Electrical Wiring in the Home/electrician

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Question
I'm thinking of transferring careers. What are the steps to become an electrician, how long will it take, what is the starting pay and what are the working conditions? Thanks

Answer
Robert Wilber
Licensed Philadelphia Electrician
Philadelphia License # 3516 - 16765
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LIFE SAFETY WARNING! [disclaimer]
Electricity is dangerous!
You can be injured or killed!
Improper installations can cause fire, injury and death!
Are you qualified to do this work?
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National Electrical Code definition, NFPA 70 2008 Article 100: Qualified Person. "One who has skills and knowledge related to the construction and operation of the electrical equipment and installations and has received safety training to recognize and avoid the hazards involved."
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Electricity is fire in a box!
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Always check with the local “Authority Having Jurisdiction” for an official interpretation before making installation decisions.
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In Philadelphia, it is unlawful for anyone except an individual licensed by the City of Philadelphia to install electrical equipment and wiring.
Homeowners are not allowed to install wiring.
The owner of any property wherein any such installation is discovered shall be issued a violation by the Department of Licenses and Inspections.
The limited exceptions include replacing devices and fixtures at existing outlets.
Contact the Department of Licenses and Inspections for more information.
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You are more likely to be killed by 120 volts than any other voltage [120 volts creates the PERFECT fatal current through the human body's electrical resistance!]
TURN THE POWER OFF WHEN WORKING!
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LIFE SAFETY WARNING! [disclaimer]
This information is provided for the use of parties as they see fit!
I am not responsible for the application of this information by any party, including those lacking sufficient skill or knowledge to perform these steps safely and any hazard created is the SOLE responsibility of the user.
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There are roughly 600.000 electricians in the United States. Since half the people in the country don't actually work, that amounts to about 1 in every 250 people who are working. That makes us the migrant farm workers of the 21st century.

The requirements to become an electrician vary from location to location. Some locales mandate testing and experience while others have no standard at all.

Since you will not be the licensed master electrician at first, the requirements are subject to the master who employs you.

If you find someone willing to hire you, you don't need to know anything at all, and they will determine your pay, which I have observed may initially not exceed minimum wage.

Unless you secure a position in the electrical union, training will be made available sporadically, if at all. Some employers take part in state recognized [if not sponsored] apprenticeship programs. Other than that, you will have to teach yourself through personal study, trade school or community college programs. None of the training will impact your pay scale. You will likely find that the more you learn the harder it will be to find employment. Many employers not affiliated with the electrical unions are owned by self-taught individuals of limited skill who prosper based on personal relationships and depend on the skills of their employees to satisfy performance requirements of their clients. Any earnings they generate, they keep for themselves. Most of these positions have no future.

Further, every fool thinks he can be, and in fact is, an electrician, so you also have to compete against every unemployed carpenter and lawn care worker.

I have raised my family and they have never gone hungry. By the same token, when I can't work anymore, I will be sleeping under a bridge.

If you have the intellect to become a good electrician and need to train in a skill and do not possess the relationships to allow building an independent contracting business supplying services to people you already have a relationship with, I recommend pursuing another field of endeavor.
About Electrical Wiring in the Home
This site answers questions related to home electrical wiring, home wiring, general electrical help,and other electrical questions related to aleternating current (AC). You can find help on the National Electical Code, home electrical issues, wiring electrical outlets, installing lighting, electrical grounding, and general electrical help for do-it-yourself projects not require an electrician. If you do not see your home electrical wiring question answered in this area then please ask your electrical wiring question here

Electrical Wiring in the Home

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Robert Wilber

Expertise

Licensed Philadelphia electrician serving Delaware, Chester, Montgomery and Philadelphia County in Pennsylvania. I install and repair residential, commercial and industrial wiring and lighting. Troubleshooting and repair of problems that stump other people is my favorite. I am willing to help people figure out why things don`t work. I understand motor controls, transformers and machine wiring. I do not teach basics to novices or do free design work.

Experience

Experience in the area I have 44 years experience in residential, commercial and industrial electrical construction and repair, 480 volts and below. This is not to be confused with one week repeated two thousand times.

Education/Credentials
44 years experience in residential, commercial and industrial electrical construction and repair

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