Emergency plumbers are amongst the most expensive to call out. In panic, people are willing to pay silly amounts to get someone to come out after hours and before you know it you’ve parted with hundreds of pounds.
Don’t get me wrong; I love plumbing and I love problem solving and getting to the bottom of a plumbing mystery like, ‘why is water coming out of my ceiling?’ or ‘why are my radiators cold?’ When you come home from a hard days work or an enjoyable night out and are greeted with this disaster, the first thing you probably do is panic.
Leaks are worst.
The shock of coming home or waking up to a flood hits us deeper than we imagine. We go from one state of being and are immediately thrust into another. We have a myriad of things going through our minds, including ‘what am I going to do?’ and ‘who can I call to help?’
I received a call one midnight from a householder with a burst pipe. Even though I told them the cost of the call out, and offered to talk them through the emergency they insisted I came out. I did, and earned a very handsome fee for it too, as well as a delicious bacon butty in the morning when I went back to do the repair proper. Here lies the clue; an emergency plumber will come out and spend as little time as possible making it OK.
So they will stop the water, cap off the pipe, or whatever is needed and generally get out as quickly as they can, leaving you with an empty wallet, and the prospect of another bill at their convenience.
There’s no doubt that emergencies happen and need to be dealt with, but with a few deep breaths and a little bit of knowledge you can change how you feel in these situations to ‘in control’ and save yourself a packet at the same time.
The saying ‘it’s all in the preparation’ has never been truer than in the case of an emergency. Although that sounds counter intuitive and by definition, an emergency is ‘a sudden, urgent, usually unexpected occurrence or occasion requiring immediate action’.
Probably the worse time (emotionally) to deal with an emergency, is during an emergency. At these times, you are panicked, shocked, vulnerable and gullible. It’s rather like going food shopping when you’re hungry. Instead of buying a week’s worth of proper meals and sensible food, you leave the shop with a bag full of chocolate, crisps and things you can eat (and usually do) before you even get home. We all know the most sensible shopping is done, when we are in our right mind, not when we are suffering from low blood sugar levels. The same is true for emergency plumbing situations. Take time to educate yourself about the things in your home that keep you safe.
You don’t have to be a D.I.Y whizz, or know anything at all about it. This is not about doing the repairs yourself or saying you will never need a plumber. This is about making yourself aware of a few simple things that mean you won’t need to call a stranger into your home when you are at your most vulnerable.
The most important lesson is as easy as turning off a tap.
Actually it is turning off a tap.
Know where your water and gas stop taps are and know how to turn them off.
If you can do this you are capable of stopping the majority of the damage.
Damage that will be done before any emergency plumber could reach you anyhow.
Know also how to do this in the dark, since your lights may be fused and if it’s a gas leak, turning on lights is dangerous.
Job done, hundreds of pounds saved and possibly more if it’s a gas leak.
We have created a great DVD ‘The Secret Life of Pipes, Dealing with Emergencies’, showing real stop taps in real houses so you can recognise yours and learn how to deal with it.
It could save you literally hundreds of £££’s and lots of stress
Do it now, before you need it.