What to Look For in a Good Plumber or Plumbing Contractor in Edmonton?
For many in need of a plumber in Edmonton, the process of finding and hiring the right person/company usually goes something like this:
- Go to Google and search “Edmonton plumber”.
- Scan the first page of the search results or possibly a local review site or directory (e.g. Homestars).
- Pick a few companies that came into their view first or have high reviews.
- Call a few of these companies for rates and availability.
There’s nothing wrong with this step-by-step because not only is it simple and puts you (the customer) in control, but it’s also the easiest way to weed through so many options.
As of this article’s publish date, a Google search for “Edmonton plumbers” yields 1,170,000 results, Yelp hosts 286 plumbing companies, the BBB lists 400+ plumbers. When you also consider there are 30,000+ businesses of all types and sizes in Edmonton (as of 2016), it’s no surprise why we try to simplify our search for local products or services — there are just too many options to choose from!
With this in mind, this guide is meant to assist you when hiring your next plumber in Edmonton. We hope to equip you with a set of questions to ask so you can obtain the right information and ultimately hire the right Plumber or Plumbing Contractor for the job.
Here are seven questions you should ask the next Plumber or Plumbing Contractor (or seek to have answered) when you are in need of of plumbing services:
1. Are they a Certified Journeymen/ Registered Apprentice within the Province of Alberta?
Plumbing is a compulsory trade, meaning the only people allowed to work in this trade, by law, are either Certified Journeyman or Registered Apprentices with the province of Alberta. The reason for this is the protection of the general public’s health. All your major plagues through out history have been caused by poor sanitation !!
In essence, a Journeyman is a skilled worker certified and authorized to perform a specific trade by the Province of Alberta. A Registered Apprentice is an individual registered with the Province of Alberta, who is still in training and has not yet completed their necessary education, training, and examination to become a Certified Journeyman.
A good question when hiring a Plumber or Plumbing Contractor would be, is the individual coming to your home or business a Certified Journeyman/Registered Apprentice, and is he or she experienced in the type of work you need done?
2. Are they licensed with the city, insured, and bonded?
Let’s say you hire a Plumber, they complete the job, then due to an oversight by the plumber, the next day you wake up to a leaky pipe and incredible flood damage in your home. Who is responsible for the damage and covering the cost to clean up and repair?
Naturally it is the Plumbing Contractor, but unless they have insurance, chances are you will be on the hook for the damage.
For your protection and peace of mind, you should confirm that the Plumber or Plumbing Contractor is licensed with the City of Edmonton, insured, and bonded.
3. How long have they been in business for?
Asking how long one has been in business for is straightforward enough, but is often missed or forgotten about. Ideally you should be hiring a Plumber or Plumbing Contractor that has been in business for at least a few years and has all of the right qualifications (mentioned above).
4. Are they experienced with all different types of materials?
The plumbing materials used in residential and commercial applications have evolved tremendously over the decades. For instance, decades ago a popular material for building drains was clay (we still see this in many older homes in Edmonton) and today there are so many more materials used, from cast iron to modern plastics.
It can be a bit difficult to know what material(s) a Plumber should be experienced in without knowing more about your system or plumbing issue. However, you may be able to gain insights through their website, past work experience, and by simply asking them what materials they have dealt with in the past.
5. Do they have a wide range and the right type of experience?
Touched upon above, you want to be sure the plumber or Plumbing Contractor you are considering has a wide range of experience and the right type of experience for the work you need done.
As for discovering if a Plumber or Plumbing Contractor has the right type of experience, ask if they have been more focused on new construction or servicing. The two require a very different skill set. If you are dealing with a plumbing emergency or are in need of a repair, you will need someone who has an extensive background in plumbing service (not new construction) for your home or business.
6. Are they well equipped with reliable tools?
A good tradesman has all the the right tools required to complete a task. They should be in good shape, clean and not worn out. A good indicator of a good Plumber is how well equipped he is, and the condition of his tools/equipment.
A good question for a Plumber or Plumbing Contractor is, “Are you properly equipped to perform this work?”
7. What are their reviews like online?
Online reviews can be misleading since no two review websites are the same. They each have their own ranking systems, nuances, and various ways to pick and choose which customer reviews they would like to use and display. For example, some review sites, like a big one that starts with Y, post mainly negative reviews, deleting positive one unless the company being reviewed pays them money.
However, when searching for a Plumber online, we recommend still checking one’s reviews and to look for any patterns. Do they get rave reviews for a specific type of service? Are many reviewers critical of a specific aspect of a company’s service (e.g. rates, time to arrive, etc.)?
These are just a few questions you should be seeking to answer. If you are unsure which online reviews you should use, here are a few good sources that are local to Edmonton:
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