Call out Fees for Plumber (Melb)

Been having issues with the hot water system at my parents house.
They called a plumber who had a look at it (nil changing of parts).
They weren't there for more than 15 min yet their call out/labour fee was $230?

Seems pretty expensive to me?
What would you have done in this situation? My parents including myself are pretty naive when it comes to home maintenance etc.


        • +1

          OP clearly mentioned in one of their comments that it was not fixed and hence I feel this charge was a ripp off.

          • @Ash-Say: As of the time of this post, OP kakarot123 hasnt made any other posts than the main one unless he has another thread about it - everyone just assumed it wasnt fixed (I have as well though as I think its implied).

  • I was ripped once. I do most of the work on my car myself as long as i have tools. So far i did breaks, all type of fluid changes and flush, timing belt, waterpump, few parts replacements. I had to replace o-ring of my Waterpump hose. All that need to do was remove pipe, clean it up in case rust, and replace o-ring and snap back and fill coolant and bleed system which i guess they didn’t do coz i did that later at home. They charge me freaking 230$. I gave them o-ring and coolant. 230$ for max 1h job. I was like i should have done that myself or i should have ask price first. I was not expecting that.

  • I might have missed it, but what time was the call out? During day time, weekend, after hours? And did they advise what needs to be done etc?

  • +1

    I like to question clients over the phone and give an approximate cost over the phone depending on parts required etc. I generally won't quote any work when I suspect the value to be $350 or less.
    Many trades get the run around being asked to come out and quote a job only for the client to turn around and say ill let you know or Im waiting on a another couple of quotes. I don't charge for quoting but can also understand why many trades do!

  • +2

    well this is why bunning gets so big. if you have a problem google youtube and then bunning. i now own a shed of tools

  • So, who's ready to get some gas line plumbing DIY youtube videos going with me :D(this is a joke)

  • +1

    Airtasker will get someone for around $100 .
    It not like they are rare .

  • +3

    I recently had a quote of $4500 to install a split system back to back. No extra run or anything. The unit cost $1800 retail, so over 2 grand worth of labour for what another refrig guy did in 2 hours.
    That's over $1000 an hour in labour.

    Prices for trades are out of control. It's one sector we really need more skilled migration to bring the prices back to earth.

  • +1

    Had something similar - heating packed up. They came out couldn't fix it after 10 mins of trying, and told me to replace the furnace, then sent a bill in the post. I rang them up and said I wasn't going to pay, as I had fixed it myself. They said well good for me but I still had to pay. I did not pay them - just explained to them they didn't provide a service that warranted payment.

  • +1

    $230 and they didn't fix anything/didn't know what he problem was??

    Hell no!!
    If they fix it, fine… that's why you confirm pricing for a tradie before hiring them. But charging you $230 to come look for 15min and then not fix anything?? Yeah, nah… off to ACAT we go!

  • +3

    Try and do most home maintenance yourself, it is easier than you think.
    Plumber wanted $500 to install a toilet (not including the cost of the toilet). Did it myself in about 1.5 hours having not done it before

    • +2

      Maybe some of that $500 is spent lobbying the government to make changing toilets illegal without a license.

  • +2

    I agree that I would be annoyed if I paid a tradesman to come out and he charged $230 and didn’t do anything. But you haven’t said what he told your dad or what was quoted for. For example hot water services often can’t be fixed and need to be replaced. If the plumber found that out after inspecting the unit then he would have still charged you a call out fee. It’s common place for tradies to charge a call out fee regardless If they can help or not. So need to do your due diligence before booking one. For example we used airtasker and found a few helpful tradies who gave us good advice on how to install a new hot water service along with their quotes. Also last week my ducted heating was giving me problems so I rang our heating guy. I knew our unit was old and he would have trouble getting parts so before he came out, so I had a conversation with him to make sure it was worth getting him to come out. He confirmed that he would have trouble getting parts so we might as well look at getting a new unit. He even recommended someone.

  • +1

    Have been quoted 12k for a basic bathroom reno in scenic rim / logan area qld

    • +1

      Depending on the size and work being undertaken, bathroom renovations can range from $10k to $25k. I just finished my own main bathroom, doing the demo, floor prep and plumbing myself, I used a tiler, builder and electrician and spent about $11-$12k

  • Sadly par for the course. That's why people use the same plumber for years and years. Trust.

    I try to use those who'll offset the cost if you proceed with works or who'll diagnose via photos/facetime.

    Too many young cowboys out there skinning folks as they can afford not to get the repeated business.

  • they got ripped, unfortunately..

    that's why essential to get 3 diff quotes.
    using a local plumber might reduce or remove the callout fee if no fix.

  • +1

    Yep always like this.. i mean tradies are always expensive but plumbers at the most. I mean the changing taps is easy but the toilet poop is not…

  • but the toilet poop is not…

    That is why I'm happy to pay them $100 to get into it :)
    Don't them I would go a lot higher for me to not go near the crap .

  • -1

    So many salty people complaining about the rates. If it’s not comparable to your income, perhaps you made some poor career choices.

  • -1

    Exactly what John71 has said above.
    And disgusting that it’s been downvoted.
    A. It’s the truth and
    B. Just because you don’t agree with it you’d rather put your head in the sand.

    For the plumber to even make $50 an hour in his pocket he needs to at least charge $100, if not more.
    It may have only taken him/her 15mins but it took them years to be able to do that. Plus licence fees, tools, insurance and not to mention the tax man who wants a 25% cut plus GST

    Just because you make $35 an hour doesn’t mean that’s what you cost the employer.

    • +1

      Mate you can go to the Reject Shop and buy $10 of tools and watch YouTube and your in business .
      You can undercut all quotes on online quotation sites .
      Believe me some Sucker will hire this person and with all due respect not be ripped off as much as the genuine one hehe .

  • +1

    A electrician fixed an outlet a while back and was telling me how he just charged $500 for a woman who wanted a single outlet.

  • Sometimes you gotta laugh at people complaining about how much a tradie charges, yet when they sell their house for sometimes $100k plus profit…they don't even blink an eye.

  • I got charged 450 bucks for a plumber to come out to try jet a pipe/camera for 10 minutes - highway robbery!

    I've just had a quote to fix a replace a roof valley(2.4M) and replace ridge capping(6m) for 800. Seems like a good price based on some of the numbers here!

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