Pipefitters Career

The work of pipe fitters is to maintain, install, and repair different types of pipe systems. Steam fitting, pipe fitting, pipe-laying, and plumbing sometimes are considered a single trade. Some pipe systems move water to a municipal water treatment plant and then to commercial, residential and public buildings. Other systems provide gas to furnaces and stoves, dispose off waste, and provide for cooling and heating needs.

Job Prospect
Every manufacturing plant needs pipe to move material through the production process. Specialized piping system plays an important role in both computer-chip and pharmaceutical manufacturing. Workers specialize in any of the four areas comprising of pipe-laying, plumbing, steam fitting, and pipe fitting.

Pipe-layers lay concrete, plastic, clay, or cast-iron pipe for sewers, water mains, drains, and gas or oil lines. Before laying the pipe, pipe-layers create and grade the trenches either with machines or manually. After laying the pipe, they cement, glue, or join pipes together.

Plumbers repair and install drainage, waste disposal, and gas systems in commercial, home, and industrial buildings. Plumbers install bathtubs, plumbing fixtures, sinks, showers, toilets, water heaters, dishwashers, and other appliances.

Pipe fitters install and repair low-pressure and high-pressure pipe systems used in manufacturing, generation of electricity, and cooling and heating of buildings. Pipe fitters also install automatic controls, which are increasingly being used to control these systems. Some of the pipe fitters specialize in one type of system. Steam fitters install pipe systems, which move gases or liquid under extremely high pressure. The work of sprinkler fitters is to install automatic fire sprinkler systems in buildings.

Steam fitters, plumbers, pipe-layers, and pipe fitters use various construction and material techniques based on the type of the project, for example, residential water system. This system incorporates steel, copper, and plastic pipe that may be installed and handled by one plumber. Municipal sewerage systems, on the contrary, are made of huge cast-iron pipes require a crew of pipe fitters.

In spite of these differences, all pipe fitters, plumbers, pipe-layers, and steam fitters should be able to follow blueprints or building plans and instructions from supervisors and work proficiently with the tools and materials of their profession. These workers use computers and special software to create plan layouts and blueprints.

Construction plumbers have to use blueprints or drawings while piping in a new house. Blueprints facilitate plumbers to identify the planned location of plumbing fixtures, pipes, and appliances. Lately, plumbers are more involved in the design process. Their operation of plumbing systems and knowledge of codes may cut cost. They first design the job to fit the piping into the structure of the house with the latest waste of materials. Then they mark and measure sections in which are connected and installed.

Construction plumbers also examine obstructions like electrical wiring. At times, construction plumbers have to cut holes in ceilings, walls, and floors of a house. They have to hang steel supports from ceiling joints to hold the pipe in proper place. Plumbers assemble a system using pipe, saws, pipe bending machines, bend and cut length of pipe. Plumbers connect length of pipe with fittings employing advanced method. Plumbers joint the parts and fittings of plastic pipes with adhesives.

For copper pipe, plumbers slide a fitting over the end of the pipe and solder it in proper place with a torch. Once the piping task is completed in a house, plumbers install the appliances and fixtures and joint the system to the sewer line or outside the water. Finally, plumbers examine the system using pressure gauges to ensure that the plumbing functions properly. These workers have to deal with following responsibilities.


Educational Qualification
Most of the plumbers, pipe-layers, steam fitters, and pipe fitters are trained in technical schools, on-the-job through apprenticeship, and community colleges. The apprenticeship program equips candidates with most comprehensive training in this field. Some of the states and communities require plumbers to possess license.

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