& Territories
The Plumber
Q: How do I know when to obtain a permit for work being performed in my house, workplace, etc.?
A: Minor service repairs such as faucet repairs, small repairs to a pipe inside the house, etc. need not be inspected. However, replacement of a water heater, repiping of your house waterlines or sewer lines, replacement of a bathtub, re-routing of gas lines, and service work of a more serious nature should be inspected. There are many plumbing jobs that are supposed to be permitted and inspected. You can always call your local permit office with a specific question if you're not sure.

Q: How long does it take become a licensed plumber and do you have to go to school?
A: In the state of Maryland you can become a Journeyman Plumber if you have a minimum of 4 years experience. You will have to take an exam with a state certified agency and pass with a score of at least 70%. The requirements to become a Master Plumber are 6 years experience and again you will have to take an exam. Only Master Plumbers are allowed to obtain permits for work.

Q: Does it matter if a technician working at my house is a licensed plumber?
A: That's a difficult question. It certainly matters but to what extent? The State of Maryland requires anyone performing plumbing services to be a minimum licensed journeyman plumber or directly supervised by a licensed plumber. Drain cleaners are not required to be licensed plumbers. The real problem is one of manpower. In my opinion, if the rules were enforced to the letter of the law we would end up with a shortage of workers. With that said, I would suggest that the more difficult the plumbing task the more important to be sure you are using an experienced plumber, whether licensed or not. Minor faucet repairs, toilet repairs, etc. are not complicated but having a water heater replaced, a tub installed, pipes repaired under your floors or in your walls, etc. are more difficult and should only be performed by a licensed professional.

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