As a homeowner, hiring an expert can be an expensive necessity. When you need the emergency services of a plumber for a clogged drain, you will likely want to shop around for the best price but still get a service call within a reasonable amount of time. Unfortunately, it can be difficult to figure out exactly what a plumber will charge to repair your current situation, especially through a phone or email inquiry. When you call a plumber and they give you a wide range instead of an exact quote or decline to give you a quote until they view your problem, they are not usually being intentionally evasive. Below are some reasons your plumber may not be able to give you an exact quote.
You May Not Know the Position of the Current Clog
The amount of time a plumber spends clearing a clogged drain and the tools they use depend on where the current clog is located. If the clog is close to the entrance of the drain, then it will likely be a fast, inexpensive job. However, if the clog is located further within your drain pipe, clearing it will likely require more specialized equipment and significantly more time. This can increase the amount you will pay to have the clog removed.
The position of the clog will not be obvious until your plumber begins to remove the clog. This makes it difficult to give an exact quote before any work is completed and almost impossible to give a quote over the phone.
You Likely Do Not Know What the Current Clog Consists Of
Clogs consist of various materials. For example, you may have a clog that is made up of grease and lint. These clogs generally need a water jet to be successfully cleared. However, roots or hair balls may be cleared using a traditional cable machine. Because the nature of the clog is not apparent until your plumber begins work, it may not be obvious what type of machine is necessary for the job, which can extend the length and cost of the service call.
There May Be Structural Damage to Your Pipes
Often, drainage pipes erode from the inside out. This means that while your pipes may look structurally sound, there may be extensive internal damage requiring that some or all of your drainage pipe be replaced after a clog is cleared. This only becomes obvious after the plumber has inspected the situation and started working and can increase the cost of the project.
If a plumber is unable to give you an exact quote you may wonder how you will be able to get a fair price for their services. There are a few things you should look for when you are attempting to hire a plumber.
- A fair hourly rate. While some plumbers charge by the project, most plumbers will also have an hourly rate available. You should compare the hourly rate of various plumbers to ensure you have a fair price. However, avoid extremely low rates as this can be a sign of low-quality work.
- A price range instead of an exact quote. If a plumber does give you a quote over the phone, expect a range instead of an exact quote. If they give you an exact quote, it may be a sign that they will cut corners on large projects and over-charge for simple projects to make their profits balance out.
- Reviews. One of the best ways to know you are getting a fair plumber is to read online reviews or get word-of-mouth recommendations. This allows you to better understand the plumbers range of costs for various services.
While an exact quote may be difficult to give, your plumber should be able to give you a price range and a description of factors that may influence the cost of your project. This will help you budget for your emergency service call. For more information, contact a company like Backlund Plumbing.