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Pipefitters & plumbers assemble, install, alter, and repair pipelines or pipe systems that carry water, steam, air, or other liquids or gases. They lay out, assemble, install, or maintain pipe systems, pipe supports, or related hydraulic or pneumatic equipment for steam, hot water, heating, cooling, lubricating, sprinkling, or industrial production or processing systems.
WHAT YOU'LL DO
- Cut, thread, or hammer pipes to specifications, using tools such as saws, cutting torches, pipe threaders, or pipe benders.
- Lay out full scale drawings of pipe systems, supports, or related equipment, according to blueprints.
- Assemble or secure pipes, tubes, fittings, or related equipment, according to specifications, by welding, brazing, cementing, soldering, or threading joints.
- Measure and mark pipes for cutting or threading.
- Inspect, examine, or test installed systems or pipe lines, using pressure gauge, hydrostatic testing, observation, or other methods.
SKILLS & ABILITIES REQUIRED
- Arm-Hand Steadiness — The ability to keep your hand and arm steady while moving your arm or while holding your arm and hand in one position.
- Control Precision — The ability to quickly and repeatedly adjust the controls of a machine or a vehicle to exact positions.
- Manual Dexterity — The ability to quickly move your hand, your hand together with your arm, or your two hands to grasp, manipulate, or assemble objects.
- Near Vision — The ability to see details at close range (within a few feet of the observer).
- Multilimb Coordination — The ability to coordinate two or more limbs (for example, two arms, two legs, or one leg and one arm) while sitting, standing, or lying down. It does not involve performing the activities while the whole body is in motion.
TOOLS OF THE TRADE
- Hoists — Chain falls; Tirfors; Tuggers
- Levels — Automatic levels; Laser levels; Pocket levels; Two-hole pins
- Pneumatic grinders — Air operated grinders; Angle air grinders; Pneumatic pipe bevelers
- Power grinders — Offset grinders; Pedestal grinders; Portable grinders; Stationary grinders
- Screwdrivers — Flat head screwdrivers; Impact screwdrivers; Phillips head screwdrivers
AT A GLANCE
The average annual wage is $46,500 or $22.36/hour.
Annual salaries range betweeen $30,380 and $74,790.
JOB OPENINGS (THROUGH 2024)
DEMAND (THROUGH 2026)
EDUCATION & TRAINING REQUIRED
Most occupations in this field require training in vocational schools, related on-the-job experience, or an associate's degree. Employees in these occupations usually need one or two years of training involving both on-the-job experience and informal training with experienced workers.