Did I get ripped off?

Old 01-11-05, 06:30 PM
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Question Did I get ripped off?

I had to hire a plumber to do a job at my Mom's house. I just didn't have the time. Here's what was done:

1. Leak in bathroom sink trap: (I removed the sink from wall) Remove sink trap, frozen nipple from trap to drain stack in wall, cut nipple, install rubber sleeve, new chrome nipple, new chrome trap, new chrome drain line, rehang sink, reconnect water lines, caulk sink.

2. Remove kitchen drain sink strainer assembly, trap and all drain pipe to drain stack in wall. Install new chrome kitchen sink strainer assembly, new brass dishwasher tailpipe, new PVC trap, new PVC drain line to drain stack in wall. Re-connect dishwasher drain to tailpipe.

3. Snake out same kitchen drain line because of slow draining.

The plumber was on-site no more than 4 hours. He did a good job, was friendly, polite and left both areas clean.

The labor bill was $575, materials $175, total of $650 plus tax.
(This is for Northern New Jersey.)

Granted, I have not hired a plumber in recent memory since I do most of this work myself and I have no idea of the going rates for labor. However, knowing what was done, the time it took and the materials used, the overall price seem high. I know rates can vary a bit and I don't mind paying for quality work. I don't even mind paying a premium if it's worth it. I just can't gauge whether these charges are reasonable.

Any comments from professional plumbers? I haven't disputed this bill yet and don't know if I need to dispute the bill.
Old 01-11-05, 06:58 PM
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You did not get ripped off. In fact I consider that quite reasonable. Here in California you would have paid more. much more...
Old 01-11-05, 08:38 PM
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Sounds about right. Be at peace my friend.
Old 01-12-05, 05:52 AM
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I'm happy to hear, from at least two sources, that the charges seem reasonable.

Thanks for the feedback.
Old 01-12-05, 09:39 AM
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Advice from a different view

I'm not a plumber but a maintenance guy I consider myself to be one of the very best, jack of all trades master of none. I don't profit from others creating work for me so I try to find solutions to keep from working myself to death I don't making any more money doing more work. I don't advise anyone to use a garbage disposal it creates bad habits and is death for septic systems. I ask people never ever put grease or fats down the sink drain it will clog them creating a problem that just isn't called for.I supply tenants with glass jars and funnel it is far cheaper and less hassle for me. I learned alot of my good house keeping from parents they have never had a plumber come out in all of my 40 years to unclog anything.
Old 01-12-05, 10:14 AM
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The numbers you produced are the average for the amount of work that was done.

Drain cleaning usually dictates separate charges (high risk) and sometimes in some occaisions the job will expand at no control of the plumbers wishes.

I wish all jobs were cut and dry, but unfortunately one thing goes bad and three follow.

If the work is correct and the job duty was without error, I would consider the charges reasonable.

Plumbers range from $75 to $150 an hour across the states.
Old 01-13-05, 05:25 PM
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Sounds fare for your area

Chris, itís a matter of location. Here in the desert southwest you can still get a good plumber for forty dollars an hour! But the cost of living here is way, way lower then your area. My home was $260,000.00, it would cost me close to one million to build it there in New Jersey. All reputable plumbing companies will tell you up front what their hourly rates are. If it sounds extreme shop around and compare them with others. I will have to agree with the rest of the posts here, for your area it sounds fare. And be happy you received an excellent job for the price. Like many that post here you could have gotten a real poor job for the same price.

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