The quick answer is, when you can least afford it or have the time for it. The more precise answer is when you are home to know if your furnace or air conditioner is not working or if there is a leak in your plumbing. If you are like many homeowners, you are home after 5:00 during the week or on weekends. Now the more important question is, does your plumbing, heating or air conditioning contractor still dispatch at normal rates?
I was still at the office after 5:00 one night this week when I received a phone call from a customer who was having a sump pump crisis. She told me that a nationally known plumbing franchise told her that they would charge her $200 to come out since it was after hours. This was about 5:15 pm. I was shocked!! I thought the trend for everything was being open later when homeowners needed service. It wasn’t her fault that she just got home and noticed that her basement was starting to flood due to the heavy rain that day.
There are many websites, home shows, news columns and talking heads that will advise you of the importance of creating a relationship with a plumbing or hvac contractor before you need them. I agree that this is wise in a perfect world. However, how do you create a relationship before you need them? Who has said to themselves, “Gee, I think I will invite the local plumber over for dinner tonight. I have always wanted to get to know him better.” ?
Here are some tips:
- Check out some websites of the plumbing, heating or air conditioning companies.
- Check to see what services they provide. Can they do it all including drain cleaning. It is easier to make one call then multiple calls.
- Check the Better Business Bureau.
- Ask your neighbor or family who they have used.
- Most important is check to see what hours they work and what after hour fees are. They are only good if they can get to you.
At Minneapolis Saint Paul Plumbing Heating Air, we believe we are here because of you the homeowner. That means we need to be available when you need us. We are available from 7 am to 10pm Monday through Saturday at regular rates. Why not 24 hours or Sunday? Well, even plumbers and hvac technicians have families and need their rest. Healthy and happy techs will help ensure they are ready when you need them.