Welcome to PlumbingSchool.Training – your resource for reliable information on launching a professional career in plumbing! Whether your goal is to find listings for accredited plumber training courses near you, read tips on finding apprenticeships, or learn about certification requirements for plumbers in your state, you’ll find it here. We’ve also included a guide to plumber salary to help you find out how much professionals earn in your area.
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Plumbing as a Career
Plumbers are vital professionals in any construction-related trade, as well as in the maintenance industry where their skills are in constant demand. According to the latest data from the Bureau of labor Statistics, job growth for plumbers, pipefitters, and steamfitters should considerably outpace the national average for all positions, increasing by 21% through 2022.
Below is a quick overview of the plumbing career in the U.S. according to official government statistics.
|Plumbers in America – By the Numbers|
|2012 U.S. Jobs||386,900|
|2012-2022 Growth Rate||21%|
|2012 Median Salary – Plumber||$49,140|
|2012 Median Salary – Similar Occupations||$38,970|
Source: Bureau of Labor Statistics
While there is no standard certification requirement for plumbers, you will find that most employers require their staff to have completed some type of professional training program. For this reason, it is strongly suggested that you enroll in an accredited plumbing school in order to receive the most widely-recognized training possible.
FAQs About Plumbing Schools
The following are the most-frequently-asked questions that new students have about plumbing schools. If you have a question that is not addressed here, we invite you to contact the webmaster directly at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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What is plumber training?
Plumbing training helps students develop the necessary skills to repair and install fixtures and appliances, and to service clogged piping systems and septic tanks. In order to become licensed in most states, you must complete an apprenticeship, but many students opt to first complete a vocational training program as well.
Here’s a quick look at both approaches.
Plumbing Trade Schools
Vocational schools are a popular way to start the training you need to become a professional plumber. On average, courses last between several months and a year, and feature a curriculum that prepares the student for a successful apprenticeship.
Trade school programs combine classroom-based study with hands-on training.
Standard Class Curriculum
The classroom portion of your training will focus on:
- Technical understanding of gas piping and potable water systems
- Problem solving with isometrics and blueprints
- Processes for service and repair of heating systems
- Identifying and draining stoppages in waste and vent systems
- Basic math skills
- Fundamentals of chemistry, basic measurements and safety
- Installation and repair of pipes
- How to properly use various hand and power tools
- Reading and using plans (e.g. blueprints)
Becoming a licensed plumber in most states requires you to first complete a formal apprenticeship program. Programs are offered by trade unions and their affiliates, and many independent contractors.
Apprenticeships usually last between four and five years, and provide paid, on-the-job training under the supervision of a master plumber. The requirements for completing an apprenticeship vary from state-to-state, but typically include:
- At least 9,000 hours of supervised training
- Attending approximately 1,000 hours of related classes (this requirement may be waived if the apprentice has previously attended a trade school)
What are the prerequisites to become a plumber?
In order to become a plumber, you’ll need to complete the following four steps.
- Complete your high school diploma or GED
- Finish a formal apprenticeship program
- Complete the required classroom hours in your state
- Pass your state’s licensing exam
Finish High School or the GED
To get accepted into a plumbing trade school or apprenticeship program, you’ll first need to have either a high school diploma or a GED. This prerequisite exists in order to guarantee that the apprentice has the basic math, English and science skills required to understand plumbing technology.
Complete an Apprenticeship Program
Becoming eligible to take the licensing exam in most states requires you to first have completed an apprenticeship program. As mentioned above, programs are offered by a wide range of organizations including:
- Plumbers labor unions
- Independent, non-union licensed plumbers
- Trade organizations
How long is plumbing school?
Plumbing classes offered through trade schools and community colleges may last anywhere from three months to a year. Keep in mind that this study time is in addition to the time you’ll need to commit to your apprenticeship.
The Importance of Being Licensed
Back in 2008, “Joe the Plumber” jumped into the national spotlight and became the center of a debate over (among other things) whether or not plumbers and other professionals should hold occupational licenses.
Regardless of which side of this debate you were on, the fact remains that most states still require their plumbers to be licensed.
What is Required to Become Licensed?
Eligibility requirements to take the plumbing license exam vary by state, but all require the candidate to have completed a formal apprenticeship program and a specified number of study hours.
Maintaining your license will additionally require you to stay current with changing regulations and laws that affect the plumbing industry, and to apply for annual license renewals.