All aspirants who want to complete plumbing education should be aware of two things. Firstly, once you do that, you can expect a relatively successful career. That is, as long as you built a strong technical and academic foundation. And, secondly, this is a stable field of employment. Thus, skilled employees will definitely get many opportunities for advancement.
Traits that Make you a Perfect Plumbing Education Candidate
Before you walk the path to becoming a plumber, you should know something. Certain qualities and skills will make your success more likely. In brief, plumbers need:
- To take care of their bodies. Because most of your work will depend on your physical ability, you need to get a handle on dexterity and strength. Your job might require to lift heavy objects. It can also entail maneuvering parts and pieces precisely.
- A detail-oriented attitude. You must construct all the cuts and fittings accurately. After all, your skill will be your calling card!
- To possess exceptional troubleshooting skills. Often, situations in real life will be different from those in your plumbing education course. Coming up with creative solutions and troubleshooting will save the day in such cases.
Plumbing Education – Courses and Classes
Let us share an outline of what you will be learning at plumbing school:
The Craft of Construction
Before they delve into plumbing, your instructors will introduce you to the process of construction. Both new buildings and existing ones require plumbing installation and maintenance. Thus, to work in the industry, you must know what it is all about.
This course will also cover the role of in construction. Other than that, you will learn how to read technical drawings. Correct handling of construction materials will also be a part of the lessons.
But when you work in the construction industry, you aren’t the only on most sites. Knowing how to collaborate and get your point across are both essential. The same is true for work safety – personal and for others. So, you will familiarize yourself with these concepts, too.
Plumbing Techniques and Tools
Like those on any skilled trade, your classes will also cover the tools of plumbing. Not only should you know what they are but also how to use them. That includes a general idea of most tools that are commonly used in the construction industry. Then the teachers will point out plumbing tools in much more detail.
Techniques will also be in the curriculum for plumbing education. They can include:
- Pipe cutting and fitting
- Identifying and using plumbing fixtures
- Different types of pipes – PVC, metal, etc.
- The use of specialized tools
Practical Plumbing Education
Plumbing is both a skill and also a craft. In your plumbing education labs, you will work with actual tools. Sure, there will be exposure to plumbing theory during your training. However, that doesn’t exclude a hands-on experience that you will get. Prepare to spend your labs performing pipe cutting/fitting, installation, and making repairs. Repairing and installing water-based appliances, such as dishwashers and washing machines, will also be part of your course.
Application and Knowledge of Building Codes
Knowing how to read those codes is important. Running afoul of them could land you in legal hot water. Aside from that, knowing what the blueprints for a building mean is also essential for plumbers. Practicing plumbers must be skilled at interpreting both. That way, you can perform installation and repairs without threatening the integrity of a building.
How to Become a Plumber
Your path to becoming a plumber should be something like this:
- Completion of GED, high school diploma, or some other equivalent
- Practicing math until you create a solid foundation. You will need it on the job.
- Joining a technical/vocational plumbing education program
- Completion of apprenticeship – usually 3-4 years
- Obtaining your journeyman license
- Acquiring a Master Plumber license/certification, so you can practice
Plumbing Education — Degree Types
There are various degrees in plumbing education available to would-be plumbers. You can opt for an Associate’s degree that takes 2 years for completion. Or, you might go for the Bachelor’s, which is a four-year-long acquisition. Continuing towards Master’s – 1 to 3 years – and Doctorate – 4 or more years – are other options open to you.
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Job opportunities in the Plumbing Industry
This time-honored vocation is still very much relevant today. So much so that BLS says it will see a 14% by 2026. Other than growing much faster than the other occupations, you’re also looking at good pay. Plumbers earned $55,160 per year in 2019.
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Types of Careers
You can choose any one of these following paths to make a career in plumbing for yourself:
- Plumber construction
- Plumber service technician
- Sprinkler fitter
As a professional plumber, you’d be working for these potential employers:
- Plumbing contractors
- Cities and counties
- Mechanical contractors
- Plumbing product sales representative
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Typical Plumbing Certifications Needed
Before you can reach journeyman plumber status, you must complete an apprenticeship. Alternatively, you can enroll at a vocational school to complete your plumbing education. In most states, you’ll need the journeyman license to proceed to the status of a Master Plumber. And to get the license, you must take a state-mandated exam. Generally, these tests consist of a written portion. After it, you fulfill any requirements on the demonstration of your plumbing skills.
In simple words, plumbing education isn’t just about fixing leaky faucets. You would have to acquire various technical skills, take labs, and get skilled at math. But after you make all that happen, you will receive your degree. Then you’d be ready to set out on a stable, exciting, and lucrative career path. Interested in finding about other technical education programs? This guide on Vocational Careers: 6 of the Best in 2020 that Pay Well and Won’t Bore You! may help.