Repair your own plumbing: top 3 things to consider.

Repair your own plumbing: top 3 things to consider.

Learn How To Solve Plumbing Problems: 

How can I fix my plumbing?

Living in Calgary, whether you are in Rocky Ridge, Lake Bonavista, or Aspen, occasionally we all feel the pressure to fix something on our own. How many times have you tried to fix a toilet, check on your hot water tank, repair a faucet or install a plumbing fixture? Fixing residential or commercial broken plumbing issues can be very rewarding. If you are a DIY type of person, keep reading! 

Honestly, one of the reasons I became a plumber was the pure satisfaction of having a problem, making a plan, and then taking action to resolve it. When I tested my work and saw the result of something that was broken and that I had turned into being fully operational, it provided my soul with total gratification. 

You may not realize it, but I have already given you the keys on how to solve your own plumbing problems (reread above paragraph), BUT there are a couple variables that tend to make your confidence shake. 

3 Reasons People Hesitate to Do Their Own Plumbing

The top 3 reasons people hesitate are because (1)  they are afraid of flooding their property and making something worse, and (2) they do not have the right plumbing or heating (gasfitting) tools and/or (3) they are missing the correct parts to do the plumbing repairs themselves.  

How can you overcome these big issues?  

If you are feeling confident and want to tackle fixing your shower, water softener, toilet, garburator, pipes, or any of the many plumbing elements that are in your home or business, then read on.

Educating yourself online prior to starting can be very helpful, especially through video instructions that take you step by step through the process. Youtube is full of people who will have tips and how-to videos on how to do a large variety of tasks such as change your kitchen faucet, replace your garburator, install a water softener, repair a plugged toilet, tighten a showerhead or simply turn off your shut off valve. Watch a few videos and find one that seems to match your problem in your home. Be careful though, not all video tutorials will be correct or match your exact plumbing / heating situation. Although not every scenario is exactly the same and variables may come up, this has been the easiest way to make sure you are on the right track to success. With a good how-to video, caution and confidence (plus the right tools and parts), most people can remedy various plumbing problems that arise in their home or office.

Covid 19 impacts

Since COVID-19, things have changed and adaptation has become so important for people and businesses. As part of our initiative to reduce person-to-person contact, at Aquality Plumbing & Heating we adapted something that we have done for years with our Realtor clients, and we are now utilizing Facetime and Zoom with all our customers in Calgary, Airdrie, Cochrane, and Chestermere.  We use these platforms to help Do-it-Yourselfers stay on the right track with plumbing or heating repairs, or to receive a quote on work they are looking to have done by our team. Imagine a private interactive session with a Calgary plumber looking at your home or business, and advising how you can get it done on your own. And it’s FREE!  I feel this has become the best way to get the information you need to get your repair or renovation moving. 

Sometimes it is too much without a Professional’s help

If you try to solve an issue on your own, but run into one of the top 3 issues listed above (worried about making the situation worse, lacking tools or missing parts) then you may need help. There could just be too many steps that overwhelm you and the value in having a professional deal with the issue, is probably the right move. It could also be that gasfitting is involved and the safety and insurance risks of working on gas as a homeowner or business owner are way too high. That is why you cannot pull a gas permit within Calgary on your own – it has to be done by a licensed gasfitting contractor. 

We are here to help with plumbing and heating repairs, installations and problems. Many times, we have assisted Calgarians with resolving their own plumbing issues. That is our ultimate goal, if that is what your goal is. You see at Aquality, our vision is to be the trusted plumbing and heating expert by building honest relationships. We feel this is a great way to start your relationship with us. 

How I Found Trust in the Trades

How I Found Trust in the Trades

You may be thinking, “You actually trust trade’s people?”

The answer is “Yes, I really do! But there is more to my answer – let me explain.

When I was young, I developed a fear of people taking advantage of me. It guided my decisions even as a child because I really didn’t want to be “ripped off” or lied to. It’s possible that many times I missed out on opportunities due to my lack of trust, but I learned to follow my gut and I felt pretty good about my decisions.  

As I grew up, I was intrigued with the fact that many people have a higher than normal level of distrust for trades people. I was hooked! I learned everything I could about trust and the trades.

Today, I can proudly tell you that I have the secret to trusting trades. I also offer clients a trust-worthy option as the owner of Aquality Plumbing & Heating, based upon ensuring our clients never feel taken advantage of.

So how do you know if you can trust a trade?  

To be honest, this works for anything or anyone, and I believe it is the best way to avoid dealing with people that cannot be trusted. For many years, I relied on gut instinct alone, and although that worked reasonably well, I soon discovered the following solid methodology.

The challenge when trusting trades

The reason trades are one of the toughest to trust for me, is because we need them but don’t want them.  Harsh but true. To make it even tougher, it’s the last thing we want to spend money on, or planned to spend money on.  Granted, we do at times plan a renovation or new build, yet we still feel like we pay too much for heat, hot water, and even lighting.  The difference in some of these is perspective. Lighting gets exciting when we get to pick the light itself, yet the wires to make it work clearly cost too much because they get buried in a wall.  We use hot water every day and consider it a life source. We heat our homes for about 9 months a year most of the time in Calgary. If one of these goes down, man are we bitter! What’s important to realize is why we are so upset this happened.  At this stage it isn’t even about the trade, it’s about me, and the lack of desire to spend money on something that doesn’t give us the exciting emotional connection material things typically do.

3 keys to Trusting a Trade

Even with that, we need help!  Enter The Trade…and this is where the trifecta of tips may help you out.  In my experience, you need to look for 3 key components.

  • Positive Relationships
  • Expert Advice/Ability to Educate
  • Integrity by Consistency
1.Developing a positive relationship

Reputation is a quick investigation to see how likely it is that you will develop a positive relationship. If a trade has a positive reputation, it is more likely that you will too.  This does not have to be a 100% transactional relationship. Personally, I have become friends to many of our clients. Even if that is not the case, people learn that I will give my best thoughts toward their concern so they get a solution for their problem. You are assessing if the trade has your best interest at heart. 

2. Ability to educate and learn from one another

At Aquality, we always think about other people’s issues as if it were our own, and then use our expertise to educate clients on solutions.  That is a huge part of the relationship, the expert knowledge and how it is shared. That reminds me of a funny story, a person actually did this to me at an estimate many years ago.

I went to do an estimate for a possible client whose hot water ruptured and they wanted to go tankless.  I didn’t know at the time but I was the third Plumber in that day.  She was super friendly although she wanted answers right when I came in.  I responded by saying I could get a better feel for what she needs if I could see her current set up.  She agreed with no issues and we went to the basement to check it out. Although my common sense told me right away, I can’t quote you this from your front hallway, I did not know I was the only one to not give her tons of options before going downstairs.  Two of the other plumbers did go down, but one never even had to take his shoes off, as he was confident in his quote without ever seeing her mechanical room! (Extra Tip- If shoes don’t come off at a quote or it isn’t offered, think twice before hiring)

Once we were looking at the set up, she told me the tankless model she wanted installed.  I’d never heard of it, and told her I would need to do some research after we were done and get back to her as I had never heard of this brand or model before.  I can assure you one thing, there are a lot of products and information in our trade, there will never be a day I know everything available.

To my surprise, she asked me what I would recommend because she wants me to do the work.  I was confused, but to her, I passed her test upstairs and showed I was interested in her home and what she needed, and I was the only one to admit I had no idea the unit she wanted to use even existed.  Little did I know, the card she held, was she had made up the brand and unit of the tankless water heater!  Yet the other two plumbers spoke highly of her choice and one even said he has put in tons of them!! (No wonder people don’t trust some trades!)   I suggested two options that would give her range on efficiency, size, and price. Still a client to this day….and life lessons of which I will never let go.

3. Developing integrity by consistency

It’s easy to do the right thing once, but to do it every time, now that’s integrity by consistency. The real trust comes from watching a trade consistently deliver good service and products. I always look for proof of a company willing to deliver consistent service year after year, customer after customer.

I’m super fortunate to have a team that knows their trade and can educate clients beyond their expectations.  What I’ve helped them learn, is to listen to what our clients want before they go into their encyclopedia of information in their mind.  

This is why long standing clients who love our service over and over, remain strong supporters of Aquality Plumbing & Heating.  I’ve built a team that consists of people who value trustworthy relationships, communication, accountability and integrity so much that its core to how they work and live their lives.

Start your relationship today!   https://aqualityplumber.com/contact/