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Essential Work during COVID-19 Level 4

As New Zealand hunkers down at home in COVID-19 Level 4 lockdown, the plumbing, gas and drains in our properties are getting more use than usual. This could lead to breakdowns or failures.


Fortunately, we are classed as an essential services during the lockdown. However, we are only allowed to carry out essential work in situations where people’s health and safety is in immediate danger.

Essential Services

Anchor 1

The emphasis is on essential repairs, not those that can wait for another day.

 Current definitions include:

  • The repair/replacement of hot water cylinders that have failed (hot water will be required for sanitation purposes) and where there is an immediate threat to people's health and safety:

  •  The unblocking and repair/replacement of sanitary waste pipes where there is an immediate threat to human health and safety.

  •  The repair/replacement of water pipes where there is an immediate threat

         to human health and safety.

  •  The repair/replacement of gas piping, fittings and appliances

Examples of the things that would not be included in that definition are:

  • The repair of minor leaks.

  • The replacement to tap washers.

  • Routine servicing.

  • The replacement of sanitary fixtures that are working.

Making The Call

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Before you pick up the phone, remember that as many people as possible in New Zealand are supposed to be staying at home to halt the spread of the virus. This includes tradespeople.

Risk assessment is essential, so ask yourself:

  • Is this really an urgent job or can it wait?

  • Is anyone in immediate danger?

  • Do I really want to risk someone outside my bubble entering my home?

  • Can I make do — or find another temporary solution — until lockdown ends?

You will need to be ready to:

  •  Describe the problem in detail. Providing photos or video or a live feed could help diagnose the problem and minimise the amount of time the tradesperson spends in your home

  • Answer questions about your health and lockdown situation — Who is in your property? Is anyone vulnerable? Are you all healthy? Are you in self-isolation or quarantine?

  •  Have we done work for you before – If you are a new client a deposit will be required.  

​What if we say no?

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We have the right to refuse a job request. Please do not be offended if your job is turned down. There will be a good reason.

 During the lockdown, plumbing, gasfitting & drainlaying businesses:

  • Must follow government rules and only carry out essential services

  • May be extremely busy and/or short-staffed

If your job is non-essential, please make a booking after the lockdown.  

Do not attempt to do the work yourself!  We are already hearing reports of DIY work going wrong — resulting in water and gas leaks.  Almost all aspects of plumbing, gasfitting and drainlaying work are restricted and illegal to DIY.  

Anchor 4

Carrying out essential work

If your job fits the criteria, all steps and preventative measures should be explained to you at time of booking and by the tradesperson prior to entering your property.

Upon arrival, the tradesperson may call you from outside so you can open the door and then self-isolate/move to another room while the work is carried out.  Everyone involved needs to maintain physical distancing - keep 2 metres away.

The plumber/gasfitter/drainlayer will be wearing protective gear if they are coming into your home.

While they will clean up after themselves, for your own peace of mind and to preserve your bubble, you may wish to deep clean after they leave.

Rogers & Rogers have the safety, health and wellbeing of our customers and employees as their top priority.

As a customer, you need to make sure you're comfortable with someone outside your bubble coming into your home and take all necessary steps to minimise the risks to you, your family and the tradesperson.


Stay Safe. Be Kind. We will get through this.

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