Electricians in the United States are largely men, earning an average of $20.57 per hour. The final incomes of Electricians generally vary between $29K and $80K; higher pay grades include potential for bonuses, profit sharing, and commissions as high as $8K, $9K, and $26K, respectively. Earnings for this group are mostly affected by geographic location, followed by the company and years of experience. While some workers in this profession — more than a third — do not have any health coverage, a majority do receive medical benefits and more than two-fifths have dental insurance. Most workers in this position report high levels of job satisfaction. The information for this snapshot was generated by responses to the PayScale salary survey.
Job Description for Electrician
Electricians work for a wide variety of companies, perform a multitude of tasks that generally require close attention to detail and good judgment, and have a journeyman electrician's license. These licenses typically require four years of apprentice work. That time includes some classroom instruction and a good deal of actual fieldwork. Certain states and companies may require a master electrician's license, which entails several more years of experience working as a journeyman.Read More...
Electricians work with a wide variety of electrical systems, repairing and maintaining them to the specifications of the system or the organizations they work for. These positions are vital and ensure that those electrical systems are running properly and performing to their highest capabilities. Electricians might perform work in various systems, include lighting, security, and distribution. Most large organizations will employ their own electricians to maintain their electrical systems. They may be responsible for one part or all of the electrical systems needed to keep the company running. They may also work with other licensed electricians or non-licensed employees to complete larger jobs.
Electricians should be willing and able to work in all conditions and at any time, as many of the systems they are required to work on may need maintenance at unpredictable times and in various locations. The work can be quite physical but also requires a great deal of knowledge and attention to detail.
- Assist in performing and interpreting power calculations, power factor, insulation tests and positive relay tests as required.
- Perform daily inspections and maintenance on electrical equipment.
- Maintain, troubleshoot and repair all power generation and distribution equipment.
- Study and understand electrical schematics.
Common Career Paths for Electrician
While Electricians do not often become Construction Project Managers, the job pays $70K per year on average. Electrician Journeymans or Certified Electricians are common next-step roles for Electricians moving up in their careers; annual pay for Electrician Journeymans is $2K higher on average, and it's $4K higher for Certified Electricians.
Electrician Job Listings
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Popular Employer Salaries for Electrician
Electric Co., Self-Employed, U.S. Navy, Tradesmen International, Inc., and Miller Electric Company are leaders in the field that employ a large number of Electricians. Union Pacific Railroad offers the highest compensation with a median salary of $64K. Soaring salaries can also be found at Berg Electric Corp., U.S. Navy, and Miller Electric Company, where earnings of $61K, $60K, or $57K are standard for Electricians.
Popular Skills for Electrician
Survey results imply that Electricians deploy a substantial tool kit of skills at work. Most notably, facility with Industrial, Programmable Logic Controllers (PLC) / Automation, and Systems Troubleshooting are correlated to pay that is significantly above average, leading to increases of 29 percent, 19 percent, and 15 percent, respectively. Skills that are correlated to lower pay, on the other hand, include Blueprints, Residential, and ELECTRICAL. It is often found that people who know Troubleshooting are also skilled in Maintenance and Residential. Those proficient in Commercial are, more often than not, also skilled in Residential and Maintenance.
Pay by Experience Level for Electrician
Median of all compensation (including tips, bonus, and overtime) by years of experience.
Electricians with a lot of experience tend to enjoy higher earnings. Relatively untried employees who have less than five years' experience make $36K, but folks with five to 10 years under their belts enjoy an appreciably larger median of $48K. Electricians who work for 10 to 20 years in their occupation tend to earn about $53K. Seasoned veterans with 20 years under their belts enjoy a median income of $59K.
Pay Difference by Location
For Electricians, Boston provides a pay rate that is 37 percent greater than the national average. Electricians will also find cushy salaries in Chicago (+35 percent), Seattle (+33 percent), San Diego (+29 percent), and Los Angeles (+11 percent). Electricians in Phoenix make 22 percent less than the national average, proving that location is a major factor in pay. Orlando and Pittsburgh are a couple other places where companies are known to pay below the median — salaries are 13 percent lower and 11 percent lower, respectively.