Does anyone know a ballpark of what it costs to move plumbing? I have a very small bathroom that needs to be reconfigured and would be moving all three pieces (toilet, bathtub and sink) to different walls. The bathroom is only 5' x 7', so the moves wouldn't be more than 5' each max. Any ideas?
Way way way too many variables & unknowns to answer this question! I could take a blind stab in the dark and say $2500... then say maybe double or maybe half... lol.
What materials are needed? Copper, cast iron, plastic, etc? Special fittings, adapters, elbows, etc?
How much labor? Perhaps your new locations require more than just adding 5 feet to each fixture... perhaps your unique situation will dictate that everything be ripped out and re-done from scratch. Sometimes it's easier to start over than totally reconfigure. More material but lower labor.
On top of that, a busy plumber will charge more than an unemployed plumber.
Your best option would be to have at least three licensed plumbers come quote the job. Give them all the same exact initial specifications. Do not reveal one's estimate to another and do not tell them you're getting more than one quote... because you want an honest quote for the full job, not just one guy trying to undercut another. Plus you don't want to tip off a dishonest plumber with anyone else's estimate. Example: You get two quotes for around $2500 and the third guy quotes $5000... now you know he might be trying to take advantage of you. However if you reveal the $2500 quotes to him ahead of time, his quote will also be around $2500 and you'll never know he would try to soak you.
Then after you receive all three quotes in writing, perhaps you'd want to negotiate a fixed price with the one you like best using the lowest quote as leverage.
You're right. A plumber is not going to know much until the walls & floor are ripped open.
But a plumber will know how much it will cost to do that room from scratch and that's what they'll probably do... quote to rip it all out and start over.
When hiring any subcontractor, pre qualify them on historical restoration experience. You do not want a sub that has work on a few old houses. Running abs, copper, etc. is easy, what you do not want is some guy cutting into the structural supports because those supports are in the way. I seen this done over and over and over again in old houses. Over time the floors sag, ceilings drop, the distribution of the weight of the house shifts.
One main fact to always remember in old houses, they were built with old growth lumber. Fully matured trees, grain structure is tight, very strong. Old houses are not fragile.
If you love your old house and you want to maintain that hora, old house feel, l would copy the same construction techniques, when possible.
cast iron expensive, quiet
abs easy, noisy
All good points.
Plumbers generally do not care much about structure, plaster, drywall, wallpaper, tile, linoleum, or electrical... they only care about making room for the pipes.
Not all old houses are of such historical significance that they require the added expense of "restoration specialists" for every menial task. I believe however, the homeowner must always exercise due diligence in these cases and make sure the plumber is not compromising the structure in any way.
Whether historical or not, it's your home, so stay involved at every step... you're paying the bill so you're the boss... ask him to leave if he doesn't like it.
Thanks for the replies. Very useful.