There are several different routes available to becoming a qualified plumber, and this usually depends on your age and your experience level. Whilst it can take years to gain a qualification, it may be possible for you to study a fast-track course which allows you to become qualified and start working quicker.
The most popular way into any trade, including plumbing is to take on an apprenticeship, which usually takes four years. Part of your time will be spent studying at your nearest college and part of it will be learning alongside an experienced professional plumber. You do need to be under the age of 25 to be eligible for most apprenticeships, as competition for places is tough and there are a limited number of apprenticeships available. It’s a great way to meet other plumbers and tradesmen and you will find yourself with a useful network of friends in the industry. Expect to earn around £90 a week, slightly more in some areas.
Adults over the age of 25 may wish to return to full time studying to gain their plumbing qualifications. As well as the City and Guilds Technical Certificates at Levels 2 and 3, you will also need to study for an NVQ Level 2 and 3 in order to become a qualified plumbing professional. Your local college will normally offer plumbing courses and it is good idea to make an appointment to talk to the tutors, who can advise you on the qualifications necessary to apply for the course as well as discuss your future career path with you in more detail.
If you already have some plumbing knowledge, then you could consider applying for a fast-track plumbing course. You’ll gain your qualification faster and may even have the option to study at home. You need to make sure that any course you study is accredited by City & Guilds, and you can expect to complete your course in around six months. A fast-track course can give you the qualifications and skills you need to start a career in plumbing and begin earning faster than a traditional apprenticeship or college course, although some think it is a less valuable route to take as you gain less experience during your training.
Why not ask around friends and family in your local area; there is sure to be a Plumber in Widnes who will be able to offer you help and advice on how to get qualified and find employment in the industry. Speak to others you know who may know tradesmen and ask them what route they took towards qualification. Perhaps a local plumbers in Widnes may be able to offer you a day ‘on-the-job’ with them, to gain some invaluable experience and make sure that the life of a plumber is for you, before you invest in further training.
Get in touch with AJS Plumbing and Heating for all your plumbing requirements from reliable plumbers. They have registered plumber with CIPHE, so you know that we’re a plumber you can trust.