Following a report that a rogue plumber has been jailed for sub-standard practices following an appearance on the BBC’s Rogue Traders, it is good to know that there are still companies like Drain Doctor which offer plumbing and drain unblocking services by skilled, highly trained technicians.
A burst pipe or blocked lavatory is enough of a headache without having to worry about the price, or whether the technician is going to do a decent job of unblocking the drain. ‘Rip off’ plumbers can charge a small fortune just to take a look at the problem. Untrained ones can leave behind an expensive mess for another company to deal with.
Drain Doctor is reassuring its customers that it is maintaining its price check policy. No overtime is charged for evening, weekend or bank holiday emergencies – and there are no call-out charges. Every job is priced before work starts, working to a national pricing menu.
Drain Doctor general manager Robin Banks said: “We are truly on call 24 hours a day, seven days a week. Service requests are handled quickly and efficiently and prices are agreed before the job is done, so there are no surprises. Our constant aim is to give superb and specialised service.
“Drain Doctor customers can rest assured that if they are unfortunate enough to suffer a plumbing emergency, we will provide a guaranteeed service at an agreed price.”
Launched in the United Kingdom in 1993, Drain Doctor Plumbing has quickly grown to become the country’s largest emergency plumbing and drain repair service. It now provides a 24 hour a day, 365 days a year service in every part of the country with each franchise run as an independent business.
The central principle is to deliver dazzling levels of service in a market plagued by cowboy operators who are overcharging customers for shoddy workmanship.
Franchisees offer a full 24 hour per day seven-day per week service with no call out charges and they give fixed-price, no obligation quotes with a full guarantee on all their work.
Technicians are trained not just with technical skills – including the latest techniques such as closed circuit camera drain surveys and no-dig drain repairs – but in customer care that is reflected in such things as wearing overshoes while in customers’ homes and clearing up carefully after every job.
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Forget the internet, social media and new technology. When it comes to lagging the pipes they are useless. Good old-fashioned printed-on-paper newspapers, though, appear to have much to recommend them.
A plumber in the USA has just found 60 year old newspapers used as pipe lagging which seem to have successfully protected the plumbing against freezing for six decades.
It’s not what Drain Doctor would recommend. But it obviously works.
Tell us of any unusual DIY solutions to plumbing problems that you’ve come across.
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As these scouts from the US discovered, plumbing can be a rewarding business. And it just goes to show how far Scouting has moved on from Bob-a-job and helping old ladies across the street.
The Scout Association in the UK offers many activities, including giving scouts the chance to earn a DIY badge. To earn the badge scouts can demonstrate how they would, among other things, unblock a sink, renew a tap washer, cure an airlock in water or radiator pipes, thaw frozen pipes, patch a leaking pipe or adjust the float arm of a cistern. They can also insulate a cold-water storage tank, pipes and hot water cylinder.
Perhaps there are some Drain Doctor technicians out there who have children in Scouts who they could help earn the badge. Alternatively, why not contact your local Scout troop and offer to help them with some practical training for anyone who wants to do the DIY badge. After all, you could be encouraging the next generation of Drain Doctors.
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Trust Drain Doctor to solve any plumbing problems.
A competition to find Britain’s favourite plumber has been launched by plumbers’ merchant City Plumbing.
There are prizes for the winning plumber (including a new van and materials from City Plumbing) but there is also an incentive for people to nominate their favourite plumber – if the person you suggest actually wins the title, you get £250 of retail vouchers.
If you are a customer, you can nominate your plumber. If you work for a plumber, you can nominate a colleague.
Surely, there must be a Drain Doctor technician (or several of them, in fact) worthy of the award?
You can make your nominations here.
One of the problems of working as an emergency plumber is finding somewhere to put the van when out on a job – without picking up a parking ticket. This can be a particular issue in some urban areas where there are yellow lines and parking restrictions just about everywhere on the public road and the customer often has nowhere for a van to be parked off the road. When you are fetching and carrying equipment – some of it heavy – between the van and the job, parking half a mile away is often not a realistic option.
Some traffic wardens are sympathetic. Some are not.
One plumber from Cheltenham got so fed up with receiving penalty notices from his local council while he was out on emergency call-outs that he paid his latest fine in pennies – 3,500 of them.
Is parking a problem for you? Why not let us know if you have any tips to avoid costly tickets while you are on call-outs.
Water companies around the UK have been inundated with calls regarding burst pipes.
In many cases these are internal pipes within the property that are the responsibility of the householders and not the water company. Water companies such as Severn Trent are therefore urging their customers to call a plumber rather than their customer service departments. Quite often they can be hanging on for up to an hour to speak to an advisor who may not be able to help them.
This story from Worcester is a an example of how frustrating this can be.
So, if you have a burst pipe on your property, before you call your water supplier call Drain Doctor on 0800 70 71 72.