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What is a Green Plumber?

By Kathy R
Updated May 17, 2024
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A green plumber is a plumber who is certified as participating in sustainable practices related to the plumbing field. A plumber receives this certification by performing his or her job in such a way that it saves water and energy, and by successfully completing the required certification courses. It's not always easy to get this certification, requiring hours of training.

In the United States, plumbers can get certified green by attending five courses offered by GreenPlumbers USA and then applying what they've learned to their plumbing practices. These classes are on the following topics: climate care, water care, solar hot water, efficient technology, and inspections. In most cases, a plumbing company can have a trainer come out to the practice to teach the plumbers what they need to know, if it has the financial means to do so.

GreenPlumbers also offers workshops throughout the United States on a regular basis and it has a presence in Australia, New Zealand, and Canada. Its series of courses runs 32 hours total. Each plumber must attend every session of the course to become successfully certified. Then he or she is allowed to promote the plumbing business as green, and reap the increased clientele and good press this can bring.

The green plumber program started in Australia in 2001. It expanded to California in 2008, and began spreading across the United States. Consumers' growing interest in green products no doubt has something to do with the program's continued success.

The practice of green plumbing is still a relatively new one, which can make it hard for some people to find certified green plumbers. This is especially true in areas that are far from major cities, or are in countries besides the four mentioned above. That makes it a good idea for people to encourage their current plumbers to get certified green instead of just waiting until one that already has the credentials to open up shop.

Consumers in the United States who choose to work with certified a green plumber may be able to get energy conservation rebates on their taxes due to the energy saving devices the plumbers install. It's smart to document all of the parts that a green plumber purchases for a particular home to check and see if they are eligible for a rebate later. Most plumbing appliances, such as water heaters, that bear the Energy Star logo can help to save some money on the recipient's next tax return.

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Discussion Comments
By backdraft — On Feb 24, 2012

A green plumber friend of mine recently told me about a toilet that he has been recommending to a lot of his clients.

Basically, it has two different flushes. One for number one and another for number two. They use different amounts of water so that you are not flushing the maximum necessary down the drain every time you use the bathroom. It does not cost significantly more money and you are helping the environment in a bigger way than you know. Water conservation is an important issue that gets bigger every year.

By nextcorrea — On Feb 24, 2012

I bought a house recently and very quickly had some problems with the pipes. I had to find a plumber that could overhaul the entire plumbing system of the house. Of course I wanted to work with a properly licensed and registered plumber. but I also figure if I am redoing the entire system why not use a green plumber as well?

It was great because now my system is made of entirely sustainable materials. But even better is that I save a ton on my water and energy bills. The system is designed to use the minimum amount of water and energy. If is maximized for efficiency. This means saving for me. I think the little bit extra I spent to go with a green plumber has made up for itself in utility savings.

By EdRick — On Feb 24, 2012

I never heard of a certified green plumber. To me, a "green" plumber is anyone whose first thought is *not* pouring toxic chemicals down the drain!

I remember calling my rental agency when my son was a baby and asking for a plumber service because I had a slow drain. They wanted me to try Drano or Liquid Plumber first, but I told them I had a baby and a pet and I wouldn't have that stuff in the house.

And the plumber was able to clear the drain by simply plunging it! Never occurred to me to plunge a *bathtub,* but it worked - and was completely "green."

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