Whether you’re starting out in the job market or looking for a new career, it’s a great idea to research what’s in demand. The higher the demand, the more likely it is to find training, certifications and good career opportunities. In the last couple of years, there has been a sharp rise in demand for professional plumbers. While you might not have considered plumbing jobs until now, this career path has a lot to offer.
As a skilled trade providing an essential service, it’s often very easy for plumbers to enjoy steady work throughout the country. But if you’re still uncertain, let’s take a closer look. We’ll review the skills plumbers need and the services they’re expected to offer alongside common salaries and benefits. With a little more information, you may better understand why plumbing jobs are in such high demand recently.
What Services Do Plumbers Provide? What Skillset Should They Have?
When lots of people think of plumbers, they think of residential services such as resolving a clog or fixing a leaky pipe. While those skills are vital for many kinds of plumbers, their duties can include a much wider variety of services.
Their skill set includes a diverse range of services like repair, installation and maintenance for plumbing fixtures and equipment as well as the pipes themselves. These services could be for potable water, gas lines, wastewater and much more. Depending on the specific discipline, plumbers might also be trained to work with drainage systems, at water treatment plants and even in industrial manufacturing!
But whatever the plumber is trained for, their job focuses on keeping things flowing steadily. Like other utilities, plumbing and piping systems are often required to function 24 hours a day. To maintain efficient and reliable plumbing, plumbers undergo training and professional certification.
What Are the Steps to Starting a Plumbing Career?
There are several ways to make progress on becoming a professional plumber. Community colleges, trade schools, industry organizations and even high school programs regularly offer core elements of the knowledge and training plumbers will need. Through these programs, people are given a plumber apprenticeship.
These apprenticeships are essentially a form of “plumbing school” and are designed to prepare you for full-time employment. They’ll offer in-classroom education as well as on-the-job training supervised by experienced plumbers. Depending on the program you participate in, these apprenticeships could take anywhere close to 2 to 5 years to complete. This time is necessary to ensure apprentice plumbers have strong competency concerning the tools, procedures and safety precautions they need to get the job done properly.
As plumbers become more experienced, they can proceed with formal certification and accreditation programs. Through further education and testing, a plumber can become a journeyman and even a master at their trade. With these higher certifications come more complex responsibilities, but an increase in available salaries and benefits as well.
What Salary Do Plumbers Get?
While the salary of plumbing jobs mostly depends on location and experience, averages typically hover around more than $50,000 each year. This will differ from state to state. An important distinction to make is that since plumbing careers regularly offer paid on-the-job training, even apprentices are being compensated for their time. Meanwhile, applicants in a large number of other fields often have to wait until their education or training is complete before they start receiving a salary and benefits.
What’s more, many plumbers provide emergency support for nights and weekends or take on extra projects for overtime pay. This bolsters compensation, particularly for advanced skills and certifications. And because plumbing is such an essential service, struggling to find steady work is fairly uncommon. These things make a career as a professional plumber an excellent option for people seeking reliable and consistent work.
Is Plumbing the Right Choice for Me?
A plumber should be in good physical condition, as jobs often involve lifting heavy objects, standing for long periods of time and navigating cramped spaces. And if a job is outdoors, poor or inclement weather can impact the process. But by taking proper precautions, plumbers can minimize disruptions and ensure the benefits outweigh these concerns.
Professional plumbers are trained experts who offer an invaluable service for countless homes, businesses and other commercial properties. It can be a lucrative career, particularly for specialists and master plumbers who are more and more involved in the design and engineering of plumbing systems. Thanks to multiple factors, plumbing jobs are likely to increase for years to come. If you elect to start a career as a professional plumber, getting a permanent position might be simpler than you think.
Why Did Plumbing Become So Popular?
There are a number of reasons plumbers are in high demand, including:
- Plumbing systems are a needed utility: Plumbing has existed for hundreds if not thousands of years, and that’s not going to change. As long as pipes, fixtures and plumbing systems require installation and servicing, trained plumbers will be there to help.
- More construction and renovation projects: As construction winds back up, designing and installing new plumbing systems should too. Additionally, advances in water conservation and plumbing technology ensures an active retrofitting aspect of the industry.
- The recent infrastructure stimulus package: The U.S. government recently passed a large stimulus package designed to improve key infrastructure like roads and utilities. As new piping is built or old piping is replaced, expert plumbers will be leading the way.
As you can see, a career as a professional plumber can be a good opportunity. There is a high demand for quality plumbers in every corner of the country, with competitive compensation and easy access to professional development programs. To learn about local plumbing jobs in Greater Richmond, why not get in touch with a local service company like Herman Allen Plumbing, Heating & Cooling? You can find out the details about available positions by giving us a call at 804-302-6657 today.