Can't decide if I want to be a plumber or electrician.
By - butterchickenking
Plumber here. Are you a nail clipper, or nail biter?
Wastewater op here. Im still a nail biter. My immune system will be studied by doctors for generations to come
You've got the wastewater operator tag now if you want it
Awesome thank you so much!
Can I have it?
You've got it
This right here. I switch from biting to clipping and I dont working either field. Just good advice in general as a construction worker.
Furthermore, do you like to lick your fingers?
You've got the plumber tag
Thanks my man!
Are you commercial, residential, industrial, or civil?
Mostly Industrial at this point. Do some residential side work occasionally, very rarely though.
What does an industrial plumber do? Do you do all sorts of crazy shit or do you just install sinks and regular piping but for industrial places?
I have a pretty large range of equipment I take care of as we are a medical device/pharma plant. It’s a long list and some of it ventures into steam, clean steam, WFI water, etc.
plenty of math in plumbing, commercial plumbers don't necessarily herd turds - most plumb new construction
Yeah service plumbing vs commercial are different beasts.
I love service plumbing, hated new construction. But I know plenty of guys who are the opposite
Plenty of math in electrical as well
My company does both commercial and residential. First year apprentice and many service calls down. No literal shitshows yet 😅.
nice, i've just started the second year of my sprinkler fitters apprenticeship. our company is mainly a commercial plumbing company, but we have a smaller fire protection side
I've met a lot of electricians that are terrible at math, I have not met a lot of plumbers with weak stomaches
My son was miserable in HS. He got lucky when some guy embraced him and taught him the electrical trade. He still can't pass the CA certification program but makes decent enough money and he's good at it.
are YOU an Electrician?
Lineman apprentice, so not really, but sorta
How’d you get that gig? I’ve been trying to get onto the utilty for years with no luck anywhere.
I applies with my local jatc. Where are you located?
Tucson Az. I had applied with Local 570 a few times for the apprenticeship program and probably a half dozen times as a line locator with the local power company, as I already am a locator for gas right now, but haven’t gotten any calls back for a few years since I’ve been trying to get in. Unfortunately the only real electrical experience I have under my belt is less than 6 months as a helper with a commercial contractor, but left after the lead foreman told me to off myself since I was worthless to him lol.
http://swlcat.org/ thats where you want to look if you're looking to do linework.
Be a plumbtrician like me
Electrify all the water! Makes using a bedet quite invigorating.
Works on icemakers too.
One of us one of us.... Couldn't make my mind up so I did both!
They both involve plenty of "hard" work and "easy" work (YMMV). Both involve math.
Commercial electrical even after you’ve got the hang of it is not simple lol. Residential maybe, but definitely not commercial or industrial. Both trades involve a lot of thinking and a lot of doing. I chose electrician over plumber because I want nothing to do with piss and shit and installing toilets, although when they’re just brazing copper all day in hospitals I do get a bit jealous. Especially the fire watch plumber who gets to stand there and chill.
I've been a fire watch as an electrical apprentice. It's very boring and the worst part is you're supposed to stay for one hour after the work completes. Everybody else leaves and you're standing there watching for embers.
I'm an industrial electrician.. you have to understand medium voltage substations to MCC's, power distribution, switch gears, motors, motor controls, PLC's, DCS's, and instrumentation. All run in rigid conduit. There is always something new to learn. There are some dumb electricians, but not alot of dumb industrial electricians.
Both are great jobs that pay very well. I see that you're looking into commercial, any reason why? Anything residential, you'll be interacting with customers daily. HVAC actually combines the two. I'm an HVAC tech just a year and a half out of school and am making a very good hourly plus commission.
[You want to be an electrician](https://youtu.be/TYfecnhKvjo)
Do electrical. It’s not that hard and no poop ever. Plus I think the potential to make money is better in electrical than plumbing. But honestly either is good.
Not never am sparky and have had to repair motors in sewage works that got flooded. Whole towns poop had to wear a wader to get to the MCC.
Not never. When my old boss electrocuted himself there was shit everywhere once the source had been isolated. RIP John.
Sounds like a plumbers problem to deal with all that shit lol
As a 37 year Commercial Electrician, you wouldnt believe the shit Ive waded thru. Give advice on your own experience...
It all depends. As a service plumber I'd say the potential for money as a one man business seems better
Absolutely. There's a lot more service work.
Not that hard... have you run much 4 inch rigid?
Some. I think carpentry is harder than electrical and plumbing. I just never thought either was that hard of work.
Electrician, plumbers are required to pick up after themselves whereas sparkies don’t, so that’s definitely a perk.
No, they're required to. They just dont
Our boss actually writes it into our contracts that we do no trash removal or pickup. Of course i pick up little strands of mc or pipe that could hurt someone if they slipped on it.
I feel like this just means you don’t provide a dumpster, the site GC needs to do that, not that you can bachelor frog the jobsite.
It depends on the GC. All my subs know to pick up after themselves which they do, if they leave behind trash because I’m pushing them hard I’ll pick up their trash as the day goes on because they’re doing me a favor.
This makes me hate sparkies even more
Hahaha ficking love it!
Fire sprinkler is a decent trade. Work with pipes but there's plenty of math and code to remember.
And we have the best smelling water.
Only matched by it's distinct coloration
Wait people think we stink?
I've been saying since I got into the field, Yankee Candle would have a best seller if they made a Sprinkler Water candle
How you get the user flair?
I posted a few days ago asking them to add us
I had the pleasure of cleaning one up that "malfunctioned" in a school and went off for less than a minute. They had tile floors and it was still the grossest thing I did at that job (which was being the low man on totem pole janitor in a middle school, so you can imagine).
Be a welder 😉
The [welder life](https://www.google.com/search?q=welder+king+video&oq=welder+king+video&aqs=chrome..69i57j33i160.9845j0j9&client=ms-android-telus-ca-revc&sourceid=chrome-mobile&ie=UTF-8#)
You may not be as bad at math as you think. The way it is taught, especially in the US is horrible.
And even then, you're unlikely to use anything beyond the basics in day to day life. It's okay to re-learn something as needed.
Honestly, construction math is pretty much always gonna be by the book with 20 tutorials on YouTube and a million books at the library to help you. We're not doing theoretical stuff.
IMO, go plumber. I'm commercial GC side as an MEP manager. I get to see both sides and hear both sides. Plumbers seem happier on average. They are usually treated better by their superiors from what I've seen. Can't speak to pay though. Every company has different overhead and profit numbers so when I see the cost it's not apples to apples. Hope this helped.
Plumber here never installed a toilet or any fixtures never snaked a drain closest I get sh*t is in the bathroom onsite. Just put up pipe that's it
Either way, sounds like porta-potties are going to be a problem for you
Do you wanna be called a sparky or a shiiter fitter.
When you’re a plumber and mess up, you get wet. When you’re an electrician and mess up, bzzzzzz
That's Mr turd herder!
Honestly dude sounds like you shouldn't do either.
But there are a lot of plumbers that do only new construction but you are restricting yourself.
I dont know what its like in Australia but electrician jobs are harder to get where i live.
Wet or electric shock? What do you prefer.
Do commercial plumbing or service. The demand for good plumbers is higher and its increasing. More money for us!
I can't recall where this was said, but in a similar thread, "Do you want to buried alive or electrocuted?"
Both trades have their ups and downs, chances are you won't be doing Laplace or Fourier transforms in the field if you are in service/commercial. If you have a good handle on the basics (add/subtract/multiplication/division) and put the time in to understand Ohm's Law, you'll be fine. You'll live if you get covered in dookie water if you cut the wrong pipe, electricity is not forgiving, it will kill you if/when you get complacent. Not to say there aren't risks working with plumbing, but this trade is not for folks who don't respect it.
You're gonna need a lot of math for both
Would you rather play with shit pipes, or get shocked ?
I’m a resi and commercial service plumber and enjoy it so fa. Got much respect for both trades and have family that are electricians etc.
At the end of the day either one will pay the bills and put food on the table and be a lifelong career for you if you want it 👍.
It all boils down to what appeals to you more
I'm apprenticing as a plumber with all my work being in new construction so far. I've never had to deal with human waste and I honestly love my job. Plumbing isn't just service work, I was mistaken there when I got started.
Whatever you decide it's both a good choice. Blue collar work will keep America in shape. Id say journey out in whatever you desire and you can go non union or union. There is a downside to union tho , after you journey out you can't become a contractor. Non union obviously has a lot of disadvantages way more than union But you can become a contractor where you can earn the huge job bids and earn that big money as to where the union its more structured and straight forward. Either way it's up to you
Are they even letting you out of your house in Australia to work or find a job right now?
I suggest you pick either one. Stop being a bitch. If you want something, apply yourself and GET good.
Sound like you whine enough to do both.
Be a painter, carry jobs on your back and make everyone's shit work look good
“Carry jobs on your back “ lol
Be a sparky it’s easier
Just rock up to jobs and try be the biggest cunt there, seems to work for every sparks I know
Found the guy that has to clean up after us
Yup, I'm a painter
Most electricians dont do much math beyond addition and subtraction. Majority of the hard math is done at the planning/engineering level. If you can make it through school (Slightly above high school math) you'll be fine I think.
I’m a commercial wall and ceiling fixer in Aus, mostly do external cladding. From what I see on site plumbers mostly just dig holes and trenches. Sparkles just pull wire for months.
I would go sparky, but I'm biased.
Have you looked into other stuff like maintenance / industrial maintenance?
Both require math…
Commercial electrician/plumbing or carpentry?
Both are great professions! And if you try to stick to new builds you won’t ever have to deal with poop! Lol
I went to Australia once. They plumbed all the sinks and toilets to swirl backwards when draining, figured that took some talent. The light switches, they worked just like the ones here, nothing special.
Electrician. You won’t make it as a plumber.
Plumbers are on the job from when the shovels hit the dirt until all the finish work is done. It gives a little extra job security. And doing commercial/industrial work you won't deal with turds very often.
You will have to smell sewer gas on almost every job at some point though.
If you know what side hot/cold is on and that payday is every other Friday you’d be a good plumber buddy.
There isn't that much shit in plumbing.
Drain cleaning, sure. But those guys aren't plumbers.
But yeah, wash you hands before lunch
I do commercial service plumbing and after the 3rd time you get used to shit. Not saying it’s not gross but it doesn’t really bother me that much. As a plumber it’s not like you are going to be in poop all day. Electrician is also a good trade, my uncle is one and makes good money likes his job etc.
I was behind on math in high school but ended up as a structural engineer so don’t put yourself down!
Sounds like your picking something for the money rather than being honest about what you want. Resulting in you being one of those crabby old guys no one like working with. Explore the trades. You can make millions doing any one of them if you are good and want to work for yourself eventually. Just find something you like. You don’t even seem to know what plumbers or electricians do.
Just be a pipe fitter
Millwright here. I always say electrician even though Im not. I was told its a better job and I had the option when I started but personally its not for me.
Look into fire protection
You can get an apprenticeship and go into Commerical/new construction/ TI for plumbing. If you can’t read a tape measure learn how to and learn your fractions. Aside from that your foreman will do most of the thinking and you’ll learn as you go. Another thing is that if you like thinking and bigger systems Commerical is better IMO.
My electricians are awesome but their work seems to be more based on calculations and formulas. Again your foreman will do all the thinking and you’ll start off helping someone pull wire or being a gopher.
Realistically either of these two are a great choice (if you go Commerical plumbing).
Maybe do hvac where you do alittle of both?
Easy answer. Whats the condition of your buttcrack at this exact time?
What about steam/gas/sprinkler fitting
Beat me to it.
I got to be a helper on a pipefitting crew, work wasn't bad.
Sprinkler fitting was neat too, I just got started too late in life for either.
I kinda like that we get overlooked, we are a tight knit group in my area (dc metro) and it's nice not feeling like a cog in a machine
Well I still kind of work with fitters. I monitor your tamper and waterflow switches and the shop I work for is part of a sprinkler company.
Oh that's a pretty sweet gig! Can you do that remotely or do you have to be at the control panel to do that?
I install the modules, wiring and panels that monitor your stuff.
There are jobs in monitoring too, but I really don't want to be a dispatcher.
If you have a higher level of intelligence and want a career where your body won't be beat up too much, electrician is where it's at.
Can’t go wrong with either although I went electrical it was more interesting to me and still is… either is great but stay away from residential on both definitely go commercial or industrial and if you can go union…
Plumber/Pipefitter here. You get to do a lot of cool stuff in the piping trade. Such as soldering, brazing, welding, tube bending, and orbital welding just to name a few. A lot of sparkies just pull wires through conduit all day. Seems quite boring to me. Also I wouldn’t want to take the pay cut of being an electrician. You’ll learn basic geometry and trig in piping trades if you can get into your local union.
I'd go with electrician. You are on the projects longer than most trades. That's my experience at least. The work is pretty clean too.
You are starting at the wrong premise - it seems you prefer electrical but dont want to struggle with both. Trust me, you will struggle on all trades in the beginning.
Both electrical and plumbing trades have maths but these days its mostly tabulated - meaning you can size cabling/pipes etc. straight from a table.
Plumbing its not only shit and piss, its also storm water, gas/water, pressure pipes, boilers.
Maybe take a pre employment course or something. Here in Canada, they give you a taste of a bunch of trades and you can ask questions.
I know framers get most all the chicks, but a nice girl who can't find a stud carpenter might settle for a sparkle, deffo not going for a turd jocky.
Plumbing is one of the best jobs around, if you can handle it. Yes you will deal with shit but it won't be all the time and you'll eventually move onto clean installs if that's what you want. It's also very labor intensive, you'll be lifting heavy ass shit a lot (pipes are heavy). The math isn't too bad, just work at it with consistent effort and you'll figure it out, and asking a coworker about a math problem helps too. You'll never be out of work and can go anywhere and have a job.
If your scared of brooms and actual hard physical work, go electrical (for legal reasons this is a joke). Pays well and it can branch off into a lot of different areas if you want to continue your education, which also means raise in pay, you could get into a 100k/year job with the right skills. Also a lot of clean installs if you go commercial.
Either way, go union.
Edit: Plumbers are good at math.
Electricians are good at meth.
In my next life I’m going to be a plumber. No thinking involved, butcher everybody else’s work and get paid top dollar while doing so.
Go to electrics. Plumbing you will learn later by yourself (most of it)
We do math in plumbing. Not gonna lie, the job is shitty at times.
Shit flows downhill and payday is Thursday.
Don’t put your fingers where you wouldn’t put your dick!
Do you keep your shit out of walkways? If so, electrical work isn’t for you.
Do you clean up after yourself? If so, electrician is definitely not for you!
You a messy guy? Electrician would be very natural to you then
Plumb swimming pools!!!
Electrical really doesn’t need much math and any math you would have to do is simple and you can easily use a calculator
Unless you go to a high level in electrical it’s really not much math and once you get the hang of it it’s not too hard plus you get to use your mind enough to not be extremely bored
Can’t really speak on plumbing
But I can recommend electrical plus most places you don’t need to clean up which is a big plus
New builds have no poop 👍
HVAC work may be a better fit.
plumber all the way, i know 12 electricians, 1 plumber. But im in ontario.
Just be a painter bro
Do you like digging holes under houses?
Either way u go, do new construction
Plumb-bear or elec-chicken? Your fate, choose wisely.
Look up plumber vs electrician on YouTube.
The old giant douche vs turd sandwich question.
Should do plumbing then electrical
Or vice versa
Knowledge is power
I f you want to be a part of the most hated trade be an electrician
If you wanna make more money become a plumber
You know the difference between a plumber and a pipe fitter? Shit.
Work in low voltage/Data, mostly air conditioned, low chance of injury or death vs electrician and you don’t have to mess with toilets like a plumber
Both are great jobs . And both offer side job opportunities. I’ve worked commercial, residential and industrial. For the most part you know who is always the least dirty and typically makes makes the most if not the same as top paying trade on site. SPARKYs !
Who would I rather hang out with or work beside all day plumbers 100% . SPARKYs for the most part are the kinda ppl that read a book about dragons during lunch break.
Life is not about math no one said it was. Choose the job you enjoy the most
Plumbing, more money at least where I’m at. Both take smarts, there’s a lot to plumbing that you may not quantify per se, though you do when calcing dfus, but it’s fucking basically thermodynamics in the laymen’s world. I’ve worked with a lot of really smart guys that were plumbers. Now that I’ve given plumbers their due, they are the loudest motherfuckers on the job site, always at like 6am before we are even allowed to make noise, and boy do they love destroying shearwalls/floor systems. Ultimately neither plumbing or electrical are simple especially once you are a foreman or supe on a multi family or commercial level, but if I were to choose I’d be a plumber.
Edit: Now that I’ve read other comments referring other trades I feel the obligatory recommendation to look at being an elevator mechanic, those dudes make bank and given the distribution model of the elevator manufacturers/suppliers, are catered to on the job site second only maybe to the fire Marshall.