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Thread: Need help searching for a plumber

  1. #1

    Default Need help searching for a plumber

    I need a plumber that will do a good job at the following:

    1. Install a buried PRV and expansion tank in the garage,
    2. Install a loop for a water softener from the shut off valve inside the pit just oustide the garage, into the brick, up the garage wall into the attic, across the garage in the attic, then back down to where I want the water softener. - I am going to buy my own softener online. Installing it isn't a problem, just getting the loop to the location I want from the shut off that leads to the house.
    3. Install a drain line from the softener location up to the attic and to the vent from the utility room.


    I have had three "water treatment" guys out and they want me to use their softener and they all contradicted each other on how it should be done.
    The plumber I see advertised are all repair guys and slab leaks etc.

    I am in Fort Worth TX, you would think there would it would be easy for me to find someone.

    Any ideas where or how to look for a good plumber that would do it the way I want it done?

  2. #2
    Moderator & Master Plumber hj's Avatar
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    quote; look for a good plumber that would do it the way I want it done?

    That may be a problem, since I would listen to you, but then prefer to do it the way "I want it done" which may not be the same as your idea, but WILL be a better way. Why would you call a "water treatment guy" to install a PRV and expansion tank, for example. If your area is like here, then there are HUNDREDS of plumbers and NO easy way to find the "best one", or even a "very good" one. The problem is that many are more interested in getting as much money from you as possible, so they can make their next truck payment, and HOW they do the job is secondary.
    Licensed residential and commercial plumber

  3. #3
    DIY scratch-pad engineer leejosepho's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by hobiecatter View Post
    The plumber I see advertised are all repair guys and slab leaks etc.
    One of those guys should be good for running the loop in the attic, but you might have to find someone else to make the pit for the tank and PRV beforehand. My in-laws had a slab leak here a few years ago, and my father-in-law had no problem finding someone to run a new line through the attic from one end of the house to the other.

    Quote Originally Posted by hobiecatter View Post
    * Install a drain line from the softener location up to the attic and to the vent from the utility room.
    That might be a problem if the plumbing codes do not allow for a new fixture to be conveniently drained into an existing vent.

  4. #4

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    Ask a neighbor who they use for plumbing. Or look around to see what plumbing trucks are in your area alot or other peoples driveways. I would just ask a neighbor or a friend.

    Word of advice, let the people do their job without hovering over them supervising. There is an automatic hovering charge added to the bill.

    and, I would use one of their softeners, it would make it alot easier if something goes wrong with it.
    Last edited by Cookie; 10-13-2011 at 07:45 AM.

  5. #5
    DIY Member jadziedzic's Avatar
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    You could pony up the bucks to join Angie's List to find a plumber recommendation; I've considered it a few times but usually found good recommendations from friends or neighbors.

  6. #6

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    Quote Originally Posted by hj View Post
    Why would you call a "water treatment guy" to install a PRV and expansion tank,
    Well it didn't really start out that way. I originally started looking for a water softener installer and had two of them come out that has done many of my neigbhors houses. In the mean time I discovered the very high (100psi) pressure that needs to be addressed. I figured since they are already tapping into the line for the softener out by the shut off valve, a PRV could be installed there pretty easy. Of course then I find out that none of them really have much experince with installing PRV's. Not like it's really hard. But it kinda needs to be done at the same time don't ya think it would save me a little money that way? I'm quoted around @$350 for a PRV install alone without any other work done.

    Quote Originally Posted by leejosepho View Post
    That might be a problem if the plumbing codes do not allow for a new fixture to be conveniently drained into an existing vent.
    I'm discovering it's not a code issue as half of my neighbors have this. It's more of the preference of the plumber. I had two of them say, it's no problem we do it all the time. Then two others said... we CAN'T do that because it's crossing the sewage with the city water. As long as it's gapped correctly it doesn't sound like a problem. Besides, my alternative is to dig a trench around to the other side of the house under driveway and sidewalks just to reach the clean out drain....no way!

    Quote Originally Posted by Cookie View Post
    Ask a neighbor who they use for plumbing. Or look around to see what plumbing trucks are in your area alot or other peoples driveways. I would just ask a neighbor or a friend.

    Word of advice, let the people do their job without hovering over them supervising. There is an automatic hovering charge added to the bill.

    and, I would use one of their softeners, it would make it alot easier if something goes wrong with it.

    I've asked the neigbhors and they've come out and looked already. They are water treatment specialists that only want to charge me a good price if I already have a loop hooked up so they don't have to do much plumbing. Even then they want to charge twice as much for the exact same softener shipped to my home from an online store with a great reputation. I just can't see spending this much money on the softener when I can get one online for half as much. It just comes down to the labor of getting a good plumber to do the things I want done and that involves putting the softener where I want it in the garage. I dont' want to hover, I just want someone to do it the way I want it done. Isn't that how a service should be?

    Quote Originally Posted by jadziedzic View Post
    You could pony up the bucks to join Angie's List to find a plumber recommendation; I've considered it a few times but usually found good recommendations from friends or neighbors.
    I am on Angie's list and grabbed the local plumber with the best rating that does softeners. He came out and looked, but didn't really give me a solid quote. He suggested I start putting holes in the sheetrock of my walls in the garage to find where the water comes up inside the slab and he could loop into there. That didn't sound like a good idea to me, unless I got REALLY lucky. So I kind of blew him off since he didn't really give me a good quote. We didn't even talk about PRV with him.

    Oh well, the search goes on. I think I will just start calling plumbers that are advertised to come out until I find one that will do the loop for me and I can install the softener myself once I get it shipped.

  7. #7
    In the Trades Gary Swart's Avatar
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    Why in the world do you want to bury the PRV? Normally, the PRV is installed as close as reasonably possible to the point where the supply line enters the house. It certainly is not buried in the lawn somewhere! The thermal expansion tank is installed in the water supply line somewhere between the PRV and the water heater. I can't offer an opinion on the water softener issue, but as far as finding a good plumber is concerned, ask your friends and neighbors if they have use a plumber they can recommend, but I don't think you have a technically difficult job that will require a specialist.

  8. #8

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    Quote Originally Posted by Gary Swart View Post
    Why in the world do you want to bury the PRV? Normally, the PRV is installed as close as reasonably possible to the point where the supply line enters the house. It certainly is not buried in the lawn somewhere! The thermal expansion tank is installed in the water supply line somewhere between the PRV and the water heater. I can't offer an opinion on the water softener issue, but as far as finding a good plumber is concerned, ask your friends and neighbors if they have use a plumber they can recommend, but I don't think you have a technically difficult job that will require a specialist.
    The supply line has a shut off valve located in a pit two feet deep in the flower bed just three feet from the outside of the house. This is where we will need to put a PRV. Ideally inside a pit as well so it can be adjusted etc. Not really buried though. There is no where else to put it as the supply lines come in underground and split underneath the slab of the house. I'm open to other ideas, but this is just how I thought it is done though...

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