How to Become a Plumber in Texas - PVCworkshop (2023)

There are several steps involved when it comes to becoming a plumber in Texas. Overall, however, it can be a good opportunity for you to consider due to the high demand for plumbers and their services.

There are also several chances of growing and advancing in this career. In order to find out all the steps that you need to follow to become a plumber in Texas, you can go through the following sections that cover it all in detail.

Contents hide

1 Requirements for Becoming a Plumber in Texas

1.1 Apprentice

1.2 Tradesman

(Video) What to Expect for YOUR TEXAS Plumbing License Exam

1.3 Journeyman

1.5 Plumbing Inspector

2 Requirements for Obtaining a License in Texas

3 Time and Costs

4 Programs

5 Job Opportunities

(Video) How to Calculate 45 Degree Offsets EASILY - Plumbing Math

6 Salary Expectations

7 Career Growth

8 Organizations to Know

9 Concluding Remarks

Requirements for Becoming a Plumber in Texas

You need to meet various requirements before you can become a plumber in Texas. These are not only educational or learning-based but also practical. You will need to start off at a beginner’s level, after which you can advance to higher levels once you obtain an official license.

To start off, you will need to apply and register to become an apprentice plumber. After this, you can start building your skills and experience in this field to become a tradesman, a journeyman, a master or a plumbing inspector.

You can take a more detailed look at each of these levels below.

Apprentice

As an apprentice plumber, you will be able to accompany professional or advanced plumbers on their jobs and assist them in small tasks that they may ask you to carry out under their supervision.

Alongside this kind of practical experience, you will also need to take several courses that can teach you how to carry out different kinds of plumbing tasks, the materials you can use, the tools involved and a lot more.

At this stage, you can also become familiar with the codes and regulations of the state of Texas when it comes to plumbing.

There are generally several requirements that you will need to fulfill to become an apprentice. This apprenticeship generally tends to go on for up to five years. It is only after you finish this apprenticeship that you can apply for a license and move on to becoming a tradesman.

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Tradesman

A tradesman is the next step when it comes to becoming a plumber. This is an intermediate level that gives you a Tradesman-Plumber Limited license if you pass the relevant examination and meet the work hour requirements.

As a tradesman plumber, you will still need to continue working under a professional plumber with a relevant license. You can start carrying out jobs and tasks that include installing, repairing, cleaning and maintaining several kinds of fixtures or pipework.

You can also manage an apprentice as a tradesman plumber. You are, however, only limited to small sites or locations as a tradesman.

Journeyman

To become a journeyman plumber, you need to have completed the above two steps and roles as an apprentice and tradesman. You should also have a tradesman license along with 8,000 hours of work experience in the field of plumbing.

You will then need to give and pass an examination to obtain the license of a journeyman plumber, after which you can obtain your certificate and card.

Once you obtain these, you can start working as a journeyman plumber under the guidance and supervision of a master plumber. You can also work on larger sites in this case. In some kinds of tasks, you will also be able to work on your own.

You will be able to carry out all the relevant plumbing tasks such as installation, repairing, cleaning, construction and more, under this kind of supervision. Managing an apprentice can also be another task that you can carry out.

Once you work as a journeyman for a few years, you can advance to the next level.

Master

A master plumber is the next step after becoming a journeyman. You will need to have an official license as a journeyman to be able to take the examination for becoming a master plumber and obtaining your license.

Moreover, you will also need to have held the journeyman license for approximately four years. This will ensure that you have the relevant skills and experiences in the field.

Becoming a master plumber will allow you to carry out plumbing tasks without any kind of supervision. You can also work on larger sites and supervise other junior plumbing positions.

You might also have to carry out different kinds of planning and coordination tasks while also working with other officials.

Plumbing Inspector

As a plumbing inspector, you need to hold the relevant license and meet other eligibility criteria to give an exam and obtain a license. This will allow you to carry out inspections and checks of plumbing work in different kinds of buildings to ensure that they meet all the standards and codes.

You will generally be appointed to a given region or building by a political division.

Requirements for Obtaining a License in Texas

There are different requirements involved in obtaining a license in Texas. Go through the following steps to get a general overview of the process.

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  • You must be at least 16 years old to become an apprentice.
  • You should have at least 4,000 or 8,000 hours of work experience depending on the level that you are applying for.
  • You should have finished a 24-hour or 48-hour training course or an entire approved training program.
  • You should pass the criminal background check.
  • Submit your Employer Certification Form.
  • You should pay the application fees for the exam. This is $36 for the journeyman exam, $40 for the master exam and $175 for the inspector exam.
  • Make sure that you give and pass your exam to obtain the license.
  • Pay the license fees to obtain your certificate.

Time and Costs

You will need to spend up to five years to complete your apprenticeship to be able to move on to a tradesman.

Both tradesman and journeyman plumbers need to spend a few years in the field to gain some experience. This can then allow them to apply for becoming a master plumber or an inspector.

You will also need to spend hundreds of dollars overall on application fees, paying for licenses and exams in addition to paying for some of your courses as an apprentice. Luckily, you can also start earning as an apprentice to cover some of these costs.

Programs

You will need to find a program and take several courses while you are an apprentice to learn the ins and outs of the trade.

Usually, trade schools, training institutes and community colleges tend to provide such courses that you can go through and pick from.

Some approved programs are available in the following places:

  • Association for the Advancement of Codes, Education and Standards
  • Conger Construction Services, LLC
  • Pioneer Educational Services, Inc.
  • Winn’s Continuing Education, Inc.
  • Jerome Mendias, Sr. Construction and Plumbing Education

Job Opportunities

In nearly all parts of the world, a plumber tends to be highly sought after to be able to carry out plumbing-related tasks in houses, buildings and other commercial structures.

This can include construction, installation, cleaning, maintenance and inspection of plumbing work depending on how skilled you are.

You can also work independently, contractually or as part of a company. You can also start your own company. You might also be required to work with various departments of the government at advanced levels.

Salary Expectations

Texas is one of the biggest employers of plumbers and pipefitters in the country. It employs over 42 people per 1,000 jobs in the installation sector, making it a major sector in the state.

On average, plumbers in Texas earn an hourly mean wage of $24.44 and an annual mean wage of $50,840 as recorded up to May 2020.

The exact amount that you will earn as a plumber can vary according to your skill level. Apprentices will earn much less (up to $20,000 per year) while this salary will keep increasing with your license type and experiences.

Career Growth

You can expect the required career growth in the field of plumbing as you continue to work more in the trade. As an apprentice, you will be able to learn new practical tasks and assist master plumbers in their jobs.

As you go on to become a tradesman and a journeyman, you can carry out certain tasks on your own while also expanding the work that you can do under supervision. Every few years, you will be able to grow into a new position that will pay you more than before.

There are several sub-levels under each level as well that can promote growth in this career.

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Organizations to Know

There are several organizations you should be aware of in case you have any doubts.

  • Texas State Board of Plumbing Examiners
  • Association for the Advancement of Codes, Education and Standards
  • International Association of Plumbing and Mechanical Officials
  • Associated Plumbing-Heating-Cooling Contractors of Texas
  • Texas Plumbing, Air Conditioning and Mechanical Contractors Association

Concluding Remarks

You now know everything you need to be aware of about becoming a plumber in Texas. This includes all the levels that you need to or can cross to start working in the field, how and where you can apply for these licenses, what your job will entail as well as how much time and money you will need to spend.

You now also have a fair idea about the kinds of job opportunities you can access, how much salary you can expect at different levels and how much potential you have to grow and advance in this career.

FAQs

What are the requirements to become a plumber in Texas? ›

How Long Does it Take to Get a Plumbers License in Texas? To apply for a Tradesman Plumber-Limited License in Texas requires at least 4,000 hours, or roughly two years, of experience as a plumbers apprentice. You must also take 24 hours of Board-approved classroom training and successfully pass the licensing exam.

What qualifications do I need to be a fully qualified plumber? ›

To become a qualified plumber you will need to gain an industry-recognised qualification, this could be a City & Guilds award or an NVQ at level 2 or higher. The level is dependent on the experience you have.

How do I get a plumber's apprentice card in Texas? ›

To register as a Plumber's Apprentice you must submit a completed application and a $15 fee to the TSBPE. If you have been convicted of a felony, you must also submit a Supplemental Criminal History Information Form (SCHIF).

How long does it take to become a journeyman plumber in Texas? ›

you have at least 8,000 hours of experience working in the plumbing trade; and. you have completed a 48-hour training course* approved by the TSBPE or you are enrolled and in or have completed a training program approved by the United States Department of Labor Office of Apprenticeship.

How much does a beginner plumber make in Texas? ›

What is the average salary for a apprentice plumber in Texas? The average salary for a apprentice plumber in Texas is $33,000 per year. Apprentice plumber salaries in Texas can vary between $17,000 to $54,500 and depend on various factors, including skills, experience, employer, bonuses, tips, and more.

What can a Level 3 plumber do? ›

The Level 3 course covers further aspects of plumbing and design and complex heating systems. This provides a platform for them to go onto their gas training and becoming Gas Safe. This will increase a new Plumber's employability and will also enable them to carry out and offer more work to customers.

What can a Level 1 plumber do? ›

The level 1 plumbing course is suitable for total beginners with no previous experience or tradespersons such as tilers, plasterers, joiners, kitchen fitters etc who wish to undertake plumbing tasks from changing taps, plumbing in a kitchen sink including a washing machine to full bathroom replacements including ...

Is learning to be a plumber hard? ›

Qualified plumbers need to go through a vast amount of training. It takes 4-5 years of education and working on the job as a journeyman apprentice before a plumber becomes qualified. There are written and skills tests all along the way.

How long does it take to train as a plumber? ›

How Long Does It Take to Become a Qualified Plumber? Generally, it will take you 1 to 2 years to gain all the plumbing qualifications you need if you are undertaking a NVQ Diploma Level 2. An apprenticeship will typically take anywhere between 2 and 5 years.

How much does a plumber apprentice make an hour in Texas? ›

Apprentice Plumber in Texas Salaries
Job TitleLocationSalary
TDIndustries Plumber Apprentice salaries - 9 salaries reportedTexas$22/hr
Mustang Plumbing Plumber Apprentice salaries - 3 salaries reportedTexas$25/hr
VIP Staffing Plumber Apprentice salaries - 2 salaries reportedTexas$18/hr
17 more rows
15 Sept 2022

Is Texas doing away with plumbing license? ›

HOUSTON (FOX 26) - Starting September 1, virtually anyone could become a plumber in Texas. This comes after lawmakers got rid of a state board that issues and regulates licenses for plumbers to perform work.

Is plumbing pre apprenticeship worth it? ›

It saves the employer time and money and makes you a faster learner. In the pre-apprenticeship program, you'll learn valuable skills that are attractive to any licensed plumbers looking to take on an apprentice, including: Reading blueprints for plumbing installations. Safe work practices and procedures.

What is the hourly rate for a plumber in Texas? ›

Best-paid skills and qualifications for Plumbers

Plumbers with this skill earn +38.48% more than the average base salary, which is $26.88 per hour.

Is plumbing harder than electrician? ›

Plumbers should have at least 246 hours of technical education 1,700 hours of training. This training involved hands-on application of theories and apprenticeship. An electrician will need 144 hours of technical education and 2,000 hours of training.

How many hours master plumber Texas? ›

The Master Plumber's license requires you to be an existing Journeyman Plumber with 8,000 hours of certified job experience. You also must pass another exam offered by the Texas State Board of Plumbing Examiners.

What type of plumber makes the most money? ›

High Paying Plumbing Jobs
  • Plumbing Engineer. Salary range: $71,000-$97,000 per year. ...
  • Plumbing Designer. Salary range: $60,500-$83,000 per year. ...
  • Residential Plumber. Salary range: $45,000-$82,500 per year. ...
  • Master Plumber. Salary range: $51,500-$78,500 per year. ...
  • Plumbing Foreman. ...
  • Licensed Plumber. ...
  • Journeyman Plumber. ...
  • Service Plumber.

Where do plumbers get paid the most? ›

Alaska has the highest median salary for entry-level and senior plumbers, but Massachusetts has the highest-paid intermediate plumbers.

Are plumbers stressful? ›

Being a plumbing technician can be stressful. You're dealing with anxious situations such as water pouring through ceilings, gas leaks and pipes bursting in subzero temperatures. If that's not enough stress, how about adding working with raw sewage and dangerous chemicals at...

What is a Level 2 plumber? ›

The NVQ Level 2 plumbing and heating qualification is designed for anyone who wants to become a plumber or domestic heating engineer. It provides all the basic domestic heating and plumbing training you need to start work in the industry.

What is a Grade 2 plumber? ›

A plumber is responsible for the system of pipes within a building. This system transports water to faucets and appliances and also removes wastes. Plumbers also work with pipes that transport natural gas. Plumbers install and maintain plumbing systems.

Is there a lot of math in plumbing? ›

Yes, plumbers need to know at least basic math if they want to become a plumber. This is because many aspects of plumbing require an understanding of concepts like fractions, decimals, and percentages. You'll also need to be familiar with different measurement systems, such as the imperial system or metric system.

What are the two types of plumbers? ›

5 different types of plumbers
  • Commercial plumber. Commercial plumbers are qualified professionals who perform plumbing duties in commercial settings. ...
  • Service and repair plumber. ...
  • Residential plumber. ...
  • Sanitary plumber. ...
  • Water supply plumber.

What is a Level 3 plumbing course? ›

For this Level 3 Diploma you will learn about complex plumbing and heating systems including, domestic gas installations, health and safety in building services, complex cold and hot water systems and complex central heating systems. You will also continue with Maths and English qualifications.

What skills do you need to be a plumber? ›

Examples of plumbing skills
  • Mechanical skills. Plumbers must be knowledgeable and adept at using various machinery and tools. ...
  • Physical skills. ...
  • Application of principles. ...
  • Problem-solving. ...
  • Administrative skills. ...
  • Communication skills. ...
  • Plumbing skills for resume and cover letter. ...
  • Plumbing skills for a job interview.

What is the easiest trade to learn? ›

Welding is one of the occupations that are easy to learn in the skilled trades. You can learn how to weld within less than six months of practical exposure. Suppose you enjoy something that pays strong and has proper hours. Welding is a job you can drop your teeth into while also getting prospects for advancement.

How smart are plumbers? ›

Myth #9: Plumbers aren't smart or well-educated

Skilled plumbers are some of the smartest, well-trained people you'll meet. First of all, it takes around five years to even become a full-fledged plumber. That's longer than it takes to get a bachelor's degree.

Is becoming a plumber worth it? ›

Plumbing is a career that will always be necessary. Almost every building has pipes and water flow, so there will always be a need for experts to repair and maintain them.

How much do plumbing courses cost? ›

Duration & Cost

A £500 deposit will secure a booking and the balance can be paid in 7 instalments of £359.33 (payable on the first weekend of each block) and 1 payment of £179.66.

Where can I study to become a plumber? ›

Where can I study to become a Plumber? TVET Colleges offer courses to become a plumber. Through these programmes, you can develop the skills you need and become qualified. Most plumbers learn their skills through apprenticeship programmes, where they get formal and practical on-the-job training.

Can I become a plumber at 40? ›

As a 40-year-old who wants to get into plumbing, your two main options are either to work as a plumber's mate (which requires no training) or complete a fast-track plumbing course. In reality, many plumbers work as an assistant to pick up the fundamentals and then learn more advanced skills through plumbing courses.

What are the levels of plumbers in Texas? ›

There are four types of plumbing licenses: Tradesman Plumber-Limited, Journeyman, Master, and Plumbing Inspector. To obtain a license, you must meet all eligibility requirements, take and pass an examination, and pay a fee. Licenses renew annually.

Do apprentices get paid weekly? ›

Whether you are enrolled in an apprenticeship programme, you are paid regularly. Are apprenticeships paid weekly? Money would be paid to you monthly or weekly, and you would pay tax and national insurance.

How many hours should an apprentice work a day? ›

How many hours can an apprentice work? Apprentices can start work as young as 16 and apprenticeships are generally for a minimum of 30 hours per week. The Working Time Regulations 1998 state that young workers should not work more than eight hours a day and 40 hours a week and don't normally work at night.

Is Texas in need of plumbers? ›

Texas has about 58,000 licensed plumbers, but the growing population and rebuilding after Hurricane Harvey has led to a shortage, according to a report by the Sunset Commission.

Can a handyman install a toilet in Texas? ›

The only state limitations are that a handyman cannot perform work if it has to do with plumbing, electrical or HVAC in homes. You are allowed to perform these jobs in your own home, but a handyman can't be hired to work in areas that need a licensed professional.

Can anyone be a plumber in Texas? ›

To work as a plumber in the state of Texas you'll need to have a license from the Texas State Board of Plumbing Examiners (TSBPE). The plumbing examiners of the TSBPE are responsible for all aspects of licensing, including applications, renewals, and examinations.

Can you fail an apprenticeship? ›

Resits and retakes

Apprentices who fail one or more assessment method will be offered the opportunity to take a resit or a retake.

What do I need for my first day of plumbing apprenticeship? ›

First and foremost, it's a general rule that the apprentice plumber needs to have their own set of equipment before they report to work.
...
These include:
  • -Pipe cutters.
  • -Pliers.
  • -Tape measure.
  • -All-purpose wrench.
  • -Level.
  • -Screwdriver.
  • -Hammer.
  • -Utility knife.
18 Aug 2020

What is the best trade to apprentice in? ›

Highest-paid apprenticeships
  • Plumber apprentice.
  • Electrician apprentice.
  • Carpenter apprentice.
  • Brick mason.
  • Automotive technician.
  • Ironworker.
  • Machinist.
  • Solar installer.

How much does a plumber helper make in Texas? ›

As of Nov 13, 2022, the average annual pay for a Plumber Helper in San Antonio is $26,777 a year. Just in case you need a simple salary calculator, that works out to be approximately $12.87 an hour. This is the equivalent of $514/week or $2,231/month.

How can plumbers charge so much? ›

Plumbers also pay an incredible amount for insurance, wages, accountant and bookkeeper fees, administration fees and a whole different raft of bills including marketing, which all need to be accounted for by the charges on an invoice sent to a customer at the end of a job.

What do most plumbers make per hour? ›

Hourly Wage for Plumber Salary in the United States

The average hourly wage for a Plumber in the United States is $29 as of October 27, 2022, but the range typically falls between $25 and $33.

What trade makes the most money? ›

The Highest-Paid Trade Jobs
  • Construction Managers. ...
  • Elevator and Escalator Installers and Repairers. ...
  • Radiation Therapists. ...
  • Nuclear Medicine Technologists. ...
  • Dental Hygienists. ...
  • Electrical and Electronics Engineering Technicians. ...
  • Aircraft and Avionics Equipment Mechanics and Technicians. ...
  • Boilermakers.

Who earns more a plumber or electrician? ›

So Who Earns More? On average, it would appear that electricians earn slightly more than plumbers, but both earn a significant annual salary. Both professions are potentially lucrative career options.

Is plumbing a happy career? ›

On average, plumbers rate the meaningfulness of their work a 2.5/5. The majority of plumbers struggle to find any sort of meaning in their work, likely resulting in less satisfaction with the career overall.

Who is the youngest master plumber in Texas? ›

Upon graduating Round Rock High School in 1981, Todd Cox began his plumbing career in the Austin area at the age of seventeen. When he received his Master Plumber License in 1983, he became the youngest Master Plumber in the state of Texas.

How much does it cost to get a plumbing license in Texas? ›

To apply for the Journeyman Plumber Examination you must submit a completed application with all supporting documentation, your Employer Certification Form(s), and a $40 fee to the TSBPE. If you have been convicted of a felony, you must also submit a Supplemental Criminal History Information Form (SCHIF).

How long does it take to get a plumbing license in Texas? ›

How Long Does it Take to Get a Plumbers License in Texas? To apply for a Tradesman Plumber-Limited License in Texas requires at least 4,000 hours, or roughly two years, of experience as a plumbers apprentice. You must also take 24 hours of Board-approved classroom training and successfully pass the licensing exam.

How much money do plumbers make in Texas? ›

The average Plumber salary in Texas is $59,250 as of October 27, 2022, but the range typically falls between $51,325 and $67,483.

What subjects are needed to become a plumber? ›

There are no compulsory subjects needed to study Plumbing; however, it is recommended that you take the following: English. Pure Mathematics OR Mathematical Literacy. Life Orientation.

How many hours do you need to be a master plumber in Texas? ›

The Master Plumber's license requires you to be an existing Journeyman Plumber with 8,000 hours of certified job experience. You also must pass another exam offered by the Texas State Board of Plumbing Examiners.

What plumbing pays the most? ›

High Paying Plumbing Jobs
  • Plumbing Engineer. Salary range: $71,000-$97,000 per year. ...
  • Plumbing Designer. Salary range: $60,500-$83,000 per year. ...
  • Residential Plumber. Salary range: $45,000-$82,500 per year. ...
  • Master Plumber. Salary range: $51,500-$78,500 per year. ...
  • Plumbing Foreman. ...
  • Licensed Plumber. ...
  • Journeyman Plumber. ...
  • Service Plumber.

What city pays plumbers the most? ›

Top 50 Cities for Plumbers
RankCityAverage Annual Salary
1Kokomo, IN$71,480
2Huntington, WV$85,050
3Weirton, WV$68,480
4Beaumont, TX$58,550
46 more rows

Is plumbing easy to learn? ›

Always Something New to Learn

Qualified plumbers need to go through a vast amount of training. It takes 4-5 years of education and working on the job as a journeyman apprentice before a plumber becomes qualified. There are written and skills tests all along the way.

What kind of math do plumbers use? ›

What math do I need to know for plumbing? Algebra and geometry are two key areas that you will need to know, as these skills can be used to calculate the surface area and volume of various pipes, fittings, and fixtures.

Is there a shortage of plumbers in Texas? ›

The problem is, there is a massive shortage of plumbers here in Central Texas. ”Even with this small storm we got coming up, I think it's going to be a problem like we had last year. There wasn't enough people and people were waiting months to get stuff done.

How much do journeyman plumbers make in Texas? ›

How much does a Journeyman Plumber make in Texas? The average Journeyman Plumber salary in Texas is $59,865 as of October 27, 2022, but the range typically falls between $52,034 and $68,220.

How do I become a plumber at 40? ›

As a 40-year-old who wants to get into plumbing, your two main options are either to work as a plumber's mate (which requires no training) or complete a fast-track plumbing course. In reality, many plumbers work as an assistant to pick up the fundamentals and then learn more advanced skills through plumbing courses.

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