A handyman walked away from the job after cutting off the water to my mother's house and removing a toilet. He did this while I was attending a funeral. My mother is 87 years old. Called Atomic Plumbing and Ryan Dean responded Saturday afternoon and restored water to the house. He finished the job Sunday morning. He was the nicest, courteous, neat plumber I have ever met. I can't say enough good things about Atomic Plumbing from the employee who took my call to Ryan Dean's excellent service.
Water systems of ancient times relied on gravity for the supply of water, using pipes or channels usually made of clay, lead, bamboo, wood, or stone. Hollowed wooden logs wrapped in steel banding were used for plumbing pipes, particularly water mains. Logs were used for water distribution in England close to 500 years ago. US cities began using hollowed logs in the late 1700s through the 1800s. Today, most plumbing supply pipe is made out of steel, copper, and plastic; most waste (also known as "soil") out of steel, copper, plastic, and cast iron.
I am not a plumber, but I am familiar with oxidation. Many simple plumbing valves only need to be removed and new "O" rings installed. That's where the problem comes in. Most older homes used metal pipes and not PVC. Usually the valve screws into a different type of metal and oxidation occurs between the two metals, almost becoming one. In order to get the valve stem out you have to break it loose. If you break the pipe, not only do you have a mess but then you have to pay to fix it. Simple if you break it you pay. If a plumber breaks it, he is responsible. I recommend paying the plumbers fee and save yourselves headaches in the long run.
While it’s their job to make sure your pipes work like a well-oiled machine, it’s not their job to rebuild the wall they had to demolish to make that happen. So, while you’re going to get that water problem fixed, you’ll want to discuss in detail what kind of “mess” they might leave behind prior to the start of the project so you can plan accordingly. Remember, there are some jobs you can do yourself. Here’s how to solder copper pipe joints!
Most plumbers, pipefitters, and steamfitters learn their trade through a 4- or 5-year apprenticeship. Apprentices typically receive 2,000 hours of paid on-the-job training, as well as some classroom instruction, each year. In the classroom, apprentices learn safety, local plumbing codes and regulations, and blueprint reading. They also study mathematics, applied physics, and chemistry. Apprenticeship programs are offered by unions and businesses. Although most workers enter apprenticeships directly, some start out as helpers. The Home Builders Institute offers a pre-apprenticeship training program in plumbing and other trades.