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  1. #1
    unkle's Avatar
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    Best way to become a plumber/electrician?

    As per title, Im thinking of retraining and learning a trade, are there any plumbers/electricians on the forum?

    Not sure which is the best route to take? What sort of qualification should I aim towards? I realise that I will have to go back to college and probably take a substantial paycut but I dont have any debts and Id be willing to do this, eventually Id like to emigrate and realise that having this sort of trade might make moving to a new country a lot easier.

    As always, any thoughts, pointers or tips would be greatly appreciated.

    Thanks in advance!
    Last edited by unkle; 20th October 2008 at 18:45. Reason: I hate typos.
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  3. #2
    fingermouse's Avatar
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    depends on what sort of sparky you want to be. I did a apprentiship but hardly use my trade now, only really done industrial stuff. Not many people taking staff on to train and maybe with the buiding trade going tits up then sparking may not be good at this time. Plumbing may be worth giving british gas a try ????
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  4. #3
    NHN
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    sparks is still a trade to be in no matter economy cause always needed, just a case of how you advertise, your rates etc etc, plumbers/sparks always make good money, just have to make yourself known to the areas local to you, will take a while & maybe some canvassing at local supermarkets with leaflets, trust me it works, do what you have to so people know your around, need to ring some local firms & check with the local colleges for day release courses aswell, so you do what one day a week in class & rest on site training, would be fairly low wage while training but if you're fairly technical then should do in no time.

    Dont cut the red wire, without putting your tongue on it 1st.

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  5. #4
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    You could check on learn directs web site to see where your local collage is that do these courses.Without any site work during your course (plumbing)you will be doing a tech certificate and with site work NVQ2.
    If you get work with an employer before you start college they should pay for your course and you get paid for the day you are there.
    Its a 2 year course and costs around 1700 for both years,then you would be best to do your gas and get corgi registered and watch the money come flooding in(when the market picks up again).

  6. #5
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    I get at least 3 phone calls a week from people asking about training(plumbing/gas) , I have a 17 y old who for some strange reason is really willing , works hard , good with the customers and picks things up quickly . but can he get on a collage course . NO , It seems there taking on all the mongs to keep them off the streets , the ones i`ve met need Neutering to stop them spreading .

    It`s hard , if you go for a block course check what quals your getting , some of them are not recognised by employers , also some will not touch cc`s (course cowboy) .
    you really need to get with a plumber and get working , you`ll find it easier to get a course as your NVQ2 is work/site based , without it you will not pass .
    I`ve been doing it now for 15 years and still learn from my elders but it is worth it .

    good luck

  7. #6
    NHN
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    thats true ebbs, thats how I started in the telecoms trade 18 years back, no not BT either, learnt from older engineer, within 3-4 years I was head installer/engineer anyway so was well worth it, does help if you're fairly technical at teh get go.

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  8. #7
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    As the owner of a medium sized plumbing company.......

    I've heard that the construction industry is really slowing down in England at the moment. The best advice I could give you is, if you have no ties i.e. family, then get yourself up here to NE Scotland and get a job. If you've got a good head on your shoulders and don't mind learning a new language ;-) then there is loads of work in this area.

    I've found that the domestic side of things has dried up a bit but I am really busy doing commercial work i'e. office blocks and industrial units. Unfortunatly I don't have any positions open at the moment but I will keep you in mind if you like. I need a couple of time served guys just now to work on a newly awarded contract :-D

  9. #8
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    sadly the recession is hitting trades involving construction(cost me my job in July) but I suppose nows the time to train for when it bounces back,good luck

  10. #9
    Z82
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    Aye really busy up here in Inverness too, in fact I can’t remember the last time things were so hectic!
    We have been doing a few 16hr shifts, desperate for qualified sparks but I get so many calls from people wanting to train and it’s just not feasible for us as we already have 1 apprentice and 1 adult trainee.


    I don’t know what the equivalent is in England but in Scotland SELECT do Adult Trainee courses, you basically get a job as an Adult Trainee and its just like being an apprentice IE block release and working on site, it takes the same amount of time, is for over 21's and you start at 7.50/hr (minimum).

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  11. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by ebbs73 View Post
    you really need to get with a plumber and get working , you`ll find it easier to get a course as your NVQ2 is work/site based , without it you will not pass .
    Without it you will pass but only get a tech certificate and not an NVQ2,but you can always go back to the college and get your NVQ2 once you start work.

  12. #11
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    so you wont pass then ?? you wont get a nvq2 ?? but i get your point .

  13. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by NHN View Post

    Dont cut the red wire, without putting your tongue on it 1st.
    I know this was posted a week ago, but I'm sure the harmonisation was in force then, so that would be the brown wire wouldn't it Mr!
    Chris

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  14. #13
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    Quote Originally Posted by NHN View Post
    thats true ebbs, thats how I started in the telecoms trade 18 years back, no not BT either, learnt from older engineer, within 3-4 years I was head installer/engineer anyway so was well worth it, does help if you're fairly technical at teh get go.

    What do you do in the comms business then?
    Chris

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  15. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by ebbs73 View Post
    so you wont pass then ?? you wont get a nvq2 ?? but i get your point .

    You do pass.Its the same exam at the end of the course nvq2 or tech cert.You just do an extra portfolio on site work for the nvq2.

  16. #15
    fingermouse's Avatar
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    ah the good old Not Very Qualified certificate
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  17. #16
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    Quote Originally Posted by fingermouse View Post
    ah the good old Not Very Qualified certificate
    Your not wrong.

  18. #17
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    Took me four years as an apprentice and doing day release at college to become fully qualified electrician. Been at it 6 year all together now.
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