Know your rights
When you hire a plumber, gasfitter or drainlayer, you are covered by the guarantees for services and materials under the Consumer Guarantees Act (CGA). Generally, you can expect that:
- the work is done with reasonable care and skill
- any materials used are new, of acceptable quality, and fit for purpose
- the work is completed in a reasonable time
- you will be charged a reasonable price (if not agreed beforehand).
If any of these guarantees are breached, you can claim under the CGA to get the problem remedied or a refund of your money.
Read Faulty products and Faulty or unsatisfactory services to find out more.
If you’re worried about the safety of any plumbing, drainlaying or gasfitting work, contact the Plumbers, Gasfitters and Drainlayers Board (external link) (PGDB).
Plumbers, drainlayers and gasfitters must be registered and licensed
All plumbers, drainlayers and gasfitters must be registered and hold a practising licence to carry out that particular type of restricted sanitary plumbing, gasfitting or drainlaying work.
Registration and licensing is done by the PGDB.
There are three types of licensing:
Certifying plumber, gasfitter or drainlayer – highest licensing level. They can do their own work and supervise others competently.
Licensed plumber, gasfitter or drainlayer – qualified and licensed but must be supervised by a certifying person who is ultimately responsible for ensuring the work is done competently.
Limited certificate trainee – working towards becoming qualified. They can do the work, but a certifying person must ensure it is done competently.
Exempt worker – not registered or fully qualified. They can do plumbing work provided they are supervised by a certifying person, who must ensure that the work is done competently.
Check the details on their licence card against the public register (external link) on the PGDB website.
You can now check an electronic register online to see if your plumber, gasfitter or drainlayer is registered.
You must be given a copy of the certification document
You must be given a signed copy of the gasfitting certificate (also called an energy works certificate) once the gasfitting work is done. This certification shows that the work done complies with all legal requirements and compliance documents. Keep this copy, as it is a legal document and can be useful for buyers if you sell the house.
Read Gasfitting certificates (external link) on the PGDB’s website to find out more.
Fair Trading Act protects you from misleading statements or behaviour
You also have rights to protect you from misleading statements or behaviour related to products or services by anyone in trade. You can claim for damages or other remedies under the Fair Trading Act for misleading conduct or claims made.
See False and misleading advertising or trading for more information.