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A plumber working on a pipe

  1. Update your resume and online profiles.
  2. Network with other plumbers and professionals in the construction industry.
  3. Speak to a recruitment specialist. 
  4. Be prepared to interview.
  5. Consider specialising in a particular area of plumbing.
  6. Stay up-to-date on the latest plumbing codes and regulations.
  7. Get involved in your local plumbing community.
  8. Apply for a paid apprenticeship.
  9. Never stop learning.

More...

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A plumber working on a pipe

  1. Update your resume and online profiles.
  2. Network with other plumbers and professionals in the construction industry.
  3. Speak to a recruitment specialist. 
  4. Be prepared to interview.
  5. Consider specialising in a particular area of plumbing.
  6. Stay up-to-date on the latest plumbing codes and regulations.
  7. Get involved in your local plumbing community.
  8. Apply for a paid apprenticeship.
  9. Never stop learning.

More...

Heating costs can be a major expense during the winter months, but there are a number of things you can do to reduce them. Whilst most of these can be done by the general public, you may need additional help with others.

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A plumber working on a pipe

Plumbing is a dynamic and essential trade that keeps the modern world running smoothly. From fixing leaks to installing complex systems, plumbers play a crucial role in maintaining and enhancing our daily lives. If you're considering a career as a plumber, here are the top skills needed to be a plumber and succeed in this rewarding profession. 

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If you're looking to become a fully-qualified plumber, then now is a great time to start! The UK government currently plans on building around 300,000 houses a year, and with a national shortage of plumbers, it is truly an excellent time to take up the trade. Overall, plumbing is an extremely exciting, invigorating and varied career pathway. 

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Electricians vs plumbers

Who earns more, electricians or plumbers?

On average, it would appear that electricians earn slightly more than plumbers, but both earn a significant annual salary. The average annual salary of an electrician in the UK is £36,134. The average annual salary of a plumber in the UK is £33,836.

 

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plumber fixing sink

There are a lot of reasons you might call a plumber to your house; maybe you’re planning a large scale bathroom renovation, have a leaky tap that needs fixing, or are looking for an emergency fix to a DIY mishap that has left your bathroom flooded. Either way, you’ll be picking up your phone and searching for “good plumbers near me”.

While there are lots of different scenarios that might require you to call a plumber, have you ever wondered when might be the best time to call? When are plumbers the busiest? Whilst plumbing might not be a profession you’d typically associate with seasonality, research has shown that there actually is a busiest time of year for plumbers.

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Plumber doing a job

Thinking of becoming a plumber? Here's a preview of what an average working day might look like once you're qualified...

Plumbers tend to rise early in the morning, often completing the first job of the day before the nation's office workers have even switched on their computers. But while those office workers will be chained to their desks for the next eight hours, a professional plumber gets to spend the day travelling around, tackling a variety of tasks in all sorts of different workplaces.

 

What jobs do plumbers do?

The jobs that make up a plumber's average working day depend (to an extent) on whether that plumber is self employed or employed by someone else.

 

Self-employed plumbers

If you've decided to set up your own business and be your own boss, you're free to pick and choose what jobs you take on. In all likelihood, domestic plumbing repairs and installations will form the majority of the work you do.

Common jobs include:

  • Stopping leaks and drips
  • Unclogging drains
  • Improving water pressure
  • Installing new pipework
  • Fitting bathrooms
  • Repairing boilers*

*Note that plumbers must be Gas Safe registered in order to work on gas boilers.

 

Plumbers employed by somebody else

If you are employed by a commercial plumbing company, your typical working day will probably look a little different from that of a self-employed domestic plumber.

Yes, there will still be plenty of leaks to fix and drains to unblock, but you may also find yourself...

  • Installing plumbing systems in new buildings
  • Maintaining large-scale water supply / waste removal systems
  • Carrying out work on public water mains

If you're not keen on the idea of spending lots of time in the van, zipping from one job to the next, then you might prefer a 'static' job that allows you to do all your work in one place. Many large businesses employ resident plumbers to carry out regular inspections and maintenance on the company's premises.

 

What hours do plumbers work?

Some plumbers work a standard nine-to-five, Monday-to-Friday week like everyone else. But there's a lot of extra money to be made if you're happy to work evenings and weekends. If your average customer is at work during the day, they'll probably want a plumber who is willing to pop by later on, when they're at home...or maybe on Saturday, when they've got the day off. And of course, some plumbing emergencies can't wait until the next weekday!

Self-employed plumbers have the freedom and the flexibility to choose their own timetable and work as many (or as few) hours as they wish. Plumbers in traditional employment usually - though not always - operate on a more rigid schedule. Both career paths have their benefits; once you've completed your training and got some professional plumbing qualifications under your belt, it will be up to you to decide which lifestyle suits you best.

Browse Our Plumbing Courses >

Further reading:

If you read the survey carried out by the Water Regulation Advisory Scheme (WRAS) you will see that basic skills are completely lacking! The survey found that 18-24 year old adults lack basic repair skills, from unblocking a toilet to fixing a leaking tap. Only 1 in 3 know how to bleed a radiator with over 55's the most capable age groups when it comes to home plumbing tasks.

What is clear is that young people are the most challenged by these tasks with less than 30% not knowing how to change a light fitting where, in contrast nearly two thirds of over 55s are able to carry this out. The survey also found that 37% of young people could change a showerhead but double this figure were capable in the the over 55s category.

Further to this the survey showed that adults born after 1985 are increasingly unable to take on simple tasks. However, a third of millennials would in fact know how to bleed a radiator, but this is still way short of the 79% of over-55s who would be able to carry out this most basic of jobs. 

So it is conclusive that when it comes to basic home repairs, they are not an issue for those in older generations, but the capability to carry out a repair is far less in the younger generations. In fact the repair that most people are happy to carry out is bleeding a radiator:

  • Bleeding a radiator - 57%
  • Replacing a shower head - 53.3%
  • Fixing a blocked toilet - 44.6%
  • Replacing a light fixture - 44.5%
  • Fixing a leaky tap - 30.2%
  • Fixing a leaky toilet - 21.2%

What is clear from the survey is that repair tasks within the home have become something or a mystery or even a no-go for most. This is great news for tradespeople and those considering taking up a trade as there are so many tasks that home occupiers will need to be carried out by professionals, no matter how simple they are in really. 

In fact it would not be advisable for anyone to tackle a task that they were not sure about as problems and possibly dangerous scenarios can result from the most simple of tasks. It's always best to use a trained professional, someone who has the training, skill and knowledge to deal with these situations. 

At Access Training, we are always striving to provide people of all ages, young and old, with the professional level of training, knowledge and skills needed to carry out basic and complex tasks, safely and efficiently. For those looking to become skilled and qualified as a plumber, electrician, gas engineer, carpenter or plasterer, we will teach you what you need to know, allowing you the opportunity to turn basic DIY jobs into earnings and a career.

To find out how to become professionally certified in a trade such as plumbing or to simply discuss the career options available to you, call us today.

Learn your trade. Get qualified. Make it happen.




*WRAS Survey of 2000 adults in April 2019.

How long is a plumbing course?

How long does a plumbing course take?

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, but there is the option to choose a fast-track plumbing apprenticeship, which aims to get you qualified and earning a lot quicker than the traditional route.

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