Home Renovations: When Should You Call a Licensed Plumber?

Home Renovations: When Should You Call a Licensed Plumber?

Photo By Andy Dean Photography at Shutterstock

Home remodeling projects are exciting. Whether you plan to give your kitchen a facelift, put on an addition to your house, or install the soaking tub you’ve been eyeing, the results are an investment that improves your home value while giving you an improved living space to enjoy. Home renovations can involve solely cosmetic work or major construction. Some work you can do yourself or have done by a handyman, but more extensive projects likely require permits and licensed contractors.

If you have a home renovation planned, you might want to have a licensed plumber and electrician on speed dial. Even tasks that don’t seem to have anything to do with the pipes may suddenly turn into a plumbing emergency. Here are a few tips for determining when you’ll need a licensed professional somewhere along the way.

  1. Renovations That Move Walls

If you’re moving walls, you probably need a plumber. Even if you’ve already started work with an architect and general contractor, it’s likely that a small structural change can cause major issues with your pipes. Even if you don’t need to change any routing, moving walls may give your entire plumbing system a shake. A plumbing technician can help determine where all of your pipes are and identify any potential leaks during a major remodel.

  1. Upgrading the Hot Water

If you’re doing a major bathroom remodel, you might not need a master plumber to install the new fixtures, but you likely will for the hot water heater. A larger tub often means upgrading the hot water to accommodate. It may also mean upgraded drainage to get the water out of the tub quickly. Large tubs can take up an hour to drain without some sort of rapid system in place.

When upgrading the hot water, remember that many regions require a licensed contractor to install or inspect hot water heater installations, in particular when a gas line is involved with the project.

Also, while a handyman might be able to install fixtures like the bathroom sink or a new toilet, if you plan to tackle a large task such as replacing the tub or installing a shower, you might need an expert on plumbing. Any bathroom expansion will likely need a plumber to run new pipes or check the connections.

  1. Total Kitchen Upgrade

When remodeling the kitchen, you won’t need a plumberif you just plan to put in new hardware on the cabinets and paint, but if the project is more involved, you may. Installing new countertops often means replacing the sink. It may also mean disconnecting and reconnecting the dishwasher and garbage disposals. Any time you are working with the major connections in your home, it is a good idea to work with a licensed plumbing contractor.

Dishwasher installations can be surprisingly challenging, particularly if the kitchen has never had one installed prior to your renovations. The same is true for gas appliances.

  1. Exterior Renovations and Landscaping

Whether you’re planting new trees or uprooting existing plants, bluefrog Plumbing + Drain can help. Trees and other plants that sink deep taproots can cause underground, expensive plumbing issues. Tree removal early in your landscaping efforts can save a lot on plumbing in the long term. Also, a plumbing expert might have suggestions about trees that won’t harm your plumbing but will still provide some shade.

Define Your Project Timeline

When you start planning a home renovation project, it is a good idea to talk through your plans with a plumber, electrician, and general contractor. By involving professionals at the planning stages, you can get a better understanding of the scope of the project, and when you might need to call in a specialist.

The Planning Stages

You’ve looked around your home and identified a few things that need repairs and some changes you’d like to see. Maybe you want to install new windows, gutters, and update the HVAC system. While this might not seem like much, it’s a pretty involved process. For HVAC service or installation, contact professional installers at bluefrog Plumbing + Drain to determine the size of the system you need and any other issues that may impact installation.

Have your plumber inspect any changes to the drainage system surrounding your home, including your gutters and windows. A poorly capped window can lead to a leak. When the gutters don’t properly shuttle water away from your home, it can also lead to leaks. No matter the source of the water, a plumber is often your first call when you notice water pooling in the basement. Avoid the issue with a preemptive inspection.

During the Work

When putting in a walk-in closet, changing your home’s layout or making any structural changes, you’ll likely run into some pipes. If you or your contractor open up a wall and see cooper, PVC or steel pipes running vertically, it’s time to immediately call in a licensed plumber. The plumbing technician will need to determine how to re-run the pipes around your changes and may offer suggestions for better placement on any planned changes.

After Renovations

If you didn’t need to call in a plumber during your renovations, but you did do some work on your water systems, you might still want to schedule an inspection. While not all plumbing installations require a licensed contractor, some do, and it can be difficult to know the difference. Contacting bluefrog Plumbing + Drain for a check on any changes is a great way to be sure your work is up to code. If it’s not, better to know quickly and have the issue repaired than to turn the water on and deal with a system failure.

Calling the Professionals

Don’t wait until you hit the pipes and spring a leak during your demolition. If you have a home renovation project planned, contact bluefrog Plumbing + Drain today to discuss how it may impact your pipes and what you’ll need done around the house.

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