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  1. #1
    beezo Guest

    Default plumbing shut off valves

    On a recent remodel job we had to have a plumbing contractor install shut off valves for the toilet and the sink faucet. He was already there doing other work but he charged $40.00 per valve. Seemed high to me.And I am not sure why we have to install them. When you put in a quality faucet that lasts for 5 years or so then you go to replace it the shut off valves often don't work completely. Is it necessary or a trade secrect to get more money from us? Maybe the water shut off valves in places other than St. Louis last longer but most I see don't outlast the faucet.

  2. #2
    Scooter Guest

    Default Re: plumbing shut off valves

    They must be installed here in SoCal because it is Code. Wouldn't think of installing any water appliance without one.

    Probably took the guy an hour or so. $40 isn't bad.

  3. #3
    Ryan Guest

    Default Re: plumbing shut off valves

    I don't know if it's code to install shut-off's at every fixture but it's standard practice and In my opinion, a goood idea. Saves the babysitter from having to figure out which valve in the basement shuts the water off to the sink when a pipe breaks.

    $40.00 per vavle sounds fair. Many people just don't realize how much it costs that plumber to come out to your house.

    When you add up licensing, insurance, advertising, tool replacement, work truck payments, continuing education classes, the fact that he has to pay for his own health insurance because he doesn't have an employer to buy it for him, office expenses, phone line, cell phone, workman's comp., etc., etc. Even a one man plumbing shop has tens of thousands of dollars in overhead every year.

    Don't worry, your plumber didn't get to take home very much of that $40.00. He spent most of it protecting you with insurance, owning the phone line to answer your call, placing the ad you used to find him, and paying for the truck he used to get the tools he had to buy to your house to do the work.

  4. #4
    Steve Turner Guest

    Default Re: plumbing shut off valves

    Just checked CABO Sect 3408.3, which states "Valves or stops to individual fixtures, appliances, risers and branches may be installed, but shall not be required. When installed, such valves or stops shall be accessible."

    This came as a shock, since I'd always thought the valves were required by code. Anyhow, I routinely have them replaced during bath and kitchen remodels, and insist that they be added in old homes not having them.

    Beezo, you have a point that the rubber washers in the valves seem to grow brittle with the passage of time (and the passage of water), and often will crumble when tightened.

    Something I learned from a Navy guy who had spent a lot of time in boiler rooms: When you open a valve by twisting the handle, turn the handle back 1/4 turn after reaching full open. You'll have an easier time closing it later on...

    $40.00/valve sounds OK to me.

    Good luck, Steve

  5. #5
    Jeff J. Buck Guest

    Default Re: plumbing shut off valves

    Price is fair for my area. The faucet works for 5 yrs because you are using it for 5 years. If you work them (the shut-off's) every so often they last longer. But no one ever does, and they drip the first time they're called upon since they were installed 5 years ago! Jeff

  6. #6
    Thor Guest

    Default Re: plumbing shut off valves

    Ditto all prior posts. Most valves are pretty chintzy. Usually by the time I get called the homeowner has tried to use the valve and at least slowed the flow so I know people will use them if they are there. There isfar less urgency and stress to the homeowner if they can isolate the offending fixture instead of shuttingoff the entire house. I always replace the old valves with much higher quality ball valves and recently someball valves that look much the same as the old valves have appeared on the market that are good for the toilet.If concealed under a cabinet use the more commercial ball valve with lever handle. The homeowner and the guyfollowing you will know immediately that somebody who "cared" was there. If I can I talk the homeowner into aball valve on the main line too because they rarely get exercised. $40.00 (Labor only) is a bargain compared toreplacing vinyl, rotted subfloor, drywall, cabinetry, etc.

  7. #7
    Bruce Busboom Guest

    Default Re: plumbing shut off valves

    Ditto, ditto and ditto to all the previous posts. I insist on shut-offs at every fixture.

    Here's the secret to long lasting faucets and shut-off valves: before installing, disassemble the entire valve, and smear heavy silicone grease on all the stems, rubber O-rings and rubber washers (top and bottom). Use a product like "Dow 111 Compound". It comes in a tube like toothpaste. The silicone not only provides lifetime lubricant to the seals, but prevents them from drying out and crumbling. Plumbers and faucet manufacturers don't want you to know this, for obvious reasons.

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