Becoming a Plumber in Indiana
Plumbers are needed professionals with the essential role of working on piping systems. Their work is important throughout society, in residential, commercial, industrial and other types of spaces. These professionals install piping and also maintain, inspect and repair it. The job duties may vary by the specialization and employer. Plumbers also provide customer service, follow guidelines and have other duties to carry out. This profession has an abundance of job opportunity and growth in Indiana and around the nation.
Requirements for Becoming a Plumber in Indiana
It’s easy to get started working as a plumber straight out of high school or with your GED. Generally, you would start as an apprentice, which includes training and paid experience working under a professional for about four to five years. But if you would prefer to gain training first, you have the option to take a program through a career or technical school and gain classroom education on plumbing topics such as pipe system design and tool use.
It’s a good idea to look into an apprenticeship program in advance, because sometimes they do want to see previous education in welding. Sometimes career colleges and apprentice programs team up to provide the combination of classroom and on-the-job training.
These are some of the plumber training options available to you in Indiana:
- Mechanical Skills, Inc.: This is a plumbing apprenticeship school in Indianapolis that provides the on-the-job training and education curriculum for apprentice plumbers. The program lasts for four years.
- Indiana Plumbing-Heating-Cooling Contractors Association: The PHCC offers an apprenticeship with 576 classroom hours and 7,600 on-the-job hours. The program leads you to becoming a journeyman plumber, granted you pass an exam.
- Ivy Tech Community College: This school partners with an apprenticeship program to provide both classroom learning and hands-on training to become a plumber. You would complete an Associate of Applied Science (AAS) through the school and go through a partner apprenticeship program.
Plumbing Apprenticeships in Indiana
To work as a plumber in Indiana, you start with a plumbing apprenticeship. You learn and gain skills under the experience of a journeyman plumber or plumbing contractor while also learning detailed plumbing information through classroom education. An apprenticeship offers the benefits of paid on-the-job training and little to no school debt, so you earn an income as you learn your trade.
To start a plumbing apprenticeship in this state, you need to become registered with the Indiana Professional Licensing Agency, Plumbing Commission. The apprenticeship will include classroom education requirements and at least 8,000 apprentice hours through a four-year program before you can move forward on a career path to become a journeyman plumber or plumbing contractor. After gaining the necessary experience as an apprentice, you apply to become a journeyman plumber or for a plumbing contractor license through your apprenticeship program.
The Plumbing Commission maintains a list of approved apprentice programs in the state. Indiana offers many apprenticeship programs in different locations, so you can find one in or near your area. Some options include the Associated Builders and Contractors Indiana Kentucky plumbing apprenticeship in Indianapolis, the Plumbing-Heating-Cooling Contractors Association apprenticeship in Fort Wayne or Jasper, or the Plumbers Local 210 apprenticeship in Merrillville.
Certification and Licensing for Becoming a Plumber in Indiana
To work as a plumber in Indiana, you need to follow licensing requirements of the Indiana Professional Licensing Agency, Plumbing Commission. To start as an apprentice in the state, you do not need a license. However, you do need to become registered.
To reach the next level of a journeyman plumber, you must be in an apprenticeship program and apply for licensing through it after gaining four years of hands-on experience and successfully completing an exam. You also have the option of plumbing contractor licensing in Indiana, which has the same requirements as journeyman licensing.
Career Outlook and Salary Expectations
A typical annual plumber salary in Indiana is $61,390 per year or $29.51 per hour, according to Indeed. Overtime pay is expected as well, which can come close to $7,000 per year.
The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) notes that the expected job growth of plumbers is 5 percent from 2020 to 2030. This is significant growth that the BLS considers much faster than the average growth rate across all occupations.
Working as a Plumber in Indiana
In Indiana and across the country, plumbers are usually employed by contractors, says the BLS. Nonetheless, a small portion are self-employed or work directly for employers in government, construction or manufacturing industries.
Plumbing provides a steady and growing job opportunity in Indiana. You can start right away with on-the-job training that pays you as you learn. In time, you progress from an apprentice to a journeyman plumber for greater pay and increased opportunity.