Plumbers in specific, does anyone give a crap any more in general.....?

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   / Plumbers in specific, does anyone give a crap any more in general.....? #21  

kenmac

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While I can't comment on your specific job. I will say, not many want to go into the trade these days and get dirty. They all want college degrees and work in a climate controlled environment .
So, someone is going to pay us guys that are willing to do the hard work that you didn't want to do.
So many people want to complain about what I charged, but they didn't want, or couldn't do the job themselves .

Either do the job yourself, or pay someone.

I had 2 million in liability insurance, commercial vehicle insurance, fuel, vehicle maintenance, tools, my own personal insurance, house payment, groceries, retirement, city, county, state licenses, permits, etc,etc,etc,. I could sit home and go broke, why work and go broke ?
I went into the trades to make a living, not just to get by paycheck to paycheck !

If it were easy, everyone would be doing it
 
   / Plumbers in specific, does anyone give a crap any more in general.....?
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dirttoys

dirttoys

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While I can't comment on your specific job. I will say, not many want to go into the trade these days and get dirty. They all want college degrees and work in a climate controlled environment .
So, someone is going to pay us guys that are willing to do the hard work that you didn't want to do.
So many people want to complain about what I charged, but they didn't want, or couldn't do the job themselves .

Either do the job yourself, or pay someone.

I had 2 million in liability insurance, commercial vehicle insurance, fuel, vehicle maintenance, tools, my own personal insurance, house payment, groceries, retirement, city, county, state licenses, permits, etc,etc,etc,. I could sit home and go broke, why work and go broke ?
I went into the trades to make a living, not just to get by paycheck to paycheck !

If it were easy, everyone would be doing it
I appreciate your reply. The couple of jobs I mentioned were/will be done by a retired IT guy with fairly primitive tools in a day.

Stepping up to a more general view of the trades. I always try to find relative value. The average pay for a trucker in the US is about $80k. Figuring 45 hours a week, that is about $35 per hour. They need to know how to log, set up brakes, manage and secure loads, and undoubtedly a bunch of stuff I don't know about. If they make a mistake, they can literally cost many lives. Now is your time worth more than a truck driver? I don't know. The two estimates I mentioned in my post were roughly each $2k per day, or $250/hr. If you assume a burden rate for all of your "things" that is still $150/hr. Then the question becomes, is your time worth 5X a truck driver. That one I can answer; no it is not.

I agree with you, hiring help is voluntary, and if I/we don't like the numbers we should (and I will) do it myself. That said, I am shocked and disappointed with the numbers, and I believe their are people that don't know better, or have no other options, and they will be cheated (my opinion on the numbers).

I would like anyone that is honest, and works to make a living. You and I at the end of the day will disagree on what a living is. If a truck driver is a poor comparison. a general practitioner in the states on average will make $210k.

On my worst day I would rather have a rich happy doctor than plumber.

Best,


ed
 
   / Plumbers in specific, does anyone give a crap any more in general.....? #23  

jaxs

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There was a time when you could take night courses in things like framing, basic electrical, basic plumbing, et.al. which were meant to help you maintain your home. By the time I was ready to take one though, they had gone away. About 20 years ago I tried to sign up for a basic electrician course at the vo-tech school but they wouldn't let me; it was only for people thinking about getting into the trade. They suggested the Home Depot courses instead. Pfft; all that I could find was "fluff" classes like how to install track lighting. That doesn't do much good if you don't have a wire from the breaker box.
Many of those classes were dropped in part due to lack of night students and in part because high schools and Jr colleges discontinued vocational training for full time students. As a taxpayer, I spoke against discontinuing vocational training and suggested schools pardner with private companies to have students earn class credits for hours OJT. I'm afraid the die has been cast because as we speak,there's tradesmen and contractors eager to hire young people with no experience but kids take dead end jobs for $2-$3 less per hour instead. The most prevalent reason I've heard for kids passing the jobs up is because parents tell their kid he is being exploited if he works for $10- $12 hour while his employer bill's their labor to customers at $80-$120 per hour. The fact kid will get multiple raises within first 2 years with a contractor doesn't mean anything to them. In their dream the kid will wash cars or flip burgers a few months until his ship come's ashore and he get's a better job. How do you overcome that mentality because when kid settles into a career as a framer, heavy equipment operator or electrician at $30 per hour his labor will bill for $100+ per hour.
Ok,let's talk about something do-it-yourselfers can use at home. When you find yourself with a toilet flange grossly high after new floor,try this. Draw bowel pattern on floor. Apply Seran Wrap to bottom of bowel and 3-6 inches up side. Mix latex additive enriched portland product to a stiff consistency then place a thick 2"-3" wide strip inside and barely covering bowel pattern on floor. Set bowl in place,use carpenter's level to press and level bowl in place. Use putty knife to trim excess squished out portland then smooth similar to while caulking. Clean up floor with damp cloth. Let dry,lift toilet, if saran wrap is stuck use box cutter or single edge razor to trim,place wax on bowl,bolts in flange and install as usual.
Playdough type epoxy can be subbed for Portland. Colorant can be added to Portland for improved appearance where it shows between bowl and floor. For best color I've painted portland rather than caulking. If desired to match caulk in room tape off then paint on caulk mixed with water. Injoy the rock sturdy seat. 😊
 
   / Plumbers in specific, does anyone give a crap any more in general.....? #24  

jaxs

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I appreciate your reply. The couple of jobs I mentioned were/will be done by a retired IT guy with fairly primitive tools in a day.

Stepping up to a more general view of the trades. I always try to find relative value. The average pay for a trucker in the US is about $80k. Figuring 45 hours a week, that is about $35 per hour. They need to know how to log, set up brakes, manage and secure loads, and undoubtedly a bunch of stuff I don't know about. If they make a mistake, they can literally cost many lives. Now is your time worth more than a truck driver? I don't know. The two estimates I mentioned in my post were roughly each $2k per day, or $250/hr. If you assume a burden rate for all of your "things" that is still $150/hr. Then the question becomes, is your time worth 5X a truck driver. That one I can answer; no it is not.

I agree with you, hiring help is voluntary, and if I/we don't like the numbers we should (and I will) do it myself. That said, I am shocked and disappointed with the numbers, and I believe their are people that don't know better, or have no other options, and they will be cheated (my opinion on the numbers).

I would like anyone that is honest, and works to make a living. You and I at the end of the day will disagree on what a living is. If a truck driver is a poor comparison. a general practitioner in the states on average will make $210k.

On my worst day I would rather have a rich happy doctor than plumber.

Best,


ed
Agreed and my doctor use's slipping grease and tell's me what he's up to. To date not a single plumber warned me,much less said "here bite down on this" or "you might want to grab hold on something".:oops:
 
   / Plumbers in specific, does anyone give a crap any more in general.....? #25  

Alan W.

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Many of those classes were dropped in part due to lack of night students and in part because high schools and Jr colleges discontinued vocational training for full time students. As a taxpayer, I spoke against discontinuing vocational training and suggested schools pardner with private companies to have students earn class credits for hours OJT. I'm afraid the die has been cast because as we speak,there's tradesmen and contractors eager to hire young people with no experience but kids take dead end jobs for $2-$3 less per hour instead. The most prevalent reason I've heard for kids passing the jobs up is because parents tell their kid he is being exploited if he works for $10- $12 hour while his employer bill's their labor to customers at $80-$120 per hour. The fact kid will get multiple raises within first 2 years with a contractor doesn't mean anything to them. In their dream the kid will wash cars or flip burgers a few months until his ship come's ashore and he get's a better job. How do you overcome that mentality because when kid settles into a career as a framer, heavy equipment operator or electrician at $30 per hour his labor will bill for $100+ per hour.
Ok,let's talk about something do-it-yourselfers can use at home. When you find yourself with a toilet flange grossly high after new floor,try this. Draw bowel pattern on floor. Apply Seran Wrap to bottom of bowel and 3-6 inches up side. Mix latex additive enriched portland product to a stiff consistency then place a thick 2"-3" wide strip inside and barely covering bowel pattern on floor. Set bowl in place,use carpenter's level to press and level bowl in place. Use putty knife to trim excess squished out portland then smooth similar to while caulking. Clean up floor with damp cloth. Let dry,lift toilet, if saran wrap is stuck use box cutter or single edge razor to trim,place wax on bowl,bolts in flange and install as usual.
Playdough type epoxy can be subbed for Portland. Colorant can be added to Portland for improved appearance where it shows between bowl and floor. For best color I've painted portland rather than caulking. If desired to match caulk in room tape off then paint on caulk mixed with water. Injoy the rock sturdy seat.

There is a program here that partners with businesses.


They have a meet n greet sponsored by the college for the students and companies. My son is now a production supervisor for the company that selected him. He is training FAME students now.
 
   / Plumbers in specific, does anyone give a crap any more in general.....? #26  

Oaktree

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Either do the job yourself, or pay someone.

I had 2 million in liability insurance, commercial vehicle insurance, fuel, vehicle maintenance, tools, my own personal insurance, house payment, groceries, retirement, city, county, state licenses, permits, etc,etc,etc,. I could sit home and go broke, why work and go broke ?
I went into the trades to make a living, not just to get by paycheck to paycheck !

If it were easy, everyone would be doing it
Agreed. There's a lot of overhead that needs to be taken into account for someone who does things right, also a lot of skills that have taken years to hone.

Yeah, any fool who owns a paintbrush and knows where he can borrow a ladder can call himself a painter and undercut the pros, and might get away with it for a while until the poor workmanship catches up. You want someone who does things right, it's going to cost.
 
   / Plumbers in specific, does anyone give a crap any more in general.....? #27  

ponytug

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You are correct, and I watch them. I do better when I can ask questions or fuss when things aren't working the way I think they should:) I weld well enough until I can't flip the darn target to get it flat......... then I just become a good grinder.
Well, isn't that what the say about fabrication? You either need to be a good welder or a good grinder?

I agree; YouTube is great in many ways, but a great teacher is better.

All the best,

Peter
 
   / Plumbers in specific, does anyone give a crap any more in general.....? #28  

PILOON

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Reminds me of my chimney repair some 50 years ago.
Local masons all quoted, like $5-600 to repair the upper portion.
Now it was external to the house therefore at the outer edge'
What I did was create a cantilever platform so that I could brick all sides.
Simple, extend some planks and weigh down the high side with 2-3X my weight.
Worked great! I was able to work all sides easily and safe.
My total cost was 50/60 bricks plus mortar to do my DIY repair. (probably $30/40)

Guess today I would rent scaffolds, but back then few rental shops were around.
 
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   / Plumbers in specific, does anyone give a crap any more in general.....? #29  

plowhog

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The two estimates I mentioned in my post were roughly each $2k per day, or $250/hr. If you assume a burden rate for all of your "things" that is still $150/hr.
I'm not taking sides. But I think you are missing something from your earnings calculations for a trades worker.

You estimated overhead at $100/hr. In your case, if each time the worker spent 1 hour to travel to, review, and quote the job, only to not get any work, that's $200 of their money down the drain. And two hours in that work week gobbled up without any income.

I don't think it is accurate to calculate earnings for a tradesperson presuming all work hours in a week are fully billed out. It's usually short of that by quite a bit.

Then factor a business owner's time spent applying for permits, obtaining and renewing govt licenses, managing liability and workmen's comp insurance policies, filling out a sales tax return, filling out a income tax returns, doing banking, attending recurrent training, being sued by customers, interviewing potential employees you never hire, training new employees who then sometimes quickly leave for greener pastures, responding in person at the labor board to defend against employee claims, and the list goes on.

Oh, btw, my dad was a plumber! He provided for the family for decades, but he certainly didn't get rich.
 
   / Plumbers in specific, does anyone give a crap any more in general.....? #30  

riptides

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My son did all new floors in his house about a month ago. I went up to help him take out the old to save money. I asked specifically if toilet pull/replace was in the deal and he said yes (that made me happy). So.... after the floors were done, he found re-setting the crappers were not in the deal, this was I am sure his error. The new floors reduced the height, and made the flanges too high. He called a plumber, and was quoted $2,400 to fix the flanges and re-seat 3 toilets. He told me this, (I assume) because he knew I would have a stroke, and come do it.

Which I did, replaced one flange, shimmed the other two with cutting board plastic 3/8 inch thick. Replaced one toilet with a leaking tank from the removal, all the shutoffs. It took a long day for an old guy, and cost just slightly north of $300 in parts.

......

I might have you beat....

Shower cartridge replacements, two showers, both easy assessable walk-in types.

Over 950.00 to replace.

You know Mohen has a lifetime guarantee on the part? Call them up, replaced at no cost.

I did have to find the cartridge puller tool at the big box store. And invest in some WD-40.
 
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