made plastic barrier, around the perimeter of this access panel, that is another 18" above the joists, so that all the loose insulation don't fall out. I'm by myself, these people have no hot water or laundry facilities, & its going to be 97deg outside that day, & I'm suppose to crawl around in this attic all day, trying to run black threaded pipe, by myself, cuz I was going by what was desribed to me, over the phone, by someone else. Not to mention, screwing up all their newly installed blown in insulation job. But by the description I was given over the phone, they were thinkin it would be a 1hr or 2hr job at most.
                            Last edited by Don the plumber; 06-24-2012, 10:12 AM.

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Re: Question for rick and co.

                              I give "advice" freely.

                              Should I go tankless.
                              What brand faucet should I use.
                              What is a good toilet.

                              I will talk about plumbing for hours with anyone.

                              Well nick, if you put the toilet behind the door and move the sink to that wall, you will free up some space.

                              But when it comes to the how do I do X, that's where free stops.

                              You want to learn? Get a job as an apprentice. I'm not going to tell people how to do my job. I've got a family to feed. Imagine this. Go ask your doctor how to remove a lump on your wifes breast. What do you think he is going to say?

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