Say you need a plumber: how can you find a good one? Here are some tips from a master plumber (yours truly) to help you tell a good plumber from a bad one. I have to warn you; the initial ‘research phase’ can take time, but without decent plumbing your life would be miserable, so do your homework!

Use only licensed plumbers. If an experienced plumber won’t apply for a license then what does that reek of to you? What else is he hiding? My goal here is not to be a wise-ass, but to give you some smart tips. If a plumber cuts corners here and there, how can you expect him to be honest with you? Don’t fool yourself. Use only licensed and experienced plumbers.

Don’t chase those who are hard to get. You either have soggy shoes, a blocked toilet or some other emergency needing fast relief. Or maybe you have a leaking tap or a dripping toilet and, while the problem isn’t a crying baby, you want it solved sooner rather than later. Keep this in mind. When you call a good plumber he’s most likely busy. Good plumbers are always busy. But a decent plumber won’t brush you off. He will try to schedule a firm appointment and also try to alleviate your problem in the meantime. And if he’s unable to help you then he’ll honestly say so.

Don’t blow your lid if he shows up late or not at all. At first glance, this makes no sense. Naturally you’d want to get even with someone who totally disrespects your busy schedule. The reality is that a good plumber will keep his appointment. On the rare occasion that he doesn’t, he will offer you a reasonable explanation and try to make it up to you. Your alarm bells should sound off if he makes no effort to bury the hatchet. When that happens, cheer up – you don’t want such a reckless person to work on your plumbing. No way, José! Simply take it as a learning experience and look for someone with a bit more sense and social grace. While good plumbers are rare, they do exist! If the appointment will be delayed more than an hour, then a good plumber will give you an update with the option to reschedule.