Not all plumbers are the same. There are a few different types of plumbers in California, and it’s important to understand how they differ to make sure you get the right plumber for your job. Let’s discuss the different types of plumbers and how they’re distinct from each other now.
1. Plumber’s Apprentice – Best For Basic Plumbing Tasks
The first step in becoming a plumber is to either go to trade school and complete a 2-4 year apprenticeship, or to become a plumber’s apprentice without going to trade school. The latter option may take up to 5 years.
Either path is acceptable in California – those who wish for classroom experience can go to trade school, while those who want hands-on experience can jump right into their apprenticeship.
Plumber’s apprentices typically handle less complex jobs under the observation of a licensed plumber. They’re fully qualified to do basic things like unclog toilets, maintain sprinkler systems, install hot water systems, and other such tasks while being supervised.
2. Journeyman Plumber – Jobs Up To $500
Journeyman plumbers have completed their apprenticeship, and are now able to provide more comprehensive plumbing services, while still being employed and supervised by a licensed or “master” plumber.
Journeyman plumbers are able to handle a more complex variety of tasks on their own. In California, plumbers are able to work on jobs that up to a value of $500 in labor and materials on their own – so they’re able to do pretty much any plumbing job that doesn’t involve major renovations.
3. Master Or “Licensed” Plumber
To become a fully licensed or “master” plumber in California, a journeyman must get at least 4 years of experience and pass a comprehensive CSLB test to get their license.
These plumbers are the most experienced, and licensed plumbers can handle any plumbing job – from unclogging a toilet to completely tearing out the plumbing and fixtures from a bathroom and renovating it.
Naturally, though, these plumbers are the most expensive. For basic jobs like unclogging toilets, they usually send an apprentice or journeyman who works for their business, since this will be a lot cheaper for customers.
Most Plumbing Companies Have All Three Types of Plumbers
In general, apprentice plumbers and journeymen are able to handle most day-to-day plumbing tasks like replacing plumbing fixtures and fixing leaks and other such issues – while licensed plumbers are more qualified for complex jobs like replacing piping, overhauling the layout of a bathroom or kitchen, and other such renovations and large jobs.
Most companies have all 3 types of plumbers on staff – and based on your job, will send a professional who is properly qualified for the job. Need plumbing services in Santa Cruz? Contact Anytime Plumbing online or call at 831-212-3188 to get the help you need from a plumbing professional.