For many centuries, lead was the favoured material for water pipes, because its malleability made it practical to work into the desired shape. (Such use was so common that the word "plumbing" derives from plumbum, the Latin word for lead.) This was a source of lead-related health problems in the years before the health hazards of ingesting lead were fully understood; among these were stillbirths and high rates of infant mortality. Lead water pipes were still widely used in the early 20th century, and remain in many households. In addition, lead-tin alloy solder was commonly used to join copper pipes, but modern practice uses tin-antimony alloy solder instead, in order to eliminate lead hazards.[13]

Journeyman: A journeyman plumber has completed the required apprenticeship and can practice the trade on his or her own. A licensing exam must be passed to become a Journeyman Plumber. The licensing exam tests the knowledge and skills learned throughout the apprenticeship. There are continuing education requirements and licensing exam renewals required. Some states expect this yearly, while others may only require renewal every three to five years.
Another way to avoid a service call from your plumber is to make sure the outside faucets are turned off in the winter and make sure you disconnect the outside hoses. You need to shut the water off from the inside. Then, open the valve on the outside to let the water that’s in there drain out—you switch both of them to the opposite direction so one is always closed and one is always open. We have to fix tons of these in the spring mostly because people leave their outside hoses connected and they freeze up. The repair could cost $100-$200 or more. Another tip would be if you’re going away for any length of time, like on vacation, turn off your water. If on any of those days the temperature drops below freezing, have someone check in on your house. I’ve been called to homes where the family returned from vacation, and there was water flooding out from the front door.
“Don’t go to the Yellow Pages to find a plumber,” says Berkey’s Bill Stevens. “It’s like guessing lottery numbers. Anyone can make an appealing ad, but that doesn’t mean they are legitimate. In this industry, it’s easy for a plumber who develops a poor reputation to advertise under a different name. They come and go.” Even searching for someone online may end up being a scam using fake reviews. Instead, look for a plumber who is well-established in your community. Check the Better Business Bureau and read customer reviews at sites such as HomeAdvisor, Angie’s List, or Citysearch. Local contractors or plumbing fixture stores can also refer you to a quality plumber, according to Grady Daniel, who owns a plumbing company in Austin, Texas. “Most of these firms won’t work with bad plumbers.” Or simply ask your neighbors for a referral. A trusted plumber that consistently delivers quality service does not remain a secret for very long.
Plumbers may not go out of their way to let you know that a toilet or sink can be moved. But if you’ve been working with them on a renovation, and they tell you something can’t be transferred to a new space, ask them to explain to you in detail why not. Speaking of things people don’t want to tell you, here are 10 things your neighbor isn’t being up-front about.
Each Government at the state level has their own Authority and regulations in place for licensing plumbers. They are also responsible for the interpretation, administration and enforcement of the regulations outlined in the NCC.[39] These Authorities are usually established for the sole purpose of regulating plumbing activities in their respective states/territories. However, several state level regulation acts are quite outdated, with some still operating on local policies introduced more than a decade ago. This has led to an increase in plumbing regulatory issues not covered under current policy, and as such, many policies are currently being updated to cover these more modern issues. The updates include changed to the minimum experience and training requirements for licensing, additional work standards for new and more specific kinds of plumbing, as well as adopting the Plumbing Code of Australia into state regulations in an effort to standardise plumbing regulations across the country.[40]
Nationally, the average water heater repair cost ranges between $120 and $200, although prices can range up to $400 or more. Water heater repair costs will depend on the type of water heater you have (tankless, electric, natural gas, etc.), the source of the problem, the cost for new parts, and labor rates in your area. Common water heater issues include problems with the thermocouple, thermostat, heating element and leaks. Most standard electric water heaters have two thermostats and two elements. One example for the cost to replace a bad thermostat is $185 for parts and labor. Replacing both the thermostat and the heating element could cost approximately $150-$200. The thermocouple is a safety device that senses when the pilot light is burning and signals the gas valve to close if the pilot light goes out. If your thermocouple is bad or corroded, the average cost to clean and repair it could be between $350 and $400. If your water heater has started to leak, it is usually more cost-effective to invest in a new water heater than to repair it, unless you’re covered by a warranty.
Get a minimum of three bids. Estimates for an average-sized job should be within a few hundred dollars. Be suspicious of anything that is substantially lower or double the price of the rest, and watch out for hidden fees, like charges for travel expenses. They could be signs of a home improvement scam. A good plumber will not nickel and dime you like this, and many of us will offer free estimates.
PVC/CPVC – rigid plastic pipes similar to PVC drain pipes but with thicker walls to deal with municipal water pressure, introduced around 1970. PVC stands for polyvinyl chloride, and it has become a common replacement for metal piping. PVC should be used only for cold water, or for venting. CPVC can be used for hot and cold potable water supply. Connections are made with primers and solvent cements as required by code.[23]
When making a selection, ask for proof of a license. Most states require plumbers to be licensed, and they typically provide a number you can call to verify that the license is current and that there are no active complaints against it. Any plumber you consider should also hold a current workers' compensation policy and a minimum of $500,000 liability insurance.
Plumbing originated during ancient civilizations such as the Greek, Roman, Persian, Indian, and Chinese cities as they developed public baths and needed to provide potable water and wastewater removal, for larger numbers of people.[6] Standardized earthen plumbing pipes with broad flanges making use of asphalt for preventing leakages appeared in the urban settlements of the Indus Valley Civilization by 2700 BC.[7] The Romans used lead pipe inscriptions to prevent water theft. The word "plumber" dates from the Roman Empire.[8] The Latin for lead is plumbum. Roman roofs used lead in conduits and drain pipes[9] and some were also covered with lead. Lead was also used for piping and for making baths.[10]
Alexa is an experienced lifestyle and news writer, currently working with Reader's Digest, Shape Magazine, and various other publications. She loves writing about her travels, health, wellness, home decor, food and drink, fashion, beauty, and scientific news. Follow her traveling adventures on Instagram: @living_by_lex, send her a message: [email protected], and check out her website: livingbylex.com
One Call Plumbing is a family owned and operated, full service plumbing company. Since 2008, Loren Webster and his team have been showing clients throughout the Durham area what outstanding technical and customer service really looks like. When you work with us, you enjoy the types of benefits that only a local, community based company can offer. Our company stands apart from the others because we:
As with other construction workers, employment of plumbers, pipefitters, and steamfitters is sensitive to fluctuations in the economy. On the one hand, workers may experience periods of unemployment when the overall level of construction falls. On the other hand, shortages of workers may occur in some areas during peak periods of building activity.

After completing an apprenticeship program, plumbers, pipefitters, and steamfitters are considered to be journey workers, qualifying them to perform duties on their own. Plumbers with several years of plumbing experience may earn master status by passing an exam. Some states require a business to employ a master plumber in order to obtain a plumbing contractor’s license.
Plumbing originated during ancient civilizations such as the Greek, Roman, Persian, Indian, and Chinese cities as they developed public baths and needed to provide potable water and wastewater removal, for larger numbers of people.[6] Standardized earthen plumbing pipes with broad flanges making use of asphalt for preventing leakages appeared in the urban settlements of the Indus Valley Civilization by 2700 BC.[7] The Romans used lead pipe inscriptions to prevent water theft. The word "plumber" dates from the Roman Empire.[8] The Latin for lead is plumbum. Roman roofs used lead in conduits and drain pipes[9] and some were also covered with lead. Lead was also used for piping and for making baths.[10]
Clogged drains or sewer line backups can wreak havoc on your business, and we know that plumbing emergencies rarely align with business hours which is why Roto Rooter provides after hours plumbing. Sudden, unexpected plumbing emergencies can have a serious negative impact on your business—any amount of downtime can result in missed opportunities and the inability to serve your clients, potentially leading to lost revenue. When plumbing emergencies occur at your place of business, you need an emergency plumber you can trust.

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