A plumber is a tradesperson
who specializes in installing and maintaining systems used for potable (drinking) water
[Employment and Occupations in the Skilled Trades in Michigan](_blank)
, Michigan Department of Technology, Management, and Budget, Bureau of Labor Market Information and Strategic Initiatives (June 2013).
The word "plumber" dates from the Roman Empire
. The Latin
is '. Roman roofs used lead in conduits and drain pipes and some were also covered with lead, lead was also used for piping
and for making baths. In medieval times anyone who worked with lead was referred to as a plumber as can be seen from an extract of workmen fixing a roof in Westminster Palace and were referred to as plumbers "To Gilbert de Westminster, plumber, working about the roof of the pantry of the little hall, covering it with lead, and about various defects in the roof of the little hall".
Thus a person with expertise in working with lead was first known as a ''Plumbarius'' which was later shortened to plumber.
Years of training and/or experience are needed to become a skilled plumber; some jurisdictions also require that plumbers be licensed.
Common plumbing tasks and skills:
* Reading drawings, and specifications to determine layout of water supply, waste, and venting systems
* Detecting faults in plumbing appliances and systems, and correctly diagnosing their causes
* Installing, repairing and maintaining domestic, commercial, and industrial plumbing fixture
s and systems
* Locating and marking positions for pipe
connections, passage holes, and fixtures in walls and floors
* Measuring, cutting, bending, and threading pipes using hand and power tools or machines
* Joining pipes and fittings together using soldering
techniques, compression fitting
s, threaded fittings
, and push-on fittings.
* Testing pipes for leaks using air and water pressure gauges
* Awareness of legal regulations and safety issues
* Ensuring safety standards and building regulations
Each state and locality may have its own licensing and taxing schemes for plumbers. Some states license journeyman and master plumbers separately, while others license only master plumbers. To become licensed, plumbers must meet standards for training and experience, and in most cases, pass a certification exam. There is no federal law establishing licenses for plumbers.
In Canada, licensing requirements differ by province, however the provinces have pooled resources to develop an Interprovincial Program Guide that developed and maintains apprenticeship training standards across all provinces. The Red Seal
Program, formally known as the Interprovincial Standards Red Seal Program, is a program that sets common standards to assess the skills of tradespeople across Canada. The Red Seal, when affixed to a provincial or territorial trade certificate, indicates that a tradesperson has demonstrated the knowledge required for the national standard in that trade.
National Vocational Qualifications (NVQ
) remained the main form of plumbing qualification until they were superseded in 2008 by the Qualification and Credit Framework (QCF) and then again into the National qualifications frameworks in the United Kingdom
in 2015. The terms NVQ and SVQ (Scottish Vocational Qualification
) are still widely used.
Plumbers in the United Kingdom are required to pass Level 2 and Level 3 vocational requirements of the City and Guilds of London Institute
. There are several regulatory bodies in the United Kingdom providing accredited plumbing qualifications, including City and Guilds of London Institute
and Pearson PLC
In Ireland, a 4-year apprenticeship plus qualification exam was necessary for someone to practice professionally. Accreditation of businesses is of great help in order to show their credibility and experience in the job.
There are many types of dangers to a plumber. Some of them are strains and sprains, cuts and lacerations, bruises and contusions, fractures, burns and scalds, foreign bodies in the eye, and hernias. Working at height, confined spaces, lead and asbestos are all on site dangers that plumbers can face.
Infectious disease risks
Plumbers risk infections when dealing with human waste when repairing sewage systems. Microbes can be excreted in the feces
of the sufferer onto the toilet or sewage pipes. Human waste can contain infectious diseases such as cholera
, and schistosomiasis
The term "White House Plumbers
" was a popular name given to the covert White House Special Investigations Unit established on July 24, 1971 during the presidency of Richard Nixon
. Their job was to plug intelligence "leaks
" in the U.S. Government relating to the Vietnam War
(i.e. the Pentagon Papers
); hence the term "plumbers".
Category:Construction trades workers