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10 Surprising Facts About Electricians

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It is usually not until something fails us and we have the need for an electrician that we realise just how reliant on electricity we are. In our day-to-day lives, and for so many different activities, we need and extensively use electricity.

While we want electricians to provide a range of electrical services that enhance our comfort and lives more generally, few of us have a broad understanding of the role of an electrician and the context of their work.

Here we provide ten facts about electricians… some of them might surprise you!

1. Master Electricians train almost as long as doctors

In the highly hazardous field of electrical work, there is no room for error. Electricians who have become Master Electricians have been training through classroom work and hands-on experience for many years. After completing an apprenticeship and becoming a licensed electrician, they need to work in the field for 3 years before they can apply to be a Master Electrician, and their credentials are thoroughly checked.

Just like doctors, electricians need to be highly trained in order to be able to diagnose electrical problems and find the correct solutions for them.

2. Electricians must be able to pass a colour test

Not many people know this, but to work in the electrical profession, colour vision is essential. Often the only way to tell the difference between multiple types of wiring is to use a colour-coded system, and without colour vision, a person working with electrical wiring could make a fatal mistake.

3. There are several areas of speciality

Preservation of electrical systems for homes and organisations is a key role of an electrician. Most electricians are specialists in electrical engineering or maintenance, but a growing number of professionals provide both functions. Electricians could also specialise in residential, commercial, industrial or outdoor power lines, but again, many electricians are able to work in more than one of these areas.

4. Many celebrities were once electricians

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Lots of electricians possess multiple talents, and some of them went on to very different careers. Elvis Presley began training to be an electrician, and famously said ‘I suppose I got rewired the wrong way round somewhere along the line’. Rowan Atkinson, now famous for being Mr Bean, has a Masters degree in Electrical Engineering that he obtained at The Queen’s College, Oxford, and Alfred Hitchcock also studied engineering from the young age of 15. George Harrison from The Beatles was also an apprentice electrician, although he wasn’t very successful at it, and claimed ‘I kept blowing things up, so I got dumped’.

5. Electricians are also safety professionals

Part of the work of the electrician is to carry out safety checks. Electrical hazards are very real and that’s why there are many safety regulations in place which electricians need to be well versed in. As electricians work in a range of places and different types of buildings, it’s imperative that they follow the correct and appropriate building codes whenever they are installing electrical models.

6. Problem solving is part of the job

A large part of an electrician’s job is identifying, diagnosing and evaluating defects and problems. In many of these cases, the cause of the problem may not be readily apparent and this is one reason why electricians use so many diagnostic tools. Not only does the electrician have to be good at maths, they have to know how to read blueprints and technical schematics.

7. Electricians perform a wide range of functions

The range of functions performed by electricians is many and varied. The wiring of new homes and
buildings is commonly done by electricians as is the wiring (or re-wiring) of older homes. Upkeep around homes and businesses through the inspection of electrical programs and fixing of issues is crucial work of electrical engineers. Testing, mounting and retaining electrical techniques for a range of purposes (including climate control, devices and security) are also components of the work of an electrician.

8. Electricians require a broad range of skills

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While electricians require an extensive range of skills are proficiencies, they need to be particularly good at:

  • examining and interpreting blueprints
  • planning and carrying out projects
  • using tools
  • logical thinking
  • working with their hands, with excellent hand eye coordination
  • customer service

Electricians also need to be good at managing stress, as they are often working in strenuous situations. They often need to be prepared and willing to carry out their job in a range of (sometimes unpleasant) conditions. It is also very useful for electricians to be physically fit as they often have cause to work in tight locations.

9. Electricians need appropriate clothing and tools

The instruments used by electricians to carry out their work commonly include: screwdrivers, wire blades, knives, pliers and chop saws. Electrical power and test tools are also used quite often.

In light of the taxing, dangerous and specialised work of electricians, it is important that they wear the correct safety garments while working. Clothing which is fitted enough so that it doesn’t get caught up in anything is important and of course, electricians need to wear garments that are suitable for different weather conditions. Of critical concern is the need for electricians to wear robust boots or shoes, that will protect the individual’s feet and help them to avoid slipping or falling. As electricians often have cause to climb and walk across wet areas, appropriate footwear is essential.

10. More jobs will be made available to electricians

It is anticipated that in the coming years many more jobs will be made available for electricians because this occupation is critical to the construction of homes and properties. With our increasing dependence on digital technology, our reliance on electricity and electrical appliances is only growing.

Electricians: They really know watt’s watt

The work performed by electricians is specialised and requires particular skills, expertise and tools. As long as we are so dependent on electricity for many of our needs and activities, there will be an ongoing need for skilled and competent electricians.

For information on what it takes to become an electrician, check out this blog post. Or, if you need to hire a Master Electrician, contact us today on 1800 PLATINUM (1800 752 846). We can’t promise they’ll be the next Elvis Presley, but who knows, you just might get to meet a star in the making!