Why do plumbers cost so much? No offense to you plumbers out there.....

United States
April 15, 2007 1:46pm CST
Ok I am feeling violated. First a little background. We had rented our house out for three years and the second set of renters literally tried to destroy the house even to the point of setting the garage on fire and causing $65,000.00 worth of damage to the house. Now all of a sudden we are having plumbing problems. We have moved back into the house and the pipes were all draining slow. Friday (yes the thirteenth) the toilets started to back up. Then I forgot about the toilet that just runs and runs forgot to turn the water off to it next thing I know the bathoom and two bedrooms have flooded. So this brings me to the plumbers. I have tried to snake it I can't get the snake past the curves in the toilet pipes. To get a plumber out here they want between $200 and $500 which I do not have. Then on top all of it off I go outside to look for the clean out trap that is supposed to be out there and guess what we don't have one. So my question is this. Why so dang much to come fix this for me? And don't tell me because you have to deal with a nasty toilet cause I have been in both mine up to my elbows trying to fix this myself to no avail. I am so frustrated. Thanks for letting me vent.
2 people like this
3 responses
@babystar1 (4236)
• United States
15 Apr 07
I am sorry that you forgot to turn off the water to your toilets,But if that was me I would call a plumber. There is a lot of things that I cant not afford either. but if it is something that you need done you will fine a way. Did you ever see what a doctor charges? going to a doctor here cost more than what a puumber wants. The plumbers here charge only $40 to $50 a hour plus parts. Parts are going up all the time.And if a plumber has to do a lot to fix your problem the cost will go up but at least your plumbing will be fixed. Did you ever think about moving to another house?
2 people like this
@babystar1 (4236)
• United States
15 Apr 07
I forgot to ask what do you do for a living.
2 people like this
• United States
15 Apr 07
You are lucky plumbers here want $70.00 to come out and look at you then they want $136.00 to $200.00 an hour till they get it fixed and if it takes 3 hours and 2 minutes it is 4 hours charge. I have called tons of plumbers and it is the same prices at all. I am a seasonal tax preparer and I own my own website. Mom is retired and has ss. So no we don't have any expendable or non expendable cash. i am going to pull the toilet myself and snake it myself. I am pretty self reliant anyway but have never pulled a toilet before. Learning experience...plus whatever doesn't kill you makes you stronger.
1 person likes this
@babystar1 (4236)
• United States
15 Apr 07
Oh my they sure do charge a lot an hour. I hope you get it fixed, and good luck.
2 people like this
• United States
15 Apr 07
Plumbers, electricians, carpenters, they all charge a hefty price. That is because they are skilled at what they do. My grandpa was a plumber and made a decent wage. My uncles also became plumbers. Occasionally they will venture out on a job for a friend. They don't charge as much as they did when they were doing it full-time.
2 people like this
• United States
15 Apr 07
I understand and appreciate that they are skilled laborers but what about those of us who cannot afford thier prices and do not know one personally? I don't know what we are going to do. Right now we are living without runnning water and doing dishes in tubs and going elsewhere to go to the bathroom. I don't want to do this indefinatly but can't afford the plumbers.
2 people like this
• United States
15 Apr 07
Maybe one would be able to let you pay a little at a time.
1 person likes this
@judyt00 (3505)
• Canada
15 Apr 07
My son in law isa plumber. Often, he has to spend quite a lot of time checking our exactly what is wrong with the pipes, then pulling up the toilet and replacing pipes, which is time consuming and costly. He says that generally, the problem is a toy or spoon flushed down the toilet by mistake. Once he found an expensive bracelet that some stupid woman flushed just to get back at her hubby. next time your toilet backs up, go to home depot, get a new gasket and pull the toilet off the floor. it only takes a few minutes. that way, you can snake the plumbing as far as the snake can reach. I also recomment using lye twice a year to keep your pipes clear, You can get that at safeway or other major grocery stores. Just flush a half can down the highest sink in the house, and a tablespoon full down all the others. add a cup of water, and wait two hours. Everything should be running smoothly. And, vet your potential tenants better!I had neighbours like those once. They took the copper pipes from the sinks when they left!
1 person likes this
• United States
15 Apr 07
Honey my toilets are still backed up. I can't afford the plumbers. I am not sure I can take a toilet up but I may be reduced to trying to do so. I will keep the lye in mind when I have running water again. Thanks for the suggestions.
1 person likes this
@judyt00 (3505)
• Canada
15 Apr 07
Its really not hard to take a toilet up. I did it once when my daughter flushed a spoon while dumping her diner once. Lift the white bumps on the sides and unscrew the nuts on there, and simply lift the toilet straiht up.You may need some wd-40 on the screws if it has been there for a long time. You will find a pipe surrounded by a yellowish waxk gasket.Then before you do anything else, take the wax gasket to home depot and ask for another one like it. Then check the traps IN the toilet for a blockage and snake the line below it for a blockage, you will have to go right down to where your pipes meet the city sewer lines. Generally, though, whatever is blocking the pipes will be right at the bend in the basement, just below the y shaped thingy that is capped. you can also try to remove this cap and check below there if you can get it off. If I can do this, you can, too. Good luck!
1 person likes this
@judyt00 (3505)
• Canada
15 Apr 07
oops, I forgot to tell you to turn off the water intake and remove the tank first
1 person likes this