While certain career options need years of education and exorbitant fees, plumbing allows you to receive training while working and being paid. Unlike degree programs at a four-year college or university, plumbers do not start with huge student loan debt or large tuition payments while they are just beginning their careers as apprentices.
You will never run out of employment because everyone requires a plumber at some point throughout their lives to maintain their house or company functioning properly. If you are thinking about this career opportunity, read on to find out all the details about how to become a plumber!
You may have an image of a man in overalls arriving at a residence with a plunger and a wrench to fix an overflowing toilet. Plumbers help in the installation of new pipes and lines in commercial buildings, in addition to fixing leaky systems in homes and maintaining public health and sanitation systems. They have received specialized training to maintain, repair, and enhance a variety of other crucial platforms.
It calls for a set of certain abilities, education, and authorization, all of which might be time-consuming to get. However, after the training and teaching, it is worthwhile. Stability, consistency, and high compensation are all benefits of this job. In the sense of conventional schooling, you do not necessarily need to have any formal education.
Many plumbers just have a high school diploma or a GED, but a lot of great plumbers left school and entered the workforce right away. If you enjoy interacting with people daily and fixing important systems in residences and businesses with your own two hands, becoming a plumber would be the greatest career choice.
The experience level, level of education, and geographic area are some of the variables that might affect the typical plumber’s income. A plumber typically makes $28.49 per hour. Depending on experience, some incomes range from $22 to $32 per hour.
According to U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics statistics from 2020, a typical plumber earns $56,330 per year. Time Magazine notes that plumbers are in high demand and may earn up to $250,000 per year in locations all around the United States, including New York, LA, Chicago, and Boston. Moreover, the number of jobs in the plumbing sector is expected to expand by 5% during the following ten years.
What Does a Plumber Do?
Installing and repairing pipe fittings and systems is the primary duty of a plumber. However, people who own their firms or organize commercial plumbing projects have a lot more work to do. Some of them include as follow:
- Installing toilets, washing machines, dishwashers, sinks, and showers.
- Creating cost projections.
- Fixing drainage systems in residential and commercial structures.
- Plumbing systems are examined and tested for compliance and safety.
- Building new structures with the use of blueprint reading.
- Maintaining the plumbing system of a building.
Learning the requisite abilities, such as fundamental math, communication, and customer service skills, is essential to become a plumber. There are various steps you may take to become a plumber.
You either already possess a high school diploma or are presently enrolled in high school and pursuing your diploma. Those without diplomas can also obtain a GED. Plumbers should have a solid background in a range of areas, including math, physics, technology, and computers.
To broaden your expertise, take drawing classes in high school. Whether you have a college degree or a high school diploma, your academic accomplishments will help you go through plumbing training classes more quickly.
The training required for a profession in plumbing is sometimes quite specialized. To do this, you can register in a plumbing vocational program offered by an approved technical institution or trade school. You can get certification in water, drainage systems, and the use of pipe equipment.
A two-year apprenticeship at a plumbing trade school might be your first step toward becoming a plumber. Local plumbing laws and rules, blueprint reading, and pipe fitting are just a few of the subjects covered in plumbing classes.
You might need to do an apprenticeship in plumbing once you have finished your vocational training. Apprenticeships combine classroom instruction with practical experience. Check your state’s licensing criteria before applying for the apprenticeship. You could be residing in one of the states that require you to complete a specific amount of classroom hours to acquire your plumbing license.
You could obtain on-the-job training during a plumbing apprenticeship and study plumbing procedures, plumbing codes, and specific skills. The trade groups, unions, and private companies all support plumbing apprentice positions.
Those who want to pursue a career in plumbing also have the option of enrolling in an approved fast-track plumbing school. These classes normally span eight to ten weeks.
It covers a variety of fundamental plumbing principles and methods in the course material. This route could replace an apprenticeship and let you look for work as a plumber more rapidly.
The majority of states need that you receive a license before you may work independently as a plumber once you have completed your apprenticeship. State-specific licensing requirements vary. However, you need to have two to five years of plumbing experience before you can enroll in licensing classes and take the licensing exam.
Also, you can obtain optional certification from the American Society of Plumbing Engineers (ASPE) in fields including plumbing design. You will be a journeyman plumber once you have obtained your license. You can open your plumbing firm or work for an employer if you have a license.
You can continue earning experience as a professional plumber after serving as a plumber’s helper or finishing an apprenticeship. It is necessary to know in-depth about the industry and acquire fresh skills that will help you succeed in your profession.
To achieve this, you may also enroll in supplementary classes. Ultimately, you may even move up to the position of a master plumber. This normally comes with better benefits and higher income.
You will work as a journeyman for two to ten years, depending on the state in which you are employed. You are then prepared to master the plumbing trade. In your capacity as a master plumber, you will create plans for pipes and fittings and share your comprehensive understanding of building codes.
To obtain your master plumber title and certification, you must pass the test required by your state. To work as a certified plumbing contractor, several states demand that you hold master plumber certification.
A plumber must have a license in several states across the US. However, it may be legal to do plumbing work without a license in some states. The prerequisites for obtaining a plumbing license vary by state, as do the degrees of licensure.
Depending on your location, you must finish a specific number of hours of classroom education, earn practical experience, and complete an apprenticeship before you can sit for the exam needed to become licensed.
This test evaluates a plumber’s proficiency and familiarity with plumbing regulations and practices. To continue with the rest of the procedure, you must first demonstrate that you have finished your apprenticeship requirements and pay a small charge. It may take two to six weeks to complete the actual licensing process.
- Most licensing processes include the following requirements:
- A GED or a diploma from high school is necessary.
- An absence of felony convictions on one’s criminal record.
- You must complete an application for the plumbing license.
- An acceptable score on the licensure test.
- For the licensing procedure to start, you must be at least 18 years old.
How to Fast-Track Your Plumbing Career?
Depending on the path you choose, it may take you as little as four years to become a plumber. Straight out of high school, you can begin working as a plumber apprentice or assistant and spend the next five years studying on the job. You can also decide to first spend two years attending studies at a trade or vocational school before working as an apprentice for another two to five years.
- With the right connections, you can find your dream job as quickly as possible by considering the following factors.
- Finding apprenticeships and jobs as a plumber’s assistant may be facilitated by developing ties within the plumbing sector.
- Include any prior physically demanding work experience you may have, as carrying heavy objects and navigating small spaces are both parts of the plumber’s job.
- Successful plumbers frequently keep up with changes in the plumbing industry’s regulations. Among other places, the Chartered Institute of Plumbing and Heating Engineering has detailed information regarding these code amendments.
- These modifications could include details on the permissible materials, spacing, pipe sizes, and drainage systems, among other things.
- A large portion of a plumber’s time is spent discovering issues, determining their causes, and immediately devising solutions. In your cover letter, make careful to explain how you go about locating, identifying, and fixing issues.
If you decide to work in the plumbing industry, you will be at the cutting edge of environmental scientific advancements that help people save water and energy. Depending on where you work as a plumber and the standards set out by your state to obtain the certification, the cost of obtaining a plumbing license might vary greatly.