What does a Plumber do?

Install, repair, and maintain pipes, fixtures and other plumbing equipment used for water distribution and wastewater disposal in new construction or existing residential, commercial and industrial buildings Install the piping for any process, including the conveyance of gas, or any tubing for a pneumatic or air-handling system.Read and understand design drawings, manufacturer's literature and installation diagrams for piping and connected appliances

Trade Code 306A NOC 7251 Designated Red Seal Trade yes


Personal Qualities

  • You may be required to work in cramped areas or at considerable heights
  • You may work outside at various times of the year and experience a considerable range of environmental and olfactory conditions
  • You have the stamina to be on your feet for long periods of time
  • You are in good physical condition and are able to carry materials and fixtures


Review the Essential Skills profile for additional qualities required www.hrsdc.gc.ca/eng/workplaceskills/LES/index.shtml

Additional information on training standards for this particular trade in the Construction sector can be found on the Ontario College of Trades(OCOT)  website at: www.collegeoftrades.ca/trades/training-standards1/construction.

Job -Related Skills, Interests and Values

  • Reading blueprints, drawings and specifications to determine layout of plumbing systems, water supply networks and waste and drainage systems
  • Installing repairing and maintaining domestic, commercial or industrial plumbing fixtures and systems
  • Locating and marking positions for pipe connections, passage holes and fixtures in walls and floors
  • Measuring, cutting , bending and threading pipes using hand and power tools or machines
  • Testing pipes for leaks using air and water pressure gauges
  • Communicating with co-workers, other trades and contractors
  • Planning and performing complex calculations for specialized projects
  • Costing and estimating the work to be performed

What Preparation and Training Do You Need?

To become a Plumber, you should preferably have a secondary school diploma this is usually required by employers and unions today, but grade 10 is currently the legal minimum to be apprenticed in this trade under the Ontario College of Trades Apprenticeship Act (2009). Please note that minimum entry requirements to this and other trades are currently under review by the Ontario College of Trades. Completion of a 9,000 hour apprenticeship will include a combination of on-the-job and in-school training, before successfully writing an examination to obtain your Certificate of Qualification.

What’s Your Future as a Plumber?

While you might assume that a Plumber just visits homes to install new sinks or tubs, a Plumber’s workplace might also be a construction site for a new office tower, a factory floor, or a residential apartment building. Technological advances in plumbing are creating a need for plumbers with computer literacy as they begin to use computers in drawing, estimating and cost reporting. New technologies are also affecting gas and water piping and the expanding use of integrated plumbing systems in home construction. Employers who hire plumbers include:

  • Plumbing , Heating and Air Conditioning Construction firms
  • A good percentage of plumbers are self-employed

Wage Rate

  • An Apprentice earns less than a Journeyperson, but as your skills and expertise improve, your wage increases
  • Wages for fully qualified plumbers vary from $25.00-$40.00 per hour


Ask Yourself: Is Working as a Plumber For You?

Do you enjoy operating a variety of hand and power tools?

Yes      No

Can you lift, crawl, bend or lie flat while working over your head?

Yes      No

Do you have the physical stamina to work 8 to 10 hours per day, 40 to 45 hours per week?

Yes      No

Will you work 2 to 3 weekends per month or on call when required?

Yes      No

Can you communicate effectively with co-workers, customers and other trades people?

Yes      No

Do you like to diagnose problems and find solutions?

Yes      No

Can you read and interpret blueprints and diagrams?

Yes      No

If you answered Yes to most of these questions, a career as a Plumber may be for You!

You may also want to explore other careers that require similar interests and skills, such as:

  • Bricklayer
  • Carpenter
  • Boilermaker

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