How To Hire a Good Plumber in Louisville
Ignoring those small leaks in your home can have serious financial implications. It is estimated that one in ten homes in Louisville have leaks that waste up to 90 gallons a day. Not addressing your leaky faucet on time may result in an additional $500 on your monthly utility bill. Therefore, it is wise to retain the services of a qualified plumber to help fix leakages promptly and optimizing your indoor and outdoor plumbing system. This would not only save you money but also help the city conserve water. However, before you settle for any plumber in the City of Louisville, ask the following questions:
- Are You Licensed to Practice as a Plumber in the City of Louisville?
- How Much Do You Charge Compared to Plumbers in the City of Louisville?
- Do You Comply with the City of Louisville Building Code for Plumbing?
- Will You Get the Plumbing Permits as Required by the City of Louisville Code?
- What Kind of Plumbing Services Do You Offer?
- Do You Offer Emergency Plumbing Services in the City of Louisville?
- Do You Carry the Necessary Insurance Policy for Plumbers in the City of Louisville?
Are You Licensed to Practice as a Plumber in the City of Louisville?
The City of Louisville, and by extension the State of Kentucky, does not allow any plumbing work to be done within its jurisdiction without a license. Plumbers in Louisville are licensed by the Kentucky Department of Housing, Buildings, and Construction (KDHBC), and this department issues master plumber and journeyman plumber licenses. Intending journeyman plumbers or master plumbers must be at least 18 years old and be citizens of the United States or resident aliens with a right to work in the U.S. Before a license is issued, the individual must also complete an examination to be administered by the KDHBC. Note that, in addition to obtaining state-issued licenses, plumbers that wish to carry out work in Louisville must register their plumbing licenses with the Louisville Metro Department of Codes & Regulations.
Any plumber that engages in plumbing without obtaining a license might be subject to civil action by the state or the city. Also, while hiring a plumber that is not duly licensed by the state does not have any direct penalties to you, it could be detrimental in the long run. For example, an unlicensed plumber might be unfamiliar with the city's building codes and will also be unable to pull the necessary permits to complete your repairs or carry out the necessary work legally. You can verify that your intended professional has the required license by utilizing the license search and verification portal provided by the Kentucky Department of Housing, Buildings, and Construction.
How Much Do You Charge Compared to Plumbers in the City of Louisville?
The price you will have to pay to fix your plumbing problem will depend on a couple of factors. Some of these factors include the type of work to be done, the cost of materials, and the duration of the job. When you are presented with a bid for a particular job, it is always a good idea to compare the prices given against two or more other bids from other plumbers.
A plumber in Louisville City earns an annual average wage of $58,930. Below is a breakdown of the average hourly wages for plumbers in Louisville compared with plumbers in other parts of Kentucky and other major cities in the country:Louisville Plumbers Hourly Average Wage$28.33Kentucky Plumbers Hourly Average Wage$27.54Cincinnati Plumbers Hourly Average Wage$26.11San Diego Plumbers Hourly Average Wage$30.73Chicago Plumbers Hourly Average Wage$44.20Minneapolis Plumbers Hourly Average Wage$39.45San FranciscoPlumbers Hourly Average Wage$51.01
Source: U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics
The 2020 Kentucky State Plumbing Law, Regulations, and Code Book regulates the activities of plumbers in Louisville. It is important that you only hire plumbers that know the provisions of the codebook and adhere to it. The Codebook provides guidelines on licensing procedures, the type and quality of material to be used by plumbers, supervising authorities, installation plans and specifications, permits, and other related plumbing issues. Hiring a plumber that is not conversant with the provisions of the code could result in code violations. This in turn can result in not just the plumber being held liable and facing possible city-imposed penalties, but you the homeowner as well. Making sure that you hire a licensed plumber is a good way to assure yourself that you have a plumber that is familiar with the city code. This is because, before a plumber can be duly licensed, they undergo examinations that test their competence as well as their familiarity and mastery of the state's plumbing code.
Will You Get the Plumbing Permits as Required by the City of Louisville Code?
Under the 2020 Kentucky State Plumbing Law, Regulations, and Code Book, plumbing work in Louisville can only be carried out after the contractor or executor of the project obtains a plumbing permit. Although a plumbing permit will be required for most jobs, certain repairs can be carried out without a permit. These include the repair of leaks, cocks, and valves as well as the cleaning out of waste and sewer pipes.
Plumbing permits in the City of Louisville are issued by the Kentucky Department of Housing, Buildings, and Construction (KDHBC). Licensed plumbers or homeowners may apply for these permits online using the Kentucky SmarGov portal, which allows eligible parties to make fresh applications and also track old applications. However, users will be required to sign up before any application can be made. If you are unable to access the online portal, a permit may be obtained by downloading and completing a Plumbing Construction Permit Application, which should be sent to the Department at
- Public Protection Cabinet
- Department of Housing, Buildings, and Construction
- Division of Plumbing
- 500 Mero Street
- 1st Floor
- Frankfort, KY 40601-5405
You can verify a permit by visiting the permit search portal of the KDHBC. If you have any inquiries concerning the permit process or a permit application call the department at (502) 573 -0397. Note that after the completion of your project, the Kentucky Department of Housing, Buildings, and Construction may send inspectors to ensure that the work done was in line with the permit issued and complies with the Building Code.
What Kind of Plumbing Services Do You Offer?
Plumbers in Louisville offer a wide variety of services to residents of the city. These services include the installation and repair of plumbing systems, repairing leaky faucets, taps cocks, the unclogging of drains, and repairing or replacing faulty piping fixtures and fittings. The reason you might need a plumber might be for routine maintenance of your plumbing system or minor repairs of a fixture or fitting. At other times, you might have a more serious plumbing problem on your hand like a burst pipe, which if not attended to immediately might lead to other problems as well. With these in mind, it is important that you find out the specializations of any plumber you intend to hire and make sure that the plumber has the capacity to handle the particular challenge that you face.
Some cost estimates for plumbing services in Louisville include:Cost of plumbing for remodel or home addition$3,595.70 - $4,648.10Cost of detecting a leak under a slab$125- $400Cost of fixing a leak under a slab$500-$4000Cost of toilet installation or replacement$126 -$135Cost of clearing drain clog or blockage$102-$125Cost of septic tank cleaning or pumping$224 - $263Cost to fix a leaking or burst pipes$150 - $350Cost of sewer line installation and repair$50-$64
Do You Offer Emergency Plumbing Services in the City of Louisville?
Plumbing issues are generally considered emergencies, and failing to fix these issues can result in extensive property damage and serious financial problems. In Louisville, just one drop of water per second adds up to 180 showers in a year, which amounts to a lot of water wasted if you ignore that single tiny leak. Likewise, bigger leaks, such as leaks the size of a pencil's width, can result in over 222,000 gallons of water being wasted in a year. These leaks might not seem like major emergencies but when you consider the extra money added to your bill, it might be a good idea to deal with any leaks you find as soon as possible. However, deciding on a plumber to use is not an activity you should rush irrespective of the emergency.
Before hiring a plumber, you should also make sure that the plumber is well equipped to handle the emergency you have. Being equipped to handle an emergency includes the plumber having the proper expertise for the task, being able to locate your home within a reasonable time, and also being able and fix your issue in one go. You can search for properly licensed emergency plumbers in Louisville using third-party services like the Better Business Bureau or Yelp.
Do You Carry the Necessary Insurance Policy for Plumbers in the City of Louisville?
As stipulated by the 2020 Kentucky State Plumbing Law, Regulations, and Code Book, all plumbers that operate in Louisville must possess commercial general liability insurance with a value of no less than $250,000. These plumbers will also be expected to show proof of compliance with the state's worker's compensation and unemployment insurance laws to the Kentucky Department of Housing, Buildings, and Construction. Hiring a plumber that has proper insurance coverage is very important in order to protect yourself from unwanted and unforeseen accidents and mishaps. If you engage the services of a plumber that is not properly licensed, you might end up being responsible for any injuries that happen while this individual is working on your project. Additionally, if there is no insurance, the costs of any damages done to your home may have to be borne solely by you. Consequently, you should ensure that you request evidence of a valid insurance policy before engaging a plumber.
How to File a Complaint Against a Bad Plumber in the City of Louisville
It is estimated that over $400 billion was spent on home improvements across the United States in 2020. Due to the huge amount of money involved in these types of projects, certain nefarious individuals, including unlicensed plumbers, and even supposedly licensed plumbers, often seek to take advantage of residents and engage in scams. In 2018, an elderly couple found themselves duped out of close to $5000 when contractors that had been hired to carry out some work, failed to complete the job and disappeared after collecting payment. Some common practices adopted by these scammers include:
- Unsolicited Offers for Repair Services: Oftentimes, these individuals will knock on your door and offer to diagnose and fix plumbing problems that you might not have noticed or, in some instances, problems that do not exist at all. These individuals tend to try to pressure you into making an immediate decision to hire them and may require an upfront payment as well.
- Incomplete Work: Another method that scammers adopt is to provide quotes for a particular service and demand full or substantial payment for the job before execution. Oftentimes, after receiving this payment, these individuals abandon the job, use inferior materials, or deliberately carry out a shoddy job so they have to be called back again.
Listed below are some tips to help you avoid falling a victim to plumbing and home improvement scams in Louisville-Jefferson:
- Always obtain references from neighbors, friends, and other trusted sources before hiring a plumber.
- Do not trust individuals that show up to your door uninvited.
- Make sure you compare price estimates and bids with at least two other similar estimates to determine if there are major discrepancies and also to help you find the best price for the service.
- If a plumber provides you with references, endeavor to verify these references to make sure that they check out.
- Try to ensure that your agreement with a plumber is put into writing in the form of a contract
- Do not make substantial payments upfront and try to avoid making payments by cash
If you have been the victim of a plumbing or home improvement scam, you can file a complaint with the Office of the Kentucky Attorney General. To file your complaint you can call the Consumer Protection Division at (502) 696-5389 or (888) 432-9257 and follow the prompts, or complete an online mediation request form. Alternatively, if you are unable to utilize these two options, you can download a complaint form, complete it and send it to
- Office of Consumer Protection
- 1024 Capital Center Drive
- Suite 200
- Frankfort, KY 40601
You should bear in mind that the service offered by the Attorney General's Office is in the form of informal mediation. As such, remedies available to you might be limited and dependent on the cooperation of the other party. If you are unsatisfied with this or if you would like to take further action, you can proceed to a Jefferson County Courthouse to file a civil action.