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What is a Licensed Plumber? What Does This Mean?

Building codes are continuously being updated as new safety measures come to light. A licensed plumber will be aware of what has changed and what you need to do in your home or business to ensure that you remain in compliance with local building codes and updated rules and regulations.

A licensed plumber is one who has successfully obtained their trades qualification from a recognized post-secondary school offering apprenticeship plumbing programs. Some plumbers may have an additional Red Seal, which is an inter-provincial standards program that allows a trades worker, like a plumber, to have their provincial trades qualification recognized in other provinces.

Plumbers do not need to be licensed in all cities and provinces, so a trades qualification is what many people refer to when they look for a licensed plumber. A municipal business license is also required for any large or small plumbing company.

Plumbers who work with gas powered appliances, e.g. replacing a hot water tank where the water is heated by gas not electricity, are required to hold a gas fitters license. Additional gas fitting licenses are required for larger commercial projects and equipment.

Before you hire a plumber or plumbing company for any emergency, repair or renovation work, confirm that they are registered with your province’s worker’s compensation board (WCB) and that their registration is in good standing. This will protect you financially if they are injured while working on your property.

Hiring a general contractor or handy-man for plumbing services may void your house insurance, especially if your home is damaged due to the work that they have done. For instance, you may not be covered for water damage if your home is flooded because you had an unlicensed worker doing plumbing work.

To find out what your insurance policy covers and doesn’t cover, or if you need to notify the company of any major work you’re having done, read your policy carefully. If you have any questions, contact your insurance provider for clarification. It’s best to ask all your questions before you allow anyone to start working in your home or business.

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