When most people think of a plumber, they naturally see the heavy man bending under the kitchen sink with parts of his body exposed that no one really wants to see. While he is technically a plumber, you should understand that there is more to that type of career than just fixing a leaky sink. In fact, you might not know that there are numerous avenues that one can take in regards to being a plumber. The traditional plumbing courses will have you work on residential and business water lines and restrooms.
However, if you would prefer to go the extra distance and take on some more coursework, you could end up installing and repairing gas pipelines as well. You might also find that you would prefer to stay with mainline work. This is great for a job with the city or county that maintains and repairs water mains and fire hydrants. You might want to stick with commercial applications which allow you to work at a pumping station for your local water system. Of course, the first thing you will need to do is figure out what you want to do and find the training.
In order to become a plumber, you are going to need to have the ability to solve problems on the go. There might be a time when you have water running all over a client’s house and you are going to need to figure out a way to save the day, and all of their belongings as well. You will also have to have a good head for math and the ability to do calculations in your head while you are working. Of course, that doesn’t mean you can’t use a bit of technology to help you out, though.
You should also be aware that doing work as a plumber will require you to be in great physical shape. You may be surprised at how much some of the everyday plumbing equipment weighs, and taking it in and out of a van is no small feat. If you have claustrophobia, then you wouldn’t make it very far as a plumber as you constantly have to work in tight, confined spaces. If you have what it takes to be a plumber, then the next step is taking courses for training and becoming an apprentice with a working plumber to learn the trade in the real world.
You can check with your local college vocational program to find a course for plumbing. These are probably the best courses to take to learn everything you will need to know to get your apprenticeship and move forward in your career. These courses will usually help you in finding a plumber that you can apprentice with but many people decide to find their own or already know of someone that will take them on once they start taking their courses. You will need to apprentice for at least two years, in most cases, before you are able to become a licensed professional plumber that can be self-employed in this industry.
Most college courses will require you to take classes for 2 to 5 years, with some specialized courses lasting even longer depending on what area you are hoping to get into. Just remember that you will be learning constantly, and if you want to be good, you won’t stop learning all the new technology and standards that come out every year in this field.