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Discuss Please help - have i been ripped off? in the Plumbing Forum area at UKPlumbersForums.co.uk.

  1. missfrances

    missfrances New Member

    Hi. My house, in north London, has a Sime Superior 100 boiler. Last year I noticed the water pressure was slowly dropping (in all the taps, and the shower), so at the start of December I got a plumber out, who said we needed a new pressure valve for the boiler. I was told the new valve was about £200 ish, and I was charged £498 (inc vat) in total for the work. The plumber came out twice; firstly to diagnose the problem, which he did very quickly, and secondly to bring and fit the new part. I assumed the fitting was complex, but he fitted the part really quickly, in 30-45 minutes, or so. I thought the cost seemed excessive, especially when i saw how quickly it was fitted. Please could someone tell me if I've paid a far price, or if I've been ripped off?! Annoyingly, only a month later, the boiler has stopped working. So my second question is, can I make the plumber come back again and fix it? Thank you. Vic
     
  2. bogrodder

    bogrodder Plumber GSR Top Contributor!!

    Minus the vat is just over £400, £200 of that is parts and say 3 hours for the diagnosis, going to merchants and then installing = £60 odd an hour and at London prices that’s cheap.


    So yes it is fair
     
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  3. island fling

    island fling Member

    How far has the plumber come to get to your house? Were you happy with his service? Clean & tidy? Is the symptoms the same as before? Even though it is the chances are it’s a different issue with the same symptoms.
    It doesn’t seem too bad a price to me tbh.
    £200 is for the parts could mean it was slightly more, he’s going to put a mark up plus there might have been delivery costs, or if not he has had to take time out of his day to collect parts then return to your home.
    Charge will be for a min of 3 hours I would assume, 1 hr to travel & diagnos fault, 1 hour to order/collect parts & 1 hour (min) for install plus then time for paperwork.
    That’s my thoughts & how I bill up on the North of Scotland & I know London can be harder/more costly to get about.

    Edit : Bogrodder beat me to it.
     
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  4. king of pipes

    king of pipes Trusted Plumber GSR Top Contributor!!

    Contact the installer of the part he should stand by his repair , what part did he change pressure valve? Post a picture please . Kop
     
  5. DuncanM

    DuncanM Plumber GSR

    If he is a decent guy he will come out and look at it. If it is the same fault then he should fix it F.O.C. However, if it is something different then expect a bill.
     
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  6. chris watkins

    chris watkins Plumber

    You would have to pay me a lot more than that to work on a Sime boiler.
    I don't understand what part has been replaced ?

    Either way, it is an old cheap boiler, what makes you think that the work carried out in early December has caused it to stop working now? Or do you believe that because an engineer lays hands on this pile of poo it is guarantees not to fail for the ++next years.

    Simple question to you how many years service have you had out of it ??
     
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  7. missfrances

    missfrances New Member

    Thanks for the response. The boiler is about 15 years old, but I hadn't realised it was a 'pile of poo'. Thanks for letting me know this Chris Watkins! It was already in the property when we bought the house, and it looked like a decent boiler to me. But as I'm not a plumber, I wouldn't know a good boiler from a bad one! Unfortunately I don't have a photograph of the part. All I was told was it needed a new pressure valve (costing £200). I'll contact the plumbers again tomorrow and try to find out a little more about the work and the part that was replaced. Maybe they'll be willing to come back and inspect the boiler again.
     
  8. island fling

    island fling Member

    As said above - if they are decent then they will come back out, it might be chargeable though if it’s not a faulty new part so maybe ask the engineer before hand if you are to expect a bill for this 2nd callout. I would expect he will probably charge for the visit at least.
     
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  9. YorkshireDave

    YorkshireDave Plumber Top Contributor!!

    MissF.
    Please do not think ill of my colleagues. Our situation here, as FOC advisors, is that many people come here to try to validate a form of thinking that is largely dictated by a genuinely biased media.
    When those thoughts are not validated people become defensive and huffy - unlike you.
    The reality of plumbing in the 21st century is that all of us 'practitioners' are played like puppets by manufacturers. Of course it is us who then have to communicate the 'bad' news in whatever form it comes to you our customer and, human nature being what it is, the messenger is lined up and metaphorically 'shot at dawn' despite being perfectly innocent of any crime whatsoever.
    As a consequence, we tend to get a little defensive...
    When Chris refers to a 'pile of poo' he is using a colloquialism which translated means this make of boiler has a very poor reputation for reliability and, let's be polite here, is 'lacking in support' from its manufacturer. Further translation means we get even more flack about this type than many others :rolleyes:
    If I may be so bold, in future try asking the plumber how his price is made up when he quotes you. If, by some chance, they are being some form of dishonest it would send a shot across their bows. If not, by asking it in an open way it is simply a question not some form of accusation.
    Two last things.
    1 - As an intelligent person please please please do not assume that because someone worked on one part of your system, anything that happens at any point in the future is automatically their fault. To do that will instantly destroy any relationship and trust the engineer has in you and you'll have to start again. Far better to ask an open question and ask if or how they might be interrelated.
    2 - Take an interest, and you'll be surprised what you pick up, and more importantly the engineer will be far more inclined to help you.
    Hope that clarifies somewhat!
    Have fun and please come back to ask again when you need help.
    Lastly, sorry to go on :)
     
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  10. king of pipes

    king of pipes Trusted Plumber GSR Top Contributor!!

     
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  11. Rob Foster

    Rob Foster Top Contributor!!

    The engineer was GSR not an anybody, you state he diagnosed collected and fitted this part. The system has gone down but crucially it might not be the new part whch has failed
    if he was as good as you say, ask him back to see whats wrong this time. Just because he was quick, efficient in my book does not mean you were overcharged. You choose to dwell in London the labour charge will be higher up to £125 + vat per hour I know
    Rob Foster aka centralheatking
     
  12. YorkshireDave

    YorkshireDave Plumber Top Contributor!!

    The English language is a thing of real beauty KOP and, in my view worth using to its fullest extent. Or, put another way, yes!!! :rolleyes::D
     
    • Agree Agree x 1
  13. missfrances

    missfrances New Member

    Thanks for your comments. The original plumbing company sent someone back today, but they sent a different plumber. I'm told the part changed back in December was called a 'Pressure Reducing Valve' (see image attached). I explained to today's plumber that I was charged £500, and he pulled a face ie) wide eyes, look of shock! I laughed, and told him I also pulled the same face when I was charged £500. He then looked a bit awkward, and tried to suggest the first plumber changed another part as well (although he couldn't tell me what), but that's not what I remember being told back in December. In December, surprised at the cost, I requested a breakdown of costs, and a receipt, but nothing was emailed to me. Today I again asked for the breakdown, but I'm now being told by the office manager that the company has just 'changed owners' and they have no invoices. All a bit mysterious. The office manager says the 'fan' was also changed in December. Maybe shes right, but this wasn't explained to me at the time, and its odd that no paperwork is available.

    Pressure reducing valve.jpg
     
  14. Rob Foster

    Rob Foster Top Contributor!!

    oh dear, that prv looks like a honeywell do4 ...the best prv
    on the European domestic market , it costs well less than £50.00, micky mouse ones cost
    less than £10.00. I cannot remember the spec but I am not sure it should be vertically installed...but others will correct me.
    Rob Foster aka centralheatking
     
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  15. missfrances

    missfrances New Member

    Not £200 then?!
     
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