Is this too much for the work being done?

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Katie

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Hi, I recently got this bid from a local electrician for work to be done at my residence in Bothell, WA. A relative who in also an electrician but is commercial (I know completely different but equal jobs) says it looks like he's padding the job. Is there a book that has standard times for electrical jobs like mechanics have? (You know how they bill for 2.3 hours whether it takes them .5 hours for 4.0 hours?) If not, how am I supposed to know what the standard time/rate is? I try Google and all I get for answers are sites that want me to sign up to receive dozens of marketing calls and emails. I've included a copy of the proposal, I know I should get at least 3 but most want to charge for coming out, which is understandable. I know that the estimate is kind of vague in the exact nature of the work being done but the time listed for each is so precice that's why I asked if there are standard times that are billed and if so where do I find them?
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DIYorBust

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Hard to say without seeing the exact conditions. You can easily check the materials prices online. The labor might be a little inflated. You could try bidding it out and see if someone will do it for cheaper.
 

alfredeneuman

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The labor calculates to be >$174 an hour.
At least 2 of these tasks could be done by a single man (permit and water heater bond)
Get at least 2 other quotes, for sure.
 

Kreemoweet

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There are no "standard" times, nor could there be for this sort of work. There are many varieties of estimating software that each may have its own default job times,
and/or use any custom times entered by the user. Software frequently produces absurd results, such as the "56.15 minutes" for
the water heater bond above. But those figures are in reality totally irrelevant. You get a total sum for a bid, and it's up to you if
you want to pay that or not. You can be sure you will not be charged less if the actual time taken for any given sub-task is less than estimated.
 
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hj

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3.75 ours seems like a lot of time to drive one or two rods into the ground and wire them up. If some one works that slow on that task, maybe all the rest are the sane way. "Flat rate" books are notorious for overpricing individual tasks and definitely for a total job. In addition, he charges time for the permit, but the contract says the permit is EXCLUDED.
A friend had a VW that needed several things done on the engine> The dealer's shop quoted the work based on the Blue Book. When the friend mentioned that each of those tasks included removing the engine, the dealer said, "that is the price for the work?. So my friend told him schedule me for work on the next three days, because if I am going to pay for removing the engine three times, YOU ARE GOING to remove it three times. The dealer told him to go away and not come back.
 
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CheesecakeLover

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I had a main panel replaced in NJ in 2017 for $3000 including parts and labor. In general, I think NJ is an expensive state as far as labor goes. I was able to select my own panel. I chose QO Load Center by Square D, 200A, 46 or 48 space. The only thing is those combo GFCI/AFCI breakers are very expensive so Those were not included. The electrician used the regular breakers, then I changed them with the expensive ones at a later date. The $3000 included installing 2 grounding rods, which didn’t take much time, although that’s dependent on your soil type. Our soil has tons of rocks, actually the ground is just rocks with a little bit of soil to fill up the cracks, so the grounding rods went in much faster than I thought they would. I will say that the electrician was here with 2 techs ALL DAY; from early morning till dark; and then the techs came back the following day for a few more hours to finish up. Finally, the electrician swung around for an hour or 2 on the 3rd day to double check the work and present the final bill. So time-wise I think 9 hours is low for the panel change. But I really don’t understand that quote. Is he changing 2 panels?? Also 1 hr for bond to your plumbing? Is your plumbing located far away from your panel? I could see it taking an hour to pull that wire if it’s not easily accessible. Oh and, my panel change also required a new meter base, exterior mast, weathered and service entry cable with a new attachment to the street wires. All that was included for $3000 so I think your estimate is a tiny bit high, but to be honest I don’t know what the pandemic has done to labor rates so who knows. Get a 2nd and 3rd bid. I went to the town and filed for the permit and paid for the permit myself.
 
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