A week in the life of a maintenance plumber
In maintenance plumbing no two days are ever the same. I get calls to fix all types of issues and problems that people are having. In this month’s blog I share with you a few snippets from a typical week.
First thing Monday morning, I am off to a local primary school to unblock a toilet. I probably come out to this school once every second month for toilet issues. Today, a school hat had been flushed down the toilet. Last time I was here, it was a tennis ball. I normally head to the school early before school starts. The poor Assistant principle has to get up early as well and meet me. I have new respect for teachers!
From here, I head to residential property. The owners have slowly been renovating the house for a while now. This week we are working on the bathroom, so I have been called in to disconnect the water and waste ready for demolition. I will probably be back in the next week to re-direct the new waterline.
I am off to a local medical clinic today to fit a Billi. This is a unit that instantly delivers hot and cold water from the tap. The staff are lovely and are all very excited about the prospect of instant hot water. I get offered a cup of tea from the new system before I leave.
I bring my apprentice with me today (aka my 10-year old son). We are off to a property where the owners are reporting the sound of water from under the house. I crawl under the house and it is water logged. I can vaguely see where the water seems to be coming from, so call out to my apprentice to turn off the water. Once I wiggle my way under the house to the area, I call out to the apprentice to turn it back on and the water starts gushing. With the water back off, I mark the spot and crawl back out. Lucky for this resident the pipe is not galvanized, so is a relatively easy fix. My apprentice is a great help grabbing materials and tools from my car. That way, I don’t have to keep climbing in and out from under the house.
My apprentice is pretty keen on the morning and lunch breaks that come with work, so we stop and eat together before heading off to our next job. This time, a quote to replace the gravity hot water unit in the roof with an outside, instanteous unit.
A blockage today. These are tough. Some days they are nice and simple and I can put the snake down the drain and clear in an instant. Other days, it can be a lot more challenging and take abit longer. Thankfully, today is reasonably straight forward and when I pull the snake back out, it is covered in what looks like wet wipes. I see this abit. The new baby wipes are meant to be flushable, but I find I am still called to unblock pipes, where they haven’t flushed. Regardless of what is advertised, I also suggest not flushing any items, other than your toilet paper.
After this I head to another renovation job. A cabinet maker has been fittings a new vanity and accidentally put a screw through the water pipe in the wall. Quick, easy fix and I am on my way and the cabinet maker gets back to work!
This morning is a morning of errands. After dropping my kids at a friend’s house, I head to Reece and price up a few different toilet suites for a customer and also pick up a hot water unit for this afternoons job. I spend abit of time also taking photos of taps and going back and forth via text. This is for a customer I saw earlier in the week who is planning the bathroom fit-out after we re-direct water and waste.
My last job for the week is replacing a burst hot water unit.
So as you can see, I get around abit and do lots of different jobs all week. This is just a small snippet of what my normal week looks like. But, always enjoyable and always something different!