A completely functional plumbing system is one of those background essentials that you don’t notice until something breaks or stops operating. When this happens, most people try to save money by hiring someone they know who is “very decent with a snake drain” but isn’t anywhere near a certified plumber.

Hiring an unlicensed plumber, on the other hand, is both more expensive and riskier than the alternative. The greatest approach to establishing a plumber’s trustworthiness is to make sure he or she is a licensed and bonded plumbing professional in your state. It’s easy to assume that the individual you contact for plumbing services is genuine, but it’s always a good idea to ask to see proof. The distinction between licensed and unlicensed plumbers is significant, and it may wind up costing you a lot of money and trouble in the long run.

Plumbers: Licensed vs. Unlicensed

A plumbing license is simply a document indicating that a plumber has the necessary education and skills – as well as the legal authority – to provide plumbing services in your state. It also implies that the plumber is responsible to the regulatory board that gives the license and can be held liable for breaking its regulations. To maintain their license, plumbers may be required to demonstrate participation in continuing professional education.

Plumbing training standards differ from state to state. At the very least, the work necessitates a highly specialized skill set that includes math, mechanics, physical dexterity, and keen problem-solving ability — and that’s just to get started. Professional plumbers also work in apprenticeships for thousands of hours to acquire the finest procedures and practices for dealing with all sorts of plumbing repairs and installations.

Apprentice plumbers must apply for a professional license from the state’s Contractors Board once they have completed their specialized training (or equivalent regulatory agency). The procedure varies by state, but in general, a plumber must complete the following steps in order to receive a contractor’s license:

  • Successfully complete a criminal background check,
  • Complete any extra prerequisite training that the state board may demand.
  • Take and pass a licensure exam
  • Create a company name and register it.
  • Prove that you have business liability insurance.

If you choose an unlicensed plumber, you have no assurance that the contractor has met any of the above standards, including the required training to install dependable and code-compliant plumbing.

So, how can you protect yourself against imposters and ensure you’re working with a certified plumber?

Are they a handyman?

The first thing you should remember when hiring a handyman is—if the worker doesn’t typically do any plumbing, don’t throw him into a job that involves that aspect of a home. This type of work is out of his area of expertise and he might make somebody in your family sick just because you want him to finish the job quickly. If the person offers to do plumbing repairs for you, don’t assume they’re breaking the law. They may not be aware of the legal requirements and could unintentionally harm you because they don’t know what they don’t know.

Do they have a license to work as a plumber?

Next, if any plumber comes into your home to work on plumbing, whether he is hired by the person doing home remodeling or you called him specifically to work on a pipe, you are entitled to see his plumbing license. It’s the size of a driver’s license so it’s easy to carry in his wallet. And no legally licensed plumber or trainee would ever walk out of the house without his license.

So make sure that you ask for his license. The contractor who says “It’s just pipes” or any of his employees who say that they don’t need one, or the guy who says « I left it at home », show them the door and insist on seeing that license.

Because there is no enforcement, your own knowledge is the only protection you and your family have from unscrupulous or uninformed individuals causing damage to your plumbing system.

Do they have a plumbing contractor’s license in your state?

Finally, get a copy of the company’s Plumbing Contractor’s License for the state in which you live.

Whether your contractor does not give one or tells you he is employing a subcontractor, you may check the State website for the organization that oversees plumbing contractors to determine if he is truly licensed.

Call our qualified plumbers today!

Give Caccia plumbing a call whenever you are in need of Water Filtration Systems, Solar Hot Water Heaters, Flat Rate Service & Repair, Faucets & Water-Saving Toilets, Copper Re-piping, Sewer Line Repairs, or you just need a reliable and licensed plumber.