Since the average incorporates both the highest and lowest numbers, the range gives us context as to how broad the plumber's salary scale is, from the lowest-paid plumbing positions to the highest-paying plumbing positions. This analysis gives us a high and low benchmark of what plumbers could expect to gain in their role, depending on their location. Keep in mind that this average includes both high and low amounts, and applies to a variety of positions, from temporary or contract worker to master plumber. Whether you are entering the plumbing industry and are looking for an entry-level apprenticeship, are an official licensed plumber or one of the experienced plumbers, knowing the terrain can be useful.
The highest rate could represent a master plumber, while a licensed officer is the median, and an apprentice would receive half that fee, representing the lower end of the scale. The 50th percentile is higher than the national figure for entry-level plumbers in 10 of the 50 states and the District of Columbia. This means that, as a plumber, you may not want to compare your salary to the country as a whole or even your entire state. The ones who have the most autonomy in their work are master plumbers and, compared to an apprentice and an officer, they have the highest earning potential.
The margin is small, usually less than a dollar an hour, but the 50th percentile for entry-level plumber salaries is lower than that of electricians and HVAC technicians in all 50 states and the District of Columbia. In other words, if you're a plumber working in that city, you're probably earning more than most plumbers in your state. Alaska has the highest median salary for beginning and senior plumbers, but Massachusetts has the highest paid intermediate plumbers. The variables that determine salary include education in the plumbing school, the place of employment, the level of the person (apprentice, officer or master plumber), the years of experience, the type of job and the type of employer for whom you work.
The salaries of plumbers in the data fall in a wide range even in the same state, depending on location and other factors. The median base salary for plumbers, regardless of experience level, is lower than the national average in all states in the South and Midwest.