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New Bathroom - Any Suggestions

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  • rueben

    Didn't someone post a couple of weeks ago about this website?


    You might have more luck getting some quotes if you post there.

    Haven't tried it myself.

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  • princess
    Thanks TEACH, you sound like the kind of PI that i would like to be. Being a chick i do think tradies take us for a ride sometimes, and the more we sound like we know what we are talking about, the less likely it is that we get rubbish service from the pro's. If in doubt, do it yourself.
    I've installed a shower, laid vinyl, replaced light fittings, painted interior and done all landscaping on our renter - its [email protected]!! Need to know more about plumbing so guess i will head to Mitre 10 and pick up some brochures

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  • teach
    If you have a low water pressure system, it is fairly easy and cheap to remedy. Go to Mitre 10 and get a Venturi mixer for your shower unit and replace the old one. Get up in the ceiling and disconnect the cold water leading from the header tank to the mixer and connect your mains water to the shower. You can get all the connections from Mitre 10 and instructions. The pressure on the cold sucks the hot from the cylinder with this type of mixer.
    I found however that in winter, the incoming cold is so cold that the shower isn't very warm ( a nasty start to the day in Autumn, so I got up in the ceiling again and raised up the header tank. Lifting it up only 1 metre will make a huge difference. I raised it 1.3m. I also had to put an extension onto the overflow pipe on the roof. It has to be level with the top of the header tank at least or it will keep pushing water thru the cylinder and out onto the roof, as I found out the hard way and the mitre 10 guru had forgotten to tell me,

    $150 for mixer
    $25 for pipe
    $60 for various connectors
    $30 for 3x2 timber for header tank stand
    $97 for copper pipe and crox connector to raise overflow pipe

    I now have a high pressure hot shower. All DIY.
    Rather than spend money on a tradesmen, I am investing in tools and DIY books as well as using the internet. I don;t have to wait on the whim of a tradesmen who may or may not have the time. I have now renovated three houses by myself. only using sparkies to wire up fan heaters and extractors.
    It is not that hard and my local Mitre 10 has saved me many thousands with their helpful tips and hints.

    They reckon the only difference between a pro and a DIY is that the Pro's have had more practise and DIYs usually lack the right tools.

    I brought my first home 3 years ago. I had no tools and had never done any DIY. to date I have repainted 3 houses inside and out. Rebuilt a deck. replaced hundreds of metres of rotten weather board. Built new boundary fences. stripped and renovated a bathroom. My next job is to try a kitchen refit.

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  • Propoholic
    Hi QueenBee

    Just one question. If a plumber comes to fix something, e.g. like a toilet, and puts say a new ballcock in the toilet, but that was never the problem and the original problem is still happening should I still get charged? I spose the answer is yes because he's put a new part on. But then if you call him back and say, that it's still happening, you then get charged mileage again. And so you just have to keep getting him back, and paying him until he can figure out the problem?
    It depends a lot on how you employed the plumber and what was said at the time.

    Example:-you tell the plumber you want him to fix the toilet and you want a quote. For the plumber to put together a quote he hasto establish what the problem is. If he can do this (establish the problem) when he inspects the toilet then he can give you a fixed price to resolve the problem. Once you have excepted his quote he hasto take on the risk that he hasnt included everything in costing the job ie he has made a mistake.

    If you are available, it is wise to get contractors to physically demonstrate that they have completed the work successfuly. At this stage you have the opportunity to discuss any matter with the contractor and even get him to mop up the floor and pick up his rubbish. They haveto provide a tidy site once they have completed their work!
    Do not pay the contractor if the problem persists after he has completed the job. You've probably heard the saying 'he who holds the gold makes the rules'. The contractor needs to be asked to return to complete the job( at no cost to you - mileage, materials etc are included in original quote). It is his responsibility to deliver a workable solution to you.

    Equally, if you employ the contractor on a 'charge up' basis (time + materials) he still hasto deliver a workable solution.

    Example:-the contractor identifies at the beginning of the job that he doesnt know what the problem is and would 'try' this - I dont believe he would be bound to pay for further labour/materials if it didnt work. Any other options would be at the clients cost, if the client agreed to this 'suck and see' approach.

    Example:-the contractor, at the beginning of the job establishes it will take one hour of investigation to define the problem (at clients cost) and then will submit a quotation /estimate for client approval. Beyond this point he hasto deliver a workable solution based on the quotation/estimate. As a client you do not pay for the contractors mistakes or errors of judgement.

    Always keep diary notes of communications/agreements made with the contractor. On larger value jobs, follow up with an email/fax confirming the contractors scope of work & any variations to the original agreement.

    Give them a good kick in the bum and they know who is boss!

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  • QueenBee
    Thanks, I will have to go up there again and have a look at the shower head. I have had problems trying to get a builder or even someone to go up and have a look because everyone is really busy and doesn't really have the time or the inclination to take on a smaller job if they can get a bigger job somewhere else.

    I will have to have a re-think about what I'm going to do to the bathroom.

    Just one question. If a plumber comes to fix something, e.g. like a toilet, and puts say a new ballcock in the toilet, but that was never the problem and the original problem is still happening should I still get charged? I spose the answer is yes because he's put a new part on. But then if you call him back and say, that it's still happening, you then get charged mileage again. And so you just have to keep getting him back, and paying him until he can figure out the problem?

    I'm in the wrong business!, no wonder plumbers are driving around in Ford Explorers!

    Regards, QB

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  • Spabath
    Bearing in mind that a new mains pressure HWC would cost you around $2000, which would allow you to install standard mixers without flow restrictors, pressure equalisers and the like, I would say that that would be the best place to start.

    It's a bit of a pity about your quote situation, but it is a nationwide problem. You could have more success with someone who specializes in renovations? A skilled carpenter, maintenance person, etc. (Doesnt actually need to be a plumber you know )

    You only need a plumber if you're making new connections, and if all the pipework is there, then it's relatively easy for builders to do bathrooms, and quite a lot of them know what to do, as it's often a bit of a football in construction as to who actually installs fittings. (i.e. plumbers claim they only do pipes, tilers/painters claim they only do decorating and sealing, and builders are of course doing walls and stuff, but actually end up doing most of the general work!)

    But like someone said, for an IP, probably best to look at upgrading cylinder to mains (or gas) if this is an option? and just sprucing up the shower to make it look nice.

    If your shower head is too big, we have some small (60mm) hand shower heads which should cope with low pressure for $25. Might be an improvement, but might not ...

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  • QueenBee
    Thanks for that guys, I have just emailed them tonight.

    Cheers, QB

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  • muppet
    Hi Guys

    Further to Sherpa's post:
    Their web site also lists all the locations of their shops.


    Leave a comment:

  • Sherpa27
    Hi Queenbee
    I have just finished doing a reno on my on bathroom. When I tried to find a folding glass shower door I came across a company in AKL called Showerwell & discovered I could have done it a lot cheaper.
    A new bath Approx $200. Gib aqualine around 3 sides & then they have an a white acrylic product used in showers these days 1800mm high which they would fold to 3 sides( cost for them to supply white folded acrylic approx $100. ) which is then glued over the gib.
    They also do the renovations if you wish.I will definately go with them next time. They have all sorts of other products for your bathroom.
    Try getting a quote from them. I used the East Tamaki branch.
    Good Luck.

    Leave a comment:

  • Philmc1
    I have 2 great plumbers, both operating with one assistant and we have a very good rapport - One told me to hold off replacing a gas HW system because they always came up on special - we saved about $400
    Initially in Wanganui I used a large company and the first two guys were great - downhill after that tho. One filled in his job sheet as taking 2 hours to show an Indian tenant how to relight the pilot on the Hot water. Removed a gas central heating system and had them check all gas was disconected a year ago - Last week new plumber discovered it hadn't been and there were two major leaks.That's just 2 of their stuff ups, I have a few more. For anybody with IP's in Wanganui, the initials of the company are MB, give them a big miss.

    Bathroom - We refurbished a real grotty bathroom a year ago for under $2000.00 plus my time of less than 3 days.
    religned shower with Hardiglaze
    Religned around bath with Hardiglaze horizontally and heavy duty vinyl with strong paste above
    Pedestal Basin - looks trendy and cost about $200 plus mixer.
    3 in 1 ceiling unit - about $100 from mitre 10
    Repainted ceiling, windows, skirting
    New vinyl
    Price includes plumber - about 2 hours, Painter about 8 hours, sparky about 2 hours and vinyl layer. Bathroom looks great and wet areas are well protected. No vanity to get flooded by tenant and hence wrecked - Brought a little stand alone shelf unit for towels etc.
    Increased rent by $20

    Stick to the basic necessities - are they really going to clean a glass shower enclosure and by god they look awful when the gunge and black mould have built up.

    Use KISS and keep it simple......


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  • QueenBee
    Yes I think I will go that way from now on.

    Cheers, QB

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  • ibuycashflow

    Get the details of the shower mixer and shower head and contact a plumbing supply or bathroom store (eg Plumbing World, Mico, Zip)

    I had a similar problem about 5 years ago with a Feltonmix mixer and head. The mixer came fitted with a restricting valve to reduce pressure if installed in a mains pressure or equal pressure situation. As my property was on low pressure or unequal pressure system the flow was even further reduced.

    The small plastic valve that Zip Plumbing sold me, fitted straight in where the old one came out and everything was good from then on. I did it myself and it took about 15 minutes.

    Your local plumbing store will point you in the right direction and it won't cost you a cent for the info

    BTW, you need a "maintenance" plumber, not one who specialises in new work. A good maintenance plumber will know how to sort out a problem, others will just replace everything and charge through the nose.


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  • FreezingHot
    My sympathy goes out to you.

    You don't sound as if you have had much luck!

    Maybe it's because I'm female, that they feel they can lead me up the garden path. I suppose eventually I will find someone that is both good and that I can trust, but in the mean time, it could be an expensive operation.
    Why don't you get your Husband to sort these nasties out, maybe they
    will not lead him to the forest.


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  • QueenBee
    I am finding it quite hard to find one that I trust. All the Plumbers I have ever called on, I have never called back for another job because I felt they have either ripped me off or not done a very good job.

    Maybe it's because I'm female, that they feel they can lead me up the garden path. I suppose eventually I will find someone that is both good and that I can trust, but in the mean time, it could be an expensive operation.

    All the Plumbers except one have been recommended by people I know that have used them. Maybe, they were ripped off, or had shoddy jobs done too but didn't realise. Maybe I'm too intolerant of poor workmanship because I'm in the trade game too. I don't rip people off, so other people shouldn't either. But I know it doesn't work like that.

    And don't even start me on builders! That's even if you could get one to return a call.


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  • FreezingHot

    Yes it can be frustrating.

    These so called trademen are meant to know what they are doing and
    a lot of the time do. It seems to me that you have a lot of problems with
    them especially where you come from.

    I try to find a tradesman that I can trust and one that will not offer all
    sorts of no brain solutions, ask lots of questions and sooner or later
    you find the right answers.

    I have only been into property investing
    for a very short while and am no expert, but I have built up a team that
    I think can help me when I really need them, sounds as if you need to do
    the same. If a tradesman does a job for me and I am unsatisfied they
    never get a call again. Period.

    I am lucky in the fact that most of my help has been given to me from
    good advice from my builder friend.

    In short, find tradesmen you can build a good business relationship with
    and they will be less likely to lead you down the garden path.


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