Deciding to become a plumber is a major decision. It only makes sense that you want to find as much information about it as possible before you make the leap and start your plumbing training. But not everything you read or hear about plumbers is true. Some things you come across might just be stereotypes or myths, and don’t actually reflect what the job is like today. To help you get a clear understanding of the plumbing industry and what it takes to become a professional plumber, NexTech Academy breaks down seven common myths about this field below.
Myth #1: There Are Too Many Plumbers in the Field
Has anyone ever told you that the job market is already oversaturated with plumbers? This is something a lot of people seem to be told, but it couldn’t be further from the truth. Statistically speaking, the plumbing industry is actually growing very fast. According to the U.S. Department of Labor, the number of plumbing and pipefitting jobs available is expected to increase 16% by 2026. Did you know that, across the board, the average growth rate for all occupations in the U.S. is only 7%? So, in comparison to other industries, plumbing is a great field for new people to get into.
The reason why plumbing is growing so much lately has to do with the fact that baby boomers are now retiring and that a lot of young adults are choosing office jobs over the trades. This leaves a significant gap wide open for people to get their foot in the door with plumbing jobs. On top of that, plumbers are like doctors in the way that there will always be a demand for them. As long as the world needs running water, the world will need plumbers.
Myth #2: Plumbing Doesn’t Offer a Stable Source of Income
Some people decide not to go into plumbing because they’re worried about the pay. But, there’s no need to worry. The majority of plumbers do very well for themselves and are able to earn a stable income to support themselves and their families. As you continue to learn and build experience in the field, you’ll be rewarded with higher pay, plus excellent benefits. And, one of the best things about being a plumber is that you can work anywhere you want. You’re never tied to a single company or a specific geographical area. No matter what city you move to, you’ll be able to find work with a steady paycheck.
Myth #3: Plumbing Is Easy
There’s a misconception out there that plumbers are uneducated or unprofessional, and that becoming a plumber is easier than getting an office job. But in order for someone to become a licensed plumber, they have to go through years of hands-on training and classroom education. There’s a lot more involved with the work than just connecting pipes. They have to learn the ins and outs of drain systems, vents, water lines, fixtures and know how to install and repair them. They also have to draw on a lot of mathematical and analytical skills every day for navigating building codes, blueprints, schematics, regulations and more.
In addition, plumbers who move into upper-level management roles – as many of them do – have to have a keen business sense and strong communication skills. Typically, most plumbers start out as a journeyman and eventually make their way into a leadership position. Many even start their own business. As you can see, becoming a plumber takes a lot of hard work and effort just like it does to enter any skilled profession.
Myth #4: The Job Is Not Rewarding
All jobs have their challenges, and plumbing is no exception. Despite this, a lot of plumbers love their job and find the work extremely rewarding. If you’ve never had the chance to talk to one about why they do what they do, you should. You’ll hear stories about how there’s no better feeling than solving a difficult problem and getting to help people, especially when emergencies crop up. You’ll hear how they enjoy working with their hands as well as their minds and how every single day brings something new. From installing a new system one day, to repairing an old one the next, the work is constantly changing and keeps plumbers on their toes. Not to mention, the skills you learn in plumbing school are ones you can carry with you forever and use to maintain your own house over the years.
Myth #5: There’s a Lack of Respect for the Industry
Plumber stereotypes have been perpetuated by movies, TV shows and books for years. As a result, some people thinking about entering the field are concerned plumbing isn’t a respected career choice. But in real life, the field is more respected than ever. Those stereotypes are just that: stereotypes. After all, people rely on plumbers to do the work that no one else can do. And, as we demonstrated above, successful plumbers are very smart and highly professional individuals – and you could be one of them.
Myth #6: The Work Is Tedious
Would you rather be in an office all day, or out in the field solving problems? As any plumber will tell you, the work is anything but boring. The job constantly takes you to new places, where you’ll get to interact with new faces all the time. You’ll also come into contact with a wide range of job types and opportunities, from residential to commercial to municipal. As the demand for more “green” water innovations increases, the work is bound to only get more exciting from here. People are looking for ways to conserve this precious natural resource and protect the environment through the use of tankless water heaters, solar water heating and other sustainable plumbing systems. If you enter the field now, you’ll get to be at the forefront of all this exciting new technology.
Myth #7: Online Training Isn’t Reliable
Have you ever looked into online schooling for your plumber training? Like most professions these days, plumbing training is available online. This is great because it allows you to learn the material at your own pace and from the comfort of your home. However, some people think the trades aren’t something that can be learned online. Turns out, they are. You just have to do your research to find a school that offers a great plumbing program. But what constitutes a great plumbing program? It’s one you can trust to give you the theoretical education and the practical, hands-on skills and resources you need to successfully enter the workforce upon completion.
Take the Next Steps Today
Are you ready to jump into the world of plumbing and get your career started? Enroll in the Plumbing Technician Program at NexTech Academy. It’s an online plumbing training program that covers everything you need to know in just 18 – 24 months. In addition to online learning modules, there’s also a shadowing component where you gain real-world experience from a pro. Learn more about the program to find out if it’s right for you and your goals. When you’re ready to enroll, see what the next steps are today.