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25 Jun 2000 at 2:10 am #273128MasterPlumbersKeymaster
I am in yr 11 and i am doing a business report on a plumbing business. I would like to know what the gerneral trend has been in the past 10-20 yrs.
25 Jun 2000 at 2:29 am #286956SylvanLMPParticipant
The general “trend” in plumbing is FRANCHISING in other words raising the prices or work performed BUT lowering considerably the mechanical ability of the mechanic.
To get over on the general public and beat existing licensing laws a lot of stumble bums no longer attend a 5 year apprenticeship training BUT opt got a 12 week crash course and call themselves “techs”
This no accountability in plumbing is why certain stumble bums are now trying to push filtering whole house plumbing rather then admit that the installing TECH may be causing a real health hazard by non venting appliances and fixtures properly and allowing cross connections between potable and non potable water systems
Some so called plumbing publications even resort to pushing FLAT rate pricing to help hide the actual hourly rate these mongrels are trying to get over as the quality of the mechanic has so much to be desired today.
Years ago it took a minimum of 10,000 hours training to be a “plumber” today this is no longer the case. Today the theme is get in GET as much out of the victims as possible and get out. The new guys in the field today would NEVER get caught with code books (ASME/ASTM/plumbing etc.) BUT they do carry a pricing book so they rip the lungs out of the folks who would never ask to see the license of the mechanic actually doing the work.
This is the NEW trend in plumbing Good luck on your report.
25 Jun 2000 at 7:48 am #286957jack spotzParticipant
golly alison, i would hope that at 11 yrs of age you’re smarter than sylvan and will UNDERSTAND that plumbers don’t really rip the lungs out of their customers. mr. sylvan is a little over protective of his hard earned liscense, which is a direct result of all the new trends in our industry. the really big guys like home depot are really making the professional plumber, who does actually play a major part in “preserving the health of this nation” by installing and maintaining sanitary water and sewer systems in all of our homes. we are the people who make sure that chemicals in your lawn, or even blue stuff in your toilet tank can not get into your drinking water. other nasty things we protect you from are raw sewage(also known as e- coli bacteria) getting into your drinking water. we understand and protect you from evil things such as lead, asbestos, mercury, carbon monoxide poisoning, and fire hazzards from propane and natural gas. the industry trend now is to do it yourself. honestly the home depot types sell to the general public, plumbing material at cheaper prices than plumbers pay for them. they have convinced the general public that they can do all of their plumbing repairs themselves as well as a plumber, and though relatively rare, dangerous situations do arise as a direct resut of lack of training. i personally have had customers either create very unsanitary living conditions in their home or blame me of being a crook after giving them a price on a fixture that for me to sell it with enough markup to stay in buisness, i will be 50% higher than home depot. this makes me look foolish in my customers eyes, but a professional plumber has always been paid more for what he knows, than what he installs. very unsanitary plumbing is installed every day by people not qualified to do the work, and the same people who are only trying to save a few bucks are honestly putting themselves at risk. plumbers are called every day to fix homeowners mistakes. though we do a professional, safe job, the homeowner hates us because they know what we have paid for our material and think we are ripping them off. we have sons and daughters just like you and must be paid a living wage to make sure they can still go to college, or are at least raised in a good home. another interesting industry trend is the fact that people your age are taught that they should work with their minds and not their hands. being a plumber is VERY uncool now days and it is very hard for us to find and hire quality young people to join our trade. plumbers perform as important a part in our country as farmers but neither of us get any respect. how many kids in your school actually WANT to be a plumber? i’d bet none. these are just some thoughts off the top of my head, if you have any specific questions on this subject, e-mail me at firstname.lastname@example.org i will gladly help any youngster with any interest in this trade, good luck on your report. jack
25 Jun 2000 at 2:47 pm #286958Art_xyzParticipant
My thoughts on plumbing trends for the past ten to twenty years.
Home owners want more and larger bathrooms with better quality fixtures and trim.
They want gourmet kitchens/gathering areas (although I can’t understand why being most families Nuke their dinner now)
States and the federal gov. are taking a stronger stand on polution. They are more strictly enforcing current codes and implimenting new regulations on sewerage and water systems, on site and municipal.
Because of these stricter regulations it is more important that ever to have qualified/educated individuals in and plumbing industry. But I am extremely sorry to say that I am not seeing this happen. What I have seen in the last several years are kids that can’t read words of more that four letters or add 2+2 who decide they won’t make it to college so why not become a plumber.
Unlike some others in this industry, I see LARGE plumbing businesses as a good thing. They will ensure the implimentation of new and better technology in this industry. They will also insure (I believe in the not too distant future) that journeyman are qualified and knowlagable in these new technologies and regulations. And in turn Plumbers will be better paid and more respected. This will eliminate the shortage of educated apprentices and encourage more young people into the trades.
Another thing I have seen in the last twenty years is more specialization ie: residential/commercial/industrial/well drilling/septic installation/sewer cleaning/backflow prevention/heading etc.etc.
Hope my input is of use.
25 Jun 2000 at 5:23 pm #286959GuestParticipant
Sylvan, my man, You’ve done it again. You sure do keep the smart ones thinking outside the box. I say, the ones that don’t get what you’re trying to teach just aren’t that bright. Intelligent people understand. Keep up the great work, son.
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