You may be weighing up your options for fixing your plumbing and heating issues and wondering if booking in an appointment for an engineer to visit during COVID 19 lockdown is the right option for you. Perhaps you’re finding it too long to wait for an appointment, or maybe you are a key worker so need more choice in order to fit your appointment around your busy schedule? If so, it is likely that you may have come across the option to see an engineer face-to-face during a visit (following government guidelines) or book to have a video consultation.
So, what’s the difference? It is likely that you will speak to a plumber over the phone. However, very few plumbing and heating companies currently use video calls. Perhaps you didn’t even know this was an option? This blog post will discuss how video consultations work as opposed to a face-to-face appointment. Using this information, you can decide which option is best for you and your circumstances. You can make an informed decision about the next step in your plumbing needs.
Is the future of plumbing appointments in video consulting?
Smartphones are accessible to everyone now, so you may be able to see how the option to choose video consultation could be pretty handy. You could see a plumber for an easy fix, discuss your options for necessary works, save you money from an hours face to face labour or call out, with the flexibility to fit around busy schedules. However, it can’t be as good as it sounds, right? You might find yourself wondering if it’s secure enough, or wondering who you’re going to have your appointment with and where they are in the country. Where are your records kept? Are the details of the conversation recorded, or do you need some specific techniques to have a video appointment? Will it even work?
The truth is that video plumber appointments are seeing huge popularity and growth. In the age of technology, where people lead busy lives, having a plumber available at your fingertips is becoming a reality.
Is a video appointment right for me?
The reality is that there are definitely times when video consulting comes into its own and is very useful. However, there are also times when it isn’t the best option.
So, how do you know which type of appointment to choose? Let’s take a look at the things you’ll need to consider to help you decide which option will work best for you. Consider what your plumbing or heating problem is, how time you require, and what technology you have access to.
What’s your plumbing problem?
Naturally, some problems will lend themselves better to a face-to-face visit, rather than a video call. You should take into account whether the plumber needs to visit, for example, if you have a leak which is a serious emergency causing damage. Or is this something that they could easily see during a video call? For example, you may need help adjusting your thermostat settings.
AS Plumbing and Gas cover all of South East London and North Kent areas. If you live outside of these areas, you may find it very convenient to have a video consultation. However, it is important to keep your problem in mind and consider whether the plumber is likely to recommend a follow-up with the repair at some point.
Does your home or location you are calling from have sufficient internet access to hold a video consultation? If not, would the plumber you choose to consider speaking to you over the phone instead?
What equipment and technology do I need to have a video plumber consultation?
It is important to check with the provider as to what technology requirements you require to run the video consultation. Cameras are so advanced now that most companies can offer video consultations from simply your smartphone, iPad, tablet or laptop. With AS Plumbing and Gas, all you need to do is either Facetime, Zoom, Skype. If this sounds easy enough, then great! However, if you confess to being a bit of a “technophobe”, then perhaps this isn’t for you. In that case, you should consider a telephone or in-person consultation.
Is my data safe and will the call be private?
All companies must abide by stringent guidelines regarding data protection and the security of their platforms. All of this is easily available to read within the terms and conditions on our website. Alternatively, you could request this information to read through at your own leisure. Your data is only available us when you give that information to us. Our own platform provides an additional level of security and prevents third parties from accessing your information.
I hope this has helped to answer some of your questions regarding online plumber consultations. Many people have never seen a plumber over video link before; so perhaps the whole thing still seems a bit daunting to you. If used correctly, there is no reason to fear having a video consultation with an experienced plumber or Gas Safe heating engineer. In many instances, it can be much more convenient than having to take time off work or move other commitments around to make a face-to-face plumbing appointment.
There are definitely times where you cannot beat a seeing a plumber face to face. There’s a lot to be said for a plumber being hands-on, getting to work on a repair and that expertise can never fully be replaced, neither with artificial intelligence or video. However, if used sensibly, video consulting can be a handy addition for you and your relationship with your plumber. It can save you time; it’s generally quicker than a face-to-face appointment, there’s no travel involved, no tricky parking situations and it can fit easily into your busy schedule.
Either way, it’s certainly a trend that is growing in the UK.
People appreciate the convenience that technology can bring them when it is becoming more difficult to obtain a plumbing appointment when it suits them and to potentially save on costs. AS Plumbing and Gas have begun offering video consultations to customers in order to free up time for everyone involved and reduce customer waiting times.