Common Plumbing Scams to Recognize and Avoid

It’s unfortunate that scammers in the plumbing world attempt to prey on people when they are at their most vulnerable: in a plumbing emergency. It’s even more unfortunate that these shady plumbers are getting quite good at it. Reputable plumbing contractors in Raleigh, NC are often called in after the fact to clean up the mess. Learn how to protect yourself by becoming aware of these common scams.

The Upfront Charge

Reputable plumbers are not going to charge you up front. If your plumber asks you for 25 percent or 50 percent in cash or check up front, it is time to send him or her packing. The Better Business Bureau (BBB) lists this as one of the most common plumbing scams. After doing a few hours of work, the plumber will leave the job unfinished—and leave you without quite a bit of money.

The Unlicensed Plumber

Be wary of any plumber who is not going to produce the right documentation up front. Ask to see the plumber’s credentials when they arrive at your door. If the plumber is reluctant to produce a valid North Carolina plumbing license and business card, be wary. If it is left “at the office,” the plumber can go back and get it.

The Rising Rate

Some shady plumbers will charge you more simply because they notice you live in an affluent neighborhood. Their hourly rates rise as they see the expensive car in your driveway or the valuables in your house. To avoid this, rates should be clearly established before the plumber arrives at your door. A plumber that is not transparent about his/her hourly rate up front is not one that should be coming to work at your house.

Bait and Switch

Untrustworthy plumbers will try this scam on unsuspecting homeowners. They will convince you that you are getting state-of-the-art, high-quality products, while installing low-grade, bargain basement items and putting the profit in their pocket. If a plumber is installing parts, get the specific part names that will be installed in writing. After all, these items should be on your receipt. Validate the parts and the prices online to make sure you are not being gouged.

The Changing Estimate

Another popular scam for shifty plumbers is the ever-changing estimate. You will be given a verbal estimate on the phone that sounds very reasonable, but no numbers will ever appear on paper for you at any point in the process. Remember, verbal contracts do not mean anything. The plumber will not tell you how much the charge is per hour or how much parts are going to be. Details are never discussed, simply rough estimates that change at each point in the process depending on what happens. Finally, you are presented with a large bill that you never really agreed to. The solution to this scam is to get everything in writing.

Choosing Trusted Plumbing Contractors in Raleigh, NC

Avoid plumbing scams by allowing the best in the business to be your plumber. Affordable Plumbing Call Us 1st, Inc. has been providing trusted, quality, and affordable plumbing service since 1993. We look forward to being your plumbing contractors in Raleigh, NC. Give us a call today!

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