Schubert Plumbing & Heating

Catering to a range of markets in the Lower Mainland
Written by: 
Matt Dodge
Produced by: 
James Logan

Clean, fast and reliable — this is what quality HVAC service should be and Schubert Plumbing & Heating delivers. Based in Mission, British Columbia, family-owned Schubert Plumbing & Heating covers the Lower Mainland of the greater Vancouver area in residential, commercial, institutional, industrial and health care markets.

From food processing plants to senior care facilities, warehouses to tenant improvements and much more, Schubert Plumbing & Heating performs service and new construction, design-build and design-assist, retrofits, gas fitting, drain cleaning, backflow testing, boiler servicing and nearly anything that fits in the plumbing-heating-cooling niche.

Direct family ownership and involvement

Schubert Plumbing & Heating was established in 1978 by Dan Schubert Sr. and his son, Dan Schubert Jr., who started full time about 12 years ago and serves as the company’s lead project manager and soon-to-be owner. “My father founded the business and he’s been involved since the beginning; he is slowly retiring but it’s hard to get rid of him,” jokes Dan Jr. “We’re family-owned and –operated — my sister works here as well.”

“What’s different about us is at any point in the project cycle, you’ll be able to talk to one of us owners on the phone or in person,” says Dan. In addition to the family leadership, Schubert Plumbing & Heating has six office staff members and more than 30 technicians in the field.

Adapting to the needs of the market

Offering a broad base of plumbing and heating services that carry over from one market to the next helped Schubert Plumbing & Heating come through the recession unscathed. “We do a large amount of senior centers and complexes to intermediate health care facilities and we have a strong retrofit division where we do quite a bit of mechanical upgrades and boiler retrofits,” says Dan. “We have many service contracts with area institutions from Agassiz to Abbotsford.”

“Covering a diverse market kept us going through lean years,” continues Dan. “When the market ebbs and flows, we can easily adapt. Through the recession when new construction dried up, service kept us moving and now that new construction is booming, we’re doing about 90 percent new construction.”

To boot, a majority of Schubert Plumbing & Heating’s work is repeat business. “We’re a very relationship-based business and a lot of our work is with the same prime contractors and general contractors,” says Dan. “We got into the senior care market right around 2006-2007 right before the market crash and that’s where we started to develop a lot of these relationships. When everything was tanking in new construction, we were faring well with contractors. It was actually a really good time for us. Getting into the right market kind of early and then building relationships — this has worked well for us.”

New construction design-assist and design-build

Schubert Plumbing & Heating’s design-assist and design-build capabilities allow the company to give customers a more accurate project picture. “We go into the early phase of a new construction job and we can give a pretty accurate budget based on preliminary drawings and we work with our customers to stay true to this budget,” says Dan. “We’ve done so many now that we really have this down.”

Schubert Plumbing & Heating has also worked on a handful of LEED projects. “We were one of the first in this area to do a full in-floor heating and cooling system in a wood-frame building,” notes Dan.

One of the largest new construction projects Schubert Plumbing & Heating has completed to date is the Mission Complex Care center. “This is one of our largest jobs,” adds Dan.

Even with new construction gaining steam, Schubert Plumbing & Heating’s boiler retrofits are still in high demand. “We’re able to complete these projects during a summer shutdown or winter break period, so we’re on a very tight timeline to get the system done quickly and properly,” says Dan. “Several of these jobs have been profiled on manufacturers’ websites and some have even won awards.”

Community connections

Schubert Plumbing & Heating has also been recognized by Small Business British Columbia for its apprenticeship and on-the-job training program. Dan, who was a plumbing-gasfitter apprentice himself, understands the importance of training the next generation. “We partner with the local Riverside College in Mission and we take on work-experience students every year and many join us after the program is over,” he explains. “We’ve seen guys come up from work experience through the apprenticeship and they’re out running jobs.”

The company is actively engaged in many community causes. “We donated labor and supplies for a drop-in youth house in Mission recently and we’ve done the same for the construction of a local food bank,” adds Dan.

As Dan Sr. approaches retirement, Dan and many other long standing employees look to carry on the Schubert Plumbing & Heating tradition with service that’s clean, fast and reliable: everything customers want.

Strategic Partnership(s): 
Envision Financial