plumbing certificates.





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  1. #1
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    Default plumbing certificates.

    I dont want to sound if I am moaning because on an open forum it could bite me back.There is an organization called PIRB which forces you to sign off work and take responsibility of your work.

    I am all for standards but it is exploitation in a way.For example ,if you do a job for R1500 or more you have to supply a certificate of compliance. This includes material. Even if the client supplies the material. So my rate is at times R350 to R450 per callout. So if I do a sink mixer replacement and the mixer costs R1300. I have to issue a certificate that costs me R160 odd bucks. In a sensitive dificult work environment if I have to give a quote the fly by night will always get the job.

    Also for every geyser I do I have to do a certifaicate which costs about R170 .I also have to pay an annual renewal fee of R700 for my so called licence.Now I need to do some heat pumps and solar geysers and you guessed it right ,I have to do a brush up course of R1600 for both. My facts may not be totally correct but it rubs me up the wrong way. I battle to afford it.
    Are there any other plumbers who feel the same way or have better info on this.?
    Are there any other trades that have similer rules.?

  2. #2
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    Default Re: plumbing certificates.

    Another government scam, Eish.

  3. #3
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    Default Re: plumbing certificates.

    Quote Originally Posted by IRON HORSE View Post
    Another government scam, Eish.
    NO !

    It is a GOOD "idea" ... ask any client that has paid good money, and ended with hot water fed to the toilet etc ...

    There ARE good reasons for these certificates.



    The only (very real) problem is in how to weed out the fly by nights ! !




    In my game it costs about R10k per year to stay registered.... and still we fight against fly by nights ...

  4. #4
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    Default Re: plumbing certificates.

    Look for new customers... there is a place for REAL plumbers who will stand behind their work... the problem and solution is not in the PIRB or regulations... the bakkie plumbers will always be there...

    You are looking for customers that will pay for the job done right... maybe look where and how you advertise... the areas you work in... you will be surprised, not everyone is looking for the cheapest plumber in town...

  5. #5
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    Default Re: plumbing certificates.

    I can agree with you in principle but in practice its a money making racket.Last year I issued two certificates for geysers because the particular nsurance company insists on it.

    Whats the difference between me connecting hot water to a toilet and a PIRB guy connecting hot water to a toilet. ?You have to fix it anyway.
    I have been informed that I wont be able to issue certificates because I need to issue 16 certificates in a year. If my business is not doing well and I cant do 16 geysers in a year I lose my silence.

    Thats just not fair. A palooka with little knowledge but better business acuman can stay in businesss but I cant because I am doing less work than him.
    Its not skill based its monetry driven.Pirb is a business.
    They need to address this problem.

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  7. #6
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    Default Re: plumbing certificates.

    The problem you are experiencing isn't limited to Plumbers. Ask any Arthitect, tour guide - and a brazilion others

    Competing with the fly-by-nights - yup - you guessed it - the rest of us have the same problem.

    The way I deal with it is by trying to do a proper budget. And not think I can "carry" some of the expenses" or that the little things "don't matter much" - they do. You can't end up subsidizing clients if you can't afford it. Or even worse - end up "paying in" because you didn't charge sufficiently. Add value to your service offered by being professional, answer calls asap, quotes go out asap, arrive exactly when you say you will, keep client updated every step of the way when you are running late, make sure they understand you supply a certificate (to give them peace of mind and i.t.o the Act.) and don't shoot other plumber's down. Concentrate on what you can offer the client. You see where I am going. I mention these things as I use a very expensive plumber - but I use him because of the things mentioned above.

    You end up being more expensive - but I rather do one job for 5k than 5 jobs for 1k.

    * I am not a plumber and I don't know your industry, nor the area you work in - the points made above is personal experience from a non-plumber
    DGO Fiddler

  8. #7
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    Default Re: plumbing certificates.

    Durban is a very difficult market. I battle with business and selling myself.Its extremely competitive and I dont network. I am a loner and notice most of my long standing customers are getting too old to deal with me or have died.
    I need to re invent myself.But this certificate story grates me.

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    Default Re: plumbing certificates.

    In the past few people got together and established some association or board. Then created system/standards what ever and then went to government and said we have these standards that have to be complied and we have organization to "license" people who are allowed to do the work or certify.

    Has caused a lot of trouble and closed down businesses.

    I do not know how this plumbing certificate business come about.

    I have problems with these systems. I am registered engineer and can sign under the pressure regulation (SANS 347). To do proper verification before signing takes time. That means few thousand R per signature. There are now:
    - Those who do proper checking AND sign only on something they know
    - Those who sign anything without doing any checking
    - Companies do not comply with the law to save money or do not know the law. No signatures.

    Unfortunately those who do proper job are very difficult to find. I constantly come across papers that have been signed and there are big mistakes.

    Cost of my registration and compulsory insurance is over R15 k/year before training etc costs, which became compulsory this year January. (My insurance is very cheap.)
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  10. #9
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    Default Re: plumbing certificates.

    If I do any work on a geyser I have to sign a certificate. So if I change a vacuum breaker I need to spend R170 extra . If Mrs Jones gets two quotes, one for R730 from me or R550 from Lester,she will choose Lester. Shes not interested in a certificate.

  11. #10
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    Default Re: plumbing certificates.

    Quote Originally Posted by ChrisF View Post
    NO !

    It is a GOOD "idea" ... ask any client that has paid good money, and ended with hot water fed to the toilet etc ...

    There ARE good reasons for these certificates.



    The only (very real) problem is in how to weed out the fly by nights ! !




    In my game it costs about R10k per year to stay registered.... and still we fight against fly by nights ...
    By the way Chris ,I cant sign a house or factory off with this certificate, the municipality doesnt recognize it, I have to use my metro certificate..
    So now in this new house I have to called the water inspector,not building inspector and give him four PIRB certificates at a cost of R180 each but have to do a brush up exam of R3400 and annual renewal of R700. Then he will inspect the house.He used to have to inspect the geysers as well now he doesnt inspect them and PIRB will randomly choose which jobs to inspect.
    So effectively the home owner is worse off because now his geysers might be inspected but before they were definitely inspected.

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  13. #11
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    Default Re: plumbing certificates.

    Quote Originally Posted by plunger View Post
    I have been informed that I wont be able to issue certificates because I need to issue 16 certificates in a year. If my business is not doing well and I cant do 16 geysers in a year I lose my silence.
    My facts are not a hundred percent correct here. I need to collect 25 cpd points in a year. Fifteen certificates is equal to one point .So I have install and issue 375 certificates in a year.Thats at a cost of R60000 per year just in certificates of compliance.
    Are there no plumbers on this forum who can correct me if Ive read this wrong. If Im correct then surely this is conditional and unlawful.If I cant meet there target I am punished.

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    Default Re: plumbing certificates.

    Quote Originally Posted by plunger View Post
    My facts are not a hundred percent correct here. I need to collect 25 cpd points in a year. Fifteen certificates is equal to one point .So I have install and issue 375 certificates in a year.Thats at a cost of R60000 per year just in certificates of compliance.
    Are there no plumbers on this forum who can correct me if Ive read this wrong. If Im correct then surely this is conditional and unlawful.If I cant meet there target I am punished.
    If above is correct some big plumbing companies have made the wording. They can easily get the numbers but difficult for one to 3 plumber companies.

    Please give a link to the requirements. I would like to see what is going on.
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    Default Re: plumbing certificates.

    Quote Originally Posted by plunger View Post
    I dont want to sound if I am moaning because on an open forum it could bite me back.There is an organization called PIRB which forces you to sign off work and take responsibility of your work.

    I am all for standards but it is exploitation in a way.For example ,if you do a job for R1500 or more you have to supply a certificate of compliance. This includes material. Even if the client supplies the material. So my rate is at times R350 to R450 per callout. So if I do a sink mixer replacement and the mixer costs R1300. I have to issue a certificate that costs me R160 odd bucks. In a sensitive dificult work environment if I have to give a quote the fly by night will always get the job.

    Also for every geyser I do I have to do a certifaicate which costs about R170 .I also have to pay an annual renewal fee of R700 for my so called licence.Now I need to do some heat pumps and solar geysers and you guessed it right ,I have to do a brush up course of R1600 for both. My facts may not be totally correct but it rubs me up the wrong way. I battle to afford it.
    Are there any other plumbers who feel the same way or have better info on this.?
    Are there any other trades that have similer rules.?
    Our company is in a different industry, but our experience is the same as yours.

    We have to have an ISO 13485 certificate for Medical Devices, which cost us annually about in the region of R250k. Then another licence which is the MCC licence.... all of this cost a fortune. It is a requirement from Government, but they don't enforce their own regulation. Then you have the fly by nights coming with their cheap Chinese imports and take business away. So in our case, Government is partly to blame.

    I do not know what to do.
    Sent from my iPhone


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    Default Re: plumbing certificates.

    One of our geysers failed. Was installed 2001 by the insurance company. Same insurance replaced it now. I would say today was the best geyser replacement that I have ever seen. All valves changed, bigger pipe size used.... Standard Bank insurance was following up by SMS, e mail and call. Ceiling was damaged as there was no trip tray. There was a period that it was not compulsory. Insurance will fix the ceiling.

    Thanks to this thread I knew to ask for the certificate. Will pay that R750 only when I have it
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  17. #15
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    Default Re: plumbing certificates.

    I would be very interested to see what that installation looks like. I am sure trays were compulsory in the ninetys.I dont have a problem with the certificates ,But everyone needs to do them. The model is based on SAQA.

    It needs money to obtain the points every year. On principle I think this is wrong. (everything costs money I realize but a balance should be had of whats reasonable)

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    Default Re: plumbing certificates.

    Does this sound correct, seeing as you guys are on the topic? Bought it 5 years ago, no mods doe and now I need to have all this work done??
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    Default Re: plumbing certificates.

    Quote Originally Posted by ZuluCowboy View Post
    Does this sound correct, seeing as you guys are on the topic? Bought it 5 years ago, no mods doe and now I need to have all this work done??
    Did you ask the person who made the offer or was he supplied by some estate agent? If the 2ng get your own. If supplied there tend to be kick back/introduction fee.
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  21. #18
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    Default Re: plumbing certificates.

    Plunger, if we any adds and salts job even that involves any plumbing we will not get an occupation certificate if we do not have a plumbers certificate. So my thinking is that this is a legal requirement and EVERYONE should comply. Of course we have the same problem in architecture. Some people just seem willing to accept sub standard work in order to save a few rand but then when it goes wrong they will expect you to fix it at the sub standard rate. Drives me insane too.
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  23. #19
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    Default Re: plumbing certificates.

    Quote Originally Posted by kippie2 View Post
    Plunger, if we any adds and salts job even that involves any plumbing we will not get an occupation certificate if we do not have a plumbers certificate. So my thinking is that this is a legal requirement and EVERYONE should comply. Of course we have the same problem in architecture. Some people just seem willing to accept sub standard work in order to save a few rand but then when it goes wrong they will expect you to fix it at the sub standard rate. Drives me insane too.
    I cant say it enough that I agree a standerd needs to be attained. The concept is good in that you have continuous learning. I could have been doing the wrong thing "very well" for many years because no one has educated me on the right way.
    Thats not my gripe. I just think that if I make an effort to learn but dont obtain sufficient points that the following year I am punished but not allowing to operate.

    Dont forget this certificate is not accepted by my municipality.The only way it effects me is by geysers. They have overridden the municipal authority to pass geysers. So to pass a house I have to call my water inspector(not building inspector,he only checks the water ,not sewer)and issue the home owner a municipal certificate and geyser certificate.

    If I dont collect enough points I cant sign a house off because of the coc for the geyser.In this case it lowers standerds because every geyser would have been checked,now only every fifty ,I suspect.An incorrectly installed geyser can kill you.

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    Default Re: plumbing certificates.

    Quote Originally Posted by plunger View Post
    I cant say it enough that I agree a standerd needs to be attained. The concept is good in that you have continuous learning. I could have been doing the wrong thing "very well" for many years because no one has educated me on the right way.
    Thats not my gripe. I just think that if I make an effort to learn but dont obtain sufficient points that the following year I am punished but not allowing to operate.

    Dont forget this certificate is not accepted by my municipality.The only way it effects me is by geysers. They have overridden the municipal authority to pass geysers. So to pass a house I have to call my water inspector(not building inspector,he only checks the water ,not sewer)and issue the home owner a municipal certificate and geyser certificate.

    If I dont collect enough points I cant sign a house off because of the coc for the geyser.In this case it lowers standerds because every geyser would have been checked,now only every fifty ,I suspect.An incorrectly installed geyser can kill you.
    It really irritates me that experienced people doing a job properly are punished because they are not doing it 'enough'.
    This just leads to the poor quality of work being delivered everywhere.
    As usual the smaller business gets punished by requirements written by the bigger business.

    I have no problem with continued professional development(CPD) as it is called in our profession and maintaining standards, I do have a problem when I attend a CPD lecture which I have paid big bucks for and I know more than the presenter!

    You are absolutely right, you should be getting points for learning not for doing, as that means you have educated yourself.
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