Plumbers (General) install and repair water, drainage, gas and sewerage pipes and systems.

Specialisations: Fire Services Plumber, Sanitary Plumber, Water Plumber.

Either extensive experience or a certificate III in plumbing is needed to work as a Plumber (General).

Tasks

  • Studies drawings and specifications to determine the layout of plumbing systems and materials required.
  • Sets out and installs hot and cold water systems and associated equipment.
  • Installs water-based fire protection systems, including fire hydrants, hose reels and sprinkler systems.
  • Designs and installs sanitary plumbing and water supply systems, discharge pipes and sanitary fixtures.

All Plumbers

  • $1,894 Weekly Pay
  • Strong Future Growth
  • Lower unemployment Unemployment

Plumbers (General)

  • 48,200 workers Employment Size
  • Medium skill Skill level rating
  • 89% Full-Time Full-Time Share
  • 44 hours Average full-time
  • 33 years Average age
  • 1% female Gender Share

The number of people working as Plumbers (General) (in their main job) grew moderately over 5 years:
from 45,600 in 2011 to 48,200 in 2016.

  • Size: This is a large occupation.
  • Location: Plumbers (General) work in many regions of Australia.
  • Industries: Most work in Construction; Public Administration and Safety; and Electricity, Gas, Water and Waste Services.
  • Full-time: Most work full-time (89%, much higher than the average of 66%).
  • Hours: Full-time workers spend around 44 hours per week at work (compared to the average of 44 hours).
  • Age: The average age is 33 years (compared to the average of 40 years). Many workers are under 25 years of age (26%).
  • Gender: 1% of workers are female (compared to the average of 48%).

Employers found it hard to fill vacancies for Plumbers in 2018. Find out more in the Department of Employment, Skills, Small and Family Business latest report on Plumbers.

Employment Outlook

Number of Workers

No data is available for the selected graph for this Occupation.

Weekly Earnings

Weekly Earnings (Before Tax)

No data is available for the selected graph for this Occupation.

Main Industries

Main Employing Industries (% Share)

Source: Based on ABS Census 2016, Customised Report. Industries are based on the Australian and New Zealand Standard Industrial Classification (ANZSIC 06).
Main Employing IndustriesIndustry (% share)
Construction89.9
Public Administration and Safety3.2
Electricity, Gas, Water and Waste Services1.1
Other Services0.9
Other Industries4.9

States and Territories

  • NSW

  • VIC

  • QLD

  • SA

  • TAS

  • NT

  • ACT

Employment by State and Territory (% Share)

Source: Based on ABS Census 2016, Customised Report. Share of workers across Australian States and Territories, in this job compared to the all jobs average.
StatePlumbers (General)All Jobs Average
NSW32.431.6
VIC30.525.6
QLD17.820.0
SA6.07.0
WA9.010.8
TAS1.82.0
NT1.11.0
ACT1.31.9

Age Profile

Age Profile (% Share)

Source: Based on ABS Census 2016, Customised Report. Age profile of workers in this job compared to the all jobs average.
Age BracketPlumbers (General)All Jobs AverageAll Jobs Average
15-199.0-5.05.0
20-2417.1-9.39.3
25-3427.3-22.922.9
35-4418.7-22.022.0
45-5415.2-21.621.6
55-596.0-9.09.0
60-644.3-6.06.0
65 and Over2.4-4.24.2

Education Level

Highest Level of Education (% Share)

Source: ABS Census 2016, Customised Report. Highest qualification completed by workers in this job (in any field of study). Qualifications needed by new workers might be different from the qualifications of workers already in the job.
Type of QualificationPlumbers (General)All Jobs AverageAll Jobs Average
Post Graduate/Graduate Diploma or Graduate Certificate0.1-10.110.1
Bachelor degree0.8-21.821.8
Advanced Diploma/Diploma2.3-11.611.6
Certificate III/IV78.0-21.121.1
Year 129.4-18.118.1
Year 113.7-4.84.8
Year 10 and below5.7-12.512.5

Either extensive experience or a certificate III in plumbing is needed to work as a Plumber (General).

Checks, licences and tickets

You may need:

  • plumbing licence
  • construction induction card (white card)
  • driver's licence
  • Psychometric or aptitude tests

Thinking about study or training?

Before starting a course, check it will provide you with the skills and qualifications you need.

  • Compare Vocational Education and Training (VET) courses, providers and student outcomes on the My Skills website.
  • You might be interested in Construction, Plumbing and Services VET training pathways on the AAPathways website.

Or check out related courses on Job Outlook.

Useful links and resources


The course listings on this page are provided by Good Education Group.

Employers look for Plumbers who work well in a team, are hardworking and provide good customer service.

Filter Skills & Knowledge

Knowledge

These are important topics, subjects or knowledge areas.

  1. Mechanical

    76% Skill level

    Machines and tools, including their designs, uses, repair, and maintenance.

  2. Building and Construction

    70% Skill level

    Materials, and methods used to construct or repair houses, buildings, or other structures like highways and roads.

  3. Design

    64% Skill level

    Design techniques, tools, and principles used to make detailed technical plans, blueprints, drawings, and models.

  4. Customer and Personal Service

    60% Skill level

    Understanding customer needs, providing good quality service, and measuring customer satisfaction.

  5. Engineering and Technology

    58% Skill level

    The use engineering science and technology to design and produce goods and services.

Occupational Information Network
O*NET is a trademark of the U.S. Department of Labor, Employment and Training Administration.
The skills and importance ratings on this page are derived from the US Department of Labor O*NET Database Version 21.2, 47-2152.02 - Plumbers.

Learn about the daily activities, and physical and social demands faced by workers. Explore the values and work styles that workers rate as most important.

Filter Work Environment

Demands

The physical and social demands workers face most often are shown below.

  1. Face-to-Face Discussions

    90% Important

    How often do you talk with people face-to-face?

  2. Exposed to Contaminants

    89% Important

    How often are you exposed to pollutants, gases, dust or odours?

  3. Spend Time Using Your Hands to Handle, Control, or Feel

    88% Important

    How much time do you spend using your hands to handle, control, or feel objects, tools or controls?

  4. Telephone

    87% Important

    How often do you talk on the telephone?

  5. Exposed to Minor Burns, Cuts, Bites, or Stings

    83% Important

    How often are you exposed to minor burns, cuts, bites, or stings?

Occupational Information Network
O*NET is a trademark of the U.S. Department of Labor, Employment and Training Administration.
The skills and importance ratings on this page are derived from the US Department of Labor O*NET Database Version 21.2, 47-2152.02 - Plumbers.

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