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Do You Have What It Takes to Become a Plumber?
Most of the states in the country are short of experienced and licensed plumbers. This is mainly due to the perception of the youngsters that plumbing is for those who have a strong physical body and has nothing to do with mental skills. This wrong perception about the plumbing profession prevents most people from following such career.
Plumbing is actually a combination of physical work and logical reasoning. In order to become a plumber, there are certain important abilities and aptitudes that are required.
The different skill sets that form the basis for becoming a great plumber include:
1. Capability to solve problems quickly and efficiently using logical reasoning.
2. A great natural ability for problem solving techniques.
3. Capability to work with different sets of people with different personality traits.
4. Willingness to take up tasks in difficult working conditions.
If anyone feels that they have the right combination of physical ability and mental aptitude to become a good plumber, they could start searching for the right type of Vocational training schools in their state. Some states also have trade schools in addition to the vocational schools. While choosing a particular trade school, one has to ensure that the school satisfies certain requirements.
Plumbing Training Requirements
1. The apprentice training program offered by the school should cover all the aspects of plumbing.
2. On the job training should be available as part of the program.
3. The school and the programs offered should be accredited.
4. The school should have connections with plumbing contracting companies and government agencies.
The Apprentice course should essentially include some of the important aspects related to plumbing including the codes that are used in the plumbing industry, understanding the blue prints, drafting skills and mathematics.
Plumbing Apprenticeships With Local Plumbing Companies And Unions
Well established plumbing companies in different states offer apprenticeship programs. These companies may not offer an attractive pay, but it would act as an excellent spring board for anyone to achieve greater success in their plumbing careers. In addition to the companies, there are also unions in the state that provide apprenticeship programs. The unions in different states offer on the job training programs and after completing this program, one would be able to get good plumbing jobs.
Joining a union sponsored apprentice program is not that simple and easy. It would take four to five years for anyone to complete the apprenticeship training, and at the end of the five year period, one can take a trade license test that is conducted by the union. On top of that, there are also tests that are regulated by the states.
You can be a journeyman plumber by passing the trade test. After becoming a journey man plumber, one can start taking contracts on their own. During the initial years the income potential may not be high. But one can get exposure to a variety of plumbing assignments that would provide you with the required knowledge and experience for taking up more complex assignments in future. After gaining experience as a journeyman plumber for five to six years, the next step to take is to become a master plumber.
Becoming a Master Plumber
In order to become a master plumber, one has to complete a qualification test that covers all the areas that the plumber has learned during the apprenticeship period and also during the journeyman period. In order to clear the master plumber qualification test, one has to be well versed in different plumbing areas including
1. Federal plumbing codes
2. State plumbing codes
3. Installing plumbing systems
4. Repairing and maintaining plumbing systems
5. Managing plumbing projects