How to Become a Licensed Electrician in Colorado: License Requirements and Guide

Ever wondered how you would get to enjoy electricity as you do now without the help of your electrician. Indeed, there could be some electrical issues you can fix yourself quickly, but there are still some that would have been almost impossible to fix without the help of your electrician. This shows how valuable the work an electrician does is.

In Colorado, there are certain steps a person looking to start a career as an electrician can take. They are:

Step 1 – Get all the Hands-On Experience and Classroom-Based Education You Need to Become a Journeyman

Your first step towards becoming a professional electrician in Colorado would be acquiring all the hands-on experience and classroom education you need.

This can be achieved in three different ways. You could decide to enroll in a technical school, join a union apprenticeship or opt for a non-union union apprenticeship.

Choosing to go with a technical college is excellent if you are looking to pursue an education through more old-fashioned education methods, like going for classes and splitting your education into semesters.

A good thing about opting for a technical school is that your education will count as a year of required work experience equivalent to 2,000 hours. This would make it fast for you to qualify for your journeyman license.

Your technical school would also make it easy to get a job or a journeyman license as this is part of the program.

If you opt for an apprenticeship instead, your programs would include classroom education and instruction while also working under the supervision of a master electrician or electrical contractor. Your pay as an apprentice will definitely be lesser than that of a journeyman. However, it will increase with time as you become more experienced.

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If you are looking to go through a union, you would have to find a Joint Apprenticeship & Training Committee located around you. In Colorado, they work together with local union chapters to offer training that is in line with the requirements of the National Training Alliance. What this does is to make sure that training for apprentices is the same all over the nation.

You can find these JATCs in Pueblo, Colorado Springs, Clifton, and Denver.

Before you can be chosen for a union apprenticeship, you have to meet some requirements:

  • You must be at least 18 years old
  • You must be able to provide a valid photo ID.
  • You must be able to show you are physically capable of meeting up the requirements of the trade.
  • You must be capable of transporting yourself to your classroom and job site
  • You must have taken and passed an aptitude test on general knowledge.
  • You must have finished your high school education.
  • You must also be ready to sign up as a member of the union and pay all the dues.

If you opt for a non-union apprenticeship program, you will be placed with a local contractor who is also without a union.

Step 2 – Sit for the Examination that Would Qualify You as a Journeyman Electrician

With a journeyman electrician license, you would be authorized to install, wire as well as repair electrical equipment accordingly without being supervised directly.

However, before you can earn this license, you must have met some requirements:

  • You must have completed the application.
  • You must have worked for four years as a registered apprentice or gained experience in electrical work within four years.
  • You must have acquired a minimum of two years of experience in electrical work in commercial, industrial, or other environments.
  • You must have acquired a minimum of 288 hours of training in the National Electric Code, safety, and other crucial electrical education.
  • You must have gotten a minimum of 70% on the Journeyman Electrician Exam.
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You will be contacted by PSI Exams once your application gets approved. Your exam would then be scheduled.

It is an exam that would take at least four and a half hours and requires you to attempt 90 questions.  Some of the topics covered in the examination include Overcurrent protection, general electrical knowledge, electrical devices, motors, raceways and boxes, grounding and bonding, special equipment, and electrical calculations. You will be contacted after the exam to inform you of your performance.

Step 3 – Consider Getting a Master Electrician License

You do not have to stop as a journeyman. You can aim at becoming a master electrician. With a master electrician license, you would be authorized to receive permits from the county to work on residential properties. You would also be allowed to plan, layout, and be a supervisor when the installation and repair of electrical equipment happen.

Below are some of the requirements for a master electrician license in Colorado:

  • You must ensure you have completed the application
  • You must have acquired four years of experience as a registered apprentice.
  • You must have gained a minimum of two years of experience in electrical work in commercial, industrial, or other similar environments.
  • You must have acquired a minimum of 288 hours of training in the National Electric Code, safety, and other important electrical education.
  • You must have acquired a minimum of 8,000 hours of experience in the last four years.
  • You must have gotten a minimum of 70% on Journeyman Electrician Exam.

You will be contacted the moment your application gets approved. Then, your exam would be scheduled.

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This exam would be conducted in four and a half hours with 90 multiple-choice questions. You would have to pay a fee of $75 for the exam.

Some of the topics covered in the exam are overcurrent protection raceways and boxes, grounding and bonding, electrical devices, motors, photovoltaics, special equipment, transformers, and general electrical knowledge.

Step 4 – Go another Step further by Becoming an Independent Electrical Contractor

You do not have to stop at being a master electrician.  You can go a step further by becoming an Independent Electrical Contractor.

It would be impossible to sell your electrical services to people living in Colorado without registering as an electrical contractor in the state. Also, with the license, you would be able to hire general electricians and at the same time own a business as a local contractor.

Only electrical contractors are authorized to sell their electrical services as one that plans, lays out, installs makes alterations where necessary, and supervises when electrical equipment is being installed.

Some of the requirements for this license are:

  • You must have completed your application.
  • You must have a current Worker’s Compensation insurance
  • You must be capable of hiring someone who holds a master electrician license or own one yourself.
  • There could be other requirements depending on your local jurisdictions, so you need to be sure of what your jurisdiction requires.

License Renewal in Colorado

Journeyman Electrician License: This license has to be renewed every three years.

Master Electrician License: This license has to be renewed every three years.

Independent Electrical Contractor License: This license has to be renewed every three years.

License Reciprocity in Colorado

The state of Colorado has electrical reciprocal agreements with the following states: New Mexico, North Dakota, Utah, Minnesota, Idaho, Arkansas, Alaska, Iowa, Maine, New Hampshire, Montana, Wyoming, Nebraska, and South Dakota.

Final Words

Irrespective of how difficult it seems to become a professional electrician in Colorado, you need not be discouraged as long as you desire to become an electrician.

References

ElectricianSchoolEdu.org How to become an Electrician in Colorado

Home Prep Education Colorado Electrical License Exam Prep

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