Monthly Archives: August 2015

3108, 2015

Quality, Service & Price…Can You Really Have It All?

August 31st, 2015|24 Hour Plumbing|0 Comments

ProductServiceCostI received a phone call yesterday afternoon.  As PlumberAssist offers a 24 hour 7 day emergency plumbing service, the phone rings at all times of the day & night.

It was “Nick” (name changed for obvious reasons).  He had a toilet that was blocked because excessive toilet paper had been flushed down it (aka he had a big dump).

“Of course we can help you Nick”.  “I can dispatch a plumber to be on your doorstep within the next 1 hour to help you out. Just to let you know, we do have an after hours service call.”

I went on to clarify our after hour charges and accepted forms of payment upon completion of the job.

“What?!”, screamed “Nick” down the other end of the phone. “Really?!” – “Yes Nick”, I replied.  “It is Sunday but I can get our on-call plumber to attend within 60minutes”.

“I don’t want to pay that much”, said “Nick”. “What else can I do?” I suggested that our service call was pretty fair considering it was Sunday and I could have a plumber attend within 60 minutes. If we weren’t the right fit for “Nick”, I suggested that he kept scrolling down Mr Google to find a plumber who could come out within a 60 minute time frame and help him out.

As the internet becomes more and more competitive in the plumbing industry and service seeking sites become more prevalent, we face this scenario quite a bit.

Customers want quick service.  Like yesterday!  They want a quality service and they want the cheapest price.

It is well known that out of the three – Service, Quality and Price, you can really only have two.  If you don’t care about quality you can have a cheap price, but you can’t expect good service too.  If you care about service, not so fussed about quality you will probably still pay a decent price. If you want good service and good quality, then be prepared to pay a fair and reasonable price for that.

In addition to “Nick’s” phone call,  our on-call plumber attended to three other plumbing emergencies over the weekend. These lovely customers appreciated the prompt service and the fact that their problem was fixed so they could get on with enjoying the rest of their weekend.

I hope “Nick” got his toilet unblocked….

 

2708, 2015

Quickie Hot Water Installation Kit…An Industry Low

August 27th, 2015|Uncategorized|0 Comments

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Tonight as I work late in the office, my attention turned for a quick news update.

And what I found has left me gobsmacked.

Quickie Hot Water Valve Installation Kits – thanks to the latest Masters brochure.

Two weeks ago A Current Affair ran a report of being cautious of the Fake Tradie. The cameras followed a man into a large retailer where plumbing fixtures and fittings were being bought to allegedly carry out plumbing work at a property.

Well, not only can small plumbing fixtures and fittings be bought at these retailers, but you can also walk in and buy a hot water service. Now, thanks to DIY videos, you get full instructions on how to install the quickie valve too.

It reminds me of the recent raids in Melbourne that uncovered dodgy dental clinics. It raised fears that patients could have been infected with blood-borne diseases such as HIV and Hepatitis. Three homes were raided in Melbourne after a tip-off from a registered dentist.

At least you can’t pop by Bunnings and buy dental equipment.

Here are the facts: The plumbing industry is regulated by the Victorian Building Authority. Plumbers are required to be licensed and (hopefully) insured. A plumber cannot take out public liability insurance without proof of registration and licence.

A plumber must lodge a Certificate of Compliance for any job over $750 including labour and materials. To read more of the blah blah jargon you can click here. Oh – and it’s also illegal to conduct any work on gas and most plumbing without a licence.

So, how can these major retailers be selling and instructing the public on how to “DIY” on such items that require a licence?

Just like the risk of HIV and Hepatitis of patients who used the backyard dentist, so is the risk to your family when your home plumbing has been illegally and/or incorrectly installed.

Some time ago Channel 9 reported an explosion to a home when the home owner attempted some DIY on their hot water service. It’s gas people! There is the likelyhood of an explosion happening.

Seriously, what is the plumbing industry coming to? The VBA need to take a stronger approach. The retailers need to be held accountable because at some point, someone is going to be fatally injured doing some DIY because they walked into a major retailer, watched a YouTube video and thought they would save some money.

In the long run, it costs more. More time. More money….let’s just hope and pray not more lives.

Wake up VBA. You’re charged with overseeing a regulated industry. Regulate it. Stop allowing the general public to purchase fixtures that require a licence to install.

Thanks to @theplumbette for posting the brochure.

708, 2015

Dealing with Blocked Drains

August 7th, 2015|Blocked Drains|0 Comments

PlungerCrazyOnce you detect that you have a blocked toilet or blocked drains in your home, it is imperative to act quickly and call in expert help at the earliest time possible. The longer you wait, your hassles can be further compounded, especially if you just have one toilet in your home.

Plumbing emergencies often crop up when you least expect them. As such, it would be beneficial to make the necessary preparations ahead of time. First, you need to find a reputable plumber and have their contact details handy even before you need one. This will allow you to save the time and effort required in finding a plumber and you can be ready to call one as soon as a plumbing problem arises.

Next, you need to know the exact steps that you should undertake to contain the problem at hand even before help arrives.

For a blocked toilet, Melbourne plumbers outline the steps homeowners need to go through until the plumbing specialists they’ve called get to the property.

The first thing you need to do, of course, is to call a plumber to help solve the problem.

Once you have placed a call for the plumber, the next thing to do on the list is to shut off the water supply going to the toilet. Here, it is not necessary to cut off the water supply to the whole house. Rather, you can shut off the supply going to the toilet by finding the component that supplies water to it. Typically, this can be found on the wall behind the toilet. This will prevent the water from rising. Do take note that, at best, the water should hold steady. If this does not stop the water from rising, you will need to shut off the water mains.

Once you have contained the overflow of water, the next thing that you can do before the plumber arrives is to clean up as much of the mess as you possibly can, using buckets, mops and towels. As for the water in the toilet, you can simply leave it as it is and let your plumber deal with it when he arrives.

In particular, you should focus your attention on the areas near and around baseboards and cabinets. When water seeps into these, it is highly likely that these can be damaged. As such, you have to make sure that these are dried as quickly as possible. After dealing with these areas, you can turn your attention to the standing water on the floors.

The important thing to remember about plumbing emergencies, including blocked toilets and blocked drains is to remain calm and act promptly. This will allow you to contain the problem at hand and minimise possible damage.

408, 2015

3 Things You Should Know About Gas Heating Safety

August 4th, 2015|Uncategorized|0 Comments

308, 2015

Easy Drain Cleaning Tips and Tricks

August 3rd, 2015|Blocked Drains, Blogs, Uncategorized|0 Comments