Plumbers and plumbing contractors are the forces behind the continuous flow of hot and cold water in your home and office as well as clog-free drainage in your sinks and bathrooms. Without their services, you might find yourself out of flowing water and find your house or workplace flooded. That is why it is important for any building contractor to get the services of established and licensed plumbers & plumbing contractors. Plumbers must have the necessary skills, experience and certification to prove that they can do their jobs while plumbing contractors must have the same qualifications but also need to know about management and finance like any general contractor.
Plumbers are skilled tradespersons whose specialization is the installation and maintenance of systems used for drinking water, drainage, sewage and pipe fitting for heating, ventilation and air-conditioning (HVAC), among others. They also install plumbing fixtures such as bathtubs, toilets and sinks as well as heating and refrigeration units. Plumbers usually work for contractors but many are also employed by companies which have plants and factories. Plumbers are assigned to do the maintenance work for them. They may also be contracted to install and connect piping for water, gas and waste disposal in a city or town.
Plumbing can be traced back in 1700 BC in the Minoan Palace of Knossos on the isle of Crete where you can find four separate drainage systems that were made to be emptied into large stone sewers. The pipes used during the ancient times were made of terra cotta and were laid beneath the floor of the palace. These pipe system provided water for the palace’s fountains and faucets from where hot and cold water flowed. The Minoan Palace also had the world’s first flushing toilet or water closet which had a wooden seat. However, the plumbing system that we know of today was designed by the plumbing engineers of the Old Roman Empire. They were able to build large baths and recreation centers which water supply came from sources miles away from these structures.
In the United States, the first known plumbers were the Hohokam Indians who first made irrigation canals in the Salt River Valley in 350 BC. They built canals with open ditches and gouged out with stone tools and wooden hoes which spanned almost 250 miles. However, the Hohokam Indians disappeared in 1450 AD even before America was discovered by Columbus, and it was only in the 19th century that water and sewage systems were developed. The people responsible for the efficiency of these systems were plumbers, skilled craftsmen of lead, expert bell hangers, blacksmiths, toolmakers, and tin and sheet-iron workers.
Plumbing contractors, similar to other contractors, must be able to present accurate price quotes to clients after studying the building plans and blue prints for the water and sewage systems. After clients accept their bids, they have to solicit the services of other contractors, subcontractors and expert plumbers. Most states require that all workers be licensed beginning with the plumbing contractor down to the plumbers and pipe fitters. Plumbing contractors must also have the required education, skills, experience, certification, and license before working in most states and be able to work independently or under a company.