Becoming a fully licensed electrician is a great goal and is a fantastic career choice for anyone. The industry is constantly expanding and there will be a huge need for trained and experienced electricians within the next 10-15 years. That being said, training to become an electrician does take quite a bit of time.
You need to enter into, progress through, and complete an electricians apprenticeship with a union, guild, or trade school. Then you will need to pass your exams which are usually enforced at the state level. Even once you’ve become a licensed electrician, there are courses and tests you need to take. So, how much time does it really take to be a professional electrician?
The first part of becoming an electrician is to enter into a electrician apprenticeship with a local electricians union or guild. Most trade or technical schools also offer apprentice programs. Although it varies, depending on the contract, the average apprenticeship lasts between 3 and 5 years. During this time you will learn important and practical on the job skills that you absolutely need to succeed as a career electrician.
You will also be required to take courses on electrical theory. Taking a business course is also a good fit if you plan to eventually be in business for yourself. Over the course of your apprenticeship you will assist and learn from master and journeyman electricians. Tasks that you will perform include hauling materials, running wire through walls and floors, installing breakers, outlets, lighting fixtures and a number of other jobs. All of these jobs, even when they don’t seem so glamorous, will mold you into a true and successful electrician.
At the end of your apprenticeship you will need to take a state exam in order to obtain your electricians license. Check out the requirements in your state. Once you’ve passed the exam you will be a licensed electrician and will qualify for standard pay rates rather than the 40-70% you earned as an apprentice.
How Long Does It Take To Become A Master Electrician?
Once you’ve become a journeyman electrician, what does it take to become a master electrician? To be a licensed master electrician there are two routes you can follow. You can either work in the industry for around 7 years, varies depending on the state, or you can pursue an Bachelor of Science in Electrical Engineering at a university or college. Once one of the two requirements are met you can usually qualify to take the master electrician license exam which will test not only your practical electrician skills, but also your understanding of electrical theory and your knowledge of electrical planning.
Read more about Master Electricians here