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press vs labor charge

what are thoughts regarding lost labor charges when press tool saves time

Comments

  • SuperTech
    SuperTech Member Posts: 1,670
    Charge by the job, not by the hour.
    kcoppSTEVEusaPAdelta T
  • BillyO
    BillyO Member Posts: 274
    how about the gained production ? its a no brainer
  • mattmia2
    mattmia2 Member Posts: 3,681
    It is like 5x the material cost, you are trading material cost for labor.
    New England SteamWorksB_Sloane
  • outofplumb
    outofplumb Member Posts: 5
    in a service call situation not knowing what you are up against ahead of time and a schedule to keep,cost plus
  • outofplumb
    outofplumb Member Posts: 5
    tool rental? flat rate does not work in this market...too small
  • GroundUp
    GroundUp Member Posts: 1,272
    Charge by the job instead of the hour, or raise your hourly rate if it's of concern. I haven't charged hourly for piping in years, everything is a hard number because I know roughly how long it's going to take regardless of method. It's a lot easier for most people to swallow just agreeing on a hard number, than it is to see you standing there at $X/hr reading a manual or calling the supply house or whatever. Then there are some folks that ask for the hard number, agree to it, then go bananas when the job is done in 2 hours because that's $X/hr or whatever. Like it somehow makes me a crook just because I can do it 4x faster than the other guy. Just had this guy about a month ago, argued that point and then offered to pay 1/4 of what we agreed on because it went quickly. So I grabbed my band saw and headed over to cut my boiler off the wall. He coughed up the money pretty quick, but made sure to let me know that I was a criminal for only taking 4 hours because he thought it was going to take 2 days
  • outofplumb
    outofplumb Member Posts: 5
    understand that scenario,but in quick day to day service you can not anticipate what is at the job.all customers have a differing view of what needs to be done
  • GroundUp
    GroundUp Member Posts: 1,272
    One of the many reasons I don't take service calls. Too many variables
  • Solid_Fuel_Man
    Solid_Fuel_Man Member Posts: 2,279
    I just think of the service calls a press job will create in the future...
    Serving Northern Maine HVAC & Controls. I burn wood, it smells good!
    GordyGroundUp
  • SeanBeans
    SeanBeans Member Posts: 483
    I recently worked for a company that charged an hourly rate and charged for parts..

    Every customer bargained down the price and the company allowed it to happen.

    I left because I did not like being on a losing team.. plus we serviced to worst of the worst, tenets and equipment
  • Ironman
    Ironman Member Posts: 6,469
    If it's a repair or service, I generally will give a fixed quote with the clause that it allows up to so many hours. If it takes longer or other issues arise, then that will be additional. I also try to verbally communicate the same info as clearly as possible to avoid any misunderstanding.

    There will always be jerks who try to pull a fast one like Groundup mentioned. Just make sure you have it in your contracts and invoices that you retain title to any equipment and material until final payment is made and that you can remove that without being held liable for any damages resulting from its removal. Also state that your warranty becomes void if payment is not made as agreed upon.

    Then, never do any work for that person again.
    Bob Boan
    You can choose to do what you want, but you cannot choose the consequences.
    SuperTechratioGroundUp
  • BillyO
    BillyO Member Posts: 274
    Exactly, raise your prices. Working cheap is destroying trade
  • hot_rod
    hot_rod Member Posts: 14,871
    most importantly is knowing what it actually cost you to be in business, and spread that over maybe 1500 billable hours per year?
    For new work and new installation it is getting tough to put much markup on materials when most EVERYTHING is available at Amazon:)

    So as a result many contractors cover their costs in the billable hour.

    Start the calculation with what you want to make. $100.000 per year before taxes? $100,000 divided by 1500 hours= $66.00/hr, just to pay yourself!
    Bob "hot rod" Rohr
    trainer for Caleffi NA
    Living the hydronic dream
    mattmia2GroundUpBrewbeer
  • pecmsg
    pecmsg Member Posts: 2,216
    hot_rod said:

    most importantly is knowing what it actually cost you to be in business, and spread that over maybe 1500 billable hours per year?
    For new work and new installation it is getting tough to put much markup on materials when most EVERYTHING is available at Amazon:)

    So as a result many contractors cover their costs in the billable hour.

    Start the calculation with what you want to make. $100.000 per year before taxes? $100,000 divided by 1500 hours= $66.00/hr, just to pay yourself!

    Then add Profit for the Company to grow and expand.

    STEVEusaPA
  • mattmia2
    mattmia2 Member Posts: 3,681
    This is why I work for others, I think about what I have in to it, not what people will pay for it.
  • pecmsg
    pecmsg Member Posts: 2,216
    How many times have we been on a job and it took 1, 2, 3+ hrs too stop the water flow enough to solder. Worse the valve you thought held didn't after its too late!
  • B_Sloane
    B_Sloane Member Posts: 56
    Press up to 1 1/2"
    after that ...
    well, for the $200 for a 3" press T
    I can spend a LOT of labor
  • pecmsg
    pecmsg Member Posts: 2,216
    > @B_Sloane said:
    > Press up to 1 1/2"
    > after that ...
    > well, for the $200 for a 3" press T
    > I can spend a LOT of labor

    + a fire guard or 2
  • B_Sloane
    B_Sloane Member Posts: 56
    pecmsg said:

    > @B_Sloane said:

    > Press up to 1 1/2"

    > after that ...

    > well, for the $200 for a 3" press T

    > I can spend a LOT of labor



    + a fire guard or 2

    We do not take on that responsibility
    that's for Facilities people
  • Gordy
    Gordy Member Posts: 9,514
    To the initial post..

    Instead of thinking of the lost labor from using a more efficient tool, or piece of hardware. That efficiency allows you to do possibly more jobs in a day,week,month, or a year.

    Think volume. If the work is out there the more you get of the market share the better. You can’t expect to make a living on a handful of customers, or charge exuberant fees for lack of volume.

    Like @hot_rod Pointed out. You need to know your business costs, and what you need to make to live.

    The world is changing do to elevated productivity. That stems from many facets. It creates competition, and it drives down profit margins because of competition.
  • BillyO
    BillyO Member Posts: 274
    exactly, more production.
  • pecmsg
    pecmsg Member Posts: 2,216
    > @B_Sloane said:
    > Press up to 1 1/2"
    > after that ...
    > well, for the $200 for a 3" press T
    > I can spend a LOT of labor

    Let me ask, how long to drain the pipe and solder in that T?

    With a press the pipe doesn’t have to be dry and the time to make 3 press fittings 1 1/2 minutes
  • BillyO
    BillyO Member Posts: 274
    Pro press is a no brainer, but most can't get past material cost.
  • Ironman
    Ironman Member Posts: 6,469
    All of your overhead cost is on labor; almost nothing on materials. Reducing labor cost is the goal, even if it means paying more for materials (within reason).

    Example: a job costs $100; $50 labor and $50 for materials. If using ProPress changes the ratio to $25 labor and $75 for materials, then I'm better off financially because I'm only paying overhead on $25 instead of $50. Overhead being all of the taxes and insurance and such that's tacked on to labor.
    Bob Boan
    You can choose to do what you want, but you cannot choose the consequences.
    GordyCanuckerBrewbeer
  • Ironman
    Ironman Member Posts: 6,469
    Another consideration: a lot of jobs require a hot permit when using a torch. That involves another man standing by in case of a fire. Now you've got twice the labor and all of its overhead in addition to the costs and hassle of the permit. None of that is incurred with ProPress.

    To me, it's like using pump iso flanges: the amount of time draining, filling and purging is eliminated when they're used. Why would one try to cheap out and not install them?
    Bob Boan
    You can choose to do what you want, but you cannot choose the consequences.
  • STEAM DOCTOR
    STEAM DOCTOR Member Posts: 1,360
    > @outofplumb said:
    > what are thoughts regarding lost labor charges when press tool saves time

    Propress rates should be different then regular hourly rates. Why should customer come out ahead just because you spent few thousand dollars on a tool. Helicopter for hire rates are more then car for hire rates, even though and because the helicopter gets the customer to the destination quicker.
    B_Sloane
  • Tom_133
    Tom_133 Member Posts: 755
    I just bumped into an electrical outfit out of Mass. that has a 4 hour minimum. My eyes nearly fell out of my head. In vermont they would fight me!!
    I love my propress, it has its place in my truck, fittings are pricey, but on service work the customer pays for that, and I am much more productive. I can do double the amount of service calls in a day if they are all copper related. On bid jobs it helps to be very quick, but also the home owner cant argue pricing, when they look up the price per 3/4 press 90 online they get queasy
    Tom
    Montpelier Vt
  • pecmsg
    pecmsg Member Posts: 2,216
    B_Sloane said:

    Press up to 1 1/2"
    after that ...
    well, for the $200 for a 3" press T
    I can spend a LOT of labor

    Took a while to dig it up.
    A job we did in 2018.
    It took about 4 hours to cut and fit all these.
    45 mins to press.
    The 3" line was still dripping glycol

    B_Sloane
  • BillyO
    BillyO Member Posts: 274
    I have 3 snowmelt systems 10 plus years old with all pro press and not one glycol stain. My soldered systems all have glycol staining . Pro press a no brainer
  • B_Sloane
    B_Sloane Member Posts: 56
    pecmsg said:

    B_Sloane said:


    r




    I am not against pressing fittings
    as one poster pointed out, he can do double the amount of service calls per day using such

    and in your instance shown here, I would have pressed this seeing it had glycol
    ( well, assuming I still had that size jaw, they were "liberated" )
    further, I see that pressed fittings leak glycol, I re-piped such a job once

    for my business, institutional installation and repair, I do not have to worry about price/time competition, and may only work on a job every couple days