Average Labour Cost/Price to Fit/Replace Basin Taps (Plumbers' Rates)

To clarify the following prices it is recommended that you read the article in the INFORMATION box below the PRICES…

(These prices are based on a tradesman’s rate of £150.00 per day and a labourer if required at £100.00 per day. This includes the cost of buying and collecting any materials, dumping any waste if necessary and any incidental materials they will need. The minimum price will usually be for a half day)

How Much Does It Cost To Replace Basin Taps?

basin taps

You buy the taps.

Any plumber brave enough to take this on would quote half a day’s labour plus £10 for “fixings” so……

To change the taps “like for like” with a couple of in line “ball o fix” stop taps, you can expect the same price and if it all goes smoothly for him it will only take an hour or so but don’t expect a rebate…… and put some ear plugs in.

For your must-see guide to Tradesmen's Rates please click on the map…


A Price Guide and Information Sheet on Fitting and Replacing Bathroom Taps

I'm going to give a blow-by-blow description of exactly what happened when a customer instructed me to undertake this very job a few weeks ago. She had lived in Texas for 20 years where everything is brand, spanking new. She had been yearning for a mixer tap on her bathroom basin for 4 years.

First, stop the water to both taps, this meant totally emptying the airing cupboard to get at the hot water stop tap (a gate valve with a circular red handle). This was seized and only just turned without coming off in my hand.

Next I took everything out from under the kitchen sink to get to the stopcock and turn of the
mains coming into the house.

She had filled pans and kettles to tide us over the hour or so the job was going to take, so off with the existing old taps. These were installed by Noah and time had welded them into position so tightly, that extracting Excalibur began to look like a piece of cake!

Remember, everything is being attempted upside down with the toilet bowl trying to muscle in on the action.

There was no way even my fabulous collection of specialist spanners was going to budge the
easier to get at of the 2 taps, so the basin had to come off the wall. This was secured to the wall with an off-cut from the Forth Bridge and a couple of 20 inch long rusty old bolts (which I could have boxed up and sold on eBay as the things they fixed the Titanic’s funnels on with).

waste pipe turned out to be copper (a good indicator of antiquity) and completely inaccessible inside the pedestal. I managed to unscrew it (in tandem with some extremely judicious application of heat), near to the wall but the angle and the pedestal prevented me lifting the basin away, so the pedestal had to come out as well.

This was screwed to the floor of course and in the process of removal one of the ceramic lugs broke, no big deal, a splodge of
silicone would sort that!

Now, bearing in mind the whole thing (basin and pedestal) had to be backed away from the wall “as one” the carpet (in a bathroom!) was fitted
around it and with the underlay, was about an inch thick so the carpet had to come up as well.

So…. now we have a bloke in a room where you couldn’t swing a cat, with a carpet half up, a basin upside down on the floor, a pedestal propped in the corner, tools everywhere, a bath full of waste bins, toilet roll baskets, (everything has a basket in this house) and other assorted odds and sods, swathed in a muck-sweaty lather. And you wonder why plumbers charge a lot!

Eventually I heated up the Dickensian putty enough to free the taps. A tricky job when the basin might explode at any moment if you apply heat for too long in the same place.

Right, fix the new tap with it’s two flexible connectors into one of the existing holes. It went in okay but wouldn’t face straight into the basin because of round pegs in square holes. That stumped me for a while until I realised I would have to attempt the impossible and enlarge the glazed tap hole. This was a total and utter botch, achieved by trying to drill with a masonry bit alongside the existing hole in 3 places. Loads more than I intended broke away and I was amazed the basin remained in one piece but eventually the tap was fixed in place in a hole that was way too big for it by making an ugly great washer for the underside and filling all around it with white silicone. It looks awful and moves if you try and turn it!

All the 50 year old seals in the copper waste pipe had evaporated during removal so I had to botch them up with PTFE tape and just hope that I’d got the angle right because this basin was going back
at the first attempt.

Obviously I wasn’t going to use the “scaffolding” to refix the basin so everything was cleaned and “siliconed up” including the back wall because the whole thing was going to be STUCK back together. I’m still picking the stuff off my fingers by the way!

I didn’t get the angle right of course but it was now back on the wall with the waste in place and amazingly, not leaking. The thing didn’t go back exactly in the same place though, in fact it’s at a truly horrible angle. There’s far too much white silicone filling the gap between it and the tiles and because the basin’s
green you can see this from the moon.

In fact it looks like a 5 year old did the job and it took about 5 hours. BUT the customer (who, it being
just over the yard arm, was well into her second bottle of Blue Nun by this time) was elated!

I obviously didn't charge her and made my exit.

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