In the state of Nevada, plumbing is not just a trade—it’s a profession that ensures the safety and functionality of water and waste systems in homes and businesses. To uphold the highest standards, the state mandates licensing for plumbers. This guide provides an in-depth look into the steps and requirements for plumbers in Nevada.

1. Plumbing License Types and Requirements in Nevada

Apprentice Plumber

  • Description: The foundational step for those looking to venture into plumbing. Apprentices learn the ropes under the supervision of licensed Journeyman or Master Plumbers.
  • Requirements:
    • High school diploma or GED
    • Photo ID and Social Security card
    • Valid driver’s license
  • Duration: Apprenticeships typically last four years or 8,000 hours.
  • Fees: No registration fee or testing required.

Journeyman Plumber

  • Description: After completing the apprenticeship, plumbers can advance to the Journeyman level, allowing them to work independently.
  • Requirements:
    • Four years or 8,000 hours of documented work experience.
    • Signed affidavit detailing work experience.
    • Pass the journeyman exam through PSI or NITC.
  • Fees: $125 for in-person exam or $250 for online. $300 license application fee and $600 biennially for renewal.

Master Plumber

  • Description: Master Plumbers have more experience and can take on larger, more complex projects.
  • Requirements:
    • At least one year or 2,000 hours as a Journeyman.
    • Signed affidavit detailing work experience.
    • Pass the master exam through PSI or NITC.
  • Fees: $125 for in-person exam or $250 for online. $300 license application fee and $600 biennially for renewal.

Plumbing Contractor

  • Description: For those looking to start their own plumbing business or take on subcontractors.
  • Requirements:
    • Bid on jobs over $500.
    • Pass a general business and law examination and a trade-specific exam.
    • Provide documentation showing at least four years of work experience as a licensed Journeyman.
  • Fees: $300 application fee.

2. Plumber License Reciprocity in Nevada

Nevada recognizes the hard work plumbers put into obtaining their licenses in other states. The Nevada State Contractors Board has established limited reciprocity agreements with a few states, namely California, Arizona, and Utah. However, these reciprocity agreements do not extend to plumbing, electrical, or fire protection trades. For plumbers specifically, if you hold a license in another state and wish to conduct contractual business within Nevada, you cannot rely on reciprocity. Instead, you must obtain a Nevada-specific contractor’s license. This process involves applying and retaking the required trade examination in Nevada.

3. License Bond Requirements in Nevada

In Nevada, contractors, including plumbers, are required to obtain a contractor bond to become licensed. The bond amounts can vary based on the type of contractor, location, and the specific project. Here’s a breakdown of the bond requirements:

  • Why Bonds are Required: Nevada cities mandate contractors to post surety bonds before commencing work. These bonds serve to ensure that the contractor will adhere to all relevant rules and regulations. They also protect consumers from potential damages resulting from negligent or substandard work.
  • Bond Amounts: Contractors in Nevada must post a bond ranging from $1,000 to $500,000 for a one-year term to become licensed. The bond’s cost is determined after a surety underwriter reviews the applicant’s credit history.
  • City-Specific Bonds: Some cities in Nevada have specific bond requirements. For instance, contractors in the City of Henderson must post a $10,000 contractor license bond.

4. Insurance Needs for Plumbers in Nevada

For plumbers in Nevada, having the right insurance is not just about compliance; it’s about protecting their business, reputation, and financial well-being. Here’s what plumbers need to know:

  • General Liability Insurance: This is the most basic form of business insurance and covers bodily injuries or property damage resulting from your plumbing services.
  • Workers’ Compensation: If you have employees, you’ll need workers’ compensation insurance. This covers medical expenses and lost wages if an employee gets injured on the job.
  • Commercial Auto Insurance: If you use vehicles for your plumbing business, commercial auto insurance is essential. It covers damages resulting from work-related vehicular accidents.
  • Tool and Equipment Insurance: This covers your tools and equipment against theft, loss, or damage.
  • Professional Liability Insurance: Also known as errors and omissions (E&O) insurance, this covers legal fees and damages if you’re sued for mistakes or negligence in your services.


Becoming a licensed plumber in Nevada involves understanding and navigating various requirements, from education and exams to bonds and insurance. By adhering to these guidelines and staying informed about state-specific regulations, plumbers can ensure they operate legally, ethically, and successfully in the Silver State. Whether you’re just starting your plumbing journey or looking to expand your services into Nevada, this guide provides a comprehensive overview to set you on the right path. Check out this comprehensive guide on Nevada Plumbing Insurance Guide & Quotes to understand the various factors that affect insurance rates.