How to Get a Plumber’s License in Texas: A Complete Guide

Becoming a licensed plumber in Texas requires completing several steps over a period of 4-5 years. You’ll start as an apprentice, gaining on-the-job experience under the supervision of a licensed plumber. As you progress, you can obtain higher-level licenses by acquiring more training, experience, and passing increasingly difficult exams.

This guide provides a comprehensive overview of the licensing process for plumbers in Texas, including eligibility requirements, fees, exams, reciprocity, insurance/bonding, and more.

Types of Plumbing Licenses in Texas

There are 4 main license types for plumbers in Texas:

  • Plumber’s Apprentice: Gain experience assisting licensed plumbers. Can only perform basic manual labor tasks under supervision.
  • Tradesman Plumber-Limited: Install/repair plumbing in 1-2 family dwellings under a Master Plumber’s supervision. Can supervise Apprentices.
  • Journeyman Plumber: Install/repair plumbing under a Master Plumber’s supervision. Can supervise Apprentices.
  • Master Plumber: Install/repair plumbing under a Master Plumber. Can supervise Apprentices. Highest credential.

Higher licenses allow working on more complex systems with less supervision.

Steps to Become a Licensed Plumber in Texas

Follow these main steps to become a licensed plumber in Texas:

1. Register as a Plumber’s Apprentice

2. Gain Required Work Experience

  • Accumulate on-the-job experience under a licensed plumber’s supervision
  • 4000 hours for Tradesman Plumber-Limited
  • 8000 hours for Journeyman Plumber
  • Document hours on Employer Certification Form

3. Complete Required Training

  • 24 hours for Tradesman Plumber-Limited
  • 48 hours for Journeyman Plumber
  • Training must be state-approved

4. Submit License Application & Fees

  • Submit license application with documentation
  • Pay application fees:
    • Tradesman Plumber-Limited: $36
    • Journeyman Plumber: $40
  • Submit Supplemental Criminal History Form if convicted of a felony

5. Pass Licensing Exam

Exams test your knowledge of plumbing codes, safety, and best practices.

6. Maintain Insurance Requirements

Licensed plumbers in Texas must carry:

  • Liability Insurance: Minimum $100,000
  • Workers’ Compensation: Unless exempt

7. Renew License Annually

  • Complete 6 hours of continuing education
  • Pay renewal fees:
    • Tradesman Plumber-Limited: $35
    • Journeyman Plumber: $40

Requirements for a Master Plumber License

To become a Master Plumber in Texas:

  • Hold a high school diploma/GED
  • Document 8,000 hours of work experience
  • Hold a Journeyman License for 1+ years in Texas or 4+ years in another state
  • Pass Master Plumber exam ($175 fee)
  • Carry minimum $100k liability insurance
  • Renew annually with 6 hours continuing education and $75 fee

Reciprocity with Other States

Texas offers reciprocity for plumbers licensed in other states. You must submit:

  • Official letter from licensing state confirming current license status
  • Length of time license held
  • Renewability
  • Any complaints/disciplinary actions

The Texas State Board of Plumbing Examiners reviews applications case-by-case.

Plumbing License Bonds in Texas

Plumbers in Texas may need to obtain license bonds based on local requirements. For example:

  • City of Beaumont: $10,000 Plumber’s Bond
  • Travis County: $10,000 Plumber Bond

Bonds guarantee compliance with regulations. Premiums are 1-4% of the bond amount.

Finding Approved Plumbing Schools in Texas

Many technical colleges and trade schools in Texas offer plumbing education programs approved for licensing. For example:

The Texas Workforce Commission provides a directory of approved vocational programs.

Renewing a Plumbing License in Texas

To renew a plumbing license in Texas:

  • Complete 6 hours of continuing education
  • Pay renewal fee:
    • Tradesman Plumber-Limited: $35
    • Journeyman Plumber: $40
    • Master Plumber: $75
  • Renew annually before expiration date
  • Late renewals may require registering as an Apprentice again


In summary, becoming a licensed plumber in Texas is a multi-year process but offers stable demand. This guide covers the step-by-step licensing process, requirements, fees, exams, reciprocity, bonds, schools, and renewals. Use the resources provided to navigate your journey to becoming a licensed plumber in Texas. Learn more about Texas Plumbing Insurance Guide & Quotes and secure your business with the right coverage today.