Do you tip a plumber in the USA 2023 and how much? (AVOID Doing This!)

Do you tip a plumber? How much should I tip my plumber? These are questions that a lot of people have after a repair.

It depends on the type of work. In general, tipping is considered polite and an act of appreciation but not always expected. Here are some suggestions on how to tip a plumber in the United States.


Installation versus repair: how much to tip a plumber

Plumbers generally make money on the work and also on the items that they have installed. For example, if they install a bath or water heater, they will add a percentage as commission. On a big installation, this can add up. For this reason, plumbers often make quite a lot when they install a new system

If the plumber has to work at night or it is a dirty job, they have special prices for this. Giving a tip can still be a nice gesture. Crawling through sewage during a hot summer night is not fun. During hot weather or rain, it can be a great token of appreciation as plumbers are not paid for this.

If it was a small fix, it can be a great idea to tip as plumbers don’t earn a lot on this type of work. If a plumber repairs a faucet or does a small task, you can give a tip as most plumbers don’t want to do this anymore. They are very busy and these tasks don’t earn them enough money. For this reason, giving a tip is often appreciated. 

Photo by Charles Deluvio on Unsplash

Why tipping a plumber is a great idea: Creating loyalty 

Some plumbers try to deceive customers to earn more money. An honest plumber is a great asset. If the plumber knows that he or she will get a tip, it can also motivate them to show up faster. Plumbers are very busy and they often don’t want to take on small tasks as they earn less on them.

If you give a tip, they are more likely to help you out in the future. This can increase your comfort by a lot as you get help faster. Who enjoys living without hot water anyway?

Plumbers often have a lot of jobs that they can work on. They don’t want to take on the small stuff as it doesn’t pay well enough. If you can add a tip, it can make the trip worth it for them.

Plumbers often work at night and during the weekends. If you need them urgently, they might be more inclined to show up if you give them a tip.

A tip is also a token of appreciation. Plumbing is a hard job and if you show that you are happy with their work, they might feel good about their hard work.

Employee versus business owner

If the plumber works for a company, it is better to give it to him or her directly. The company might skim the tip or not give it at all. It is possible that the plumber is not allowed to accept it as some companies have a policy against tipping as it can lead to discussions between plumbers. Business owners are often able to take away more money home so there is less need to tip them.

Photo by Marian Florinel Condruz on Unsplash

How much should you tip a plumber:

You don’t have to do big things, plumbers often appreciate a soda or cookie as well. Generally, plumbers earn a nice wage. If they have to show up in the middle of the night for a small fix, a 20% tip is reasonable. In other instances, a 10% tip for a repair is more than enough. For a big installation, there is no need to tip at all.

According to the American Plumbers and Pipefitters Association (APA), plumbers make an average of $51,000 a year. However, there are a few plumbers who make very large sums of money. For example, the CEO of a plumbing company can earn an estimated $250,000 a year.

While they might charge by the hour, a lot of plumbing companies are using a price book per job. This makes sure that they charge enough for each type of job as some of these require special equipment or materials.

Plumbers will appreciate a tip. It is hard work and shows that you care about what they did for you.

During the weekend, they might have left a family dinner to help you out so a token of appreciation is a nice gesture.

Don’t annoy the plumber

Plumbers often don’t want a tip but they want to be left alone while they are fixing things. A lot of people are constantly looking or asking questions. This can be quite annoying if you are working on a system or trying to think. Plumbing systems can be very complicated so giving a plumber space to work is often appreciated. Plumbers often like this more than getting a tip. We don’t mind if you ask questions after the job but disturbing us while we are fixing things, can get annoying really quickly. 

Make sure that the plumber has a clean working area. Having to crawl between junk is no fun. Just clean the general area where the plumber will have to work.

Leave a great review

Plumbers often appreciate a great review on Facebook or Google. This only takes a few minutes and can make people feel great about their work. A simple thank you can also do wonders. Tell them about what a great job they did and how much they helped you out. People really enjoy appreciation and if you show that you are happy with their work, they might feel great without a tip. 

Reasons to tip a plumber

Some reasons to tip a plumber include:

-The plumber did a great job. Some problems are really hard to solve and they might troubleshoot for a while.

-The plumber was polite and professional. Cleaning up after their work and dressing professionally is important.

-The plumber was quick and efficient. Experienced plumbers can fix problems very fast as they know what can go wrong.

-The plumber took the time to explain the repair or installation that was done. They can discuss several options with you. Sometimes things can get fixed quite cheaply but this solution might not last that long. Providing options to a customer is always great.

-The plumber answered all of your questions. Plumbing systems are complex and if the plumber wants to explain how things work, it can lead to a great experience.

To conclude, there are some reasons to tip a plumber if they did a small job in the middle of the night. They will generally charge more for this already so it is not obliged to give a tip to a plumber. Most plumbers make decent money. A tip can be a token of appreciation and can also make sure that the plumber will show up next time you have a problem. You don’t have to tip with money as a soft drink or a cookie can do wonders as well.