HANDLING PLUMBING REPAIRS DURING COVID-19
Getting your plumbing fixed? Here are some ways to keep your home safe when having plumbing repairs during COVID-19.
1. SCREEN PLUMBING CONTRACTORS BEFORE HIRING
As with any home repair contractor, it is good practice to thoroughly research and vet candidates first before signing a deal. Your home is your biggest investment so you want the plumbing job to be done only by capable plumbing contractors. But now that we are transitioning to the new normal with COVID-19, it is important that homeowners be proactive in screening plumbing professionals. Being concerned about letting a complete stranger into your home to take care of needed plumbing repairs is a valid state of mind. After all, it is better to be safe than sorry.
Aside from the usual ways of screening contractors such as asking for licenses and references, you may also ask questions about how their plumbing companies handle the COVID-19 situation. For instance, you may ask if they are screening their employees for COVID-19 symptoms and if they are restricting them from work if they are suspected of being infected. You may also ask about measures that they have in place to prevent the spread of the virus.
Once you are satisfied, make sure you talk to them clearly about your plumbing issue and ask if it is possible to minimize direct contact between you and the contractor over the course of the project. If there is a way to pay for the service without having direct contact with the contractor, clarify it to avoid payment issues in the future.
2. KEEP FAMILY MEMBERS AWAY FROM THE REPAIR SITE
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention have identified the groups that are at a high risk to contract COVID-19, who include those that have underlying medical conditions such as chronic lung disease, serious heart disease, diabetes, kidney disease, and liver disease. In addition, people who also have diseases that cause their body to be immunocompromised such as those that had recent organ transplants, those that currently use immune weakening medicines, and those that have HIV are also at risk. Finally, older adults especially those 50 years old and above are highly susceptible to the virus.
If any of your family members belong in any of these groups, they need to avoid entering the repair area as much as possible. There is no vaccine or cure for COVID-19 yet as of this writing. The best way to minimize the risk of getting the disease is through social distancing.
3. ASK THE CONTRACTORS TO WEAR MASKS AND GLOVES
The CDC recommends wearing protective clothing such as masks and gloves when going out in public. The science behind wearing masks is persuasive. Wearing a mask not only prevents you from getting the virus but it also keeps you from spreading the virus in case you already have it but do not experience any symptoms. The risk of transmission is drastically lower when wearing a mask compared to not wearing at all.
As you and the contractor go through the home inspection and the repair project itself, always wear masks and gloves throughout. The mask doesn’t have to be the N95 type as they are usually reserved for medical front liners. You may use surgical masks and even cloth masks as long as you use them properly.
When it comes to home repair such as plumbing, it is still advisable to weigh the need to get the fix versus the risk of possible transmission. Some repairs are really necessary so with these cases, it is important to take the necessary precautions to ensure the risk of getting the virus is very close to zero.
About the Author:
Kevin Rabida is a content marketing specialist writing in-depth articles and guides about new technology, small business challenges, and blue-collar industry issues and has been featured in several US, UK, and Australian trade publications. He’s worked with companies like UPrinting, PrintPlace, and Handle.com
Guest Contributor: Kevin Rabida