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Old 27.05.2020, 20:02
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Buying taps in Germany?

Hi all,

We are renovating our bathrooms right now and our contractor is telling us we need to source the taps from his supplier in Switzerland rather than buying them online from Germany (Reuter) or the UK. He says this is something to do with the water pressure (3 bars v. 4 bars?). Of course ordering from Reuter is about 30% of the price. . . I can't find anything online about this though. Does anyone know if this is correct? Is it that the taps won't work at all, or that the water pressure might be compromised?

The suppliers I've spoken in other European countries said they've sold taps to Swiss customers with no issue.

Thank you!
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Old 27.05.2020, 20:21
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Re: Buying taps in Germany?

You will find this is totally the norm in Switzerland. We know our plumber really well, and he is a nice, friendly guy- but he says that is how they work- buy from their supplier (Sabag) or find another plumber. And if you find another plumber, they will 99.9% probably 100%, say the same. The Swiss trades work as 'guilds' and all adopt the same principle. Very protectionist - I can see both sides. In our case, they put the professional discount they get in our favour, as we are friends. That also means they are always ready to turn up, fitting us in a busy schedule, if we ever need them. And of course guarantee the work and the goods they provide. Just the way it is here.
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Old 27.05.2020, 20:29
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Re: Buying taps in Germany?

You don‘t really need a plumber to fit taps....
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Old 27.05.2020, 20:32
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Re: Buying taps in Germany?

We got our last bathroom taps from Reuter.de.

They work fine.

Your plumber is talking b*llocks.

They sell the same taps because they are the same.

Example:

Grohe Lineare 23106001 from Galaxus

Grohe Lineare 23106001 from Reuter

Not much difference in price though.

Probably twice the price though at Sanitas Trösch or one of those other places where it's difficult to find the price.
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Old 27.05.2020, 20:37
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Re: Buying taps in Germany?

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And of course guarantee the work and the goods they provide. Just the way it is here.

I'll tell you the way it is here - the last plumber we used did twice as much work as we asked for - which wasn't necessary, lost a brass end-cap when he drained a pipe and charged us for the half hour where, according to my wife, he was outside chatting on his phone and smoking.

Just the way it is here.
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Old 27.05.2020, 20:38
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Re: Buying taps in Germany?

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You don‘t really need a plumber to fit taps....

Agreed - in our case, it was doing a whole new bathroom including complicated plumbing.
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Old 27.05.2020, 20:39
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Re: Buying taps in Germany?

We bought two full bathrooms from Germany from Reuter and Megabad (due to lack of availability of some items at Reuter). Our project manager said it would have cost us double to buy the same in Switzerland. The plumber we had lined up did fit them for us, but we had to sign a waiver to say it wasn‘t his fault if they failed.

The taps work just fine.
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Old 27.05.2020, 20:42
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Re: Buying taps in Germany?

Interesting - I do not know of any plumbing firm here who will agree to fit showers/bathroom/fittings not sourced from their own supplier and certainly not from abroad. They have plenty of work- so much building/renovating around + industrial- so they can afford to stick to it.
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Old 27.05.2020, 20:54
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Re: Buying taps in Germany?

Thanks, this is all very helpful. I think he is saying the plumbers will fit them, but don't want to accept responsibility if they don't work (like eyebeebe said).

Glad to know it's just the norm, although I wish he would have just explained this to me rather than saying it is due to a technical issue which is actually a non-issue. At the outset he said we could buy all of own fixtures if we wanted, but he never mentioned then that the plumbers wouldn't then guarantee the job. We asked them to choose fixtures for us, but then what they proposed was not what we asked for/just wrong (examples: recommending a bathtub that is too big for the space, recommending a 40cm rainshower with a 45cm arm for an 80x80 shower). So we've just started sourcing the products ourselves.
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Old 27.05.2020, 21:01
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Re: Buying taps in Germany?

He wants to pocket the difference between the price they show you and the price he pays.

Try to talk price down some, or tell him you'll order them yourself elsewhere.

Those discounts can be huge, as an electrician I had 80% discount on cables and pipes, 50% on switches, wall sockets and such, 60% on power cabinets etc..
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Old 27.05.2020, 21:08
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Re: Buying taps in Germany?

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We got our last bathroom taps from Reuter.de.

They work fine.

Your plumber is talking b*llocks.
Indeed.

One thing to be careful of though, is that mixer taps that mount directly onto the pipes coming out of the wall tend to have a different distance between the hot and cold, the Swiss standard is something like 150mm and the EU is 160. Or thereabouts.

You can get mountings to cope with this, with a built-in offset, but this can cause problems, especially if the pipes in the wall are not exactly the same length. Had a few issues here (Morgins) with the adaptors breaking after a year or so, having been under stress. Also they can make it difficult to fit the chrome surround, so aesthetically they're not ideal. I notice that they have some much better adaptors (than I used before) at Jumbo, so will be getting those next time I'm making changes and refitting the French sourced taps.

A Swiss plumber will not touch them with a bargepole, couldn't guarantee the work, etc. so I can well i,agine that they're going to insist on Swiss-sourced taps.
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Old 27.05.2020, 23:25
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Re: Buying taps in Germany?

Water pressure varies, there's no standard although Switzerland is often surprisingly strong. In Germany 3 bar is the industry standard but you can have 2 bar in one town and 4 in an another.

Another satisfied Reuter customer here, I fitted German taps from them (Herzbach) myself, no problem. Saved a fortune.
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Old 27.05.2020, 23:37
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Re: Buying taps in Germany?

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Interesting - I do not know of any plumbing firm here who will agree to fit showers/bathroom/fittings not sourced from their own supplier and certainly not from abroad. They have plenty of work- so much building/renovating around + industrial- so they can afford to stick to it.
So fit it yourself.

We have 1 bar at the rustico, the pressure does NOT matter.

Tom
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Old 28.05.2020, 00:12
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Re: Buying taps in Germany?

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Thanks, this is all very helpful. I think he is saying the plumbers will fit them, but don't want to accept responsibility if they don't work (like eyebeebe said).

Glad to know it's just the norm, although I wish he would have just explained this to me rather than saying it is due to a technical issue which is actually a non-issue.

The "norm" is that they want to make money out of you, hence the "technical issue"
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Old 28.05.2020, 00:33
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Re: Buying taps in Germany?

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Indeed.

One thing to be careful of though, is that mixer taps that mount directly onto the pipes coming out of the wall tend to have a different distance between the hot and cold, the Swiss standard is something like 150mm and the EU is 160. Or thereabouts.

My place doesn't have pipes that come out of the wall, it has the female threaded pipe in the wall and connectors that create the impression of pipes that come out of the wall. If they're straight ones (which I've never seen) you can replace them with offset connectors. This is how most installations are done as the pipework usually isn't done to such precision, including the length of the pipe but you don't screw the connectors necessarily all the way down you screw them in as far as you need and so the ends of the connectors are in the same plane. Sounds like you got this part wrong.


https://www.betterbathrooms.com/Imag...ersize.jpg?v=2

Last edited by Landers; 28.05.2020 at 00:44.
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Old 28.05.2020, 10:59
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Re: Buying taps in Germany?

Thanks! We actually found the exact same model of the shower we wanted to buy (which he said wouldn't work because it is coming from Germany) at Hornbach.

We've been through the same thing with the tiles (word of advice: buy your tiles from tileexpert! they are like 25% of the price of Saneo etc.), he ended up "convincing" Saneo to give us a 20% discount and they would be delivered earlier (only reason we accepted to go with Saneo was the timing - otherwise tileexpert would still have saved us more than CHF1,500).

It's tiring. I know I just need to accept that this is how it all works, still makes me

I will need to learn how to fit taps myself!
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Old 28.05.2020, 11:16
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Re: Buying taps in Germany?

I can see both sides. On the one hand the plumber wants to install items he is familiar with and works. There also should be a premium as it takes time for him to acquire the items.

Like many things, there is strong protection. I'm in the process of installing kitchen myself and struggle to get the parts here in Switzerland as they refuse to sell to non-trades and the big box stores don't have a full range.

In the end I had the choice of ordering online and waiting for parts to come from overseas or holding my nose and paying a local plumber to come with the necessary parts and do a 30 minute job.
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Old 28.05.2020, 11:34
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Re: Buying taps in Germany?

Quote:
Interesting - I do not know of any plumbing firm here who will agree to fit showers/bathroom/fittings not sourced from their own supplier and certainly not from abroad. They have plenty of work- so much building/renovating around + industrial- so they can afford to stick to it.
Get a French or German plumber, problem solved
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Old 28.05.2020, 11:48
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Re: Buying taps in Germany?

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I can see both sides. On the one hand the plumber wants to install items he is familiar with and works. There also should be a premium as it takes time for him to acquire the items.
I can see both sides too. The problem comes when one side is convinced that the consumer does not have a choice in the matter.
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Old 28.05.2020, 11:50
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Re: Buying taps in Germany?

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Get a French or German plumber, problem solved
The local French plumbers all work for the Swiss plumbers same for carpenters, electricians ... Well not all- but the local firms are headed by Swiss but employ many frontaliers. The thing is, it is a choice at the end of the day- by using local artisans, you buy a lot more than taps (in the case of our guest bathroom- it was a lot more than that- ceiling down, changing postions of doors, insulatint, knocking down walls and building new ones ...so not something we could have done ourselves) - you buy into loyalty and service- you know they will be there in minutes in an emergency and back you up with insurance, etc. Imagine what would happenn with a plumbing emergency during border closure. Local guy would just tell you he is really busy and can't fit you in. If you are a customer, they will be there in a few minutes.

Not a single plumber in our region will fit, never mind guarantee, products they don't know- for 100s of reasons, and money not being the only one (in our case, they passed the discount onto us).

Insurance- wise - I wonder. If you fit plumbing yourself and you get a leak that causes a lot of damage- what happens? With electrics, you certainly would not.

Last edited by Odile; 28.05.2020 at 12:01.
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