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Plumbers and pipefitters assemble, install, maintain and repair pipe systems utilized to transport water, liquids, air and gases. They install plumbing fixtures such as toilets and bathtubs. They also install refrigeration and heating units. Plumbing and pipefitting are regarded as separate trades, however a number of qualified workers have skills in both fields.

Plumbers And Pipefitters picture    Plumbers And Pipefitters image

Plumbing and Pipefitting Schools

The Apprentices of the Plumbing and Pipefitting Industry of the United States and Canada, and the United Association of Journeymen sponsor plumber and pipefitting programs. These five-year apprenticeships take place around the country and combine work in the field with classroom learning. While learning the trade, apprentices will also be employed by a contractor, allowing them to earn wages during the course of their training.

At the relevant point in the course of program, apprentices will choose a specific curriculum to pursue with the aim of becoming a plumber, pipefitter, or other service technician in the industry. Contact your local union to find out about apprenticeship programs in your area. Note that entry into most programs requires candidates have a high school diploma.

Plumber Education Requirements

Most plumbers, pipefitters and steamfitters meet plumber education requirements through jointly administered apprenticeships or from community colleges and technical schools. Apprenticeship programs usually provide the most thorough training for these occupations. Most of these apprenticeship programs are managed jointly by union locals and their affiliated companies or by nonunion contractor organizations.

Most apprenticeships take 4 to 5 years to complete and include paid on-the-job training and include at least 144 hours of classroom learning each year. Subjects taught in classrooms include drafting and blueprint reading, applied physics and chemistry, mathematics, local plumbing codes, and regulations and safety.

Plumber License and Certification

Most states and communities require plumber training which leads to licensure. Although licensing requirement vary, most localities require workers to have two to five years of experience along with passing an examination that tests their knowledge of local plumbing codes and their knowledge of the trade before they are allowed to work independently. In a few states, pipefitters need to be licensed. A special license is required in several states to work on gas lines.

The Plumbing-Heating Cooling Contractors-National Association in partnership with the GreenPlumbers USA train and certify plumbers all over the nation on energy efficiency and water saving technologies. This certification can help workers trained in this area to acquire more jobs and advance in their careers more quickly.

Resources for Plumbers and Pipefitters

Sources:

  1. The Bureau of Labor Statistics, Occupational Outlook Handbook, Plumbers, Pipefitters, and Steamfitters, http://www.bls.gov/ooh/construction-and-extraction/plumbers-pipefitters-and-steamfitters.htm
  2. The United Association of Journeymen and Apprentices of the Plumbing and Pipefitting Industry, http://www.ua.org/

Metro Areas Sorted by Total Employment for:
Plumbers and Pipefitters

Listed below are metro areas sorted by the total number of people employed in Plumbers and Pipefitters jobs , as of 2015

Source: 2015 Occupational Employment Statistics and 2014-24 Employment Projections, Bureau of Labor Statistics, BLS.gov.

     
Metro Area (Alabama) Total Employment Annual Median Salary
Birmingham 1540 $42,100
Hoover 1540 $42,100
Mobile 920 $42,350
Huntsville 580 $38,510
Montgomery 430 $35,990
Tuscaloosa 260 $43,930
Florence 200 $56,460
Muscle Shoals 200 $56,460
Foley 190 $36,580
Fairhope 190 $36,580
Daphne 190 $36,580
Decatur 190 $37,190
Auburn 80 $35,470
Opelika 80 $35,470
Oxford 50 $39,520
Jacksonville 50 $39,520
Anniston 50 $39,520
Gadsden N/A $32,010
Dothan N/A $39,270
     
Metro Area (Alaska) Total Employment Annual Median Salary
Anchorage 980 $66,030
Fairbanks 460 $71,600
     
Metro Area (Arizona) Total Employment Annual Median Salary
Scottsdale 5600 $48,090
Mesa 5600 $48,090
Phoenix 5600 $48,090
Tucson 740 $39,940
Flagstaff 190 $44,960
Kingman 110 $41,610
Lake Havasu City 110 $41,610
Yuma 60 $19,630
Douglas 60 $40,060
Sierra Vista 60 $40,060
Prescott N/A $47,130
     
Metro Area (Arkansas) Total Employment Annual Median Salary
Conway 890 $39,710
North Little Rock 890 $39,710
Little Rock 890 $39,710
Jonesboro 130 $33,580
Hot Springs 60 $29,800
Pine Bluff 50 $35,810
     
Metro Area (California) Total Employment Annual Median Salary
Long Beach 11480 $52,730
Los Angeles 11480 $52,730
Anaheim 11480 $52,730
Hayward 6170 $66,170
Oakland 6170 $66,170
San Francisco 6170 $66,170
Carlsbad 3990 $54,530
San Diego 3990 $54,530
San Bernardino 3750 $49,570
Riverside 3750 $49,570
Ontario 3750 $49,570
Santa Clara 2490 $60,520
San Jose 2490 $60,520
Sunnyvale 2490 $60,520
Arcade 2270 $50,830
Roseville 2270 $50,830
Arden 2270 $50,830
Sacramento 2270 $50,830
Fresno 850 $52,060
Thousand Oaks 790 $46,720
Oxnard 790 $46,720
Ventura 790 $46,720
Arroyo Grande 560 $47,440
Paso Robles 560 $47,440
San Luis Obispo 560 $47,440
Santa Rosa 560 $53,410
Modesto 480 $39,680
Bakersfield 480 $47,650
Vallejo 410 $64,100
Fairfield 410 $64,100
Santa Barbara 400 $59,620
Santa Maria 400 $59,620
Visalia 370 $57,990
Porterville 370 $57,990
Chico 300 $37,770
Lodi 280 $53,110
Stockton 280 $53,110
Santa Cruz 230 $58,570
Watsonville 230 $58,570
Salinas 210 $58,490
Merced 190 $44,740
Redding 120 $56,140
Yuba City 120 $74,690
El Centro 110 $41,770
Madera 60 $40,120
Corcoran 60 $58,670
Hanford 60 $58,670
Napa N/A $57,320
     
Metro Area (Colorado) Total Employment Annual Median Salary
Aurora 3980 $48,100
Lakewood 3980 $48,100
Denver 3980 $48,100
Colorado Springs 890 $42,720
Fort Collins 780 $50,060
Greeley 570 $45,200
Boulder 260 $47,680
Grand Junction 230 $51,140
Pueblo 110 $53,500
     
Metro Area (Connecticut) Total Employment Annual Median Salary
Hartford 2000 $57,990
East Hartford 2000 $57,990
West Hartford 2000 $57,990
Bridgeport 920 $52,170
Norwalk 920 $52,170
Stamford 920 $52,170
New Haven 860 $65,840
Waterbury 220 $49,950
Danbury 170 $67,270
     
Metro Area (Delaware) Total Employment Annual Median Salary
Dover 120 $53,190
     
Metro Area (Florida) Total Employment Annual Median Salary
Fort Lauderdale 5210 $39,810
Miami 5210 $39,810
West Palm Beach 5210 $39,810
Clearwater 3020 $36,810
Tampa 3020 $36,810
St. Petersburg 3020 $36,810
Sanford 2410 $34,730
Orlando 2410 $34,730
Kissimmee 2410 $34,730
Jacksonville 1840 $40,380
North Port 920 $36,780
Bradenton 920 $36,780
Sarasota 920 $36,780
Fort Myers 750 $38,620
Cape Coral 750 $38,620
Lakeland 660 $34,750
Winter Haven 660 $34,750
Titusville 600 $38,810
Palm Bay 600 $38,810
Melbourne 600 $38,810
Naples 580 $37,980
Marco Island 580 $37,980
Immokalee 580 $37,980
Ormond Beach 570 $35,570
Deltona 570 $35,570
Daytona Beach 570 $35,570
Port St. Lucie 530 $40,670
Pensacola 510 $37,660
Brent 510 $37,660
Ferry Pass 510 $37,660
Panama City 450 $23,830
Gainesville 400 $42,980
Tallahassee 330 $33,900
Homosassa Springs 240 $29,800
Fort Walton Beach 220 $35,010
Destin 220 $35,010
Crestview 220 $35,010
The Villages 150 $55,590
Sebring 120 $25,180
Punta Gorda 100 $36,140
Ocala N/A $35,970
Sebastian N/A $44,210
Vero Beach N/A $44,210
     
Metro Area (Georgia) Total Employment Annual Median Salary
Roswell 4740 $44,260
Sandy Springs 4740 $44,260
Atlanta 4740 $44,260
Savannah 280 $50,370
Macon 200 $29,520
Gainesville 170 $48,180
Albany 160 $36,840
Warner Robins 160 $47,090
Athens 110 $41,140
Clarke County 110 $41,140
Valdosta 100 $31,080
Brunswick 80 $61,900
Rome 70 $54,080
Dalton N/A $43,780
Hinesville N/A $48,840
     
Metro Area (Hawaii) Total Employment Annual Median Salary
Urban Honolulu 1640 $62,810
Lahaina 320 $60,830
Wailuku 320 $60,830
Kahului 320 $60,830
     
Metro Area (Idaho) Total Employment Annual Median Salary
Boise City 860 $52,660
Idaho Falls 180 $42,440
Pocatello 110 $45,420
Coeur d'Alene N/A $33,590
     
Metro Area (Illinois) Total Employment Annual Median Salary
Peoria 610 $70,910
Springfield 380 $74,100
Champaign 310 $78,700
Urbana 310 $78,700
Rockford 290 $84,300
Bloomington 280 $69,670
Decatur 260 $62,090
Carbondale 180 $52,260
Marion 180 $52,260
Kankakee 70 $49,110
Danville 60 $65,430
     
Metro Area (Indiana) Total Employment Annual Median Salary
Anderson 3640 $53,550
Carmel 3640 $53,550
Indianapolis 3640 $53,550
Fort Wayne 870 $63,010
Goshen 490 $56,030
Elkhart 490 $56,030
Bloomington 360 $54,990
Terre Haute 320 $72,980
West Lafayette 140 $55,760
Lafayette 140 $55,760
La Porte 140 $61,590
Michigan City 140 $61,590
Columbus 70 $72,690
Muncie N/A $45,730
     
Metro Area (Iowa) Total Employment Annual Median Salary
West Des Moines 830 $54,000
Des Moines 830 $54,000
Cedar Rapids 700 $52,710
Iowa City 320 $50,980
Cedar Falls 190 $39,210
Waterloo 190 $39,210
Ames 80 $45,320
Dubuque 80 $49,820
     
Metro Area (Kansas) Total Employment Annual Median Salary
Wichita 570 $44,910
Topeka 210 $46,420
Manhattan 170 $45,770
Lawrence 50 $47,620
     
Metro Area (Kentucky) Total Employment Annual Median Salary
Fayette 590 $62,610
Lexington 590 $62,610
Fort Knox 240 $46,470
Elizabethtown 240 $46,470
Owensboro 220 $41,240
Bowling Green 180 $41,360
     
Metro Area (Louisiana) Total Employment Annual Median Salary
Baton Rouge 3260 $46,900
New Orleans 1890 $47,270
Metairie 1890 $47,270
Lake Charles 1320 $48,770
Lafayette 790 $44,720
Bossier City 710 $47,860
Shreveport 710 $47,860
Houma 620 $45,480
Thibodaux 620 $45,480
Alexandria 320 $41,840
Monroe 190 $43,420
Hammond 80 $35,100
     
Metro Area (Maine) Total Employment Annual Median Salary
South Portland 590 $49,120
Portland 590 $49,120
Lewiston 200 $48,340
Auburn 200 $48,340
Bangor 180 $50,930
     
Metro Area (Maryland) Total Employment Annual Median Salary
Baltimore 4840 $51,040
Towson 4840 $51,040
Columbia 4840 $51,040
Lexington Park 70 $37,600
California 70 $37,600
     
Metro Area (Massachusetts) Total Employment Annual Median Salary
Barnstable Town 470 $54,230
Pittsfield 170 $59,680
New Bedford 160 $71,920
Gardner N/A $83,440
Leominster N/A $83,440
     
Metro Area (Michigan) Total Employment Annual Median Salary
Warren 4500 $67,490
Detroit 4500 $67,490
Dearborn 4500 $67,490
Grand Rapids 1600 $45,760
Wyoming 1600 $45,760
Kalamazoo 710 $65,640
Portage 710 $65,640
Flint 610 $67,530
East Lansing 330 $59,820
Lansing 330 $59,820
Ann Arbor 330 $66,210
Midland 320 $48,410
Saginaw 170 $62,640
Battle Creek 140 $42,600
Bay City 130 $37,510
Monroe 130 $67,860
Jackson 100 $56,330
Benton Harbor N/A $32,590
Niles N/A $32,590
Muskegon N/A $41,230
     
Metro Area (Minnesota) Total Employment Annual Median Salary
St. Cloud 550 $53,540
Rochester 510 $68,800
North Mankato 110 $60,310
Mankato 110 $60,310
     
Metro Area (Mississippi) Total Employment Annual Median Salary
Gulfport 1190 $48,680
Pascagoula 1190 $48,680
Biloxi 1190 $48,680
Jackson 500 $33,850
Hattiesburg 190 $41,030
     
Metro Area (Missouri) Total Employment Annual Median Salary
Springfield 520 $48,470
Columbia 320 $44,490
Jefferson City 240 $50,060
Joplin 180 $50,200
     
Metro Area (Montana) Total Employment Annual Median Salary
Billings 460 $66,480
Missoula 180 $51,880
Great Falls N/A $48,360
     
Metro Area (Nebraska) Total Employment Annual Median Salary
Lincoln 510 $53,590
Grand Island 60 $37,710
     
Metro Area (Nevada) Total Employment Annual Median Salary
Paradise 2720 $47,640
Henderson 2720 $47,640
Las Vegas 2720 $47,640
Reno 670 $47,130
     
Metro Area (New Hampshire) Total Employment Annual Median Salary
Manchester 540 $52,710
     
Metro Area (New Jersey) Total Employment Annual Median Salary
Trenton 270 $83,460
Vineland 240 $58,310
Bridgeton 240 $58,310
Ocean City 210 $39,730
Hammonton 210 $60,690
Atlantic City 210 $60,690
     
Metro Area (New Mexico) Total Employment Annual Median Salary
Albuquerque 1350 $45,830
Las Cruces 260 $30,870
Farmington 160 $37,020
Santa Fe 130 $43,200
     
Metro Area (New York) Total Employment Annual Median Salary
Cheektowaga 1620 $57,150
Buffalo 1620 $57,150
Niagara Falls 1620 $57,150
Rochester 1540 $54,980
Schenectady 1410 $67,820
Albany 1410 $67,820
Troy 1410 $67,820
Syracuse 1020 $53,000
Binghamton 240 $50,540
Utica 130 $46,030
Rome 130 $46,030
Glens Falls 110 $44,320
Elmira 100 $59,740
Fort Drum 70 $60,810
Watertown 70 $60,810
Ithaca 70 $66,560
     
Metro Area (North Carolina) Total Employment Annual Median Salary
Raleigh 1470 $44,450
High Point 580 $39,720
Greensboro 580 $39,720
Chapel Hill 410 $44,850
Durham 410 $44,850
Salem 400 $38,490
Winston 400 $38,490
Fayetteville 320 $41,670
Asheville 300 $40,860
Greenville 220 $29,970
Jacksonville 190 $41,410
Hickory 170 $35,180
Morganton 170 $35,180
Lenoir 170 $35,180
Burlington 140 $42,200
Rocky Mount 130 $38,950
New Bern 90 $45,090
     
Metro Area (North Dakota) Total Employment Annual Median Salary
Bismarck 160 $54,740
     
Metro Area (Ohio) Total Employment Annual Median Salary
Columbus 2210 $49,010
Elyria 2200 $53,700
Cleveland 2200 $53,700
Dayton 900 $51,700
Canton 790 $45,040
Massillon 790 $45,040
Akron 740 $43,210
Mansfield 110 $57,200
Lima 100 $36,600
Springfield 70 $65,630
Toledo N/A $71,840
     
Metro Area (Oklahoma) Total Employment Annual Median Salary
Oklahoma City 2460 $44,870
Tulsa 1330 $47,180
Lawton 100 $38,180
     
Metro Area (Oregon) Total Employment Annual Median Salary
Eugene 380 $61,150
Salem 310 $61,990
Redmond 210 $61,940
Bend 210 $61,940
Albany 160 $80,030
Corvallis 60 $59,520
Medford N/A $88,750
     
Metro Area (Pennsylvania) Total Employment Annual Median Salary
Pittsburgh 3420 $61,070
Lancaster 920 $43,810
Harrisburg 910 $42,910
Carlisle 910 $42,910
York 540 $50,520
Hanover 540 $50,520
Barre 520 $44,230
Hazleton 520 $44,230
Scranton 520 $44,230
Wilkes 520 $44,230
Reading 440 $59,740
Erie 360 $50,930
Lebanon 170 $39,560
State College 160 $43,940
Williamsport 150 $38,290
Altoona 120 $47,320
Johnstown 100 $42,580
East Stroudsburg 80 $37,210
Gettysburg 80 $50,530
Chambersburg 70 $49,860
Waynesboro 70 $49,860
Bloomsburg 40 $37,710
Berwick 40 $37,710
     
Metro Area (Puerto Rico) Total Employment Annual Median Salary
Carolina 510 $19,380
Caguas 510 $19,380
San Juan 510 $19,380
Ponce 80 $19,230
Aguadilla 50 $18,200
Isabela 50 $18,200
Arecibo 30 $19,050
     
Metro Area (South Carolina) Total Employment Annual Median Salary
Mauldin 1100 $41,600
Anderson 1100 $41,600
Greenville 1100 $41,600
Columbia 650 $43,950
North Charleston 640 $44,190
Charleston 640 $44,190
Bluffton 270 $40,930
Beaufort 270 $40,930
Hilton Head Island 270 $40,930
Spartanburg 260 $41,410
Sumter 170 N/A
Florence 90 $41,770
     
Metro Area (South Dakota) Total Employment Annual Median Salary
Sioux Falls 400 $46,310
Rapid City 150 $44,880
     
Metro Area (Tennessee) Total Employment Annual Median Salary
Nashville 1630 $48,460
Murfreesboro 1630 $48,460
Franklin 1630 $48,460
Davidson 1630 $48,460
Knoxville 750 $39,950
Johnson City 100 $47,830
Morristown 50 $44,030
Jackson N/A $44,130
Cleveland N/A $62,840
     
Metro Area (Texas) Total Employment Annual Median Salary
Sugar Land 12650 $49,250
The Woodlands 12650 $49,250
Houston 12650 $49,250
Arlington 8500 $43,310
Dallas 8500 $43,310
Fort Worth 8500 $43,310
Austin 2560 $44,730
Round Rock 2560 $44,730
New Braunfels 1950 $44,880
San Antonio 1950 $44,880
El Paso 1080 $33,750
Beaumont 870 $53,790
Port Arthur 870 $53,790
Longview 760 $32,740
Corpus Christi 570 $44,770
Amarillo 440 $45,360
Lubbock 400 $43,230
Bryan 380 $38,210
College Station 380 $38,210
Edinburg 360 $30,860
McAllen 360 $30,860
Mission 360 $30,860
Odessa 340 $40,710
Midland 320 $38,290
Abilene 320 $45,010
Waco 310 $40,720
Tyler 260 $37,410
Temple 230 $39,350
Killeen 230 $39,350
Brownsville 160 $29,270
Harlingen 160 $29,270
Wichita Falls 160 $45,250
Laredo 150 $35,670
Denison 90 $39,110
Sherman 90 $39,110
Victoria 90 $44,990
San Angelo 80 $42,070
     
Metro Area (Utah) Total Employment Annual Median Salary
Salt Lake City 2480 $52,320
Provo 1170 $51,710
Orem 1170 $51,710
Ogden 990 $46,720
Clearfield 990 $46,720
St. George 160 $37,200
     
Metro Area (Vermont) Total Employment Annual Median Salary
South Burlington 490 $51,660
Burlington 490 $51,660
     
Metro Area (Virginia) Total Employment Annual Median Salary
Richmond 1810 $47,790
Roanoke 430 $35,860
Charlottesville 220 $41,440
Radford 210 $38,430
Christiansburg 210 $38,430
Blacksburg 210 $38,430
Harrisonburg 210 $42,460
Staunton N/A $26,410
Waynesboro N/A $26,410
Lynchburg N/A $40,280
     
Metro Area (Washington) Total Employment Annual Median Salary
Tacoma 5830 $64,640
Bellevue 5830 $64,640
Seattle 5830 $64,640
Silverdale 980 $52,010
Bremerton 980 $52,010
Spokane Valley 450 $50,290
Spokane 450 $50,290
Bellingham 410 $129,970
Richland 390 $64,770
Kennewick 390 $64,770
Mount Vernon 150 $61,040
Anacortes 150 $61,040
Wenatchee 110 $46,410
Yakima 60 $52,080
Tumwater N/A $47,890
Olympia N/A $47,890
Walla Walla N/A $73,040
     
Metro Area (West Virginia) Total Employment Annual Median Salary
Charleston 360 $46,960
Beckley 170 $33,850
Vienna 100 $42,590
Parkersburg 100 $42,590
Morgantown 70 $33,350
     
Metro Area (Wisconsin) Total Employment Annual Median Salary
West Allis 1620 $74,860
Waukesha 1620 $74,860
Milwaukee 1620 $74,860
Madison 1120 $77,630
Appleton 940 $68,400
Green Bay 470 $69,930
Wausau 210 $52,800
Fond du Lac 210 $66,710
Neenah 140 $73,050
Oshkosh 140 $73,050
Racine 120 $53,990
Eau Claire 110 $69,500
Beloit 100 $43,280
Janesville 100 $43,280
Sheboygan 90 $68,900
     
Metro Area (Wyoming) Total Employment Annual Median Salary
Casper 250 $47,420
Cheyenne 210 $43,680

Most Popular Industries for :
Plumbers and Pipefitters

Industries representing at least 1% of total jobs for the occupation.

Source: 2015 Occupational Employment Statistics and 2014-24 Employment Projections, Bureau of Labor Statistics, BLS.gov.

Industry Jobs Percent Annual Median Salary
Construction Trades 323,760 74% $45,290
Construction 20,680 4% $47,480
Civil Engineering 17,730 4% $44,240
Government 17,630 4% $45,920
Automotive And Vehicle Manufacturing 10,160 2% $51,860
Utilities 8,340 1% $53,610
Office Services And Staffing 7,690 1% $39,160
Education 6,100 1% $48,030
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We have some additional detailed pages at the state level for Plumbers and Pipefitters.

Numbers in parentheses are counts of relevant campus-based schools in the state; online schools may also be available.

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