Electricians specialize in the installation, assembly, and maintenance of electrical installations. This can be electricity in the house, such as lighting, meter boxes, intercom, video installations, and other home automation. But there are also electricians who focus on controlling heavy, electrical machines in, for example, factories or means of transport. An electrician ensures that electricity is safely tapped and that electrical appliances and installations can be used safely.
What does electricians do?
Electricians are responsible for installing and connecting all types of electricity supplies and installations. Think of sockets, group boxes, and electricity infrastructure in homes, offices, buildings, hospitals, and schools. An electrician can also deal with electrically controlled machines, for example in factories. Additional courses and training are required for this. An electrician actually goes to every place where electricity is involved.
Because working with electricity entails risks and failure to properly connect and maintain electricity can have major consequences. These standards are continuously tightened and kept up to date, also because new techniques are being added; further training is, therefore, an important part of the duties of an electrician.
In summary, an electrician’s responsibilities generally include the following duties:
- Building infrastructure for electricity
- Pulling Electricity Cables
- Slot Milling
- Mounting lighting and wiring
- Installing group cabinets
- Dismantling sockets and (earth leakage) switches
- Testing applied electricity
- Troubleshooting and prevention
- Preventive maintenance on electrical installations
- Advising on energy saving and new, modern applications (e.g. automatic control of lighting and integrated sound systems)
When installing electricity at new construction sites, the electrician must be able to read drawings. This indicates the locations where connection points and sockets should be located.
Low voltage, medium voltage and high voltage
When we talk about electricity in and around houses, you speak of low voltage. The power that is fed to the low-voltage grid comes via a local exchange. This is the medium-voltage grid, which is supplied with power via the high-voltage pylons that are scattered throughout the country. The higher the voltage, the more additional knowledge is generally required for an electrician.
Where do electricians work?
As an electrician, you are employed by a technical or installation company or by a large contractor who has various specializations in-house. You can work in, for example, residential or non-residential construction (such as schools, hospitals, or offices) or with medium or high voltage installations. As an electrician, you visit different places and you work on the spot together with, among others, a supervisor and/or foreman. You also sometimes interact with other types of technicians.
There are also employment agencies that specialize in the posting and/or secondment of technical personnel. As an electrician you can therefore also get started via such an agency; you then work for different clients.
Electricians also work for network and rail operators. Important topics: electrician colleagues, where do electricians work.
How do you become an electrician?
To become an electrician, you follow a technical training course, for example, the vocational training First mechanic electrical installations. This is a level 3 training, where you can specialize in industry or housing and utility.
Other courses that you can follow are Low Voltage Distribution, Medium Voltage Distribution, or Electrical Installation. You can follow these at levels 2 and 3. If you want to specialize further, you can take additional courses and training, for example in the field of high voltage.
What is an electrician’s salary?
The salary of an electrician is on average between 2,776 and 4,245 euros gross per month, and of course, depends on your experience and knowledge.
Maintenance of electrical installations
Electrical installations are very vulnerable. Anything can break. That is why it is important to have the electrical installations properly maintained. An electrician can provide the necessary maintenance to these installations and, where necessary, he can provide you with advice regarding the work to be performed. Think, for example, of the maintenance of the group box, carrying out inspections, or installing an earth leakage circuit breaker if it turns out not to be present yet.
Help with a power outage
A power outage can happen for many reasons. For example, because there is a malfunction in the local exchange, but also because something in the house is not properly connected. An electrician can fix the problems.