Today I got a call from a "friend of a friend". It seems that a couple of weeks ago, the friends friends mother (in her 70's), needed to call a plumber on a sunday morning. She thought that there may be a leak in her crawlspace. Now, I'm a plumber in the Seattle area, so those of you from up here may already know where this is going. The company that she called shall remain nameless, but I'd like an opinion on what happened here. The plumber arrived and inspected the job, telling her that the entire house needed to be repiped, and that they could start immediately, but if they weren't able to start now, they didn't know when they would be able to get back. Now first of all, I know that the entire house didn't need work, because I did the bathroom remodel about 4 or 5 years ago, all copper, and that included the laundry (common wet wall). I inspected this job today, and the work that was done was this:
1. New 1" pex water service. (about 20') Included excavation, but was VERY easy dig, was told it took about an hour.
2. New stubs and supplies to kitchen sink. (base of cabinet)
3. New copper to/from water heater to crawlspace.
4. Tied in to copper drops to bathroom with pex adapters.
5. New hose bibb (which wasn't needed, as was already frost free).
Now, this entire job, I estimate, could have been done by myself and my apprentice, in 10-12 hours. There really wasn't much to it.
Now I'm pretty sure that some of you local plumbers REALLY know where this is going. I'm still not naming the local plumbing company, but I will say that they charged this little old lady...........wait for it...........$6300.
I'm putting this out here because I think this kind of stuff gives all of us a bad name. What can we do when we see someone so taken advantage of? Please give me some input.