Certifications and Licenses for Plumbers

Licenses for Plumbers

A career in plumbing requires attention to detail and the ability to work both independently and as a team member. Plumbers are responsible for maintaining, assembling, installing, and repairing a variety of piping systems that control everything from the water in our homes to industrial processes in factories.

Because of the complexity and safety issues involved, it’s important for plumbers to maintain certifications and licenses that allow them to perform work within a specific jurisdiction. Licensing requirements vary from state to state, and the job of enforcing them often falls to local municipalities.

In New York, for example, licenses are required at both the state and city level. New York City requires plumbers to pass a written exam and a practical exam. In order to take the exam, plumbers must first complete a registered apprenticeship program or equivalent experience. They must also submit affidavits from previous and current employers who can vouch for their character, and they must pay a licensing fee, as well as a registration fee and an examination fee.

Certifications and Licenses for Plumbers

There are other certifications that plumbers may pursue that can help to increase their marketability, but they are not required. For instance, plumbers may want to earn the National Inspection Testing and Certification (NITC) and International Association of Plumbing and Mechanical Officials (IAPMO) certifications, which certify that a plumber is up to date on the latest in plumbing codes and regulations.

The initial steps in becoming a licensed plumber include getting a high school diploma or equivalent, attending vocational school to earn a certificate or associate degree, and earning on-the-job training as an apprentice. Many vocational schools offer classes on basic plumbing skills, as well as courses related to construction skills and industry safety guidelines. Many schools have partnerships with local plumbers, who can help guide students toward successful careers in the field.

If you’re interested in running your own business, you will need to obtain a state-issued business license and insurance. You will also need a workers’ compensation insurance policy, liability insurance, unemployment insurance and potentially a cash deposit or surety bond depending on the municipality you live in.

To succeed in the field, plumbers must be able to effectively communicate with customers, colleagues, and other tradespeople. This includes explaining technical concepts in layman’s terms, providing clear instructions and documentation, and being punctual and reliable. In addition, they must be able to work independently or as part of a team and possess a strong work ethic and commitment to quality. These qualities can be learned in school or on the job and are essential to the success of a plumbing company. The average wage for plumbers in New York is $18,400. For more information, check out the Bureau of Labor Statistics.

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