When looking for a new plumbing product, what’s most important? For many, the decision comes down to whether the product works and is affordable – and rightly so. But to maximize your investment and ensure the job’s success long after you leave the jobsite, it’s important to dig deeper into the products you use and Read more
When looking for a new plumbing product, what’s most important? For many, the decision comes down to whether the product works and is affordable – and rightly so. But to maximize your investment and ensure the job’s success long after you leave the jobsite, it’s important to dig deeper into the products you use and the manufacturer that creates them.
And once you find plumbing manufacturers you trust, you’ll have more confidence in your installs and worry less about customer callbacks. It may sound tedious to research manufacturers, but the payoff — knowing they’re reliable — is worth the extra time.
So, how do you find trustworthy manufacturers? Start by asking the right questions:
Does the manufacturer have a proven track record of reliability?
Having a new product fail after installation isn’t a gamble any contractor wants to take. It should be a given that it was built to last.
When you install a product, you need to know it won’t fail. A reliable manufacturer ensures quality throughout production and creates products to comply with industry codes and standards.
This happens by:
- Choosing quality materials over cheaper materials.Instead of using lower-quality raw materials to save money, the manufacturer should use robust materials that last long after installation. And its product specs should be easy to find online to maintain transparency about the product.
- Performing rigorous independent testing.Each product should undergo months of repetitive and extreme testing to make sure it can be pushed to its limits without failing. Try to find what a manufacturer has to say about their testing process — and if it exceeds minimum testing requirements.
- Helping lead compliance initiatives.Manufacturers shouldn’t just produce products that comply with industry standards. Company leaders should participate in initiatives promoting safer products that are better for the environment, such as the IAPMO WE Stand Committee.
- Owning the manufacturing process. Manufacturers who own the production of their products from raw material to final product have more control over the product quality and when things need to be adjusted.
Does the manufacturer create products that work seamlessly with existing solutions?
As a contractor, it’s a must that new products can work well with the ones you already use. It’s the manufacturer’s responsibility to make sure their solutions complement not only those in the same product line but also ones from different brands and materials.
Does the manufacturer’s leadership spend time on the jobsite?
Manufacturers should constantly seek ways to improve plumbers’ jobs, and the only way to truly do that is to walk alongside them on the jobsite. The manufacturers you partner with should be asking about your biggest pain points and presenting real solutions.
And even if you’re not yet one of their customers, the manufacturer should make it clear how they support and communicate with contractors like yourself. Look for evidence of strong customer relationships by reading online reviews, testimonials, case studies and support pages.
Partnering with the Right Manufacturers
The next time you search for a new plumbing product, take time to consider the reputation and business practices of the manufacturers. You’ll end up with more reliable products that will, in turn, help boost your own reputation with your customers.
Chris Carrier is the Marketing Director, Americas at RWC – a market leader and manufacturer of water control systems and plumbing solutions for residential and commercial applications.
In response to the coronavirus outbreak, plumbers are looking for ways to work more efficiently and adapt to customer needs. But with people observing social distancing requirements and other precautions, we need efficient solutions more than ever. A Snapshot of the New Normal As a plumber, how has your day-to-day routine changed? Even as a Read more
In response to the coronavirus outbreak, plumbers are looking for ways to work more efficiently and adapt to customer needs. But with people observing social distancing requirements and other precautions, we need efficient solutions more than ever.
A Snapshot of the New Normal
As a plumber, how has your day-to-day routine changed? Even as a manufacturer of plumbing solutions, we’ve noticed a change in the way our customers work. In the past few months, pros have shared several important trends they’ve noticed:
- Scheduling around other pros on jobsites. With the introduction of staggered shifts in certain construction markets, pros are having to coordinate time around other trades. They can no longer come and go on jobsites as their schedule allows. It’s critical to set a schedule and stick to it. If a firestop installation takes longer than expected, for example, the delay could throw other contractors off schedule.
- Making faster residential service calls. Because of social distancing requirements, plumbers working in homes need to get in and out quickly to keep customers comfortable and reduce the risk of spreading or getting the virus. They need ways to make repairs and install fixtures as quickly as possible without sacrificing quality.
- Conducting virtual consultations and meetings. On websites and social media profiles, some plumbing contractors are inviting customers to schedule a virtual consultation through video conferencing platforms like Zoom. During the appointment, the customer can explain the issue they’re having and receive an initial quote. This reduces time in-home and can ensure efficiency.
- Installing more touchless faucets. Not surprisingly, reducing the spread of germs and viruses is currently top-of-mind for most consumers. Some plumbers have noticed an increase in requests for touchless faucet installations from health-conscious homeowners.
While the pandemic highlighted the need for solutions that get pros in and out faster and help them adapt to shifting customer needs, it’s difficult to make changes in a short amount of time. In some cases, pros don’t have time to perform services in the exact same way as they did six months ago.
At RWC, we’ve always offered solutions that make plumbers’ jobs more efficient, like durable SharkBite push-to-connect fittings and HoldRite firestopping systems. But the past few months has reinvigorated our mission to develop safe, sustainable and efficient solutions. We’re seeking ways to design even more products that cut down on installation without reducing quality and craftsmanship.
So… Where Do We Go from Here?
We can’t pretend to know what the plumbing industry will look like in a month, six months or even a year. Will plumbers continue working around social distancing requirements? Will customer demand for hygienic products like touchless faucets increase?
No matter what the next few months bring, we believe efficiency and adaptability are permanent fixtures. As you continue to improve services for customers, we will support and empower you with plumbing product innovations.
Chris Carrier is the Marketing Director, Americas at RWC – a market leader and manufacturer of water control systems and plumbing solutions for residential, commercial and industrial applications.