Ten Skills All Plumbers Need to Have

Plumbers are always in demand. If you want to be a plumber, then you can rest assured that you’ll find regular work. This is as society is highly reliant on water systems. Should anything happen to these systems, even something as minor as a leaky faucet – who do people call? Plumbers.

However, in order to be a plumber, there are several skills that you need to have.

You’ll learn a majority of these skills during the time you spend in vocational training or during your apprenticeship. These skills are essential to finding success in your career and ensuring that you can solve all your clients’ problems.

What are the skills a plumber needs to have?

As a plumber, you should be comfortable working with most of the tools you’ll need on a daily basis. You should also have a general idea of how to solve most plumbing and water system problems. Here are the ten skills that plumbers need to be adept at to find success in their careers:

1. Know how to install and repair

Plumbers need to complete a pre-apprenticeship program, followed by an apprenticeship. The apprenticeship stage typically lasts around four to five years, and during this time, you’ll learn the essential skills of the trade. You’ll be taught how to install various fixtures, how to repair them, as well as how to maintain them. Learning how to troubleshoot is also an essential skill that plumbers need to have.

You should know how to install and repair both pipes, as well as piping fixtures. This includes both drainages, as well as venting systems. You should also be capable of fixing leaks or dealing with clogged lines. You will also need to learn how to connect appliances that need to use water, such as washing machines. Finally, you may also be asked to install piping for air handling systems, or gas, or even pneumatic systems.

Not only should you be able to deal with these issues, but you should also be able to troubleshoot for them in a calm manner.

2. Adapting to new plumbing trends

New technology and innovations are always appearing, and plumbers need to stay on top of the ones relevant to them. An example of this is how customers may ask you how they can reduce their impact on the environment.

They may also want to upgrade to smart home features and ask you to install them.

For that reason, you need to know what the latest features are, as well as how to install and repair them. Think hand-free faucets and toilets, greywater recycling systems, and more.

3. Know how to read blueprints

Plumbers should be able to read and interpret blueprints. You should know how to understand mechanical, as well as architectural drawings, in order to correctly install pipes and fixtures. If you want to locate municipal connections, for example, then knowing how to read drawings as well as schematics becomes essential.

You’ll also need basic math skills, as these will help you to create estimates, as well as do any calculations you need for installing fixtures.

4. Learn how to work with tools

A plumber should be adept at using hand and power tools. These can include tools like lime plungers, augers, wrenches, as well as snakes. Not only do you need to know how to operate these tools, but you’ll also need good hand-eye coordination in order to use them effectively.

Remember that you’ll also need to inspect your tools regularly and replace any tools that are broken or can’t be used.

5. Know the plumbing code

Not only do you have to know what the local, as well as national plumbing codes are, but you’ll also need to follow them rigorously. The plumbing code is always enforced by all plumbing inspectors, and they look for everything from the design to the materials and more.

6. Follow safety procedures

All plumbers should know how to work safely; otherwise, they could pose a danger to themselves and others. You should know how to handle chemicals, how to protect your body parts, such as your hair, skin, eyes, etc. You should be comfortable with working in confined spaces, as well as with heights.

When you’re working, remember to wear safety clothing and be vigilant at all times.

7. Collaboration and teamwork

Plumbers should be able to work well with others. You may find yourself working alongside other contractors to finish a project.
During such times, by implementing teamwork strategies, you can better ensure that the work gets done well.

You may need to work with electricians, painters, gas-fitters, and other contractors, on a construction project. The key to success is proper collaboration.

8. Customer service

Irrespective of whether you’re working with a business, or homeowners, you should know how to provide good customer service to everyone. You’ll need to present yourself professionally, answer any questions that the client may have, and ensure that you treat them well.

Having a client be impressed with your work is crucial, as it can enable you to get other clients through referrals.

9. Be flexible

You may be called into work at any time. This includes after-hours, on weekends, and even on holidays. There’s no fixed time when a water system can malfunction, so people may need to call a plumber at any time. Emergencies like a burst pipe or an overflowing toilet will need to be dealt with as swiftly as possible.

Be ready to be called to work at any time. Being flexible with your timing will allow you to earn more, as well as make a name for yourself as a plumber.

10. Physical endurance and stamina

Plumbers need to be physically fit. You may have to work in small spaces or in extreme temperatures. Physical fitness can help you to stand out in your career. You should be fit enough to stand for long periods of time or to crouch, or climb stairs, or balance. The more physically fit you are, the easier it will be for you to meet the demands of the job.


If you want to be a successful plumber, then you’ll need to be skilled at more than just fixing water systems. This list contains all the useful skills you need to find success as a plumber. From being physically fit to knowing how to treat your customers right, a plumber needs to have these ten essential skills.

As a plumber, you should also consider plumbing insurance. This is as you’re exposed to certain career risks, such as being sued by a client or encountering business disruptions. When these happen, you may find yourself losing money. With the help of insurance for plumbers, however, you can create a financial safety net for yourself. Get financial coverage, and protect your finances with the help of insurance for commercial plumbers. That way, you can focus on your job and not have to worry about common career risks.

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