You’ll often hear the word “plumber” used as an umbrella term for those with different specialisms and skills. Subsequently, being a plumber can mean anything from being a bathroom fitter to a gas, heating and renewables engineer. Therefore, Options Skills deliver a range of plumbing courses designed to suit anyone looking to qualify in the UK.
We offer complete training packages for new entrants designed to provide students with the qualifications they need to launch their plumbing careers.
In addition, our plumbing courses also provide an excellent opportunity for experienced individuals to upskill and expand their skills into the heating and renewables industries.
For this reason, our courses are available at our training centres across the UK and delivered by tutors with years of industry experience.
Our managed learning programme is ideal for new entrants to the plumbing and gas trade. Students will learn essential gas and plumbing maintenance skills and complete an Unvented Hot Water Systems (G3) qualification. Ultimately, the course leads to an ACS qualification which allows you to apply to the Gas Safe Register.
The final stage in plumbing and heating training is ACS assessment. Upon completion, trainees are eligible to join the Gas Safe Register.
Our ACS Domestic Gas Training Course includes ACS Initial Assessment. However, we can also deliver training to external students who have completed an MLP elsewhere.
Go to: ACS Initial Assessment
Gas engineers must renew their ACS qualifications every five years to stay on the Gas Safe Register.
ACS Renewal is available to both past students of Options Skills and external students.
Go to: ACS Renewal
Trainees gain a complete understanding and awareness of Part L of The Building Regulations with our Heat Efficiency training.
Go to: Energy Efficiency
Learn how to install and maintain Air Source Heat Pumps and Ground Source Heat Pumps.
Learn the industry standards, requirements and design principles of low -temperature systems.
Go to: Low-Temperature Design
Water Regulation certification is essential for plumbers and engineers looking to join their local water authorities Water Industry Approved Plumber Scheme.
Go to: Water Regulations
Earn your certificate of competence as defined by Building Regulations.
Go to: Unvented Hot Water Systems
Up to 31st December 2020 Regulated qualifications and UKAS Accredited certificates of competence issued in the UK were widely recognised by other EU member states. However, since the UK’s withdrawal from the EU, individual member states that previously recognised a UK qualification may now no longer do so. Learners undertaking qualifications on the basis that it is recognised by an EU member state should in the first instance make enquiries with the relevant bodies in that Country to confirm its recognition status.
When you enrol on our ACS Domestic Gas & Plumbing Maintenance Training Course, you’ll be eligible to apply for twelve months of free Checkatrade membership.
Checkatrade is the leading tradesperson directory, with over 13 million people using them to help find a reputable tradesperson.
Allowing you to reach new customers in your local area and further afield, Checkatrade and Options Skills will help you launch your career and grow your business.
As a maintenance plumber, you’ll often react to call-outs and repair, typically the smaller jobs ignored by bigger businesses but incredibly important to homeowners.
From fixing a leaking tap to unblocking pipes, working as a maintenance plumber is an excellent step into the industry, allowing you to perfect essential plumbing skills and knowledge.
As a gas and plumbing engineer, you’ll be experienced in domestic plumbing work and qualified in gas engineering.
You’ll be installing boilers and gas cookers while also laying piping for new radiators. Joining the Gas Safe Register is often the next step for those who’ve been working in the plumbing industry for a few years – enabling them to learn new skills and increase earning potential.
Learn more about our ACS Domestic Gas Training Course.
A Renewables Specialist installs Ground and Air Source Heat Pumps and other equipment forms that utilise renewable energy.
To undertake the course, you must first hold ACS Gas Qualifications.
Many engineers keen to future-proof themselves realise they must complement other traditional plumbing and gas repairs with renewables.
Learn more about our: Renewables Training Package
A bathroom or kitchen fitter will install and maintain pipework and sanitary ware.
Additionally, they will usually have other skills, including design, knowledge of Building and Water Regulations, Tiling, Carpentry, plus the knowledge and skills of a general builder.
A Drainage Engineer will typically specialise in clearing blockages from drains and repairing or replacing collapsed drains. They are often well equipped and will own costly specialist equipment.
Whilst many plumbers will deal with blocked sinks or toilets internally, quite often, the cause of the blockage is traced to an external drain. Usually, this will then require the engineer to carry expensive, specialist equipment, e.g., High-Pressure Jetting Machines, CCTV cameras or even drain lining repair kits.
For this reason, many plumbers leave this type of work to specialist companies that can investigate and undertake comprehensive investigations, solutions and repairs where necessary.
A First Fix plumber will typically work with a builder or on a building site. They will work with other trades as a house is being built, normally installing pipework and sanitary ware, before or in conjunction with other trades such as carpenters, plasters etc.
A plumber involved in this type of work is usually experienced and quick. The role does not usually include repairs and maintenance, and typically there is no interaction with customers or the general public. A plumber must carry a CSCS Plumbing card to work on many building sites.
As a technician, you’ll specialise in servicing and repairing residential plumbing, cooling, heating and sanitary lines. You’ll be responsible for diagnosing plumbing issues assisting customers in making an informed decision for repair.
As a manager, you’ll be in charge of a team within a company. Not only will you need excellent plumbing skills for this role, but you’ll also require management skills.
As you’ll be responsible for overseeing the day-to-day functions of a team, you need to ensure they’re trained and doing their jobs as expected and handle any issues that may arise.
Once you’ve gained the skills and qualifications required to work in plumbing, you may look into self-employment and launch a business of your own.
There are numerous benefits to being a business owner, including complete control of your career and high earning potential.
Beginning a career in plumbing will look different for each person.
Some will choose to work as a plumbers’ mate as this route allows them to gradually build up their skills and knowledge of the trade before looking to earn official qualifications.
Alternatively, apprenticeships are also a great option – particularly for younger entrants looking to earn a little money as they learn the trade.
Training courses are especially well suited to mature students who can dedicate themselves to learning the trade. Following eight weeks of centre-led training, students can go out to gain work experience alongside qualified engineers who have plenty of knowledge and skills to call upon and share.
What works for you isn’t necessarily the same as what works for others, so it’s essential to consider your options and research thoroughly.
For more information on each entry route, look at our how to become a plumber guide.
Alternatively, our plumbing course advisors are available to talk you through the different options available to help you make the right choice for you.
There is no definitive answer for how long plumbing courses take to complete.
Entry into the industry can take up to four or five years via an apprenticeship, whereas our complete ACS Domestic Gas Training Course takes, on average, between one to three years to complete. Therefore, training courses are an excellent option for those who want to get into the industry sooner, which is typically the case for more mature learners and career changers.
Short courses such as top-up or add-on courses can be anywhere from one day in duration to several weeks.
Ultimately, how long it takes you to complete a course depends on the amount of content covered, qualification gained upon competition, and whether you undertake the course on a full or part-time basis.
Since the dawn of plumbing, plumbers have played a vital role within their community.
Flowing clean water allows for health, hygiene, and well-being – making plumbing one of the most important jobs there is.
As well as providing this invaluable service, plumbers have also always had to keep up with the ever-evolving technology. While communities grow and the demand for plumbing systems increases, the industry and technology has had to evolve. As a result, plumbing is more complex and varied than ever before.
With the introduction of smart and energy-saving products, the plumbing landscape has changed, and plumbers are required to understand, install, and maintain an abundance of products.
Consequently, these new products have opened the doors to new industries such as heat pumps and low-temperature heating, increasing the demand for existing plumbers. Therefore, considerable space has opened up for existing plumbers to upskill and new plumbers to enter the industry.
Whether in homes, businesses, or community spaces, working and efficient plumbing and heating systems are a must, making plumbing a fascinating and lucrative industry to be a part of.
In addition to this, in the ever-growing new housing market, along with existing homes requiring renovation, plumbers have never been more in demand.
Whether you can complete a plumbing course on a part-time basis or not will depend on the course itself.
Typically, it’s recommended you undertake a short course programme on a full-time basis. However, there is usually the option of part-time training for longer courses.
Part-time plumbing courses are ideal for those with existing work or family commitments, as they’ll allow you to fit training around those commitments.
For example, our ACS Domestic Gas Training Course begins with eight weeks in our training centre where students learn essential plumbing maintenance and gas skills.
Though we typically deliver this full-time, we understand that two months away from work isn’t possible for everyone. As a result, we can offer this stage of the course in smaller training blocks.
Following that, students must go out to work on-site in stage two. How often you’ll work will depend on your availability and your mentor’s workload. Some trainees prefer a few days on-site a week, while others work with their mentor full-time.
Working part-time can increase training duration, but the most important thing is finding a way of training that suits you.
the future of the
The demand for smart and energy-efficient plumbing and heating technologies doesn’t appear to be slowing down. In fact, as more people look to lower their carbon footprint, the demand will only increase.
From hands-free fixtures to smart pipes, plumbers day-to-day will never look the same.
Many people opt for smart meters and thermostats to control their energy usage and spending, meaning understanding and installing these is becoming a must for plumbers and engineers alike.
Smart pipes that allow customers to monitor water pressure and alert them to damage or leaks means eliminating doubt and pinpointing the source of issues sooner.
Hands-free taps not only look sleek and smart but reduce the need for contact – reducing the risk of bacteria and illnesses spreading. They’re also more convenient for people with limited mobility and stop taps being left on unnecessarily.
Whether you’re a part of the industry or not, it’s exciting to see the advancements in plumbing. Plumbers are being challenged and presented with new opportunities for growth and upskilling, while homeowners can choose from a broader range of products to find the ones that best suit them.
We welcome people of all ages, genders, and backgrounds into our centres to train with us.
Previous experience within the trades industry isn’t necessary to train with Options Skills. However, we can offer accelerated training to those with existing qualifications, experience and skills.
But above all, our training programmes deliver all the knowledge and hands-on practice you’ll need to earn industry-recognised qualifications and launch your new career.
Enrolling on our plumbing courses couldn’t be easier.
Complete our contact form, and one of our plumbing course advisors will be in touch.
Our advisors are on-hand to answer any questions you may have, arrange centre visits, and get you booked onto a course.