When it comes to plumbing, you need someone who knows their stuff. While many local handymen may charge what seem to be the most reasonable rates around, employing an individual with less-than-stellar qualifications can put your home or business at risk. Read on to find out exactly why you should trust the experts.
Becoming a qualified plumber in the U.K. isn’t easy! It requires an industry-recognised qualification at NVQ Level 2 or 3. In each case, an individual completes both on the job training as well as theory classes at a local college or training centre. They then meet with an NVQ assessor, who conducts an on-site assessment of their work and awards (or does not award) the qualification. These qualifications are accredited by industry awarding bodies, such as City and Guilds.
In the United Kingdom, plumbers can be registered with a broad range of reputable organizations. This includes the Chartered Institute of Plumbing and Heating Engineering (CIPHE), based in Essex and catering to the whole of the U.K., The Association of Plumbing and Heating Contractors (APHC), serving Wales and England, the Scottish & Northern Ireland Plumbing Employers' Federation (SNIPEF), Cheshire’s FairTrades - Plumbers' Association and more.
But...What’s the Harm?
Unregistered technicians are often very convincing of their skills. However, it’s important to keep in mind that someone who is unregistered may be using out of date methods, unsafe tools or outdated technology, which makes it risky for you and your property. Unqualified plumbers don’t always carry insurance, which means you are less likely to receive financial compensation should you become injured, or should your property be damaged, over the course of a job.
A qualified, registered plumber shows dedication to the industry and compliance with all current laws, regulations and safety measures. It also demonstrates that the individual is a professional who’s committed to their career. When you hire a qualified plumber, you know that that their skills have been tested - and they came out on top. Registered plumbers typically carry public liability insurance, which protects customers in case of injury or property damage, as well as employers’ liability insurance if applicable.
Have you had a good - or bad - experience with the hiring process? Let us know in the comments. To find registered plumbers in your area, click here.