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Sweetwater Plumbing Blog

Plumbing Scams Exist! Here Are Ones to Watch For

hand-holding-wrenchIn a recent blog post, we went over why it is so important to only hire licensed plumbers for any service you need for your home or business. We have a decade of history providing plumbing service to Southern California, and we’ve seen plenty of examples of the plumbing fiascoes non-professionals can cause. We end up fixing many of these rotten jobs!

Unlicensed plumbers can also be shady. Unfortunately, there are scams out there looking to steal money from homeowners and business owners with bad plumbing service and downright dishonesty. You can avoid these when you go to a licensed plumber first—a licensed plumber has the insurance and certifications to protect you.

To help you dodge these plumbing scams, we’ve listed a few of the ones you run across.

The guy who knocks on the door and says the city sent him

No professional plumber will walk up to your door and ask, “Hey, do you need some plumbing done?” They certainly will not walk up to your door and say, “Hi, the city sent me to inspect your plumbing!” If anyone does this, you have the right to say no, close the door, and call the city about it. If your house needs an actual inspection, the municipal authorities will call you first. And never let anyone claiming to be a “plumber” into your home unless you know they are certified, licensed, and cleared.

The great phone estimate that changes to be less than great

This one is common. The plumber quotes you an estimate over the phone that sounds like a swell deal. However, you don’t receive a written estimate. The so-called plumber then goes to work, still without any paperwork about an estimate, finishes the job, and the charge is three to four times higher than the verbal estimate! An estimate is always an estimate until the plumber can make a full inspection, so don’t go with any agreement that is just verbal.

Cash-only jobs

This is related to the changing estimate. Watch out for a plumber who wants to do a job for cash only or an under-the-table payment. This is a big warning that the plumber doesn’t have a license. Ask to see the proper licensing and certification, and if they can’t provide it, go to another plumber. You risk a “take the money and run” situation otherwise.

Multiple people you don’t know keep showing up

You hire a plumber, schedule the service, and yet over the next few days different plumbers show up at your house, and none of them seem to know what the others have done. This is a sign of a scam where the plumber is “subcontracting” the job to family members so they can then claim they had no control over the hourly rates when a steep bill arrives. This is one of the reasons licensed plumbers make a point about having all employees wear uniforms and have identifying tags.

For plumbing in La Puente, CA you can trust, from professionals who deal honestly, call us!

Sweetwater Plumbing—we’re always open for business! Call any time of the day or night.

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