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Why You Should Consider Plumbing as a Career

There are many advantages of a career as a plumber. Here are just a few:

  • High Salary Potential: Journeyman plumbers can make enough to support a family and live comfortably. Master plumbers can earn $100,000 a year or more.
  • High Demand: According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, employment of plumbers, pipefitters, and steamfitters is projected to grow 16 percent from 2016 to 2026, much faster than the average for all occupations.
  • Economic Stability: Consumer demand for plumbing services remains high even during tough economic times. There will always be a need for plumbers. Home or business owners may cut back in other areas, but they will still pay a plumber to come fix a broken toilet.
  • Paid Training: Companies will pay you for your work during your apprenticeship. This means you earn money while you are still learning how to do your job, unlike colleges and universities that require you to pay them while you learn.

Most children don’t grow up dreaming of becoming a plumber. In today’s changing economy, however, the four-year college trajectory that was once seemingly mandatory for success is now just one of several options a young person can pursue during his or her career. Apprenticeships and on-the-job training for careers in the trades, particularly plumbing, can build the foundation for a lucrative, rewarding career that can reliably last until retirement.



There is a shortage of experienced plumbers, so once you have acquired the necessary skills and training, you will likely find employment in a relatively short period of time. Plumbers are needed everywhere, in cities and rural areas, for old construction and new development. There is a constant demand and never a shortage of work. In fact, there is such a high demand for plumbers that many professionals can earn up to six-figure salaries. Even during times of recession when most other careers are being phased out, people still need a plumber.


To become a suitable apprentice, there are few minimum requirements that a person must meet. Typically, they only need to be 18 years old, in good physical shape, and have a high school diploma. During your courses and apprenticeship, you will get the training and hands-on experience you need to become successful in your new career.


If you are going to take the time to pursue training and are seriously considering plumbing as a career, it is essential that you become a licensed plumber. The more experienced you are, the more you can expect to earn, so it really pays to educate yourself. Having a license provides you with the skill set you need to tackle more complicated plumbing problems. It also speaks to your overall professionalism and dedication to the craft, making it more likely that customers will choose you over the competition.


With many careers, employees take the stress or their work home. However, with plumbing, you can leave the work at the end of the day. Forget about needing a home office or finding time to catch up on work in your free time. You simply go to work, finish the job, and head home. No stress, no worries.


As with any job, there are certain requirements for this career choice. Education requirements include two different schooling levels.

  • Obtain a high school diploma or equivalent education such as a GED certificate
  • Complete an apprenticeship that lasts from two to five years, depending on work experience and other specialized training programs

Additional requirements, skills, and character traits include:

  • Ability to work well in cramped spaces
  • Good manual dexterity
  • Comfortable with general math
  • People and communication skills


After you have completed your training and education, the next step is to become a licensed plumber. You will need to pass an examination issued by your state. Every state's requirements vary slightly, but most licensing exams require proficient knowledge in specific areas:

  • Local plumbing codes
  • Plumbing procedures
  • Proper choice of materials and fittings for any given job
  • How to properly use your tools

Many plumbers choose to go into business for themselves as their careers progress. If being a business owner is a goal of yours, you may want to consider obtaining education and training in business, accounting, or management skills in addition to the necessary plumbing licenses.


America’s leader in plumbing and drain cleaning services, Roto-Rooter, is hiring and in many cases cannot find enough skilled plumbers to fill positions. This economy is affecting the career paths of people, whether starting out or having to start over, and the plumbing industry is a time tested trade with advantages for many types of workers.

In an article in the Providence Business Journal, Roto-Rooter master plumber Dave Jones shared that, “people don’t realize the money that can be earned in the plumbing field because licensed plumbers are in high demand. "I love the trade business because it is recession-resistant-people always need plumbers and this is one job that cannot be outsources overseas.”

One of the issues facing the industry is a negative perception of trade jobs - all of which are well paying, honorable and needed professions. Plumbers play a crucial role in maintaining the infrastructure of our society and its health. An apprentice plumber with Roto-Rooter earns about $43,000 per year, while a master plumber can earn over $100,000 per year in many markets, which is a lot more than any entry level graduate can make.

People, who enjoy working with their hands, don’t want to sit behind a desk and like variety in their job can excel as a plumber. In today’s changing economy, with unemployment affecting more than 12.5 million Americans, plumbing is a stable career.


To get started, try finding out what types of plumbing schools, training programs, and apprenticeship opportunities are near you so that you can begin pursuing the education you need to begin your new career. You may also consider speaking with a professional plumbing company for more information on why you should consider plumbing as a career and how you can get started.

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