Home » How to spot a dodgy plumber: our Melbourne plumbers explain all!

How to spot a dodgy plumber: our Melbourne plumbers explain all!

Whether you’re renovating your bathroom or replacing old pipes, you don’t want to find out your plumber is dodgy after the work is done.

There’s nothing worse than finding out after-the-fact that your plumber wasn’t exactly trustworthy.

The worst part? Most people only find out about this when their pipes burst, their hot water system dies or their pipes start leaking again – long after the work is completed and you’ve handed over your hard-earned money!

The professionals from Watermaster Plumbing Solutions want to ensure that you never find yourself in a precarious situation with an equally precarious plumber.

To help you avoid dodgy tradies, our Melbourne plumbers have put together a short list of things to look for in a good plumber.

Melbourne plumbers

A good local plumber will employ licensed tradesman

A licenced tradesman is someone who has completed the appropriate training and education in order to work safely and competently in a particular trade.

When looking for someone to fix a leaky pipe or take the lead in their bathroom renovation, it’s vital that your chosen company employs plumbers who have undergone the appropriate training.

Just like any other trade, you don’t want to get someone who doesn’t know what they’re doing to fix your plumbing – that can only end very badly!

To operate as a plumber in Victoria, applicants need to be licensed by the Victorian Building Authority (VBA). To be accepted, your plumber will have to have:

  • Obtained the required Certificate
  • Completed a mandatory 4-year apprenticeship
  • Public liability insurance for all their work
  • Is up-to-date with the latest plumbing standards

It’s also important to know that just because a tradesman was licensed at one time, doesn’t mean their license is still valid.

It could have been cancelled or suspended due to malpractice – alternatively, it may have simply expired.

Want to learn more about plumbing licenses? Our good friends at H2-Pro Plumbing wrote a great article that goes into more depth.

Your Melbourne plumbers should issue a compliance certificate

If a plumber is licensed and certified, it means that not only are the individual plumbers up to scratch – it also provides a guarantee that their work is 100% compliant with plumbing standards and building codes.

This takes the form of what’s known as a compliance certificate.

When your Sandringham plumber signs off on a compliance certificate, they’re essentially taking responsibility for their work. A certificate gives you protection in the unlikely event that your plumber’s workmanship isn’t up to scratch, while jobs performed without can lead to your punishment for your plumber.

When do you need a compliance certificate?

  • When the total value of the work (labour, materials, GST) exceeds $750
  • For jobs involving gas, no exceptions
  • Installations of cooling towers of any sort

Another important thing to remember is that certificates need to be signed by the plumber that carried out the work.

If you see an apprentice or other plumber filling yours out, you’ll want to insist on getting the original plumber.

melbourne plumbers

A good plumber will give you everything on paper

Plumbers who don’t know what they’re doing isn’t the only risk – be on the lookout for dodgy plumbers who try to rip you off!

It’s a common plumbing scam – you call a plumber for help with some plumbing emergency. Your plumber turns up, promising a great price.

The problem? It’s all verbal, or over the phone. Every time you email or ring them asking about a formal invoice, they push it back, claiming that things are just too busy right now, or that they’re occupied with other jobs.

Finally, it does turn up. Only, it’s not the price they initially said – rather, it’s an extortionate sum many times what you were originally quoted.

And since the initial price was given over the phone or in-person, there’s no evidence of it. It’s a case of “he said, she said”.

This trick is the trademark of dodgy plumbers. Luckily, it’s one that you can avoid pretty easily by requesting an invoice up-front.

If your plumber is reputable, they’ll give you an invoice once they’ve diagnosed your problem and determined how much it’ll cost. Importantly, they’ll do this before you pay, allowing you to make an informed decision.

A reputable plumber will have the reviews and experience to prove it

You don’t have to take your plumber’s word that they know what they’re doing – thanks to the power of the internet, it’s not hard to find out if your plumber knows their stuff!

If a plumber can show that they have been operating in business for a long period of time, then there’s a good chance you’re onto a winner.

Few dodgy plumbers would be able to last a long period of time – no one wants to rehire or recommend the person who did faulty maintenance and caused the pipes in their walls to burst!

Take Watermaster Plumbing for example – we have twenty years experience in the business, working on plumbing jobs big, small, and weird. We’ve worked on everything from blocked toilets in the home to big jobs like plumbing for Melbourne’s iconic Eureka Tower!

Not only that, but a reputable plumber will also have the reviews and word-of-mouth to back them up. For instance, we have a plethora of written and video testimonials on our website highlighting our trustworthy plumbing service.

If a plumber doesn’t have a testimonial or feedback section on their website, a good way to check their credibility is through Google Reviews, True Local or Yelp.

Or if they’re a local plumber, simply ask around – word tends to travel when tradesmen are dodgy!

Don’t risk it – hire the plumber Melbourne homes and businesses trust!

Watermaster Plumbing Solutions are a family owned business with an excellent 20-year track record. Our team is committed to providing the highest level of plumbing services to our local community.

Our Melbourne plumbers respect you and your home. We understand that our workplace is also your home and we endeavour to leave everything the way that we found it.

The great thing about our team is that we provide an upfront price before we complete the job, meaning you won’t be hit with a bill double the size that you expected.

Our plumbers can be reached after-hours too – we provide emergency plumbing services, making us the team to call if a pipe bursts over the weekend or if you run into a gas leak when you get home from work.

If you want to hire the Watermaster Plumbing Solutions team you can get in contact with us through our website, or request an on-site inspection and quote.

And if you’re the type of person who likes to have a bit of a chat on the phone, don’t hesitate to call us on  1300 156 650.

2024-03-28T02:55:56+00:00 May 8th, 2019|Blog|