Plumbing Training Is Worth It

If you’re thinking that the cost of that trade school, and its plumbing training, might not be worth the cost of attending, think again.

In the United States the median hourly pay for pipe layers was 13.68 – and that was for the last year the wages were studied – 2004. The wages have gone up some since that time. The lowest ten percent, those just starting out their on-the-job plumbing training, made only 9.19 per hour on average, while the highest 10 percent earned over 25.07.

Whats important to keep in mind about these figures, too, is that these are for all plumbers who, either in the midst of training, or having completed it, work for other plumbing or related companies. Plumbers who work for themselves may earn as much as 130 per hour. Of course, these are generally folks who are paying the overhead costs of the business, and perhaps people who work under them so its not all gravy.

Plumbing employees, once training has been completed, start out with some variation in wages depending on which industry they work in. If they are employed in natural gas distribution, for example, they make the highest hourly wage – 23.86. Those employed in the area of construction of non-residential buildings earn a median U.S. wage of 21.55 per hour. Plumbers working for contractors in the building equipment industry make approximately 19.85 per hour, while those in construction of utility systems earn about 18.29 per hour.

Local government pays the lowest of these categories – 16.30 per hour.
Apprentices, those still taking part in on-the-job plumbing training earn approximately half of the going media wage for experienced plumbers, pipe layers, steam fitters or pipe fitters. As their skills improve their wages increase. After a predetermined waiting period, these plumbing training apprentices receive benefits equal to their experienced co-workers.

The ten best known schools in the United States and Canada that offer plumbing training are Everest Institute in Houston Texas, National Institute of Technology in Long Beach Texas, Wyotech in Fremont, Calif., New England Institute of Technology in Warwick Rhode Island, Pennco Tech in Bristol Pa., Vatterott Colleges with two campuses in Missouri, Vancouver Career College with seven different locations in Canadas British Columbia, Eastwick Colleges in Patterson New Jersey, the online Professional Career Development Institute PCDI and Penn Foster Career School which is also entirely distance learning and Web-based.

At New England Institute of Technology, for example, the plumbing training can lead to either an Associates or Bachelors degree in plumbing technology. Students learn the latest technology in heating and plumbing, pipe fitting, drafting, blueprint reading, draining, vent, waste management, and troubleshooting. Completion of the plumbing training program at NEIT qualified the plumber to work as a pipe fitter, a plumbing contractor, or a water supply technician.

Places and Reasons for Water Leaks in Your Plumbing System

Maintaining a home is not that easy. As a homeowner, you need to check everything inside the house to avoid problems that can affect your family in the future. One of these problems is water leaks. Leaking water can not only damage your home; it also brings with it the threat of toxic mold growth. You do not want this to touch any of your children because this can make them sick.

Why it is often too late when you find out there is a leak? And if it’s already there, the damage is done. You spend hard earned cash on water leak repair and it’s not even funny. The reason for a water leak in your home is plain and simple: you forgot to routinely check your home for plumbing problems. Water is a universal solvent and it seeps through everywhere and anywhere. That is why, as mentioned, it is very important to give time to periodically inspect the insides of your home to avoid this nuisance.

How can you protect your family from this inconvenience? Here are several sources of water leaks common at any home. For your guidance:

1. Kitchen Sinks
2. Washing Machine Hoses
3. Water Heater Hoses
4. Bathroom Sinks and Tiles
5. Shower Heads
6. Toilet Bowl

The kitchen sink is an area always overlooked. Look at the plumbing under the cabinet where the sink is located. Pipes are interjoined to the faucet. If there are problems, then, repair on the faucet is doable.

Another area to watch out for is your laundry room. The hose on your washing machine can create such a huge mess if left unattended. Washing machines used for over 5 years needs to be examined at least once every 6 months for leakage. As equipment grows old, it becomes subject to wear and tear. Even a thin spray of water on your hose can cause a big problem in the future. The same idea goes for the water heater hose. What is your remedy for this? You can either change the hose or put a sealant on the leak – it’s up to you; though replacement is a much better solution.

The bathroom is a fiesta for water leaks. If there are tile cracks, it must be repaired in an instant. Cracks can induce leaking plus molds and mildew can easily grow behind it. The alarming part on this is that even if molds cannot be seen, the bad effects of it are present in the bathroom. It releases toxic spores in the air and can create a potential problem in the air quality inside your home.

The toilet bowl is another factor in water leaks. Check the connections of the piping at least once a month. The toilet and bath is wet most of the time and this makes it prone all the more to water leaks. The only solution is to prevent it from happening by checking it constantly.

Quick tip: Before you start any repair, turn off your main water system to avoid flooding. Good luck!

Do You Know What Was First

Come to think of it, everything we have today is due to advancement in technology and scientific discoveries. We are able to watch shows on TV coming from all over the world because there is cable connection. We can talk to other people via the internet and through computer. Another marvel is the cellular phone. We can go on and on but simply put, everything has a beginning. Even the most common of all inventions – the bathtub – something we take for granted, every single one has its own history. Its history started way before plumbing.

We cannot go on for the day without cleansing our body. Hygiene is a basic need. While some don’t see the importance of it, most human beings take a bath “just because”. We were trained by our parents that bathing is an important daily routine and it is! Lucky for us, we in the 21st Century, and everything is available at the click of a button or switch. One thing we don’t even think about is plumbing. There is hot and cold water running from up above when we take a shower or we can turn on our iPod and lie down in the bathtub. So going back, who, how and why?

Earliest discoveries were found in the Greek Islands, particularly in Crete, over four thousand years ago. It was seen in the palace ruins and believed to be the bathing contraption of the Royal family. It resembled the claw foot tub or the earliest known bathtubs during the 1800’s and was made in hard pottery. Length was 5 feet and just enough to accommodate one person.

Nobody really knew who the inventor of bathtub was but in the Ancient Greek time, every wealthy family had one. There was not any plumbing systems connected – no outlets, no drains and that led historians to believe that the tub was filled manually and was cleaned scooping out water afterwards. A rumor started that bathing was immoral and considered perilous to the health. (Backward thinking!) But, as we are in the practice today, the rumor was twisted back to the truth – bathing is imperative and everyone else did the act.

There were American geniuses in the early 19th Century who were intrigued by the purpose of a bathtub. At first, tubs were made of wood until 1873 when J. L. Mott Iron Works envisioned and created the ultimate bathtub, made of cast iron with an enamel interior. Those who cannot afford were welcome to use public tubs which started around 1850’s. These tubs could fit a number of people all at the same time. But as the economy improved and American living became comfortable; people can acquire their own personal bathtub today.

Basically, that is the History of Bathtubs, which as you can see started way before plumbing was invented. It would be nice to know who the first person was that thought about this essential invention. He was probably Greek, but then, records were not kept at that time – so, we are left to give credit on those who had innovative ideas and enhanced the bathtub. At least, they made bathing easier and comfortable for us all.

How to Prevent Future Plumbing Problems

According to Dallas plumbers, who are among the most experienced in the field of plumbing due to the nature of the plumbing in the Metro area, very tricky soil that moves during the year, expands when it rains and shrinks when in the dry season, stressing the whole house and the plumbing pipes. Also the chemical composition of the water does not help the north Texas plumbing, very loaded with minerals that eventually clog the pipes.

There are simple and easy ways to extend the life of your pipes and other plumbing fixtures. Some of these prevention methods are performed by a qualified plumber, but many of them are steps that you can implement yourself. Taking preventative steps now will lessen plumbing emergencies and help to maintain the healthy water flow in your pipes. But first, you need to understand how your pipes function, know the cause of your plumbing problems and become aware of any plumbing peculiarities unique to your location.

1. Slab leak repair – Slab leaks are commonly caused by holes or cracks in the pipe, loose pipe connections and ruptured pipes. It is discovered only when the damage results in enough water leaking and rising up the cracks to create puddles of water on the ground.

One common cause of leaks and cracks in pipes can be due to the chemical composition of water and its effects on copper. When water flows incessantly through a copper pipe, chemicals in the water react with the copper and weaken the pipe over time. If the water pressure is too high, such as when the diameter of the pipe is too small, this shortens the time period it would normally take for water to corrode the copper pipe.

Another cause for ruptured pipes can be due to foundation shifting. This usually happens as a result of ground moisture. The moisture causes the soil to expand and contract, moving the foundation and the pipes contained within it. This pulls the pipes apart over time and results in leaks. Loose pipe connections due to poor craftsmanship of the pipe or improper installation can also be the culprit.

To prevent all these problems, experienced Dallas Plumbers recommend an application of epoxy inside the pipe. Epoxy is like water proof glue. When hardened, the epoxy turns into a compact solid state. Two objects that are bound by epoxy are bound permanently. Epoxy is so strong that even while underwater the substance can harden and bind objects or seal up holes. Due to the properties of this strong adhesive, it is most often applied to holes and cracks to stop water leaks. Using it on pipes for protection and additional strength is even better. With an epoxy lined copper pipe, the epoxy serves as a protective covering that prevents water from direct contact with the copper thus preventing corrosion. It adds to the durability of the pipe by reinforcing the inner base.

2. Toilet clogs and leaks – The toilet bowl itself is a strong bathroom fixture and is difficult to break under normal conditions of use. So toilet problems would rarely require entire toilet replacement. Internal parts within the tank that get worn out can be bought separately. Though toilet clogs can be easily managed by plumbers, it is sometimes embarrassing to have it done. You also are at the mercy of waiting until the plumber is available to come and fix your problem. Even if you live in an apartment, you still have the same embarrassment to contend with and you still have to wait for the maintenance man to arrive. Meanwhile, it can be very inconvenient to have an inoperative bathroom. So prevention is always the best choice. You can start by keeping the toilet clean. Do not flush hard, solid objects down the toilet. Also, do not flush sanitary napkins, paper towels, Kleenex tissues, cat litter, or anything else other than toilet paper.

3. Kitchen sink clogs – Food, grease, and soap can accumulate and clog the pipes of your sink. This will grow eventually into a bigger problem if not addressed immediately. To prevent gunk from accumulating in the pipes, use strainers over the drain to catch food particles and prevent them from going down with the water. Also, it is important never to pour grease down your drain. Use an empty coffee can to pour your grease into, and then dispose of the can when it becomes full. Grease that is poured down the drain turns into a thick solid of fat that will line your pipes. Over time this will become a clog. From time to time, pour boiling hot water mixed with vinegar down your sink drain to flush it out, wash away grease build up and loosen stuck particles and clumps.

4. Burst Pipes – It can be difficult to identify ahead of time when your pipes are having problems because they’re completely hidden. Often times you are unaware of a problem until the pipe has burst and water is leaking. To get ahead of this dilemma, it helps to pay attention to any unusual sounds your pipes may be producing such as growling, whistling, rattling, and screeching. Any of these would indicate that your pipes need to be examined by a plumber ASAP. Also, any changes in the water flow or water pressure from your faucets can be due to a damaged pipe. Do not wait to call a professional. Any delays can result in much greater problems and costly repairs.