As with other construction workers, employment of plumbers, pipefitters, and steamfitters is sensitive to fluctuations in the economy. On the one hand, workers may experience periods of unemployment when the overall level of construction falls. On the other hand, shortages of workers may occur in some areas during peak periods of building activity.
A good plumber will know about how many hours it will take to complete a project and will also be experienced enough to know that some projects have unexpected problems. Your plumber should be clear about the hours he or she plans on working and let you know if evenings, weekends or holidays cost more. Your plumber should also have access to additional resources like subcontractors in the case the project extends beyond their area of expertise.
Most plumbers, pipefitters, and steamfitters learn their trade through a 4- or 5-year apprenticeship. Apprentices typically receive 2,000 hours of paid on-the-job training, as well as some classroom instruction, each year. In the classroom, apprentices learn safety, local plumbing codes and regulations, and blueprint reading. They also study mathematics, applied physics, and chemistry. Apprenticeship programs are offered by unions and businesses. Although most workers enter apprenticeships directly, some start out as helpers. The Home Builders Institute offers a pre-apprenticeship training program in plumbing and other trades.
After completing an apprenticeship program, plumbers, pipefitters, and steamfitters are considered to be journey workers, qualifying them to perform duties on their own. Plumbers with several years of plumbing experience may earn master status by passing an exam. Some states require a business to employ a master plumber in order to obtain a plumbing contractor’s license.
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Master plumbers on construction jobs may be involved with developing blueprints that show the placement of all the pipes and fixtures. Their input helps ensure that a structure’s plumbing meets building codes, stays within budget, and works well with the location of other features, such as electric wires. Many diagrams are now created digitally with the use of Building Information Modeling (BIM), which allows a building’s physical systems to be planned and coordinated across occupations.
My plumbing experience was to have the plumbing disconnected under the sink so the counter top and new sink could be installed. I thought the service of $115 was high, but usually if there is an additional fees, it is usually rolled into the cost of repairs or labor. This company also charged 3.75 % for putting it on a credit card, which was not mentioned until I received the invoice in the mail after paying on the phone.
The most common residential drain to cause problems is the kitchen sink drain. Food particles, grease, soap or detergent build up can all, over time, slow down or completely block the flow of water down to the septic or sewer system. A garbage disposal as well as an installed dishwasher add more pipes to the mix which create more potential for clogs.