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How Much Does a Plumber Cost: The Average Prices You Should Be Paying
Attempting DIY plumbing or choosing the wrong plumber can cause some of your hard-earned money to go down the drain.
It can also cause leaks and other problems that you shouldn’t need to deal with, which can end up costing even more.
When choosing a plumber, make sure you’re not getting soaked for their services. Select one with a good local reputation and that charges fair rates that are in line with others in the area.
Here’s what you can expect to pay for various plumbing jobs…
Fixing Leaky Faucets
What’s more annoying than the constant drip of a faucet when you’re trying to get some sleep? Not to mention the costs of all that water that can add up over time.
Leaking faucets are a common people call plumbers. You can expect to pay the national average of around $65 to $150 depending on the job. This is money well spent, because ignoring a faucet leak can turn into a bigger issue that can cost upwards of $300 or more.
Another big problem that gets people on the phone with local plumbers is a clogged pipe. You run the faucet but the water keeps accumulating, even though there’s no drain plug in place. This can be the result of putting organic waste down the drain in the kitchen or from soap and hair in the bathroom.
You can try to use chemical drain openers, but those don’t always work and may not identify the cause of the problem. You could also cause damage to pipes if you don’t follow the directions.
Depending on how complicated the blockage is, you could pay up to $500 for a plumber to clear a drain. They may use a drain snake to achieve results. In the event of a broken drainpipe, you could pay considerably more to have it repaired.
Water Line Installation
Perhaps you still have an old lead water pipe, which was common in homes built up until 1986. Lead in water has been linked to a number of potential health risks including hyperactivity or anemia in children.
Or, perhaps there’s been some damage to the line. Either way, the cost for a new copper one that extends around six feet can run up to $2,000. There are other piping materials such as PVC you can ask your plumber about that may affect the durability and cost.
Kitchen/Bathroom Piping Additions
If you’re adding a new bathroom or replacing the piping in an existing bathroom or kitchen as part of a renovation, you could be paying up to $5,000 plus materials for a 40 sq. ft. area. The cost could go up or down depending on how complicated the job is.
The price might be well worth it, as new bathrooms and kitchens are among the top return on investment for home improvement projects.
Repairing Water Heaters
You rely on your electric or gas water heater every day for a nice shower and clean dishes. When it breaks down or stops functioning as well, you have two choices: get a new one through a plumber, or have a qualified plumber fix it for you.
If the heating element has given up its ghost, you could be looking at paying the national average of around $460. You may also have problems with water odor due to mineral buildup in the unit (which can also reduce its capacity). A plumber can help with that too.
If you need a new unit, you might expect to pay up to $1,500 for a new water heater and around $800 to $1,500 for the installation.
Sump Pump Installation
A sump pump is an essential component to get rid of water that has accumulated in the basin of your basement. Sump pumps are ideal for properties that experience a lot of moisture or flooding in the basement, commonly from the waterline being above the foundation line.
The pump itself may only cost you $400 or so, but the cost to install one can be significantly higher – in the $1,000 to $3,000 range. However, that’s not a lot when you consider basement flooding damage can cost more and isn’t typically covered in home insurance plans.
Gas Pressure Testing
Not all plumbers only deal with water pipes. Some are also experts in gas piping and can help you identify a potentially harmful gas leak.
You may notice the telltale egg smell of gas leaking in and around your home, or even hear hissing from gas appliances as a warning. Don’t mess around with gas – leave the house and call a plumber that can confirm if there’s leak using a pressure test and repair it if necessary.
The average cost of a gas pressure test is around $75 to $150, while a repair could run from as low as $120 for a simple job up to $760 for more complicated jobs behind walls. For buried gas lines, you could be adding up to $5,000 in excavation costs. Remember, there are situations when the gas can’t be turned back on until an authorized plumber has inspected it for you.
Flat Rate vs. Hourly
Depending on the plumber or the particular job, you can expect to pay them either hourly or a set rate. Plumbers may ask for an hourly rate for bigger jobs but might want to choose a flat fee if it’s a smaller job. (Keep in mind there may be a diagnostic fee with either.) Either way, make sure the plumber can provide a free estimate before they start the work.
With that being said, hourly rates can fluctuate but are around the $66 to $75 mark in the area (around $88 to $95 for commercial projects.)
Ask How Much Does a Plumber Cost Before a Job
At some point, you’re probably going to need a plumber. Whether the toilet is leaking or you need someone to complete the piping in a bathroom renovation, you’re probably asking, “how much does a plumber cost?”
While the costs can vary dramatically depending on the service provided, it’s good to do some research to find out the average in the area. To find out more about the services and to get a free quote, contact us today.
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I was charged $995 for a pressure test only. Plumber wanted over $5,000 to replace water heater, replace two leaking gas valves his $995 test found, and install a tap for refrigerator ice maker.