5 Things you need to become an Electrician
- A high school diploma or GED.
- Complete an electrical technology training program at a trade or vocational tech school.
- Apply for a registered apprenticeship program
- Complete a 4-5-year apprenticeship with a master or journeyman electrician
- Pass the exam for a license in your state or locality.
How long does it take to become an Electrician?
Basic coursework takes between 1 to 2 years and an apprenticeship takes between 4 to 5 years.
How to get an electrician apprenticeship.
Apprenticeships must be applied for like a job. It is recommended that before applying, you complete a pre-apprenticeship technical training program to learn basic skills and to prepare you for obtaining that apprenticeship.
Students at a technical or vocational high school can begin to build their competencies and skills before they graduate by taking an electrician/electrical technology curriculum.
If you did not attend a technical high school, you might consider getting an associate degree, (which is about 2 years), or completing a certificate program, (generally 1 year) offered at community colleges that can teach you the basics. Many programs will assist students in identifying and applying for sought after apprenticeships.
An apprenticeship for an electrician takes between 4 to 5 years to complete and consists of 144 hours of technical training and 2,000 hours of paid on-the-job work under the supervision of a licensed electrician.
How much does it cost to complete an apprenticeship?
Apprenticeships are free! In fact, after initial training, you are paid for your time. There are thousands of programs in the U.S. Programs are usually sponsored by unions or companies that employ electricians. These organizations want to develop and train the next generation of skilled workers, and apprenticeship programs are the best way for them to ensure a steady pipeline of trained workers.
Applying for an apprenticeship is like applying for a job, and the process usually includes some skill testing and interviews to assess your capabilities and desire to become an electrician. An advantage to you is that you may end up working for the company where you complete your apprenticeship.
What does an Electrician do?
Electrical wiring installation, maintenance, and testing are the core activities of most electricians. Reading blueprints and technical diagrams, troubleshooting, and inspecting electrical equipment and components for safety and compliance with regulations. Electricians use a variety of tools and equipment, such as power tools, measuring devices, and power construction equipment.
Some jobs involve moving or lifting heavy equipment, being in awkward positions or tight quarters for long periods of time and working outdoors in all types of weather.
Are there different career paths for Electricians?
You bet! Electricians work in many industries and focus on different specializations. Here's a list of some of the most popular ones:
Construction of new buildings and residences.
Industrial equipment maintenance at factories, plants, hospitals, and airports
Power transmission line and distribution system installation and maintenance.
Telecommunication equipment installation and cabling.
Alarm and Security system installation.
Energy power generation equipment– power plant, solar and wind power equipment.
Transportation manufacturing and maintenance aircraft, automotive, rail.
What skills do you need to be a successful Electrician?
Knowledge of all electrical code and standards
Critical thinking and problem-solving
Good hand-eye coordination
A focus on quality
Good time management and self-motivation to get the job done
Physical strength and stamina
How much does an Electrician make?
Salary range for an Electrician
$42,530 to $70,010
Are there many job opportunities available for an Electrician?
Explore job openings for Electrician near you here.