Insurance for Plumbing Contractors
Plumbing contractors install, repair, and replace plumbing and piping to connect to water supplies, gas utilities, sewer connections, appliances, sprinklers, and irrigation systems. Other services the plumbing contractor may provide are retail sales of hardware and even appliances, as well as remodelling services for kitchen and lavatories.
At Business Insurance Service, we understand not just the insurance industry, but the commercial sector too. Our brokers have years of experience and expertise in finding tradespeople from across all disciplines the right kind of Contractors’ All Risks and Contract Works insurance cover for tradespeople, giving both sole traders, SMEs, and large building contractors the protection they need.
What Insurance does a Plumbing Contractor need?
There are certain liability insurance covers that every trades and construction company should have, or are legally required to have. Tradespeople insurance policies provide you with essential covers, such as Public Liability, Employers Liability, Contract Works and Tool Cover.
Minimum recommended cover on a Contractors Combined policy would include Machinery and Contents, Employee Dishonesty, Book Debts, Contractors Plant and Equipment, Contract Works, Goods in Transit, Public/Product Liability, Employers’ Liability
Other covers to consider could be Buildings, Business Interruption with Increased Expenditure, Computers, Employment Practices Liability, Environmental Impairment Liability, Excess of Loss/Difference in Cover Liability, Commercial Vehicle or Motor Fleet.
Property exposures depend upon the work done by the contractor at his own premises. Some contractors have facilities to construct their own piping, so cutting and welding are done at their own facility. In those cases, fire exposures may be high. Welding has exposure from the storage of tanks of gases that must be handled properly to avoid loss. The welding operations themselves need good controls. Are the welding operations separated from the other operations either in a cut-off area or by flash and welding curtains? Other fire concerns are from the storage and cutting of the piping and fixtures that may be plastic and pose exposure to toxic fumes should a fire occur. Plastic plumbing and piping use adhesives that may be flammable. Handling and storage of flammables need good controls. If repair work on vehicles and equipment is done in the building, fire hazards may be much higher. Theft can be a high exposure if inventories of valuable metals such as copper or brass are at both their facility and at the job sites.
Premises liability is a concern at the job site. Contractors can damage customer’s premises when removing old plumbing and piping and installing new. There is also the possible bodily injury to customers. Background checks are imperative for any employee who will have regular contact with customers.
Completed operations exposures can occur if the plumbing or piping is not properly installed and leaks or water damage occur. This could result in significant property damage. If sewer connections are faulty, leaking sewage can cause bacteria and disease, and additional substantial property losses. Environmental concerns need evaluation from the disposal of waste and the old debris that has been removed from the structure. Are proper disposal methods used for the type of waste encountered? What procedure is in place when asbestos and other hazardous items are encountered in existing structures? What training and handling methods are used? These types of items have serious liability and environmental considerations.
Commercial Vehicle / Motor Fleet
Motor liability depends on the radius of operation. Age, training, experience, and drivers’ records, as well as the age, condition, and maintenance of the vehicles, are all important items to consider.
Employers’ liability exposures vary based on the plumbing job. Burns from the welding operation can occur both at the plumber’s facility and at the job site. If welding is done in small, confined locations, additional exposure exists to fire, fumes, and vapours. Cuts and amputations can result from the cutting of piping and plumbing. Fumes and vapours from the adhesives can cause eye, skin, and lung irritations. Ventilation is important. If the contractor does any excavation to connect to utilities or to install sprinklers and irrigation systems, potential losses from digging and trenching could occur.
What other risks does a Plumbing Contractor face?
Other exposures include contractor plant and equipment, goods in transit and contract works. Contractors plant and equipment is generally limited to employees’ tools but equipment may be rented, leased or borrowed for specific jobs. If the insured is involved in selling the product to be installed, there is a goods in transit exposure to review. When goods are installed over a period, the contract works exposure exists and must be evaluated. A key question is the security of the job site.
Risk Management Advice for Plumbing Contractors
Plumbing contractors provide much-needed services for both residential and commercial customers alike. However, plumbers have a number of unique risks to consider. Thankfully, assessing your exposures and taking the appropriate precautions can go a long way towards protecting your business. This questionnaire gives plumbing contractors the opportunity to review risk categories specific to their operations and take actions to address those risks.
While the proper risk management practices can reduce certain exposures, no system is 100 per cent effective in ensuring an incident-free workplace. As a result, it’s all the more crucial to work with a qualified insurance broker to not only assess your exposures, but secure the appropriate cover as well. To learn more, contact Business Insurance Service today.
How can Business Insurance Service help Plumbing Contractors?
Whether you’re a sole trader or a small to large company, your insurance portfolio has to be up to date and provide you and your business with the right level of protection. Rather than trying to find Contract Works Insurance or tradesperson insurance by hunting through countless websites, let us or our website do it for you.
We’re members of the British Insurance Brokers Association (BIBA) and work with some of the largest and best-known insurance providers in the UK, including Lloyds of London for larger, more complex and high-risk customers. We’re fully regulated and committed to delivering a premium quality, trustworthy and reliable service to all our customers, regardless of size.
As preferred brokers working with some of the largest insurance providers in the UK, we have immediate access to a huge range of policies for businesses, tradespeople and construction companies. We provide our customers with a bespoke or package service, creating insurance portfolios that are specifically tailored to your individual needs, and your budget.