Electricians Job Description

Electrician Job Description

The main job duty of electricians is to ensure that electrical current keeps flowing in a safe and reliable fashion from mains to outlets and electrical appliances. Secondary roles of electricians depend on the specialization and the industry in which the electrician is employed. Although there are common duties for all electricians, differences exist in the duties that these professionals handle, and they are all determined by the specific career path an electrician chooses.

New Construction

Electricians who work in construction sites usually work from blueprints produced by architects or builders. The blueprints provide information regarding the location of all electrical outlets, switches, circuits, lighting fixtures, breakers, and wiring in a building. The electricians then determine the best way to run the wiring throughout the building. Electricians in construction sites also install conduits to hold all the required wiring as well as run the wires and connect them. Apprentice electricians cannot fulfill these roles and usually work under direct supervision. On the other hand, licensed electricians can perform these tasks on their own without direct supervision.

Industrial Electricians

Some electricians specialize in working in industrial settings. Depending on the employer, some electricians fill multiple roles. For instance, an electrician working in an auto production plant might repair robotics as well as repair generators and motors in a battery production plant. Industrial electricians also install new electrical equipment and rewire existing systems. This type of electricians also performs routine maintenance on equipment in an industrial environment.

Residential Electricians

Some electricians specialize on repairing residential electrical systems. With time, residential electrical systems might become defective or outdated; circuit breaker may also become too small for current electrical demands. Some homeowners may require residential electricians to help them place electrical outlets in new locations. Residential electricians may also be required to rewire entire homes. This may involve coordinating with other professionals including carpenters, HVAC technicians and plumbers.

Commercial Electricians

These professionals install and repair electrical systems in offices and other commercial settings. Business owners may require the services of commercial electricians when they want to increase the number of computers in their offices, install lighted signs, or relocate cash registers. Commercial electricians may also need to work with other professionals including alarm system technicians and elevator installers.

Education and Training

One of the best places to launch your career as an electrician is a technical school. Here, you will learn how to read blueprints, learn about local building codes, and the basics of electrical theory. Next step is serving as an apprentice, which may take two to four years. During your apprenticeship, you will attend classes part time and receive on-the-job training the rest of the time. You cannot work independently as an apprentice nor offer your services to the public. After successful completion of your apprenticeship program, you will become a journeyman electrician. Most states allow journeyman electricians to work independently and seek state licenses.

Electricians earn descent wages and salaries. The Bureau of Labor Statistics notes that electricians earn an average annual salary of $52,910 with the highest earning ten percentile electricians earning $82,680 per year as of May 2011.

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