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.
How often do you clean a septic tank?
For homeowners with a septic system, it’s important to have a regular septic cleaning schedule. To protect ground and drinking water, the Environmental Protection Agency recommends residential septic cleaning every three years. Many septic system companies state that you can maintain a healthy system with regular septic cleanings every three to five years. In addition to cleaning, a septic tank inspection once a year will uncover problems and can save you thousands in cleanup and repair.
When waste goes into your septic system, it separates into three parts. The solids (sludge) drop to the bottom, wastewater floats in the middle, and a layer of scum rises to the top. Regularly scheduled cleanings prevent the sludge in your septic tank from building up and clogging your tank, leading to an overflow. Pricing for a standard septic cleaning ranges between $200 and $500, with the national average cost at $315. It’s easier, more cost-effective, and better for your home health to keep your septic tank maintained.
How much is it to clean a septic tank?
Nobody wants their septic tank to back up. Regular septic cleaning and pumping is important to keep your ground and drinking water protected from harmful bacteria. The Environmental Protection Agency recommends septic system cleaning every three years. The national average cost for a septic tank specialist is $315. Costs for septic cleaning may vary based on where you live, how large your septic tank is, and how long it has been since the last cleaning. If it’s been many years since you’ve had your tank cleaned, the process of breaking up and removing the solids may take longer and could cost more. Typical residential septic tanks range in size from 1,000 to 2,500 gallons. The price range for septic cleaning usually averages $200-$500, with varying by tank size. Repairs or replacement parts will also add to your cost. To keep your septic tank in good health between cleanings, only flush approved items such as toilet paper, and don’t rely on your garbage disposal for composting. Items that don’t break down easily (like lemon rinds or feminine hygiene products) can back up the septic system, leading to clogs and overflow. If you smell the unmistakable odor of sewage or can see sewage bubbling up above your drain field, call for a septic cleaning immediately.
Who pumps septic tanks?
Septic system professionals pump septic tanks. Pros in different states will have different licensing and certification regulations. Make sure the company you hire is licensed and certified, is a legitimate business, and has the appropriate insurance. Damage to your septic system could cost thousands of dollars in cleanup and repair, so it’s best to hire a qualified professional from the start.
Using an industrial-strength vacuum hose connected to a tanker truck, the septic tank company will pump out the contents of your tank. First they break up the scum of the top layer, then mix the sludge (on the bottom) into the wastewater for removal. To get all the sludge and scum from the tank, pros may use a tool called a septage spoon that loosens stubborn waste from the sides of the tank. After the tank is hosed down and empty, it is inspected for any cracks or leaks that could lead to trouble in the future. The waste in the truck is then transported and disposed of at a waste management treatment center, a cesspool or an approved dumping site.
When should you clean a septic system?
Experts agree that you should clean your septic system every three to five years for optimal system health and safe water. You should also have it inspected every year to catch minor issues before they become major. If you think you may be overdue for a septic cleaning, here are signs that you should call a pro immediately.
- You’re at capacity: If the bottom of the scum layer is within six inches of the bottom of the tank’s outlet or if the top of the sludge layer is within 12 inches of the outlet, your tank needs to be pumped, according to the EPA.
- It stinks: If you can smell wastewater, call a pro right away to clean your tank, pipes and field.
- Sewage backup: Raw sewage backing up into the pipes in your home is no fun. The pros can pump out your pipes, clean your tanks and clear any clogs, but it will be a complex and messy job.
- Pooling water: Water collecting around your tank or drain field can be a sign you need to clean your septic system.
- Super grass: If the grass above your septic system drain field suddenly gets vibrantly green and lush, the septic tank leak could be leaking sewage and fertilizing your lawn in unwanted ways. Call a pro to inspect it right away.
What are plumbers and what do they do?
Plumbers are skilled professionals who are trained to install and maintain pipes and systems for drinking water, sewage and drainage. They usually have trained through four- to five-year training programs, which include apprenticeships, via trade schools and community colleges. Plumbers’ areas of expertise typically go beyond pipes to include mathematics, blueprint reading, plumbing codes and water distribution. They handle plumbing emergencies, such as broken pipes or clogged drains, and install and maintain everything from a new piping system to a replacement faucet. Plumbers also know how to install bathtubs and showers, toilets, water heaters and dishwashers. Plumbers may work on residential or commercial sites, sometimes designing and laying out a pipe system during construction.
How do you find a good plumber?
Whether you need a plumber to perform drain repair, install a new fixture, or replace rusty pipes, you need to make sure you hire someone reliable who will finish your job on time and within budget. Start by asking the plumbers on your short list these questions:
- What is the total cost? Make sure your estimate includes materials and labor. Find out whether the plumber will be providing the materials and whether you’re being charged an hourly rate (which is variable) or a flat fee.
- Is removal and cleanup included in the job? Some plumbers leave behind old parts, while others include the cleanup in the cost.
- Is the work guaranteed? Find out whether the work (as well as the parts or fixtures) are guaranteed under a warranty.
Follow these additional tips for confidently hiring a plumber or other skilled professional.
Do plumbers offer remote or virtual services?
If you see a profile that states the plumber is offering remote services, contact the plumber before hiring them to see what those services include. Although plumbing is a job that has to be done in-person, you can ask them if they offer virtual consultations or an online walk-through.