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Describe your Plumbing Background

  • Apprentice Plumber doing New/Service

    Votes: 3 4.7%
  • Licensed Plumber doing New/Service

    Votes: 24 37.5%
  • Licensed Plumber doing Service Only

    Votes: 11 17.2%
  • Licensed Plumber doing Cost/Sales/Estimating

    Votes: 11 17.2%
  • Licensed Plumber doing New Construction Only

    Votes: 2 3.1%
  • Apprentice Plumber doing New Construction Only

    Votes: 0 0.0%
  • Apprentice Plumber doing Service Plumbing Only

    Votes: 1 1.6%
  • Licensed Plumber doing Service and Drain Cleaning

    Votes: 21 32.8%
  • "Other" and specify what talent applies

    Votes: 6 9.4%
  • Drain Cleaner doing Service Plumbing

    Votes: 2 3.1%
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www.DunbarPlumbing.com
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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
Had a discussion with Mike (saysflushable) this morning and this topic came to mind.



Does a plumber who has done new construction plumbing make a good service plumber?


Can a new construction plumber do service plumbing efficiently?


Does a new construction plumber always make a good estimator for bidding jobs?


Does a plumber who does service plumbing their entire career, can they easily jump into new construction with enough knowledge to make the transition?


Does new construction plumbing mold the expertise of a knowledgeable service plumber?


Lots of variables to choose from, many different ways we've all entered this profession.



I've seen guys who worked in the shop (I didn't list this) that handled materials on a regular basis, understood what was common and habitually breaking that when they got put in the profession they instantly mended in with no issues whatsoever.

Almost like you was catching someone highly interested in more than stocking shelves, enterprising their momentum and willingness to learn. << You can achieve a lot with that attitude if you can find the right person who's interested. Because I've dealt with "licensed" journeymen that are burned out, need a job, are bored with anything new and have the attitude to just "get by" instead of having any hunt left in the dog.

That's why some of the fellows I hear that call me, that are licensed plumbers seem to be a lost spirit when they lay out their street creds over the phone.

That's how it is though, I can't tell them how to present themselves but it's the deciding factor of how they are in the future most times.
 

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I can say for certain that my background in new construction helps me out in the service world. Trying to explain what might be hidden in walls or under the slab to another plumber that's only done service work can sometimes be frustrating. Because I've put them together before it's kind of like having x-ray vision. I wasn't a great service plumber right away, just because I've done new construction but it does help. On that same note, I've seen lots of new construction plumbers where that's all they know and they barely know that. They were terrible service plumbers. There's a big part of being a service plumber that involves your interactions with people and being somebody the customer can relate to. In new construction you don't have to think about that; spit on the floor, cuss all day long at volume 11, throwing tools, etc. Some guys can't break these habbits. A guy that works at a parts counter and has a huge product knowledge might have a leg up on the plumber because of his people skills. All the facets of the trade are different enough that none of them can prepare you 100% for any other.





Paul
 

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I can say for certain that my background in new construction helps me out in the service world. Trying to explain what might be hidden in walls or under the slab to another plumber that's only done service work can sometimes be frustrating. Because I've put them together before it's kind of like having x-ray vision. I wasn't a great service plumber right away, just because I've done new construction but it does help. On that same note, I've seen lots of new construction plumbers where that's all they know and they barely know that. They were terrible service plumbers. There's a big part of being a service plumber that involves your interactions with people and being somebody the customer can relate to. In new construction you don't have to think about that; spit on the floor, cuss all day long at volume 11, throwing tools, etc. Some guys can't break these habbits. A guy that works at a parts counter and has a huge product knowledge might have a leg up on the plumber because of his people skills. All the facets of the trade are different enough that none of them can prepare you 100% for any other.





Paul
I VERY MUCH agree with this Paul ! Think that to make a truly GREAT plumber you have to train in most if not all of the different disciplines .
THEN take people skills into a home and master dealing with all types and personalities of customers .
No disrespect to anybody who has ONLY done service ,,, but if you haven't done it from the ground up ,, can be missing the whole picture .
Also feel that remodeling plumbers get a faster , overall education ( whether it's Resi or Comm ) then just about anybody .
my .02
 

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I started out in a third generation service shop. Then went to commercial. I have done my share of single/ multi family construction. 2 yrs. as a plumbing inspector. I don't know everything. I have just seen and done alot over the years. I have hired new const. guys that thought service was a piece of cake. Any moron can do it! Ask them a question about diagnostics, and they are lost. They have no clue as to the fine art of service work. On the other side, a service plumber would not have a clue new const. techniques. All can be acquired if a plumber is willing, able and given the opportunity.
 

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Repair work can be more complex than a new install for a typical home.
i agree ,,, yes . However ,, do you agree that it is important to have the knowledge of what is going on in floors and walls to better / quicker diagnose the problem ?
 

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AKA house plumber
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I mainly do new construction but when needed I'll do service when requested by my boss. I don't really care for service. Having a suppressed immune system, I don't like touching others plumbing fixtures. It raises my chances of making me really ill. I have no problems diagnosing problems and repairing or replacing anything. For years I was the only plumber doing new construction warranty work and I believe that has taught me alot on the service side of plumbing.
 

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www.DunbarPlumbing.com
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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
I mainly do new construction but when needed I'll do service when requested by my boss. I don't really care for service. Having a suppressed immune system, I don't like touching others plumbing fixtures. It raises my chances of making me really ill. I have no problems diagnosing problems and repairing or replacing anything. For years I was the only plumber doing new construction warranty work and I believe that has taught me alot on the service side of plumbing.



I can't say I blame you for that. The exposures I've had in just the past 10 days is scary.


Blood-born goop, fecal matter, human tissue, hair, veins, and I still come home and eat donuts bare handed! :thumbup:


If you already have a compromised immune system I can see this being really bad. But indirectly for those not in that situation...


the constant exposure to the "bad" stuff builds an immunity to the same bad things that nurses get around. God's way of allowing those who live in dangerous professions to not be a victim of their own doings.

Pretty impressive how we're created and function. Awe crap I just broke a fingernail...I'll be down for days now. :cry:
 

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i agree ,,, yes . However ,, do you agree that it is important to have the knowledge of what is going on in floors and walls to better / quicker diagnose the problem ?
If you have done enough repair and remodel then you already know whats usually behind the walls and floors. For instance a guy plumbing new houses since 95 thats done no repair work wouldn't have a clue how they plumbed things 70 years ago.....no matter how well he plumbs new houses today. I see it all doing repair...including all the fk up's the new guys make.
 

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If you have done enough repair and remodel then you already know whats usually behind the walls and floors. For instance a guy plumbing new houses since 95 thats done no repair work wouldn't have a clue how they plumbed things 70 years ago.....no matter how well he plumbs new houses today. I see it all doing repair...including all the fk up's the new guys make.
That person has a bunch of pictures of what is in walls and floors . The TOTAL picture comes from starting from ground up .
 

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waterheaterzone.com
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I'm all plumbing service, repair work, remodels and drain cleaning. I'd do new construction...IF there was any money in it. All the GCs seem to want to pay peanuts, and there are plenty of plumbers around here that are willing to work for peanuts. So that is my number one reason for not doing new construction. I prefer service anyway, diagnosing problems, driving around a warehouse on wheels with thousands of parts and tools in the back. Thats my gig.
 

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I can can appreciate that.
i feel I'm a well rounded plumber. That's all that matters. at this time I'm doing med gas for a commercial outfit. but in 17 yrs. i've seen all phases of plumbing and feel comfortable with any situation. as with these time, we are all out there doing what we can to feed our families, so just abide by the state and county laws and codes get a plumbing contractors lic. and get in where you fit in. I've been fortunate to have a well rounded career in the Plumbing field. we are professionals, and very proud!
 

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I can can appreciate that.
i feel I'm a well rounded plumber. That's all that matters. at this time I'm doing med gas for a commercial outfit. but in 17 yrs. i've seen all phases of plumbing and feel comfortable with any situation. as with these time, we are all out there doing what we can to feed our families, so just abide by the state and county laws and codes get a plumbing contractors lic. and get in where you fit in. I've been fortunate to have a well rounded career in the Plumbing field. we are professionals, and very proud!
Well said !!
 
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Residential Service Plumber-Will only be writing on residential.

Maybe the standards are lower around here, but my experience with new construction plumbers is not so hot. Most of them around here don't know jack about plumbing. All they know is how to punch out a particular model. As stated in an earlier post, unless you been doing new construciton since the early 1900's, you have no idea how bad some :censored: is done. The way its supposed to be and the way it actually is are two completey different things.

Just to piss some people off. It always seems that the plumbers coming from new contruction make light of service not the other way around. Service plumbers know how tough it is, and generally don't have to talk about it.:furious:
 

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CEO Speedwagon.
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Well Steve I don't fit into any of those catagories. I'm a licensed plumbing contractor that does, new, re- hab, re- model, service, some drain cleaning and bidding and estimating. My career has been too diverse to be labled by any of those catagories.
 

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www.DunbarPlumbing.com
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Discussion Starter · #18 ·
I can't rewrite poll options so maybe nathan can remove option #9, change it to "other" and specify what talent applies.


Hell I even set that to multiple choice!


Damn internet too fookin' hard for me today :cry:
 

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master of disaster
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ive done new and serv. both over my career , it takes a good lay out man in new const. and a decent gen. cont. ive always done mostly serv.work, remodels, and drain cln. because it always been busy for me, i like the chalanges and surprises of serv. work and the money turns over alot faster! thats why im the master of disaster!!!!!!:eek:
 

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If you have done enough repair and remodel then you already know whats usually behind the walls and floors. For instance a guy plumbing new houses since 95 thats done no repair work wouldn't have a clue how they plumbed things 70 years ago.....no matter how well he plumbs new houses today. I see it all doing repair...including all the fk up's the new guys make.
AHH!!!! Something we agree on.

The transition from service to new is easier than the other way around not only in plumbing, but also in pricing.
 
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