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How To Train As A Plumber

Oct 11, 2007
There are many sources of plumbing training, not all of which is classroom. Standard residential or commercial plumbers, pipe layers, steam fitters and pipe fitters all vary their training in one or many of a variety of methods. Most residential and commercial / industrial plumbing training is offered in technical schools or community colleges. This classroom plumbing training is almost always supplemented by on-the-job training. Steam fitters, pipe layers, pipe fitters and plumbers that work primarily in commercial settings usually get their training through very formalized apprenticeship programs.

Apprenticeships are generally the best plumbing training in terms of a comprehensive look at what the job constitutes. These apprenticeship training programs for plumbers and other pipe specialists are administered by local labor unions and the companies with which they are affiliated or by organizations that represent non-union contractors. Examples of organizations through which one can get plumbing apprenticeship training include the Mechanical Contractors Association of America, the United Association of Journeymen and Apprentices - part of the Plumbing and Pipe fitting Industry of the U.S. and Canada; The National Fire Sprinkler Association; the National Association of Plumbing, Heating and Cooling Contractors; and the Home Builders Institute. The latter is a subsidiary of the National Association of Home Builders.

Apprenticeship plumbing training lasts four to five years whether its union or not. Primarily on the job training it also includes a minimum of 144 annual hours in the classroom. The subjects for which the apprentice plumbers receive classroom training include blue print reading, drafting basics, applied chemistry and physics, math, local plumbing codes, plumbing and contracting safety, and legislated contracting and plumbing regulations.

The on-the-job part of the plumbing training includes basic plumbing skills such as learning to recognize the various types and grades of pipe, using the essential plumbing tools, and unloading plumbing materials safely. As the apprenticeship continues and the apprentice progresses in her or his experience, she can learn how to work with and install the various pipes, plumbing fixtures and piping systems.

Those who want to apply for apprenticeship plumbing training have to be a minimum of 18 years old and must be in good health. An applicant may have to have a GED or high school education. Someone who has military plumbing training is considered a great apprenticeship applicant. In fact, they may be credited for the experience. Other suggested training that can grease the plumbing apprenticeship application wheels is drafting, general math, reading blueprints, computer skills and physics.

While there is no uniform standard plumbing license, most municipal and state governments in the United States require that plumbers acquire a license. Passing an examination that tests how well they absorbed their plumbing training and how well they can carry out their plumbing tasks is common in many areas. With additional training beyond the basic plumbing courses, plumbers can go on to become supervisors of other construction and plumbing employees, can go into business for themselves or find work as a building inspector.
About the Author
James copper is a writer for http://www.newcareerskills.co.uk where you can find information on plumbing training
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