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Q & A

Answers to commonly asked questions from the experts on Thumbtack.

How much do plumbers charge per hour?

Depending on the service you need (unclogging a drain, fixing a pipe, installing new pipes, etc.), plumbers charge anywhere from $45-$165 per hour. Plumbers often operate on a fixed rate model, too. Some won’t charge hourly rates because the variables involved in their work makes it less practical to do so. 

Plumbers will scope out the work, calculate the cost of parts, and roll it together with other fees to give you an estimate for the job. They may even offer standard flat rates for things like installing a toilet or a sink. Reach out to plumbers near you to get an accurate cost estimate for your project or repair.

Does a plumber need to enter my home?

A plumber will need to enter your home to fix plumbing issues like dripping faucets, clogged sinks or toilets and leaky pipes. They might not need to come into your home if the faulty appliance is located outdoors or in the garage. Before you begin the project, contact plumbers near you to find out they will need to enter your home.  

What do you do if you have a burst pipe?

First, switch off the water supply to reduce the water damage. You should also turn off the electricity for the part of your home that has sustained the leak, as it can be extremely dangerous if the water comes into contact with an electrical socket. Next, drain the remaining water from your faucets so it doesn’t freeze inside the pipes. 

Once you’ve done all of this, search for qualified plumbers in your area and ask them to provide you with a quote. 

What’s the best way to set up a consultation or an appointment with a plumber during the COVID-19 pandemic?

If possible, it’s best to set up a virtual consultation or phone call with a plumber near during the COVID-19 pandemic. You can send a message to a professional plumber near you and ask if they are available to video chat or have a phone call. Use that time to discuss the work that needs to be done. Make sure to ask any questions you have about the project. And lastly, ask the plumber how they handle payments and whether they have any specific safety precautions in place to comply with social distancing. 

What are the signs of a burst pipe?

If your water pressure has suddenly dropped or your sink and toilet have unexpectedly started clogging, you may have a burst pipe. Other tell-tale signs include watermarks on the wall of your bathroom or laundry room, drips or puddles in your home or basement, or water from your faucets that have suddenly turned brown. You may also notice a strange rotten-egg smell or the sound of gurgling water in your home.

If you notice any of these signs, contact a plumber near you to fix your pipes immediately.

How much does it cost to repair a broken pipe?

The national average cost to repair broken pipes ranges from $120 to $170. Prices can vary depending on the type of damage, whether the pipe is easily accessible, the materials needed and where the pipe is located. For example, an exposed pipe under the sink will likely cost much less than a pipeline in your yard that requires digging. 

Your overall cost will also depend on the hourly rate of the contractor. Most plumbers charge between $60 and $65 per hour for standard pipe repair, and up to $95 per hour for complex plumbing work. 

Contact the best pipe repairers in your area to find out how much it will cost to fix your pipe(s). 

To learn more about pricing factors, read “How much does pipe repair cost?

What happens when a water pipe bursts?

When a pipe bursts, the water can cause indoor flooding and damage your home. If the pipe is in an accessible location, you will likely notice puddles of water right away. However, if the pipe is underground or behind a wall, it may cause reduced water pressure, a sulfur smell or discolored water. All of this can cause significant (and expensive) damage, which is why you should always contact a plumber near you if you suspect your pipes are leaking.

Does insurance cover a broken pipe?

Sudden water damage may be included under most homeowners’ insurance policies, but it’s typically not covered if the damage could have been avoided with proper maintenance.

For example, if a pipe in your laundry room suddenly bursts and causes damage to the flooring and walls, that is usually covered by insurance. But if a pipe under your sink has been leaking for months and causes your wood floors to rot, your policy won’t cover that damage.

Always double-check with your insurance agent (or another expert)  to see what your policy covers.

How long is a water heater supposed to last?

Your water heater is an essential part of your home, heating water for showers, dishwashing, laundry and more. On average, a traditional water heater will last 8-12 years. The general consensus is that it’s better to replace your water heater with a new one than to repair one that’s 10 years old or more. Older models are less energy-efficient and thus more costly to run than newer models with better technology. Here are some indicators of when it may be time to replace an old water heater instead of repairing it:

  • Leaks: If leaking is not caused by loose connections, the water may be seeping out through slight fractures in the metal of the tank that have formed over time.
  • Strange noises: Clanking, rumbling and other noises can mean that sediment has formed on the base of your tank, contributing to fissures leaks, and inefficiency.
  • Age: If it’s more than 10 years old, it’s probably time to replace.
  • Discolored or rusty water: Have a pro check it out; if the problem isn’t resolved by draining and cleaning, you’ll want to replace the heater.
  • Lack of hot water: Inconsistent heating and hot water supply that runs out too quickly likely means it’s time for a new unit.

Can a leaking pipe burst?

Yes. A leak in your pipe can build up pressure and wear through the material. Left unchecked, this pressure can cause the pipe to burst. This is why it’s so important to fix your pipes and contact a plumber as soon as you notice a leak — no matter how small or insignificant it may seem. 

Smaller leaks are easier and inexpensive to fix, saving you time and money in the long run. In addition, many insurance policies will not cover water damage for pipes that burst due to gradual leaks.

Reviews for Ashburn plumbers
Sean L.
So easy to work with Veteran Plumbing!
Veteran Plumbing ServicesVeteran Plumbing Services
Philip C.
Jose from 2020 Drain Clean & Plumbing was all around professional and great to work with. He was punctual, had a great attitude and gave us different options on how to fix our plumbing. Then he went to work right away and finished quickly. This was a great experience and plan to work with them more in the future on some of our different issues with plumbing around the house.
2020 Drain Clean & Plumbing, LLC2020 Drain Clean & Plumbing, LLC
Jason R.
2020 responded very quickly and fixed my plumbing issue immediately. Thanks!
2020 Drain Clean & Plumbing, LLC2020 Drain Clean & Plumbing, LLC
Cody D.
Great work on some complicated plumbing. And professional work on repair to hardwood floor and trim.
JJ CONTRACTING SERVICES LLCJJ CONTRACTING SERVICES LLC
James L.
Fixed my plumbing efficiently and professionally. Would use him again and recommend him to others.
HAPPY DRAIN GUYS LLCHAPPY DRAIN GUYS LLC
Alex E.
JC was is a complete professional, he did an amazing job replacing the valves and pipes. I would highly recommend him for any plumbing jobs. He is really good about responding in a timely manner and was very flexible with his schedule. I will definitely use him for any future plumbing needs.
Jc cruzJc cruz
Mike N.
Nova plumbing responded almost immediately to my inquiry, and arranged a time to come check out the issue the next day. When he arrived, he took all the precautions for COVID and was able to diagnose and fix my issue literally within minutes for a very fair price. Will definitely use Nova Plumbing and Drain again!
Nova Plumbing & Drain LLCNova Plumbing & Drain LLC
Rene A.
I called VanCleve plumbing on Monday and spoke with Dakota about my need to install two new toilets. He quoted me a price and also made some recommendations. He was patient in answering my questions. Two days later I had two new toilets installed. Very pleased and I highly recommended VanCleve plumbing.
VanCleve PlumbingVanCleve Plumbing
Stephanie T.
Bestway Plumbing has been very responsive and helpful in the work I needed done. Will definitely use them again for future needs.
Bestway plumbing and drainBestway plumbing and drain
Lawrence O.
I needed a contractor to configure some new pipes for my kitchen plumbing. I contacted CA Plumbing late on a Friday and they were able to send someone over first thing the next morning. Denzel was prompt and professional; he was able to install the required pipes in a very confined area and with high quality. I would definitely call them again for any other jobs.
CA Plumbing & Drain LLCCA Plumbing & Drain LLC
Stacey F.
Great service by Eagle Home Solutions for a last minute toilet issue. Chris the plumber was very helpful, explained and showed me the issue and fixed my toilet quickly. While I was the last appt for him, he also took the time to listen and check out other plumbing projects I need help with. Will definitely call Eagle Home Solutions for my other plumbing projects.
Eagle Home Solutions  inc. (Walt . L)Eagle Home Solutions inc. (Walt . L)
Thumbtack Customer
Just had Robert come out to do some plumbing work in the kitchen. Very knowledge and willing to share his knowledge with you. Will be using his services again!
RJA FloorsRJA Floors
Steven K.
Great experience with Veteran Plumbing Services. They quickly discovered what was wrong with my toilet and replaced a faulty part. Price was reasonable and they worked very efficiently. Friendly as well.
Veteran Plumbing ServicesVeteran Plumbing Services
Vincent R.
2020 Drain Clean & Plumbing responded promptly to my request and did a great job. The plumber that was sent was friendly and very professional. I would definitely recommend them in the future.
2020 Drain Clean & Plumbing, LLC2020 Drain Clean & Plumbing, LLC
Ben G.
Amazing. Called to schedule the appt. immediately, came the following day, Jose was incredible, he was professional and provided options to fix my issue. Will use for any other plumbing issues again!
2020 Drain Clean & Plumbing, LLC2020 Drain Clean & Plumbing, LLC
Jian Z.
Veteran Plumbing Services responded within minutes after I sent my request and Dennis show up the next day at the beginning of the appointment time window. He helped us solve the slow drain issue - it was quick and we didn't need to pay for his service - and shared with me tips and tricks to avoid the same problem. Dennis is very professional and polite. I would definitely call him again if we run into plumbing issue again!
Veteran Plumbing ServicesVeteran Plumbing Services
Thumbtack Customer
Walter did a fantastic job! He was professional, knowledgeable, and he fit us in quickly! I will certainly use him again should we have a plumbing need. Very reasonably priced as well!
Eagle Home Solutions  inc. (Walt . L)Eagle Home Solutions inc. (Walt . L)
Stephanie M.
Very good work. We did run into another problem with an existing condition, but he did take care of it on the spot. No one likes to spend money on plumbing, but he has very reasonable pricing.
BNH General Plumbing  ServicesBNH General Plumbing Services
Kha V.
Ahmad was professional, courteous, responsive, and did a great job! Very happy with the work that he did, and will definitely hire him again for figure plumbing related jobs around my house. Thanks again, Ahmad!
HAPPY DRAIN GUYS LLCHAPPY DRAIN GUYS LLC
JAE L.
Best plumbing in town. He came on Sunday in 1 hour and changed the pipe real quick. His price is reasonable and he is really professional about his job. Planning to hire him again for 3 toilet changes.
HAPPY DRAIN GUYS LLCHAPPY DRAIN GUYS LLC
Thumbtack Customer
Paulo did a great job . He came on time and did a great job installing my water heater for a very fair price very professional i will recommend him and definitely used again for all my plumbing jobs
Plumbing servicesPlumbing services
Kelly K.
I received a response immediately and someone came out the same day. I felt the quote was reasonable and the work was completed within 30 minutes. Abdul was friendly and professional. We will definitely use them again for any future plumbing needs.
2020 Drain Clean & Plumbing, LLC2020 Drain Clean & Plumbing, LLC
Arka C.
Alex was impressive: professional, punctual and above all, gracious. It was an absolute delight to work with him. Clear communication, upfront quote and lightning fast response sets him far apart. Now I know whom I'll call first for plumbing work.
Quality PlumbingQuality Plumbing
Arnes H.
Julian was professional, curtious, and fixed my problem within a couple hours. What I thought would be an expensive project, he did at a reasonable cost and quick turn around time. I would recommend Julian to anyone needing plumbing work at their home or business.
Plumb Agent, LLCPlumb Agent, LLC
Matt K.
Alex came by to replace/install a new faucet for the kitchen. He came out same day and was very responsive and professional. The faucet works great and we couldn’t be happier with his service. Will be using him from now on for all our plumbing/gas needs! Would recommend to everyone.
Quality PlumbingQuality Plumbing
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