How to Prepare Your Home for a Plumber?

woman on the phone calling a plumber leaking sink

To prepare your home for a plumber consider the timing factor: extremely urgent, or, sometime this week. The first case is an emergency situation such as when your toilet pipe has burst and there is overflow of water damaging the house; or your hot water system has broken down in winter and you need a shower; or there is a gas leak that has spread throughout the house. These cases need fixing right away if the problem is getting worse even before the plumber arrives. So, you shut off the main line water valve, you turn off the main gas line, or you shower at a friend’s place.

The second less urgent situation where plumbing help can be postponed might involve a leaking faucet, blocked pipe, or low pressure in the shower. In both cases you can greatly enhance the outcome of a plumbing visit by taking time to prepare your home with the following 7 simple guidelines in mind.

Shut off the mains water valve to your home

This is the first step in any plumbing situation. If it is a gas problem, however, you need to shut off the gas valve at the gas mains of your home. Shutting off the water mains stops the chance of water flooding into the room when the plumber unscrews the faucet or pipe. 

Flush all the toilets in your home

Flushing all the toilets in your home, even if the plumbing issue is somewhere else, ensures there is no excess water in the pipes that could overflow into other pipes. Flushing the toilet if the plumber is going to be working there is a matter of hygiene and polite courtesy. Removing any human waste by flushing is usually a no-brainer. If flushing the toilet will make the problem worse, then make a small apology to the plumber while he works on the toilet.

Close all the faucets in your home, including sinks, showers, and bathtubs

Doing this stops sudden flows of water when the mains is turned back on. It also prevents overflow from other pipes to the problem area. And it can highlight any leaks that also might need repair by the plumber. Which brings us to the next tip, listing other plumbing issues.

Make a list of all plumbing issues

The cost of urgent repair by a plumber can go through the roof. Cost of travel to your location can bump up the price. You can cut costs by asking for a number of repairs in one visit. This is usually okay when the problem is not an emergency. Sometimes if you make a quick list of other minor plumbing issues such as a leaking faucet, or low pressure, you can negotiate to have the plumber look at these while he is there. While he or she will still charge you more, having extra tasks done then cuts out travel cost factors of many trips later.

Clear the space where the plumber is working

The plumber will need a clear space to put his tools and to sometimes lay down or kneel down. It could be under the sink, or in the laundry, or at an outside faucet and pipe. In the latter case you would disconnect and put aside any hoses or external parts on outside taps. You would also secure any pets that you might have. A curious pet will only distract the plumber’s focus, as will playful young children. If you have a busy household, try to make the plumber’s work area off limits for the time being. Direct young children or other members of the family elsewhere. And make sure there are no electric cords in the area and power outlets are turned off. Electricity and water can be dangerous.

Clear up spills, and catch leaks in a bucket

Mop up any patches of water. Doing this ensures a dry space for the plumber to work in. He or she will be aware of occupational health and safety issues and slipping on water is one of these. Make sure leaky taps have buckets underneath. This stops slippery floors becoming a hazard. It also reminds you of that collective list of other pluming issues mentioned above.

Be honest and transparent when explaining the situation

When it comes to any and all plumbing situations, the expert licensed plumber will be aware of nearly every type of problem. Homeowners need not be embarrassed to explain the issue with honesty and transparency. The toilet plumbing might be blocked because you have been flushing disposable nappies down it. Or you may have botched trying to cheaply install a new tap because you used the wrong tools. Or you may have damaged the pilot light in your heating system by poking it with a stick. Forget about feeling foolish, tell the plumber everything that relates to the issue. Tell it plainly in full detail. The more information the plumber has the more quickly and efficiently they will assess and fix the problem.

And of course, you should also listen carefully to the plumber when he explains the problem to you. Ask them to clarify if you don’t understand something. Listen carefully so you recognize any future problems that might occur. This reaffirms your responsibility as homeowner. Keep the seven guidelines in mind for the next time you need to call the plumbing professional and you will save money and stress. Taking ownership of plumbing issues is the best way to partner with the plumber and fix the problem quickly. Prepare your home for the plumber as a professional courtesy, and as a cost-effective boost to all outcomes.


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