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Rude Tradies in Canberra

By ex-vectis - 29 November 2011 26

Ok, so I’m using Riot-Act to get this out of my system.  But it really got to me so need to vent my spleen somewhere.

Last night we noticed that there was a patch of very wet carpet next to the cupboard where the Water Heater is.  Investigating it I found that the heater was bulging and the floor around it very wet.

The propery is a rental and so I contacted the agents and they told me to contact the agency-used plumber directly.  I described the issue and he said he’d be around after he finished the current job. Fair play, no worries with that.  However, the bulging did worry me a bit so I check on the web.  I found a few ‘Plumber’ forums and in all of them the message was the same – turn it off imediatly.

When the plumber came (to be fair, only a couple of hours later) he looked in the cupboard for 10 seconds and grunted that it needed replacing. I said that I’d turned it off by pulling a few fuses out of the main electricity board (the labeling was awful so I wasnt sure which was the right one), joking saying that i didnt want it to explode on me.  He just kept a blank expression and grunted it wouldn’t explode.  He asked for the keys to the house but I said i’d be in all afternoon anyway.  Another grunt and he said he’d be back later in the afternoon with a new boiler.

Couple of hours later I noticed some guy wandering around the back garden.  Front door was open AND has a bell but he hadn’t even bothered trying.  I zapped out and said hello.  Greeting was ‘wheres the boiler?’  Slightly taken aback I showed him.  Trying to be friendly  I was chatty and jokey.  All I got back was grunts.  The ‘boss’ and the other gorilla were just as conversationally challenged.  I was really taken aback, even checking I didnt have a  “All plumbers are tools’ t-shirt on or something.

Later, trying again to be friendly (I’m nice!), I offered them a cuo of coffee/tea.  One grunted ‘nah’ and the other two just ignored me completely.  When I then tried to make myself a coffee I found the mains water was turned off anyway!!  Whats wrong with ‘hey mate!  Just got to turn the water off’  or even a jokey ‘hahah, you’ll have a fun trying to make coffee/tea, waters off’.

Eventually (again, being fair, they were efficient and quick), one of them said that all was done and he was just venting system.  That was it no other words.  When the water finally came through I was given the manual, told to keep the cupboard open for a bit and a ‘see yah’.

Not even the ‘boss’ couldn’t be bothered to come and say goodbye etc…

Now, i didn’t want them to be my best mate and invite me to be the birthing partner for their first-born.  But some courtesy and basic communication would have been nice.  I dont think I’ve ever been blanked so much.  I even racked my brain to think if any thing I’d said on the phone could have been heard as ‘you arsehole’ or something.  But no.  I just dont think they’ve ever been taught basic manners or even communication skills.  Quite bizarre, why would someone be like that?

Anyway.  Spleen vented and those plumbers crossed off my Christmas card list, the Fat Yak six-pack I’d got them as a thankyou stayed in the fridge and I put their names on my list of petty people.

Okay – let the flames begin 🙂

What’s Your opinion?


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26 Responses to
Rude Tradies in Canberra
pepmeup 4:54 pm 29 Nov 11

a Canberra Tradie that turned up when they said, fixed the problem with in a day. They seem to me to be the best tradies I’ve herd about in Canberra for years. who are they?

nothingtoprove 4:23 pm 29 Nov 11

So you would like someone standing over your shoulder at your desk, talking to you while you try work?

Holden Caulfield 4:07 pm 29 Nov 11

longshanks said :

…However, it’s always better to have a d*ckhead who does a good and professional job, than a friendly, chatty and generally pleasant tradie who does a lousy job…

O’Reilly v Stubbs (1975).

BimboGeek 3:56 pm 29 Nov 11

I get this at work sometimes. We have sales reps show up and not say hello, just start filling an order then look at me blankly when I ask them if they have a catalogue of their products so I can choose stock or compare prices, other ones who show up only if they feel like it and repair guys who just walk in and start looking around.

But the worst I’ve ever seen was a plumber who came to my house and proceeded to unleash upon me his feelings about Jews. Do not hire Ned Kelly!

And yeah if I was a plumber I would say hello to the person I was working for, and let them know when I was turning off the water. If I was having an antisocial day I might not say anything else but you at least have to say hello and goodbye to humans!

GardeningGirl 2:23 pm 29 Nov 11

Mysteryman said :

Xunlyn said :

Wait, so your problem is that they didn’t talk to you while doing their job?

Wait, so you had trouble understanding the post?

Obviously the issue is the lack of common courtesy/decency. It’s expected that when someone speaks to you that you’ll have the decency to acknowledge and respond appropriately, especially if you are in a professional capacity at the time. The fact that they are working in someone’s house and are potentially going to inconvenience them should also be considered. A simple “we’ll be turning off the water for a while” would be the bare minimum I’d expect from someone who was being paid to provide a plumbing service for me. These people are being paid professional rates, they should behave professionally.

+1

Mysteryman 1:36 pm 29 Nov 11

Xunlyn said :

Wait, so your problem is that they didn’t talk to you while doing their job?

Wait, so you had trouble understanding the post?

Obviously the issue is the lack of common courtesy/decency. It’s expected that when someone speaks to you that you’ll have the decency to acknowledge and respond appropriately, especially if you are in a professional capacity at the time. The fact that they are working in someone’s house and are potentially going to inconvenience them should also be considered. A simple “we’ll be turning off the water for a while” would be the bare minimum I’d expect from someone who was being paid to provide a plumbing service for me. These people are being paid professional rates, they should behave professionally.

p1 11:38 am 29 Nov 11

KB1971 said :

Were they rubbing their hands together at the time… 😛

Not that I saw, but there may be a “excessive poo” surcharge… 🙁

longshanks 11:38 am 29 Nov 11

I understand where you’re coming from – after all, it doesn’t take much to be friendly.

However, it’s always better to have a d*ckhead who does a good and professional job, than a friendly, chatty and generally pleasant tradie who does a lousy job.

At the last property we were renting the agents had a designated “handyman” who would come out for anything that didn’t need a licensed tradesman. Top bloke, always good for a chat and a laugh, always rang before he came, always came when he said he would, but less conscientious in his acutal work than your average six year old. Bodgy repair jobs, crap left lying around for weeks, things which were started but never finished…

Better to have the job well done in the end, say I!

KB1971 11:16 am 29 Nov 11

p1 said :

ex-vectis said :

So, maybe `Rude Tradies` is an unwarranted generalisation. You get good folk and bad folk in all walks of life.

I think this sums it up well. Some people are just d?¢ks. How these people end up in customer service positions always amazes me.

The plumbers I had at my place yesterday were excellent, friendly, but sadly told me my problem would cost a lot. 🙁

Were they rubbing their hands together at the time… 😛

p1 10:42 am 29 Nov 11

ex-vectis said :

So, maybe `Rude Tradies` is an unwarranted generalisation. You get good folk and bad folk in all walks of life.

I think this sums it up well. Some people are just d?¢ks. How these people end up in customer service positions always amazes me.

The plumbers I had at my place yesterday were excellent, friendly, but sadly told me my problem would cost a lot. 🙁

KB1971 10:22 am 29 Nov 11

I am a tradie (motor mechanic) It amazes me how the buidling industry survives with their lack of interest. We recently renovated our kitchen & had a good run of tradies until I got to plastering.

I rang 5 ot of the Chronicle, one didnt answer, one quoted over the phone & three said they would come for a look. Of the three 2 didnt turn up for a look, one was not a problem as I was at home for the day but the other made me late for work & when I called him he lied to me & said he had been & gave the quote to my daughter (I had been home all the time waiting for him).

The one bloke who did turn up for a look, I gave him a ring later on & said he had the job (because he had actually turned up). he could not remember turning up to look at it (WTF?) despite it being only 3 days earlier. Anyway, we agreed on a week (not a day) & he said he would call that week to let me know what day he was coming. He didnt call.

Word of advice for people out there DO NOT USE THE PLASTERERS IN THE CHRONICLE!!

I will probably get a hiding for this but Facebook is a wonderful thing. My wife posted looking for a tiler, one of her old mates was married to a tiler, he recommended the plumber. We had good reliable work from them. I have a mate who did the joinery work for me, he recommended the splashback guy. FB helped us again with a plasterer, the guys we did eventually get were well priced & turned up on time & really friendly.

It pays to ask around.

ex-vectis 10:13 am 29 Nov 11

Xunlyn said :

Wait, so your problem is that they didn’t talk to you while doing their job?

A slight over simplification…. But taken on the chin.

ex-vectis 9:58 am 29 Nov 11

Just as a comparison, the Dishwasher guy came to install a new Dishwasher (5 months I`ve been trying to get the agents to get it sorted – another, equally whingy, story) this morning. Couldn`t have been more different than the miserable goons yesterday. He was chatty and friendly and very approachable, still getting the job done quickly and efficiently. Even took the old non-working dishwasher away (unlike the old Boiler which is now a feature dumped in the front garden).

So, maybe `Rude Tradies` is an unwarranted generalisation. You get good folk and bad folk in all walks of life. And the beers I got for the `plumbers` went to the dishwasher man, who is now on my Christmas card list.

Roadrage77 9:58 am 29 Nov 11

Some people are just personality-less pricks, don’t let it get you down.

Xunlyn 9:41 am 29 Nov 11

Wait, so your problem is that they didn’t talk to you while doing their job?

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