Plumbing is a vast trade . You can specialize in new build construction either in commercial or residential. Industrial plumbing. Service plumbing.
It is a skilled trade that combines a school component with a supervised work component under a certified journeyman that lasts 4 years .
A journeyman has put some time under his belt and really never stops learning. It is nice if he can be well rounded and experience a wide variety of plumbing in both commercial and residential.
If I look back on my career I see I was so lucky I started in commercial. We did deep service s for a mall expansion and a large Safeway I did condo sites and base buildings. From there high rise towers. I considered this to be in the major leagues . Big building s, big pipes, big crews .
I became a Forman and ran sites which became the natural progression as I learned the trade through some great journeymen. You also learn a lot from bad journeymen too .
I learned to deal with many different personalities from plumbing crews to all the trades we interacted with . I always felt like plumbing is the heart of a building. We are there when they start to dig and build a foundation, we are laying the drains that connect to the entire building. We touch every trade from beginning to end . We must be able to understand people as well as plumbing principles.
Residential plumbing is smaller and faster but same principles so it is great to have good experience in both. It has enhanced my commercial plumbing and vice versa.
We not only understand principles in drainage waste and vents but gas lines and hot water heating.
It awesome to “see” behind walls and fully understand where waste water goes and how it flows
It makes you an excellent service plumber. It is all integrated. The trade is so vast there are many areas to specialize in if you desire. As you progress you can find a spot you enjoy the most and have a career that never gets boring. You are always learning .
In service you also learn about electrical and control wiring for furnace s and boilers.
It may inspire you to add refrigeration to your plumbing ticket . The plumbing, heating and refrigeration trades are so fascinating. Not only that … they are essential to our comfort and happiness.
What would we do without fresh water, proper waste elimination, heating and cooling?
I feel very blessed to be a tradesman. If you are looking for a vast and rewarding career… Look no further. I highly recommend it.