How hard is it to become an electrician?

Whether official or informal, you must complete an apprenticeship. Nobody will refer to you as a journeyman if you have just graduated from college or trade school. Before you can be termed a journeyman or pull permits in some jurisdictions, you must have several years of experience. 

The good news is that anyone may start as an apprentice on day one, and you’ll generally start at half the income of a journeyman and work your way up in 4-5 years.

The electrical trade is a secure choice for anybody seeking a flourishing career with plenty of security and earning potential. If you’ve been considering becoming an electrician, you might be wondering how to get started and how difficult it is to become an electrician and advance in your profession.

Do You Need Math to Become an Electrician?

Electricians must know basic arithmetic, although they are not generally required to solve complex problems. Algebra, in particular, is frequently utilized on the job, and if you intend to engage in a union apprenticeship, passing an algebra exam will be needed prior to acceptance into the program.

If arithmetic makes you uncomfortable, you might want to brush up on your skills by browsing for resources online or enrolling in a course, either in person or online. You could even come across one for electrical contractors. Fractions, decimals, whole numbers, algebra, units and measures, powers and roots, and solving equations are just a few of the various forms of arithmetic you’ll need to master.


Is it Difficult to Become an Electrician?

Many years of experience in the profession are required to obtain the expertise required to qualify as a master electrician. To become a fully trained electrician, you will need to spend four to six years as an apprentice in the early stage of your profession.


You can anticipate working hard during your apprenticeship because your role is to assist journeymen and master-level electricians with their tasks. Carrying heavy equipment and tools to and from work sites, obtaining supplies as needed, and performing much of the hard work are all typical responsibilities.

Working long hours is also common during peak seasons, which means that employment may have a big influence on your family and social life during these times. This time commitment is not limited to trainees and is likely to continue throughout your career.

Once you have completed your apprenticeship requirements, you will most likely need to get licensed. Although the qualifications differ depending on state and local legislation, becoming a certified journeyman electrician typically entails passing an examination.

 After becoming a journeyperson, you will generally be expected to stay at this level for at least two years before applying for a master electrician or electrical contractor’s license. Although it is possible to continue working as a journeyperson without becoming a master, there are compelling reasons to pursue this level of certification. 

Master electrician

Master electricians earn higher money, have access to supervisory roles, and can start their own contracting business. If any of these are on your list of professional objectives, it is definitely worth your time to pursue further certification.

To become a master electrician, you must once again pass an examination. Both the journey- and master-level tests are often based on your knowledge of local building standards, which vary by location but are typically based on the National Electrical Code (NEC), which is maintained by the National Fire Protection Association. 

Depending on where you reside, you may need to learn about other codes, such as those administered by the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE) or the International Code Council (ICC).

There are several online tools available to assist you to prepare for your test, including full training programs. A local trade school or community college may also offer an exam prep course.

Is Electrician School hard?

Electrician and trade schools are designed to expose you to a profession as an electrician. You must study diligently in order to acquire the talents, acquiring one skill at a time. Teachers often assist kids who are struggling, although this varies by school. You must ensure that you attend a respectable school with a fairly priced curriculum

A trade school can adequately prepare you for an apprenticeship. It’s fantastic to have an instructor to aid you with the essential arithmetic abilities, learning the fundamentals of the trade, and finding entry-level or assistant employment. 

Keep in mind that you do not have to attend an electrical or trade school to become an electrician. Some people go to school, while others do not, and both have successful jobs as electricians. If you can locate an apprenticeship program straight immediately, that should be your first priority.

What are the Drawbacks of Working as an Electrician?

Although the life of an electrician has its benefits, such as the opportunity for future professional advancement and the flexibility to work in a variety of sectors, it is not for everyone. Some drawbacks are as follows.

  • It’s a lengthy journey from apprentice to master. You will have spent six to eight years mastering all areas of the job before you can call yourself a master electrician. 

On the plus side, unlike other careers where you must spend a substantial sum of money to attend a training school or university program, you will get paid as you learn the profession, which will balance any possible expenditures.

  • Working as an electrician necessitates a high level of physical stamina. Aside from lugging tools and equipment, you may anticipate spending most of the day on your feet and possibly in confined areas while working on complicated wiring systems. The work can be physically demanding and may not be suitable if you are not in good physical shape.
  • Especially during high seasons, the hours might be lengthy. As previously said, the task may demand a significant amount of time, which you may want to spend with family and friends. 

This time commitment may involve working weekends and for extended periods without a day off, particularly when the weather is pleasant. On the bright side, as you advance in your profession, you will be qualified for more sorts of employment and may be able to obtain a more traditional nine-to-five job after you are licensed.

  • You could find yourself working outside in bad weather. This disadvantage is especially true for someone planning to work as a lineworker (those who install and repair power lines). 

Linemen are frequently obliged to labor outside in blizzards and severe winds in order to restore electricity to neighborhoods. Even residential and commercial electricians may be required to labor outside in freezing weather or in a sweltering attic on a hot summer day.

  • You will have to satisfy picky customers. Although working with difficult individuals is not unique to this profession, those in the construction industry, particularly business owners, will need to keep their clients pleased if they want their firm to thrive.
  • Although Projections Central anticipates a 10.4 percent increase in electrician employment over the next ten years, this rise may not benefit individuals with the most advanced degrees. The demand for highly skilled employees is decreasing as newer materials become easier to install.

Understand the work environment

Electricians frequently work both indoors and outdoors and are sometimes physically demanding situations. They may be subjected to periods of hard lifting and hauling, extended durations of standing, work on ladders, and exposure to the outdoors. Electricians work both alone and in groups, which might be challenging depending on your chosen work style.

If the electrical work environment appears to be difficult for you, here are some tips for dealing with it.

Maintain good health

Taking care of your body is a vital aspect of any job that demands physical effort, including electrical work. Eating nutritious foods, getting enough rest, and exercising may help you adjust to the physical demands of your job.

Dress for the elements

When you have dressed appropriately for the weather, outdoor labor is generally easier to manage. Consider the weather in the region where you want to work and dress accordingly while preparing for a workday—for example, insulated steel-toed boots and a thick jacket in cold weather.

Electricians’ Wage Expectations

One of the nicest aspects of learning a profession is the chance to earn a livable income as you study. In fact, you will most likely recoup your investment in training programs, books, and instruments throughout the duration of your apprenticeship. 

Apprentice electricians earn an average hourly income of $15.43, according to You may also be able to earn salary raises based on merit or time spent in the profession throughout your apprenticeship.

Your income will rise as you advance in your profession and gain certifications at each level. The average hourly salary for a journey-level electrician is $25.56, while the average hourly wage for a master electrician is $29.14.

Furthermore, no matter what level of electrician you are, you may be eligible for incentives, profit sharing, and commissions, which may add $2,000 to $14,000 to your annual pay.

In Conclusion

Despite the drawbacks above, this job is an excellent fit for someone with a certain temperament and can lead to a potentially long and fulfilling career. If any of these issues give you pause, you may want to spend a little more time investigating the profession and possibly even speaking with a local electrician. This way, you can learn more about the peculiarities of the trade-in in your region.