A pipefitter and a plumber both work with pipes that carry water, sewage, or other fluids. However, they perform a variety of tasks that are distinct from each other. While a plumber deals with plumbing fixtures, water supply lines, and drainage, pipefitters work specifically with piping in various industries. Learn more about the differences between a plumber vs pipefitter.
What does a plumber do?
A plumber installs, maintains, repairs and replaces plumbing systems in residential and commercial buildings. He or she also designs plumbing layouts in accordance with building codes and provides information to architects about the proper placement of piping.
He or she may troubleshoot problems and make adjustments, such as repairing a clogged toilet. In addition, he or she may provide advice and information to homeowners about the health of their water system. In these positions, plumbers use tools and knowledge of physics and math to design and implement new plumbing systems and repair existing ones.
Some states require a license to be a plumber or pipefitter, and some have apprenticeship programs for entry-level jobs. Once you are certified, you can begin to work on your own or with a team.
You can also find plumbing careers in the industrial sector, including factories and service stations. During your career, you may install steam systems and hazardous gas lines. You can even work in the maritime industry, where you might perform plumbing services on ships.
What does a pipefitter do?
Pipefitters are more likely to work in industrial settings and have extensive experience with welding. They also use concrete tools and jackhammers.
They use acetylene torches and small hand tools when installing a pipe system in a factory or service station. They also need to know how to weld in places that can cause damage, such as under the floor.
While plumbers work in residential and commercial settings, pipefitters do most of their work on large-scale constriction projects and industrial settings.
Working as a plumber vs. pipefitter
The job outlook for both plumbers and pipefitters is very positive. The number of available positions is expected to increase over the next decade. The average wages are high, with a bachelor’s degree and experience necessary to get an entry-level position.
There are several things to consider when choosing a career as a plumber or pipefitter, including your interests, your physical abilities and your career goals. You should also consider the work environment and your ability to handle confined spaces.
If you are a good communicator, you might enjoy working with customers and negotiating contracts and projects. In this way, you can build relationships and stay in touch with them in the long run.
Having a strong sense of responsibility, patience and empathy are helpful in the field of plumbing. These skills will also help you maintain good relationships with customers and contractors.
Getting a job as a plumber vs pipefitter
If you’re still working out which career is better between plumbers vs pipefitters, you can learn more about both on our site. Here’s how to become a pipefitter, how to become a plumber, and our list of pipefitting jobs from all over the United States.