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Career and Education Opportunities for Plumbers in Durham, North Carolina

Many educational and employment opportunities exist for plumbers in the Durham, North Carolina area. About 13,060 people are currently employed as plumbers in North Carolina. By 2016, this is expected to grow 29% to 16,840 people employed. This is better than the national trend for plumbers, which sees this job pool growing by about 15.3% over the next eight years. Plumbers generally assemble, install, and repair pipes, fittings, and fixtures of heating, water, and drainage systems, according to specifications and plumbing codes.

Plumbers earn approximately $17 per hour or $36,100 yearly on average in North Carolina. Nationally they average about $21 hourly or $45,640 annually. Compared with people working in the overall category of Plumbing, people working as plumbers in North Carolina earn more. They earn more than people working in the overall category of Plumbing nationally.

There are twenty-six schools of higher education in the Durham area, including one within twenty-five miles of Durham where you can get a degree to start your career as a plumber. Given that the most common education level for plumbers is a high school diploma or GED, you can expect to spend only a short time training to become a plumber if you already have a high school diploma.

CAREER DESCRIPTION: Plumber

Plumber video from the State of New Jersey Dept. of Labor and Workforce Development

In general, plumbers assemble, install, and repair pipes, fittings, and fixtures of heating, water, and drainage systems, according to specifications and plumbing codes.

Plumbers assemble pipe sections, tubing and fittings, using couplings, clamps, screws, bolts, cement, plastic solvent, caulking, or soldering, brazing and welding equipment. They also set up pipe assemblies, fittings, valves, appliances such as dishwashers and water heaters, and fixtures such as sinks and toilets, using hand and power tools. Equally important, plumbers have to trim openings in structures to deal with pipes and pipe fittings, using hand and power tools. They are often called upon to fill pipes or plumbing fixtures with water or air and observe pressure gauges to uncover and locate leaks. They are expected to measure and bend pipe to required angles, using hand and power tools or machines such as pipe cutters, pipe-threading machines, and pipe-bending machines. Finally, plumbers study building plans and inspect structures to gauge material and equipment needs, to determine the sequence of pipe installations, and to develop installation around obstructions such as electrical wiring.

Every day, plumbers are expected to be able to twist and stretch their arms and legs to get work done. They need to control and manipulate objects at a fine level of detail. It is also important that they control objects and devices with precise control.

It is important for plumbers to keep records of assignments and produce detailed work reports. They are often called upon to clear away debris in a renovation. They also perform complex calculations and planning for special or very large jobs. They are sometimes expected to ready written work cost estimates and negotiate contracts. Somewhat less frequently, plumbers are also expected to trim openings in structures to deal with pipes and pipe fittings, using hand and power tools.

Plumbers sometimes are asked to locate and mark the position of pipe installations and fixtures in structures, using measuring instruments such as rulers and levels. They also have to be able to direct staff working on pipe cutting and preassembly and placement of plumbing systems and components and set up underground storm, sanitary and water piping systems and extend piping to connect fixtures and plumbing to these systems. And finally, they sometimes have to set up oxygen and medical gas in hospitals.

Like many other jobs, plumbers must be reliable and be thorough and dependable.

EDUCATIONAL OPPORTUNITIES: Plumber Training

Wake Technical Community College - Raleigh, NC

Wake Technical Community College, 9101 Fayetteville Road, Raleigh, NC 27603-5696. Wake Technical Community College is a large college located in Raleigh, North Carolina. It is a public school with primarily 2-year programs and has 14,839 students. Wake Technical Community College has a less than one year and a one to two year program in Plumbing Technology/Plumber which graduated zero and three students respectively in 2008.

CERTIFICATIONS

Standard Journeyman Plumber: The International Code Council's National Contractor Trades Examination Program is an independent testing program designed to provide licensing agencies with information regarding.

For more information, see the International Code Council website.

Standard Residential Plumber: The International Code Council's National Contractor Trades Examination Program is an.

For more information, see the International Code Council website.

Journeyman Plumber: This certification is designed to test the knowledge that a journey level plumber has of the Uniform Plumbing Code published by the International Association of Plumbing and Mechanical Officials (IAPMO).

For more information, see the National Inspection, Testing and Certification Corporation website.

Journeyman Pipefitter-Steamfitter: The NITC journey level pipefitting/steamfitting certification is based on a written examination that consists of 100 multiple choice questions.

For more information, see the National Inspection, Testing and Certification Corporation website.

Medical Gas Installer 6010: This examination is covered under NITC's scope of accreditation by the American Standards Institute (ANSI).

For more information, see the National Inspection, Testing and Certification Corporation website.

Medical Gas Specialist 6005: Candidates shall have successfully completed twenty-four (24) hours of training covering all facets of piped medical gas and medical-surgical vacuum systems.

For more information, see the National Inspection, Testing and Certification Corporation website.

Medical Gas Maintenance Personnel 6040: Candidates must have completed thirty-two (32) hours of training in the maintenance of medical gas/vacuum systems, and have a minimum of one (1) year experience in the maintenance of medical gas/vacuum systems.

For more information, see the National Inspection, Testing and Certification Corporation website.

Bulk Medical Gas Systems Installer 6015: Certification to this standard shall be through a method approved by the firm's Quality Control Unit (QCU).

For more information, see the National Inspection, Testing and Certification Corporation website.

IAPMO Mechanical Inspector: IAPMO's National Personnel Certification Program for Inspectors, Plans Examiners and Code Administrators is a nationally recognized, comprehensive testing and certification program that assesses the knowledge of construction codes as an indicator of competence and professionalism.

For more information, see the National Inspection, Testing and Certification Corporation website.

Automatic Sprinkler System Layout: This certification program is for engineering technicians engaged in the layout and detailing of automatic sprinkler systems which must meet existing and proposed code and statutory requirements.

For more information, see the National Institute for Certification in Engineering Technologies website.

LOCATION INFORMATION: Durham, North Carolina

Durham, North Carolina
Durham, North Carolina photo by Specious

Durham is situated in Durham County, North Carolina. It has a population of over 223,284, which has grown by 19.4% over the last ten years. The cost of living index in Durham, 86, is well below the national average. New single-family homes in Durham are valued at $187,200 on average, which is well above the state average. In 2008, 1,082 new homes were built in Durham, down from 1,574 the previous year.

The three most popular industries for women in Durham are health care, educational services, and professional, scientific, and technical services. For men, it is construction, educational services, and health care. The average commute to work is about 21 minutes. More than 41.8% of Durham residents have a bachelor's degree, which is higher than the state average. The percentage of residents with a graduate degree, 18.3%, is higher than the state average.

The unemployment rate in Durham is 7.3%, which is less than North Carolina's average of 10.6%.

The percentage of Durham residents that are affiliated with a religious congregation, 39.3%, is less than both the national and state average. Laymans Church, Holy Infant Church and Homestead Heights Church are among the churches located in Durham. The most prominent religious groups are the Southern Baptist Convention, the United Methodist Church and the Catholic Church.

Durham is home to the Hope Valley Country Club and the Union Building as well as Durham County Stadium and Northgate Park. Shopping centers in the area include South Square Mall, Lakewood Shopping Center and Kings Plaza Shopping Center. Visitors to Durham can choose from Brownestone Inn, Durham-Days Inn ) and Hilton Durham for temporary stays in the area.