How to Choose the Right Plumber

The internet is full of plumber disaster stories. From seedy contractors who take your money and run, to companies that promise one thing but deliver another, it’s easy to see why anyone would be nervous to hire a plumber. After all, no one wants to deal with the massive headache of a seemingly minor job that stretches on and on, or a small problem turning into a larger one because it wasn’t addressed properly. You can use the following guide to make sure you hire a plumber that you can feel good about. 

Get an estimate 

It’s standard for reputable plumbing companies to provide you with an estimate before proceeding with the job you’re needing. Be specific when you ask for an estimate to ensure that the cost includes everything. Some plumbing companies charge according to time spent and materials used, while others charge a flat rate for a job. Make sure you understand exactly how and when you’ll be charged. 

Evaluate their services 

Plumbers do much more than just unclog drains. A well-rounded plumbing company will be experienced in a wide range of services, including installation of new equipment, drain cleaning, water heater maintenance, water softening, and emergency services. You want a plumber that you can rely on whenever you need them—not one that’s only useful for one type of job. 

Here are some of the most common services offered by full-service plumbing companies.  

Look for value 

Remember, the best value isn’t always the lowest priced option. Things like good customer service, strong company reputation, and years of experience are more valuable than you might think.  In fact, you should be skeptical of prices that seem too good to be true—the plumber in question may be using lower-quality materials or cutting corners that will end up costing you in the long run. Or, the plumber may intentionally be offering low prices to reel in customers, before up-charging them as the work goes on.

Read their history 

Take some time to research the company’s history. Are they established and reputable in their area, with a clear and concise website, or do they fail to make a good first impression? Are they a company you’ve heard of, either through advertising or word of mouth, or did they seem to come out of nowhere? Trust your instincts—if a company fails to impress you, keep looking until you find one that does.  

There are many useful resources online to help you evaluate a plumber. If the plumber you’re looking to hire has no online reviews, customer testimonials, or ratings from the BBB, you should look elsewhere unless you’re willing to assume the high risk of hiring a relative unknown.  

Word of mouth 

Ask your friends, family, and coworkers about their good (and bad) plumber experiences. If the same company comes up multiple times as being pleasant to work with, then you should feel reasonably confident that you’ll have a similar experience.  

Online databases and reviews 

Websites such as HomeAdvisor, Angie’s List, and Yelp are great resources for reading accurate reviews. Some websites even have a functionality to allow you to filter by verified reviewers. These are people who actually used the plumber’s services, and not people who may be writing fake reviews.  

Another useful way to find ratings and reviews is to Google “plumbers near me” Google’s search algorithm will give you the names, contact info, and star ratings of plumbers in your area.  

Ask the right questions 

Before hiring a plumber, it’s important to speak with either the plumber themselves or with the company they work for. The following questions are important to get a straight answer.  

Are you licensed, and can you provide proof of insurance? 

All plumbers employed in the state of Arizona, including independent sub-contractors, must earn a license from the Arizona Registrar of Contractors. The license requirements include four years of relevant industry experience and a passing score on two comprehensive exams. Before hiring a plumber, you should check to ensure that they’re licensed, and that their license is current.  

Additionally, you should ask your prospective plumber for proof of bonding and insurance. If they can’t provide proof of both bonding and insurance, then it’s best to consider other options. Without up-to-date bonding and insurance, you’ll have no safety net in case things go wrong or your home is damaged during the job.

Who will be in my home doing the work? 

It’s important to know the plumber completing the job and their qualifications. It’s also important to know if there will be one plumber, or a team of plumbers involved. Of course, this may change depending on scheduling and the needs of the job, but you should at least be able to get a general idea of who you’ll be greeting at the door when they arrive. If the plumbing company won’t give you any sort of details, it’s best to look for other options. 

It’s also important to know if the plumbers will clean up after they’re done, and if they’ll wear protective footwear to avoid damaging your home. That way, you’ll be able to trust that your home will be in good hands.  

When is payment due? 

It’s important to establish up front when the plumber expects to be paid, and how much of the cost needs to be paid up front. Some plumbers may require a percentage of the entire payment to be paid before the job begins, with the rest being due upon completion of the job. If you’re concerned about being able to afford your repair or installation job, many plumbers offer convenient financing options. For example, Chas Roberts’ financing program allows you to make easy monthly payments until your job is paid off in full. 

Trust the experts: trust Chas Roberts 

Our strong track record speaks for itself—for more than 75 years, families throughout the Valley have trusted us as their go-to for all their plumbing needs. From fixing a stubborn leak to helping you re-work your bathroom with custom shower, tub, or toilet installations, you can rest easy knowing that our plumbers are willing to go the extra mile to make your experience the best it can be. Contact us today and experience what sets Chas Roberts apart from other plumbers in the Valley.