Are you interested in learning how to become an electrician? Perhaps you have a natural inclination to fix things but do you have the skills needed to become an electrical technician?
Learn what an electrical technician does and skills you’ll need to succeed.
What Does an Electrical Technician Do?
Electricians perform a wide variety of tasks, ranging from complete installation of wiring in a new construction project to repairing and replacing older systems. Some of the most common duties include:
Type of Work
Most electricians fall into one of two categories:
Skills Every Electrical Technician Needs
Although this career route may be attractive to a lot of people, there are some electrical technician requirements that can’t be taught in a classroom or during an apprenticeship. It’s important to consider whether you have the following skills necessary to be good at the job, otherwise your safety and the safety of those around you may be in jeopardy:
On the other hand, if you work for a private contractor who services individual businesses and residences, you’ll likely need to develop a rapport with the customers. In most cases, a homeowner’s need for an electrician comes at a time of crisis, making them feel overwhelmed and out of control. Helping them feel comfortable and reassured about the project goes a long way in word-of-mouth recommendations.
How to Become an Electrician
There are two main paths to take if you want to become an electrician, but they both take time. Due to the specialized equipment electricians use and the need for impeccable safety practices, becoming a fully certified electrical technician can take up to five years. However, the rigorous training produces highly-skilled technicians capable of taking on any job. Since most of the work is completed on-the-job, you will be able to make money while learning your trade.
Most electricians become trained through an apprentice program or a technical training program at a trade school. In both cases, a high school diploma is necessary before starting a program, along with an understanding of math through the algebra level. Your choices for training options are:
After finishing these programs, technicians still need to complete an apprenticeship. They will also need to take continuing education courses. The apprenticeship period for someone who has earned a degree at a technical school usually takes two years to complete.
A typical program will consist of at least 144 hours of classroom/textbook learning and 2,000 hours of on-the-job training. This training is paid, but it’s at a lower rate than what’s typical of an electrical technician. This hands-on style of education will encompass state coding laws, blueprint interpretation, communications and soldering.
Physical Requirements to Become an Electrician
While the personality traits and education requirements listed above may come as no surprise, there are also some physical characteristics that need to be considered. In most cases, these requirements are simply suggestions, but they are each based on providing safety for the electrician and those around them. Check with your state and local license issuers to see if there are any physical requirements in your area.
At a minimum, the suggested physical requirements for an electrical technician include: