plumber problem - what now?

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Just paid licensed, bonded, insured plumber $850. When he finished the work, he turned water back on and didn't check for leaks. There was nothing obvious at first, but 15 minutes after he left the bedroom carpet was soaked in one corner. He had put the ferrule in backwards in a compression fitting in the bathroom. I fixed that leak and phoned his answering machine to express my displeasure and ask him what he was going to do about the stained carpet. An hour later I discovered a second leak on a compression fitting on 5/8 inch copper pipe. I phoned again and again and he won't call back. Since this guy is licensed, should I notify the state licensing board? I'm afraid to call another licensed plumber because the next guy might be worse than the first one so I'll get out my torch and sweat in a decent fitting to replace the compression fitting, but I'm still p*ssed about the carpet. I somehow thought a licensed professional would know how to connect two pipes together.
Bob
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On Tue, 25 Jan 2005 03:50:03 GMT, "rck"

Some of the reasons I dislike plumbers and compression fittings!:~)
-- John Willis (Remove the Primes before e-mailing me)
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Yeah, can't find many plumbers who know how to solder anymore. They love compression fittings, quick and dirty.
Bob
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"He had put the ferrule in backwards in a compression fitting in the bathroom."
Not that I'm an expert on ferrules, but the ones I recall were symetrical. Aren't they?
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symmetrical. Shallow taper against the nut and sharper angle taper against the valve. Flip it over and it'll leak.
Bob
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I do believe so. As someone who has used a lot of ferrules. They are both symmetrical, and also they have a circumfrence.
--

Christopher A. Young
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Hi Stormin, hope you are having a nice day
On 27-Jan-05 At About 22:47:55, Stormin Mormon wrote to All Subject: Re: plumber problem - what now?
SM> I do believe so. As someone who has used a lot of ferrules. They are SM> both symmetrical, and also they have a circumfrence.
SM> --
SM> Christopher A. Young Learn more about Jesus www.lds.org SM> www.mormons.com
<trader4@o wrote in message SM> "He had SM> put the ferrule in backwards in a compression fitting in the SM> bathroom."
SM> Not that I'm an expert on ferrules, but the ones I recall were SM> symetrical. Aren't they?
Wrong as usual. there are some ferrules that are one sided.
-=> HvacTech2 <=-
.. "After they make styrofoam, what do they ship it in?" - s.w.
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maintenance man who used compression fittings because he didn't know how to solder. His boss told him to learn or pay for the fittings himself.
Anyhow; if you paid by check I sure hope you stopped payment.
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On Tue, 25 Jan 2005 03:50:03 GMT, "rck"

Absolutely. If your state is the same as mine, contractors take such complaints very seriously as failure to resolve can lead to loss of licence. I had a fence guy mess up my fence when he did a job for a neighbor. Two weeks of calls got zero action other then a claim that "it was like that, I didn't do it". Within a few days of filing the complaint with the Registrar of Contractors he was on the phone trying to set up a meeting and start the repairs.
I'm afraid

-- Elbridge Gerry, of Massachusetts:
"What, sir, is the use of militia? It is to prevent the establishment of a standing army, the bane of liberty. . . Whenever Government means to invade the rights and liberties of the people, they always attempt to destroy the militia, in order to raise a standing army upon its ruins." -- Debate, U.S. House of Representatives, August 17, 1789
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I've lived in some states with excellent consumer protection and enforcement of licensing laws. I just checked my state (Tennessee) and it says that because of the large number of complaints against contractors and the lack of staff for enforcement, the board has jurisdiction only over work which exceeds $25,000 in value. Bubba the licensed plumber knows this and therefore has no incentive to do good work on an $850 job. Now that I've calmed down, I think the best thing is for me to fix his mistakes, dry out the carpet and have it cleaned and then get on with my life, and then next time do the work myself even if it takes longer to do.
Bob
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try sending him a letter, certified mail, return receipt requested, expressing your displeasure with his work and indicating you will pursue a complaint with the licensing authority unless he re-inspects all his work (are mopre leaks looming on the horizon?) and repairs or pays for repair of the damage (is there water in the walls now? mold forming?)
get a couple of independent 3rd parties to witness the damage
file a complaint with the licensing authority under reasons other than the $25,000 "floor", if possible (look for a catch all rule, like acts discreditable to the profession, etc.), with sworn affidavits from the independent 3rd parties evidencing the damage
he would then be required to spend the time/effort responding to the complaint; that might slow him down a bit, in the future others should be able to check with the licensing authority and see the complaint if they check him out with the licensing autthority prior to deciding to hire him
contact your insurance carrier if you have plumbing leak insurance
contact the tennessee attorney general's office for possible relief there
tell everyone you know locally about the incident, that might cost him a job or two
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Stop payment on the check if is not already to late. You can complain but small claims court is an easy and normal DIY
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Small Claims court. You sue, you win, he doesn't pay, you go back to court, get a court order, take the sherrif with you, and take his tools. Three days later your house mysteriously burns down. The carpet is no longer a problem.
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ORRrrrrr Depending on how you paid him you can cancell the check or charge back the credit card. You DIDNT pay him in cash, did you? NEVER do that. Now, when he calls back, get it straightened out and agree on a an adjusted price for the repair considering the damage to your carpet and his inability. Not bad advice for a guy named................ Bubba :-) (screw the lawyer advice. Just get a jar of vaseline and bend over now)
On Tue, 25 Jan 2005 05:45:18 GMT, "rck"

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wrote:

There is always small claims court...take pictures, keep reciepts and my guess he will just give up and pay when he gets the letter of demand or a small claims action. If not...it might not be worth your time to persue it further...good luck, Ross
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I kept on calling, with each call getting a little more demanding. Today out of the blue, he shows up, looks at damage, apologizes and says he'll take care of everything. Amazing, he doesn't call back for 5 days, then suddenly shows up. Persistence paid off.
Bob
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off......Ross
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Well you called him and I take it he did not return your call. I would first call a guy that can pull up and dry the carpet so you don't get mold and mildew problems and then sent a bill to the plumber. If he doesn't pay or forward the claim to his insurance company, then file a small claims suit for the damage. Keep the valves you took off for evidence.
If he doesn't pay file a claim against his bond. They will pay and hold up his license until he makes good.
--

Roger Shoaf

About the time I had mastered getting the toothpaste back in the tube, then
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you can call a lawyer.
or you can follow all the internet advice and then end up calling one anyway, hoping you havent screwed yourself in the process.
randy

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I think a lawyer would probably be more dishonest than the plumber.
Bob
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