Plumbing contractors install, troubleshoot, replace and maintain the system of pipes, fixtures, connections and devices that facilitate water or gas flow in and out of homes. A plumbing contractor may work alone or have a staff of plumbers that he supervises.
Some plumbing professionals specialize in maintenance work and have yearly contracts with owners of residential buildings. Others also confine their work to only new residential construction projects. A plumbing contractor may also decide to only apply his skills to remodeling and retrofitting tasks that normally require replacement or upgrading of systems in residential homes to enhance efficiency.
When their services are required by property owners, plumbing contractors are usually contacted by phone and appointments are scheduled for them to inspect the working site and prepare an estimate for the project. Occasionally plumbers can give an estimate over the telephone if it is a common problem, like clogged garbage disposals, but they normally prefer to inspect the source of the issue before they commit to a price for their work. They typically provide a written estimate to the client that they both sign to confirm the scope of the task to be done and the cost.
How they get paid depends on many factors. Variables that determine the amount paid include their plumbing school education, where they work, their level (journeyman, apprentice or master plumber), the type of work they do, years of experience and the kind of employer they work for.
Once their bid is accepted, the contractors assemble their tools and equipment needed for the job. Wrenches, pipe fitters, snakes, tube benders and cutters are some of their tool collection. They normally have standard pipes, connectors and fittings in stock.
There are a lot of benefits that home owners can get from hiring the best plumbing contractor but they still need to make sure that they will be carefully checking the contractors that they hire, and make sure that the professionals have the capability to fix their residential plumbing problems.