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Apple Blog

Filtering by Category: The Apple Team

It's Good to be a Plumber!

Pat Scheper

Pat.jpg

I was listening to Jill Schlesinger this morning on my way to the office.  She is on WBAL every Friday morning with some sound financial observations and advice.  The topic this morning was jobs outlook for current college graduates.  Jill said the job market is very good. A college graduate this year can expect to land a job making a $50,000 annual salary.  She said that is a very good salary for someone just out of college entering the market.  Jill also said that the average debt from college expenses is $37,000.00.  She believes that a graduate with a $50k job will be able to handle that debt.

Well, this got me to thinking about the trades (electrical, carpentry, HVAC, plumbing, etc…) in general and my trade, plumbing, in particular.  And I’m thinking that it is good to be a plumber.

Let’s take a look at where young person will be after four years of “Plumber College” at Apple Plumbing:

After finishing four years of Plumbing College at Apple Plumbing and successfully passing the State Journeyman Test, he/she will be earning anywhere from $50,000 -$80,000 annually .

During his/her four years of Plumbing College an apprentice will have earned approximately $104,000 in pay.  Wait a minute!  We are paying someone to go to our Plumbing College?  They aren’t accumulating college debt? WOW!

In addition to great pay, there are other benefits an Apple Plumbing College graduate is entitled to:

  • 80 hours annual paid time off
  • 24 hours annual sick time off
  • Health, vision and dental insurance
  • Company iPhone
  • Company truck to take home
  • Paid training and continuing education
  • Paid re-certifications
  • Quarterly performance bonus
  • Matching IRA up to 3% of earnings
  • Company paid uniforms
  • Company credit card
  • Personal tool replacement
  • Paid holidays

Not bad at all for someone fresh out of college.

Yes, IT’S GOOD TO BE A PLUMBER!

 

“TOILETS! Cheese and Crackers!”

Pat Scheper

My dad, Clements August Scheper, was a plumber. His business was C. A. Scheper & Son in Randallstown. The “son” was first my brother, and then was me.  Note the singular “son”.  Dad was difficult to work for but he knew plumbing and he taught me a lot of plumbing. If you’ll indulge me, I’ll relate a trick of the trade that he taught me in the spring of 1977.  Sue and I were engaged and I was working for my dad. We installed a new 3” copper water main and connected it to an existing 3” steel water main in a building. We finished on a Friday afternoon, turned on the water, and lo and behold (do people say “lo & behold” anymore?) the joint where our copper connected to the steel was leaking.  Not a bad leak, but a leak none-the-less. …and this was Friday afternoon!

I asked Dad what we were we going to do?  He gave me a dollar and sent me to a local grocery store for a can of Morton Salt. Dad spread his handkerchief on the floor, poured a thick line of salt diagonally on the kerchief and rolled it up.  He then tied the salt laden handkerchief around the leaking joint and said “let’s go home”.  Monday morning that pipe joint was dry as a bone and has been ever since.  I have a bag of tricks like this that he taught me.

What does this have to do with toilets?  Well, nothing really, except to introduce you to my Dad.  Dad was old school through and through.  It took him years to start using PVC drain piping instead of cast iron and steel.  Dad would call people in the trade who used plastic pipe and fittings ”hacksaw & glue plumbers”. He hated plastic pipe. Once a plumber stopped in the office to apply for a job. He told Dad that "he just did new plumbing" and not service. Dad asked him what would he do if he installed a new toilet and it didn’t work, call a plumber?  Needless to say, that guy didn’t get hired.  I often think about Dad and how he would see the plumbing trade today.  My guess is he’d tell me we’re doing it all wrong and should stop using plastic pipe!

When I came up in the trade (late 60’s and 70’s) there were no big home box stores where anyone can purchase most anything for the home; stores that are geared to the do-it-yourselfer.  Back then, if a customer needed a new toilet, we would pick it up at the supply house and install it. There was no choice for the homeowner. It was either American Standard or Eljer and they took what we provided. Same with faucets. The only place a homeowner could buy plumbing parts was the local hardware store. In Randallstown it was Deer Park Hardware on Liberty Rd.  It seems you could buy anything there.  In 1978, when Sue and I were just one year into our marriage, I bought a ceramic mixing bowl set that we still use.

Again, I digress.

Back to toilets. When Dad was in business, every toilet tank had pretty much the same parts:  a ballcock, a flush valve, a tank ball, a float ball, lift rods, a float rod, and an overflow tube.  If I kept those parts on my truck, I could pretty much repair any toilet. The only toilet that those parts didn’t work for was a one piece toilet.  For that, I just made a trip to the supply house.  Now, there are high efficient toilets and imported toilets and comfort height toilets and dual flush there are almost 4,000 different toilet sold in the United States. That’s a lot of different parts, and impossible to keep them all on a service truck.

Also, now every toilet sold is given a MaP rating.  This rating tells you how much waste a toilet will cleanly flush in grams. The ratings go from 250 to 1,000.  We only install toilets with a rating of 800 or better. You can check it out yourself:  http://www.map-testing.com/ .  Toilets now come in a seemingly infinite variety of colors and styles. And prices.  A customer once paid us over $1,300.00 for a new toilet!  And then there are heated toilet seats, toilet seats that will wash your bum when you finish, toilet seats that are bidets, and even toilets that flush themselves when you are finished!

When Dad was amazed or startled by something he would never take the Lord’s name in vain by saying “J…. C…….!”.   He would instead say “Cheese and Crackers!”  Today he would say “TOILETS…Cheese and Crackers!”

(Oh, the reason the pipe stopped leaking is that the salt caused the metal to oxidize. It rusted the metal thus plugging up the leak. Once the salt was removed the oxidation stopped. For a man with only an 8th grade education, Dad was pretty smart!)

Apple Plumbing Apprentice Receives License

Ben Scheper

Westminster, Maryland. December 22, 2016. Apple Plumbing & Heating Inc., a full service plumbing company located in Westminster, is pleased and proud to announce that Luke Tutin passed the Maryland Board of Plumbing’s journeyman examination and is now a fully licensed journeyman plumber/gasfitter.  94651 Luke joined Apple in 2012 under the company’s Apprentice program which provides four years paid training of plumbing, backflow, gas, and hydronic heat trades, in preparation for the state journeyman plumber/gasfitter license exam.

Apple Plumbing provides general plumbing, well pump, water treatment, drain cleaning, and water heater services to Carroll, Frederick, Baltimore, and Howard County residents and contractors. The company now employs a full staff of twelve, running seven trucks, and has one Goldendoodle named Bunker.

Apple Plumbing & Heating has received numerous awards for excellence in service and for business innovation. These include: Carroll’s Best 2012, 2013, 2014, 2015, 2016, Carroll County Chamber Business of the Year 2012, Maryland Breakthrough Business Award 2013, and Angie’s List Super Service Award 2013, 2014, and 2015.

For more information, contact Ben Scheper at 410.840.8118, ben@appleplumbing.com or visit the website www.appleplumbing.com.

Apple Plumbing & Heating Techs Receive Licenses

Ben Scheper

NEWS RELEASEFOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

 Jason Winstead, Master Plumbing Service Technician

Westminster, Maryland. August 11, 2016. Apple Plumbing & Heating Inc., a full service plumbing company located in Westminster, is pleased and proud to announce that two service technicians have received industry licenses.

Plumbing Service Technician Jason Winstead passed the Maryland Board of Plumbing’s masters examination and is now a fully licensed master plumber/gasfitter. Plumbing Service Technician Robert Eyler passed the Maryland Board of Plumbing’s journeyman examination and is now a fully licensed journeyman plumber/gasfitter.

Robert Eyler, Plumbing Service Technician

Apple Plumbing provides general plumbing, well pump, water treatment, drain cleaning, and water heater services to Carroll, Frederick, Baltimore, and Howard County residents and contractors. Maryland. Apple Plumbing & Heating now employs a full staff of twelve employees and one Goldendoodle names Bunker.

Apple Plumbing & Heating has received numerous awards for excellence in service and for business innovation. These include: Carroll’s Best 2012, 2013, 2014, 2015, Carroll County Chamber Business of the Year 2012, Maryland Breakthrough Business Award 2013, and Angie’s List Super Service Award 2013, 2014, and 2015.

For more information, contact Ben Scheper at 410.840.8118, ben@appleplumbing.com or visit the website www.appleplumbing.com.

 

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Apple Plumbing & Heating Welcomes New Apprentice to the Team

Ben Scheper

Westminster, Maryland. May 18, 2016. Apple Plumbing & Heating Inc., a full service plumbing company located in Westminster, Maryland is pleased to announce that apprentice RobertEylerplumber/gas fitter Robert Harry Eyler has joined the Apple Plumbing Team. Robert has over six years experience in the plumbing industry including well pump installations, pressure tanks, sewer lines, and water heater installations. Robert will be taking his journeyman license exam in 2016.

Apple Plumbing provides general plumbing, well pump, water treatment, drain cleaning, and water heater services to Carroll, Frederick, Baltimore, and Howard County residents and contractors. The company was founded in 1994 by Pat and Sue Scheper both with strong ties to the community and a keen sense for customer service. The business grew by word-of-mouth and by 2009, son Ben Scheper came on board and the company soon moved to their current location on Aileron Court in Westminster, Maryland. Apple Plumbing & Heating now employs a full staff of twelve employees, and one Goldendoodle names Bunker.

Apple Plumbing & Heating has received numerous awards for excellence in service and for business innovation. These include: Carroll’s Best 2012 and 2013, Carroll County Chamber Business of the Year 2012, Maryland Breakthrough Business Award 2013, and Angie’s List Super Service Award 2013, 2014, and 2015.

For more information, contact Ben Scheper at 410.840.8118, ben@appleplumbing.com or visit the website www.appleplumbing.com.

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Apple Plumbing & Heating VP Ben Scheper Selected to BBJ's '40 Under 40'

Pat Scheper

Westminster, Maryland. August 19, 2015. Ben Scheper, Apple Plumbing & Heating Inc. Vice President, was selected as one of Baltimore Business Journal's “40 Under 40”, a prestigious designation awarded annually to forty up and coming business professionals under the age of forty.ben-scheper Scheper was selected from over 350 nominees ranging in industries from banking, finance, retail, law, non-profits and more. In 2009, Ben graduated from the Robert H. Smith School of Business at the University of Maryland with a BA in Finance and began working at Apple that same year. He is responsible for developing and implementing many of the company's current procedures and processes which have led to Apple Plumbing's current success.

For more info about the Baltimore Business Journal's '40 Under 40', visit the web page: http://www.bizjournals.com/baltimore/news/2015/08/19/here-are-our-2015-40-under-40-honorees.html

Apple Plumbing provides general plumbing, well pump, water treatment, drain cleaning, and water heater services to Carroll, Frederick, Baltimore, and Howard County residents and contractors. The company was founded in 1994 by Pat and Sue Scheper both with strong ties to the community and a keen sense for customer service. The business grew by word-of-mouth and soon moved to their current location on Aileron Court in Westminster, Maryland. Since then, the company has expanded its shop space and now has a full team of seven plumbers and apprentices, three office personnel, five trucks, and one Goldendoodle named Bunker.

Apple Plumbing & Heating has received numerous awards for excellence in service and for business innovation. These include: Carroll’s Best 2012 and 2013, Carroll County Chamber Business of the Year 2012, Maryland Breakthrough Business Award 2013, and Angie’s List Super Service Award 2013 and 2014.

New Water Heaters for The Hill Family Central Y

AdminSheila

YMCA In late June, Apple Plumbing & Heating, Inc. installed a new, high efficient hot water system for The Hill Family Center Y.The following photos and description details the work that was done, the planning that went into it and how this installation helped the Y reduce their carbon footprint.

The old system that the Y of Central Maryland was using consisted of two 80 gallon propane water heaters with a 200 gallon storage tank. This old system had an efficiency of less than 60%.

YMCA WH 1

The Y chose to have us install a new, high efficiency tankless water heating system. This system consists of five 95% efficient propane-fired water heaters with a recirculating pump and integral system controller. We chose Noritz water heaters for their dependability, ease of programming and factory support. Off the bat, we estimate the Hill Family Center Y will burn over 2,500 LESS gallons of propane gas annually. By my research and calculations that is over 31,000 lbs LESS carbon dioxide being emitted into the air each year! The new system has no storage tanks that need to be constantly heated even if no hot water is being used. The heaters only heat water as needed. If no hot water is flowing, the heaters are not burning gas. The system comes with a controller that monitors hot water flow and turns on heaters as needed. If a little hot water is required, only one heater will fire. In addition, each heater modulates its gas usage from 15,000 BTU to 199,000 BTU.

YMCA WH 2

As you can see, the system is compact which reflects its efficiency. Our team of Jordan, Bruce and Luke worked long days for a full week in order to get the Hill Family Center Y back on line with hot water. Jordan spent a full day the week before the job planning out the installation. There was quite a bit of piping installed in a very small space. They had to install gas piping, cold water piping, hot water piping, recirculating piping, condensate piping and flue piping. All in three days. In total, the project took five days. The last two days were spent on electrical wiring and control wiring. Tim Kyle Electric was our subcontractor for the electrical work. His crew was challenged to integrate the new system with old controls and wiring. It took some creative thinking but Tim Kyle Electric, along with Jordan, figured out the sequencing and was able to fire up the system on Friday afternoon to bring the Hill Family Center Y back on line with hot water as promised.

YMCA WH 3

All of us at Apple Plumbing congratulate the Hill Family Canter Y for their commitment to our environment. They chose a system that provides their members with an abundance of hot water while saving energy and decreasing their carbon footprint. Their decision results in a great benefit not only for their organization and members, but to the community they serve. Jordan, Bruce, Luke, and all of us at Apple Plumbing are honored to have been given the responsibility to design and install a high efficient hot water generating system for the Hill Family Center Y. We value the confidence placed in our team and are proud of the product we delivered.

Apple Plumbing & Heating Adds Sixth Licensed Plumber to the Team!

Ben Scheper

Westminster, Maryland. January 5, 2015. Apple Plumbing & Heating Inc., a full service plumbing company located in Westminster, Maryland is pleased to announce that licensed Journeyman Jason Winstead has joined the Apple Plumbing Team. Jason has over seven years’ experience in the plumbing industry with expertise includes drain cleaning, well systems, and water heaters. Jason also served in the United States Air Force from 1997-1999 and currently lives in New Freedom, PA.

Apple Plumbing provides general plumbing, well pump, water treatment, drain cleaning, and water heater services to Carroll, Frederick, Baltimore, and Howard County residents and contractors. The company was founded in 1994 by Pat and Sue Scheper both with strong ties to the community and a keen sense for customer service. The business grew by word-of-mouth and by 2009, son Ben Scheper came on board and the company soon moved to their current location on Aileron Court in Westminster, Maryland. Since then, the company has expanded its shop space and now has a full team of six plumbers, two apprentices, three office personnel, five trucks, and one Goldendoodle named Bunker.

Apple Plumbing & Heating has received numerous awards for excellence in service and for business innovation. These include: Carroll’s Best 2012, 2013 and 2014, Carroll County Chamber Business of the Year 2012, Maryland Breakthrough Business Award 2013, and Angie’s List Super Service Award 2013.

Apple Plumbing & Heating Welcomes New Technician

Ben Scheper

Westminster, Maryland. August 27, 2014. Apple Plumbing & Heating Inc., a full service plumbing company located in Westminster, Maryland is pleased to announce that licensed Journeyman Chris Mills has joined the Apple Plumbing Team. Chris has over twenty years’ experience in the plumbing industry and has been licensed since 1996. Chris’s expertise includes water treatment systems, well pumps, constant pressure systems, and water heaters.

Apple Plumbing provides general plumbing, well pump, water treatment, drain cleaning, and water heater services to Carroll, Frederick, Baltimore, and Howard County residents and contractors. The company was founded in 1994 by Pat and Sue Scheper both with strong ties to the community and a keen sense for customer service. The business grew by word-of-mouth and by 2009, son Ben Scheper came on board and the company soon moved to their current location on Aileron Court in Westminster, Maryland. Since then, the company has expanded its shop space and now has a full team of plumbers and apprentices, three office personnel, five trucks, and one Goldendoodle named Bunker.

Apple Plumbing & Heating has received numerous awards for excellence in service and for business innovation. These include: Carroll’s Best 2012 and 2013, Carroll County Chamber Business of the Year 2012, Maryland Breakthrough Business Award 2013, and Angie’s List Super Service Award 2013.

Apple Plumbing & Heating Adds Two Plumbers to the Team

Ben Scheper

Westminster, Maryland. June 12, 2014. Apple Plumbing & Heating Inc., a full service plumbing company located in Westminster, Maryland recently added two plumbers to the Apple Plumbing Team. Apple Plumbing welcomes Master Plumber Jeremy Mason of Mount Airy with 19 years plumbing experience and Journeyman Plumber Bruce Edwards of Finksburg with 20 years plumbing experience. Apple Plumbing provides general plumbing, well pump, water treatment, drain cleaning, and water heater services to Carroll, Frederick, Baltimore, and Howard County residents and contractors. The company was founded in 1994 by Pat and Sue Scheper both with strong ties to the community and a keen sense for customer service. The business grew by word-of-mouth and by 2009, son Ben Scheper came on board and the company soon moved to their current location on Aileron Court in Westminster, Maryland. Since then, the company has expanded its shop space and now has a full team of seven plumbers and apprentices, three office personnel, five trucks, and one Goldendoodle named Bunker.

Apple Plumbing & Heating has received numerous awards for excellence in service and for business innovation. These include: Carroll’s Best 2012 and 2013, Carroll County Chamber Business of the Year 2012, Maryland Breakthrough Business Award 2013, and Angie’s List Super Service Award 2013.

For more information, contact Ben Scheper at 410.840.8118, ben@appleplumbing.com. ####