You’ve heard the horror stories about finding a plumber in Toronto in an emergency. Your neighbors clogged the only toilet in a five-person household and couldn’t quickly find one. Or the plumber’s bill made her doubt her career choice.
Plumbing emergency situations leave homeowners feeling desperate and at risk of overpaying, especially if they don’t know anyone in the field and are unfamiliar with the industry.
Hopefully the advice in this article will provide clarity for such situations.
How much can an emergency plumber cost?
Hourly plumbing rates in Toronto for 2023 indicate an average range of between $200 and $300 per hour for services.
The total cost to fix a problem varies depending on the complexity of the job, whether the plumber required additional materials or equipment, and the number of hours spent fixing the problem.
For simpler jobs, plumbers typically charge a lower rate for the first hour of work and a lower rate for each additional hour.
Simpler tasks are typically referred to as service calls. Processing usually takes no longer than one to two hours. In addition, plumbers usually already have all the necessary tools and equipment for service calls.
Examples of common service calls include repairing a toilet that doesn’t flush properly, a toilet tank that fills slowly or not at all, hot and cold water flowing from opposite faucets, and showers or bathtubs that don’t drain properly.
For more complex jobs, a Toronto plumber will charge a higher hourly rate or surcharge and then a lower rate for each additional hour. Some plumbers charge a flat fee.
Licensed plumbing companies that have been serving the GTA for at least a decade or more count clogged drains and sewer lines, flooding, burst or frozen pipes among the most common plumbing emergencies across Toronto.
Fortunately, any plumbing service provider should be able to give you a rough estimate over the phone before sending someone to your home, giving you the opportunity to shop around for a reasonable price.
Experts in this field recommend getting at least three quotes before making your decision.
How to Find a Plumber in Toronto
Below is a short list of the top-rated plumbers in Toronto that offer 24-hour emergency services.
If viewing a list of potential plumbers seems too counterproductive, you may find it more appealing to use digital service apps like Jiffy, Ovvy, and Bidmii.
These apps automatically connect you with plumbers and other contractors in your area. Like the transportation apps you may be more familiar with, these apps allow users to view ratings and reviews from previous customers.
The prices for these apps are usually very competitive. The platform acts like an intermediary, removing confusion and securing payments for completed work.
How to avoid overpayment
To avoid being scammed, experts offer three important pieces of advice: ask as many questions as you need, stick around to watch the plumber perform his job so you don’t get charged for work that was never done before was done. Make sure the plumber helps you understand the problem and how to fix it.
A professional Toronto plumber will usually outline the problem and solution before beginning any work.
If any new problems become apparent, the plumber should update you as this will likely mean more work and higher costs.
Once the work is completed, the service provider should go over and test the work done to ensure everything is in perfect condition.
Common Plumbing Emergencies and How Plumbers Fix Them
Plumbers have a variety of options for fixing clogged sewer lines. The solution lies in the cause of the blockage.
In some cases, the solution may simply be to physically break up the blockage with a metal coil. Plumbers advise against using chemical agents as they can cause long-term damage to the pipes.
For larger clogs in older pipes, plumbers can use the hydroscrub method to clear them. This involves applying water at a pressure of between 4,000 and 20,000 psi (pounds per square inch) to overcome the blockage and unclog the sewer line.
This procedure is more complex due to the equipment required. Some offers start at at least $1,000.
Burst or frozen pipes
The first step in this situation is to turn off your home’s water line. In most Toronto homes, the main water stopcock is located in the basement.
Waiting for the plumber to shut off the water increases the chances of water damage. So try to do this yourself. The only way to fix this is to replace the burst section of pipe. One source gives a range of $455 to $2,227 for new pipes.
Main water shut-off valve defective
Every home is equipped with a main water shutoff valve so that people can shut off the water in their homes in the event of an emergency. The pipe is usually ¾ inch or one inch in diameter.
To shut off the water, most older homes in Toronto have a rubber seal that seals the vessel and prevents water from entering through the pipe.
Over time, cracks form in the rubber compressor, preventing it from completely shutting off the water. Most modern plumbing systems use a brass ball valve as the shut-off valve rather than the rubber washer to eliminate the risk of future leaks.
This is a quick fix. However, you must call 3-1-1 to shut off the water supply to the city spring.
Currently, the water on/off fee in Toronto is $98.81. This will be added to your next electricity bill. The cost of replacing the shutoff valve varies from situation to situation; However, the cost for a simple replacement can range from $227 to $325.