Diamond Certified Company Report

Pipe Spy Marin, Inc.

Diamond Certified Company Report

Pipe Spy Marin, Inc.

Diamond certified ratings dashboard
CUSTOMER SATISFACTION i
Customer LOYALTY i
Helpful Expertise i
Company Credentials i
  • Workers Compensation
  • Liability Insurance
  • License Verification
  • Business Practices
  • Current Complaint File
  • Legal & Finance
Phone SURVEY RESPONSES FROM 200 VERIFIED CUSTOMERS i

Kathleen M.

VERIFIED Pipe Spy Marin, Inc. CUSTOMER

1 of 200

Quality 10
10 10
Loyalty Yes
CRITIQUE

They arrive on time, they do their best to get the job done without additional fees, and the office people are hardworking and responsive. They are professionals all-around.

They are reliable and they do their best.

Robert R.

VERIFIED Pipe Spy Marin, Inc. CUSTOMER

2 of 200

Quality 10
10 10
Loyalty Yes
CRITIQUE

They are smart, reasonable, and incredibly professional.

They are very professional.

Carmin P.

VERIFIED Pipe Spy Marin, Inc. CUSTOMER

3 of 200

Quality 10
10 10
Loyalty Yes
CRITIQUE

They are reliable, they do good work, they show up on time, and they are professional.

I think they are a very friendly company and they try to accommodate the client's needs. My experience with them has been good. Every time I have called them, they have offered very good service.

Read All 200 Survey Responses at Ratings View
Diamond certified VIDEO PROFILE
Diamond certified company PROFILE

Myles O'Dwyer, President

Pipe Spy Marin, Inc. inspects, diagnoses, repairs, and replaces sewer lines for residential and commercial clients in Marin County and San Francisco. The company’s comprehensive inspection process includes providing a written report, video and estimate that detail the condition of each customer’s sewer line, which allows its technicians to customize their services to guarantee the best possible results.

President Myles O’Dwyer says his favorite part of working with sewer lines is solving the unique puzzle that every job presents. “Pipe work varies significantly from location to location—even if they’re right next door to each other—so it takes quite a bit of investigation and problem solving to find the best solutions. We’re challenged on a daily basis, but that’s exactly what makes this type of work so interesting.”

Pipe Spy Marin utilizes trenchless sewer replacement technology and pipe bursting techniques to maintain the integrity of its customers’ properties. “Some people think you have to dig a big trench in a yard to replace a sewer line, but our trenchless capabilities allow us to burst and replace an entire pipe without disturbing the ground in between,” explains Mr. O’Dwyer. “Our customers really appreciate having that option.” 

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DIAMOND CERTIFIED RESEARCHED CAPABILITIES ON Pipe Spy Marin, Inc.

COMPANY CONTACT
Service AREA

San Francisco
Marin County
San Anselmo
Larkspur
San Rafael
Mill Valley
Novato
Corte Madera
Sausalito

SERVICES PERFORMED

Sewer Line Inspection
Diagnosis
Repair & Replacement

DIAMOND CERTIFIED RESEARCHED ARTICLES ON Pipe Spy Marin, Inc.

Company Profile

Pipe Spy Marin, Inc. inspects, diagnoses, repairs, and replaces sewer lines for residential and commercial clients in Marin County and San Francisco. The company’s comprehensive inspection process includes providing a written report, video and estimate that detail the condition of each customer’s sewer line, which allows its technicians to customize their services to guarantee the best possible results.

President Myles O’Dwyer says his favorite part of working with sewer lines is solving the unique puzzle that every job presents. “Pipe work varies significantly from location to location—even if they’re right next door to each other—so it takes quite a bit of investigation and problem solving to find the best solutions. We’re challenged on a daily basis, but that’s exactly what makes this type of work so interesting.”

Pipe Spy Marin utilizes trenchless sewer replacement technology and pipe bursting techniques to maintain the integrity of its customers’ properties. “Some people think you have to dig a big trench in a yard to replace a sewer line, but our trenchless capabilities allow us to burst and replace an entire pipe without disturbing the ground in between,” explains Mr. O’Dwyer. “Our customers really appreciate having that option.” 

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Company Philosophy

"We understand how disruptive a sewer line problem can be to a household, so our main goal is to work as quickly and efficiently as possible so our customers can get back to normal. Sewer problems can really vary in terms of difficulty, but we always take the time to come up with the best solutions to our customers' problems."

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Comparative Summary

Maintaining customer satisfaction is a crucial aspect of any business, but it’s even more important for sewer line contractors that have earned the prestigious Diamond Certified award. For Pipe Spy Marin, Inc., the key to achieving and maintaining high levels of customer satisfaction is taking a measured, comprehensive approach to each project that ultimately ensures the best possible outcome.”When a property owner’s sewer line breaks, it’s a crisis that needs to be remedied immediately, so we’re very adept at working as expeditiously as possible,” says President Myles O’Dwyer. “Our customers really appreciate the amount of time and effort we put into our work.”

Pipe Spy Marin has been inspecting, diagnosing, repairing and replacing sewer lines for residential and commercial clients in Marin County and San Francisco since 2007. The company’s thorough inspection process includes providing a written report and estimate that detail the condition of each customer’s sewer line, which allows its technicians to customize their services to guarantee the best results.

Unlike less experienced sewer line contractors that use disruptive digging methods and technology to replace their customers’ sewer lines, Pipe Spy Marin utilizes trenchless replacement technology that leaves surrounding areas intact. “Basically, we thread a cable through the existing sewer line with a bursting head and new piping attached, then we break open the old pipe and replace it by pulling the new pipe through,” explains Mr. O’Dwyer. “Our customers get very excited when they discover we’ll be able to replace their sewer lines without disturbing the ground above.”

To further differentiate itself from its competition, Pipe Spy Marin supplements its inspection reports with comprehensive, high-quality videos that include voice commentary from the company’s technicians. “Most sewer line contractors just give their customers silent videos, but the average person doesn’t really understand what they’re seeing, so those videos aren’t really helpful,” says Mr. O’Dwyer. “We explain everything on our videos and reports so our customers know exactly what’s going on.”

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Industry Info

Most sewer inspections are conducted in conjunction with the sale of a property—buyers usually want to know the condition of the sewers before they invest in a new home or business location. As a result, most referrals and recommendations for sewer inspections and repairs come from real estate agents. Myles O’Dwyer, president of Pipe Spy Marin, Inc. in Larkspur, thinks this is a good thing. “Real estate agents are professionals who want to deal with other professionals,” he says. “If they recommend a company that performs questionable work, it reflects badly on them and they may lose a sale. As a result, most real estate agents develop long-lasting relationships with sewer line contractors whom they trust, so if you get a recommendation from your agent, it’ll likely be a good fit.”
Mr. O’Dwyer says it’s also important to make sure your sewer line contractor uses high-quality materials in order to avoid unnecessary replacements in the future. “Pipes and fittings cover a wide range of prices. For instance, connectors that link a house’s sewer line to the sewer can range from $4 to $25. A $4 fitting will work for a little while, but the $25 fitting will last much longer and prevent the need for a redo.”
Most people don’t realize that a leaky sewer line also lets ground water into the sewer system, which can cause big problems for waste treatment facilities. For example, the sanitation facility that services Larkspur, San Quentin and Corte Madera processes about 3.2 million gallons of sewage each day (in winter months, rain can cause that number to jump to 11 million gallons). If you have a leaky sewer line, even more of your wastewater will enter the facility, which means the excess gets dumped in the bay and creates an environmental hazard. To avoid this, it’s important to have your sewer line maintained and replaced whenever necessary.

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Frequently Asked Questions

Q: Do I need to fix my sewer line right away?

A: That depends on the extent of the damage, but you can delay the work in many cases. A new sewer line is expensive, so postponing work can often help people who are living on a budget. We’ll advise you on whether the work can be put off and for how long. Also, we can often provide temporary fixes to extend the life of your existing sewer line.

Q: How long will it take to replace my sewer line?

A: In most cases, it takes about two days to complete the actual work, but the job isn’t fully done until it’s inspected by the county, and that can take a while. Marin County can usually do an inspection within one day, but it can take weeks in other places. It all depends on the availability of the county inspectors.

Q: How long will my water be off during the project?

A: We actually don’t turn off the water. The entire job may take two days to complete, but replacing a pipe only takes about four hours. During that period, we ask that you don’t use any sinks, bathtubs or toilets. That means if we start replacing the pipe at 11am, you’ll be able to use all your facilities again around 3pm. Most people aren’t inconvenienced at all.

Q: Do you offer trenchless sewer line replacement?

A: Yes. In fact, trenchless replacement is our preferred method.

Q: Is it going to smell like sewage while the work is being done?

A: No.

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SELECTED PHOTOS FROM Pipe Spy Marin, Inc.

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DIAMOND CERTIFIED EXPERT CONTRIBUTOR ADVICE & TIPS FROM Myles O'Dwyer

Expert CONTRIBUTOR PROFILE
  • Myles O’Dwyer is president of Pipe Spy Marin, Inc., a Diamond Certified company. He can be reached at (415) 890-6856 or by email.

Myles O’Dwyer: Pipe Guru

By James Florence, Diamond Certified Resource Reporter

LARKSPUR – It might come as a surprise to learn that Myles O’Dwyer’s turn as president of a plumbing service company was preceded by an extensive career in commercial finance. On the other hand, it explains a lot about the thriving success of his business. As Myles tells it, his newfound venture came as the result of a failed business merger. “I was in the process of negotiating a merger between a plumbing parts supplier and a service company, with a plan to combine them into a national franchise. When the parts supplier backed out, I went to work for the service company with an aim to improve its financial performance.” Benefitting from his business acumen, Pipe Spy expanded its operations to Marin in 2007, where Myles continues to run things today.

Originally from the Bay Area, Myles’ career in finance took him all over the United States, from Chicago to Connecticut to Los Angeles, before an opportunity arose for him to return to his native environment. Having spent several winters on the East Coast, Myles attests to a renewed appreciation for the temperate North Bay climate. “We still have our seasons, but it’s nothing like back east,” he affirms. “When I lived in Connecticut, the trees would lose all their leaves and just look like dead sticks for five months. It was depressing.”

While his career keeps him busy, Myles finds time to enjoy a variety of hobbies outside of work, from weekly basketball games to renovating classic cars and motorcycles, including his father’s 1934 Ford pickup. He also likes to keep up with his four daughters, all of whom are variously situated along the West Coast. “My oldest daughter is a kindergarten teacher in Seattle, Washington, my second-oldest is a chef in San Francisco, and I have a set of twins who are in college,” he proudly says. Myles also enjoys going out to support the football team of his Berkeley alma mater, the Cal Bears.

When asked what his future retirement might look like, the ever-ambitious Myles intimates that it’ll likely be the start of another enterprise altogether. “One of the things I’ve always wanted to do is get my PhD, so I’ll probably do that after I retire,” he says. “I haven’t decided whether to focus on business ethics or political science—I guess I’ll cross that bridge when I come to it!”

Ask Me Anything!

Q: Do you have a favorite movie?
A: I remember the best double feature I ever went to: “Patton” and “MASH.”

Q: What kind of books do you like to read?
A: I like mysteries that have some kind of historical element to them, like The Da Vinci Code.

Q: Beatles or Rolling Stones?
A: Beatles—but actually, the Beach Boys are the best!

Q: Who makes you laugh?
A: Richard Pryor, Steve Martin and Robin Williams.

Q: What’s your favorite snack?
A: Oatmeal cookies.

Q: What was your favorite Halloween costume as a child?
A: Every year I wore the same costume: the classic bed sheet ghost. It was very effective.

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Expert articles
  • How to Prevent a Sewer Line Backup

    LARKSPUR — Homeowners often don’t know they have an issue with their sewer line until it backs up inside their home. Fortunately, there are a couple of proactive measures you can take to prevent this from happening.

    One way to avoid a sewer line backup is to install what’s known as a Contra Costa valve. This mushroom-shaped metallic valve is placed at the mouth of your outdoor sewer pipe, at a level lower than the lowest fixture in your home. The pipe opening is blocked by a little plastic ball that sits upon it and seals off the gasses. However, this ball isn’t a hard seal—if the sewer line backs up, it moves up and out of the way, allowing the backup to escape and end up outside rather than inside the home.

    While the Contra Costa valve is very effective, it’s also quite noticeable. If your sewer line comes out to an area like your patio where you don’t want everyone to see it, you might consider another option: a “popper.” Poppers work the same as Contra Costa valves, but they can be installed at ground level so they’re not visible.

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Expert video tip

Video: Solutions to Sewer Line Backup

Complete Video Transcription:

LARKSPUR — Host, Sarah Rutan: Preventing sewer line backup in your home is important. So today we’re in Larkspur with Diamond Certified Expert Contributor Myles O’Dwyer of Pipe Spy Marin to learn one way that you can prevent this.

Diamond Certified Expert Contributor, Myles O’Dwyer: Homeowners that are experiencing sewer line problems frequently find out about it when that sewer line has backed up inside the house. That could be in their shower pan, it could be in their bathtub or heaven forbid, that it has already escaped one of those two devices and traveled all over their floor.

So, there are opportunities to prevent that from happening. One of them is what we refer to as the Contra Costa valve, which I am holding here in my hand. These are placed on the pipe outside of the house and they are installed at a level that is lower than the lowest fixture in the house. So what happens when the pipe backs up, this little ball that you can see here in the pipe, see move it around right there, which normally sits in top of the bottom of this device and keeps the sewer gases inside the pipe so you don’t have to smell them moves up with the pressure of the water and out of the way and allows the water to escape outside and on to the ground outside the house where it can be much more easily taken care of.

There is an alternative to the Contra Costa valve, which I just showed you. The Contra Costa valve is quite noticeable and if you are in a situation like your patio where you’re not as interested in having everyone see it, we recommend the installation of what is called a Popper. It has the same effect, it pops up when the water pressure pushes on the bottom but we can install it in a manner that is even with the surrounding ground such as it is not visible to the eye in the same manner as the Contra Costa valve.

Host, Sarah Rutan: To learn more from local, top-rated companies visit our Diamond Certified Expert Reports at experts.diamondcertified.org

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  • Pipe Spy Marin, Inc. SOCIAL MEDIA FEEDS
Diamond Certified RATINGS ON Pipe Spy Marin, Inc.
Diamond certified ratings dashboard
CUSTOMER SATISFACTION i
Customer LOYALTY i
Helpful Expertise i

Each surveyed customer was asked, “If you needed any helpful expertise, did this company provide that expertise?” To calculate this score, total “Yes” responses were divided by total responses (excluding those that stated they hadn’t needed any expertise).

Company Credentials i
  • Workers Compensation
  • Liability Insurance
  • License Verification
  • Business Practices
  • Current Complaint File
  • Legal & Finance
Phone SURVEY RESPONSES FROM 200 VERIFIED CUSTOMERS i
Pipe Spy Marin, Inc. : Average 8.8 out of 10 based on 200 unique customer surveys of customer satisfaction.

Kathleen M.

VERIFIED Pipe Spy Marin, Inc. CUSTOMER

1 of 200

Quality 10
10 10
Loyalty Yes
CRITIQUE

They arrive on time, they do their best to get the job done without additional fees, and the office people are hardworking and responsive. They are professionals all-around.

They are reliable and they do their best.

Carmin P.

VERIFIED Pipe Spy Marin, Inc. CUSTOMER

2 of 200

Quality 10
10 10
Loyalty Yes
CRITIQUE

They are reliable, they do good work, they show up on time, and they are professional.

I think they are a very friendly company and they try to accommodate the client's needs. My experience with them has been good. Every time I have called them, they have offered very good service.

Robert R.

VERIFIED Pipe Spy Marin, Inc. CUSTOMER

3 of 200

Quality 10
10 10
Loyalty Yes
CRITIQUE

They are smart, reasonable, and incredibly professional.

They are very professional.

Patrick D.

VERIFIED Pipe Spy Marin, Inc. CUSTOMER

4 of 200

Quality 10
10 10
Loyalty Yes
CRITIQUE

They do great work, and the pricing can be an issue, but overall, they do great work.

The quality of the work

Ken P.

VERIFIED Pipe Spy Marin, Inc. CUSTOMER

5 of 200

Quality 10
10 10
Loyalty Yes
CRITIQUE

They are dependable, they know how to get the job done, and they know what they are doing.

They are on time, and they sent out the report quickly.

Brian W.

VERIFIED Pipe Spy Marin, Inc. CUSTOMER

6 of 200

Quality 10
10 10
Loyalty Yes
CRITIQUE

Nothing in particular

They were good.

Mimi G.

VERIFIED Pipe Spy Marin, Inc. CUSTOMER

7 of 200

Quality 10
10 10
Loyalty Yes
CRITIQUE

They did the assessment and gave recommendations in a timely manner.

They have a camera that goes underground so you can see what the actual problem is.

Jim K.

VERIFIED Pipe Spy Marin, Inc. CUSTOMER

8 of 200

Quality 10
10 10
Loyalty Yes
CRITIQUE

I liked the way they did business. They got the job done and were very professional.

They got the job done on time and at a good price.

Ken A.

VERIFIED Pipe Spy Marin, Inc. CUSTOMER

9 of 200

Quality 10
10 10
Loyalty Yes
CRITIQUE

I would say Miles is highly competent, honest, and prompt.

Myles is always on time. He is really nice to do business with. He is caring and a reasonable person.

Kathy S.

VERIFIED Pipe Spy Marin, Inc. CUSTOMER

10 of 200

Quality 10
10 10
Loyalty Yes
CRITIQUE

I would recommend them if someone needed this type of service.

They were very prompt with sending information and the estimate, which made everything very easy.

Jordan A.

VERIFIED Pipe Spy Marin, Inc. CUSTOMER

11 of 200

Quality 10
10 10
Loyalty Yes
CRITIQUE

They did a great job and completed the work on time.

They took care of the lateral replacement without me having any knowledge of the subject.

Rick A.

VERIFIED Pipe Spy Marin, Inc. CUSTOMER

12 of 200

Quality 10
10 10
Loyalty Yes
CRITIQUE

They are very reliable.

The communication was great.

Barbara J.

VERIFIED Pipe Spy Marin, Inc. CUSTOMER

13 of 200

Quality 10
10 10
Loyalty Yes
CRITIQUE

They were very helpful even when they weren't getting paid.

They were very thorough.

Andrea D.

VERIFIED Pipe Spy Marin, Inc. CUSTOMER

14 of 200

Quality 10
10 10
Loyalty Yes
CRITIQUE

They were very professional, on time, and very helpful with the ongoing process.

They were very friendly and conscientious.

Alicia I.

VERIFIED Pipe Spy Marin, Inc. CUSTOMER

15 of 200

Quality 10
10 10
Loyalty Yes
CRITIQUE

They were professional, on time, and they did a great job. They cleaned up after themselves.

They got the job done, and they were pretty quick.

Arturo A.

VERIFIED Pipe Spy Marin, Inc. CUSTOMER

16 of 200

Quality 10
10 10
Loyalty Yes
CRITIQUE

They are a great company, they are always on time, and their prices are pretty competitive to other companies.

They are bilingual.

Bernard L.

VERIFIED Pipe Spy Marin, Inc. CUSTOMER

17 of 200

Quality 10
10 10
Loyalty Yes
CRITIQUE

They are reliable and professional. They are candid, and they are honest.

They are my go-to guys.

Dale F.

VERIFIED Pipe Spy Marin, Inc. CUSTOMER

18 of 200

Quality 10
10 10
Loyalty Yes
CRITIQUE

They are available.

They are easy to make appointments with, and they get the job done.

Joe H.

VERIFIED Pipe Spy Marin, Inc. CUSTOMER

19 of 200

Quality 10
10 10
Loyalty Yes
CRITIQUE

I thought they did a good job.

The work was clearly communicated to me and they had a clear knowledge of permits and other issues.

John R.

VERIFIED Pipe Spy Marin, Inc. CUSTOMER

20 of 200

Quality 10
10 10
Loyalty Yes
CRITIQUE

I worked with James Brown.

I liked the communication and the consistency and how things were done. They do a great job.

Read All 200 Survey Responses at Ratings View