ROYAL FLUSH: JLM PLUMB’N’GASFIT ANSWERS YOUR CALL
Justin Moore from JLM Plumb’N’Gasfit runs a modest domestic plumbing and maintenance business. Even amidst the ongoing COVID-19 uncertainties, JLM is still working hard—with the appropriate safety measures in place—to make sure their customers are not left stranded with house maintenance problems.
The business was established in 2016 in the north-eastern suburbs of Melbourne, specialising in all general plumbing and maintenance (in addition to heating and cooling), and has now grown to accommodate an apprentice and a subcontractor.
One of Justin’s more memorable plumbing jobs was at a house that had a blockage under it from a botched DIY job. He had to crawl under the house—and ended up covered in sewage from the busted pipe. Despite that unpleasant turn of events, he got the job done.
A typical day for Justin includes anywhere between four and eight plumbing jobs. On the day of the interview, Justin started in Diamond Creek, working on a community project turning an old Melbourne M-Class tram into a community-run café. He then ducks off to Christmas Hills for a roof repair, and after that, he’s fixing a leaking shower. Justin handles the emergencies (most with less than an hour’s notice), and his crew handle all the other quoted jobs.
Justin dashes around all day helping his customers out with unexpected emergencies or urgent projects, and at any one time he needs to bring all his gear with him. To do that, he needed a sturdy, reliable workhorse that would get him and all his equipment from point A to point B, while being versatile and compact enough to navigate the busy and sometimes tight suburban streets of Melbourne. Justin said that his old ute was being constantly pushed to its limits, especially with what he had to bring with him from job to job.
And that was when Justin saw a preview for the Isuzu NLR 45-150 Servicepack X online and thought to himself, “This is exactly the vehicle I’m looking for.”
Explaining his preference for the Servicepack X, Justin said, “It’s a cross between a ute and a van. But it’s not as creepy as a van, and it’s just far better than a ute.
“The Servicepack X made perfect sense.”
He raced down to Westar Truck Centre in Campbellfield, Victoria, and became one of the very first in Australia to drive an NLR 45-150 AMT Servicepack X from the Ready-to-Work range. Justin’s NLR Servicepack X not only features a two-pedal automated manual transmission (AMT), but is also fitted with a genuine Isuzu bullbar and a reverse camera, which helps him get out of tight spots.
And with his NLR Servicepack X coming with a pre-built body—covered by a factory-backed three-year warranty—Justin could get back to work straight away, and all with a peace of mind knowing his new truck promises performance and reliability.
Justin said, “I could just pick the truck up and start work the next day, no stuffing around fitting it out and no downtime.”
Adding a personal touch, Justin added bright blue livery and sign writing to the truck, as well as fitting out the service body with drawers and shelving to his liking.
But why a truck? What couldn’t his former ute do that Justin needed it to do?
“The biggest issue with my ute was space and weight.
“With the nature of my work, I need a vehicle that can handle the weight of all my equipment and still have storage to spare.
“Because at any given time, I’ve got hand tools, power tools, fittings and parts—and a lot of them are brass or copper, so that starts to add up in weight. And in addition to all of that, I have to bring with me a high-pressure water jet for cleaning sewers.
“I need a payload capacity of at least a tonne, all without the vehicle putting up a struggle, and a truck is the only option for that.
“I need to be able to have everything on me all day… I can’t afford to be constantly going to and from suppliers to get materials.
“I need to be a mobile workshop, and be able to pull up to jobs and solve the issue immediately,” Justin said.
Luckily for Justin the NLR 45-150 Servicepack X light-duty truck has a GVM of 4.5 tonnes and a GCM of 8 tonnes, which means it can easily transport everything he needs for any job, no sweat.
And not only that, but all Isuzu NLR 45-150s can be driven on a car licence, meaning Justin doesn’t need to specially get a truck licence—and to top it off, the NLR 45-150 is as easy to drive as a ute.
“Not having to go for a course or pay for your employee go through a course is great, because that’s less downtime, which affects the business.
“This truck means anyone can jump in it and start driving, and it feels like driving a car,” added Justin.
JLM Plumb’N’Gasfit takes on jobs beyond Melbourne’s inner city suburbs, and Justin finds himself having to travel more than 800 kilometres a week, on all types of terrain.
Justin described the types of roads he often finds himself on.
“A lot of dirt roads; rural, off-the-track lanes; driveways that are borderline four-wheel drive tracks; farm properties across paddocks; and plenty of freeway… The truck gets a flogging.”
But with his truck’s AMT, which allows him to operate in both fully automatic and clutchless manual, Justin knows that he can control his truck exactly the way he wants it, depending on the type of road and gradient he’s on.
With the challenges of owning and running his own business, added to the distances he needs to travel and the many different environments he finds himself in, Justin said he needs his truck to be ultra-reliable.
Not having any unnecessary downtime is important to Justin. And fortunately, he hasn’t had to deal with any, despite having had the NLR for a year and a half, driving long distances and through off-road conditions. Justin has never been stuck or stranded, apart from scheduled servicing. And because of that, Justin’s sure that Isuzu trucks are the only things he’ll be looking at in the future.
“Honestly, I wouldn’t bother getting utes again, even for apprentices or employees… I’d be putting them in an Isuzu truck,” Justin said.
“A lot of things still surprise me, 10 years into plumbing. I’m constantly learning and having to problem-solve.
“But when it comes to the Isuzu, there’s no doubting or stressful thinking required.”