An electrician is a tradesman specializing in electrical wiring of buildings and related equipment. Electricians may be employed in the installation of new electrical components or the maintenance and repair of existing electrical infrastructure.
In the United States electricians are sometimes referred to as Inside Wireman as opposed to Outside Linemen who work on electric utility company distribution systems at higher voltages. "Electrician" is also used as the name of a role in stagecraft, where electricians are tasked primarily with hanging, focusing, and operating stage lighting. In this context, the Master Electrician is the show's chief electrician. Although theater electricians routinely perform electrical work on stage lighting instruments and equipment, they are not part of the electrical trade and have a different set of skills and qualifications from the electricians that work on building wiring.
In the United Kingdom, United States, and Australia "spark" or "sparky" is slang term for an electrician.
In most countries, the job of an electrician is a regulated trade for safety reasons due to the many hazards of working with electricity, requiring testing, registration, or licensing. Licensing of electricians is controlled through government and/or professional societies.
In the United States licensing requirements for construction work are controlled by local building officials. Typically, certain types of electrical work are only permitted to be performed by a Journeyman or Master electrician. The requirements for becoming a journeyman or master electrician, and the types of work they are permitted to do, vary between states; however, there are often interstate reciprocity agreements. Not all states offer a statewide journeyman or master electrician license.
Before electricians are allowed to work without supervision, they are usually required to serve an apprenticeship lasting from 3 to 5 years under the general supervision of a Master Electrician and usually the direct supervision of a Journeyman Electrician. Schooling in electrical theory and electrical building codes is usually required to complete the apprenticeship program. A Journeyman electrician is a well rounded craftsman trained in all phases of electrical construction installation in various building styles and maintenance of equipment after installation. A Journeyman is usually permitted to perform all types of electrical work except design of electrical systems.
In most Canadian jurisdictions a supply authority will not connect power to a new building unless a licensed electrician has applied for the electrical permit (some provinces allow a homeowner to obtain his own electrical permit). Similarly to the United States, training of electricians follows an apprenticeship model, taking four or five years to progress to fully qualified journeyman level. Typical apprenticeship programs emphasize hands-on work under the supervision of journeymen, but also include a subtantial component of classroom training and testing. Training and licensing of electricians is by province, but many provinces recognize qualifications received in others.
Restricted electrical licenses are also issued for specializations such as motor winder, appliance repair, audio/visual installation, HVAC installation, and similar jobs.
Some of the more common tools are:
TWENTY UNLICENSED ELECTRICIANS CAUGHT IN CRAIGSLIST STING BY DIVISION OF PROFESSIONAL LICENSURE CONSUMERS ADVISED TO CHECK LICENSES BEFORE HIRING AN ELECTRICIAN FOR HOUSE WORK.
Mar 10, 2011; BOSTON, Mass. -- The following information was released by the Office of Consumer Affairs and Business Regulation...