While there are undoubtedly many hundreds of legitimate, reliable and genuine plumbers in the UK, as with any profession, there will always be those who seek to rip innocent customers off, and leave them short of money, or with a problem bigger than that which they originally had.
However, there will come a point in your life when you’ll need the expert services of a plumber, so how can you tell if they’re genuine professionals like Chiswick plumbers, or just out to pull the wool over your eyes and rip you off?
To help you choose a plumber that will fix your problem at a reasonable price, and not leave you with a bigger problem and an even bigger bill, here are 5 signs that should serve as a warning:
They use scare tactics
One common technique used by unscrupulous plumbers, is to make you believe that the problem you’ve called them about, is much bigger than it really is. As an innocent layperson who likely knows no more than the very basics about plumbing, they can often get away with this tactic, and what may have been a small thing to fix, ends up being a huge problem with a huge price tag. But what are you going to do? You can’t fix it yourself; you don’t know how to. So, you hire them and they get away with it.
Their quotes aren’t documented
Verbal quotes given over the phone or in person, are no substitute for something formalized in writing, and provides dodgy plumbers with the perfect opportunity to inflate prices and charge you much more than was originally quoted. Professional gas safe registered plumbers will always provide you with an estimate of cost and an invoice once the work has been completed. If they don’t do this, stay away.
They ask for payment upfront
Illegitimate plumbers often demand payment for their services upfront, which is a clear warning sign that something isn’t right. Work must be carried out before any money is handed over, and even in an emergency, you should never pay a plumber any part of the bill until the problem has been fixed.
They go on to cause extra damage
Unless you know anything about plumbing, and stand over the plumber while they work, you will never know whether their actions have caused more damage than the original problem reported to them, and once the damage has been done, it has to be fixed, right? To prevent this from happening, take pictures of the existing problem so that you can show the plumber when they arrive, and make notes so that it’s clearer whether anything untoward may have occurred while they were ‘fixing’ the problem.
You’re never given a warranty
The majority of trusted plumbers will be more than happy to provide you with a warranty for the work they’ve carried out, whereas a dodgy plumber wouldn’t dream of doing such a thing!
Dodgy tradespeople are the scourge of society, and unfortunately, it’s up to Joe Public to try and keep them in check. Always keep your wits about you when hiring a plumber, and don’t be afraid to question them if you suspect something isn’t quite right about them or the service they’re providing.