Plumbing Apprenticeship Training

Advance your skills and qualifications in one of the most specialized and well-paying of the building trades as you work toward your Interprovincial (Red Seal) certification. Develop expertise in plumbing, steamfitting, sprinkler fitting and gasfitting as you work through the four levels of plumbing technical training, following the criteria set by the Industry Training Authority (ITA).

 This program is currently not available to international applicants.
Where: Comox Valley
Starts: See schedules below
Length: 6-8 weeks/lvl
 Apply Now

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The student-to-instructor radio is low, so you get a lot of hands-on time and time to ask questions and really delve into the materials. I would definitely recommend coming to NIC.

Cassandra Kuryliak, NIC plumbing apprenticeship student

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Plumbing Apprenticeship Training Classes

Dates and classes may change or be cancelled depending on demand.

Note: Apprentices enrolling in technical training must take their training in sequential order, levels 1, then 2, then 3 then 4. You must complete all levels of technical training to be eligible to write the Interprovincial (Red Seal) examination.

PBA-100 - Plumbing Apprenticeship Level 1
  • 2019 Fall: September 23 - November 1
  • 2020 Spring: May 11 - June 19
PBA-200 – Plumbing Apprenticeship Level 2
  • 2019 Fall: November 12 - December 20
  • 2020 Fall: September 21 - October 30

PBA-300 – Plumbing Apprenticeship Level 3

  • 2019 Winter: March 11 - April 19
  • 2020 Winter: January 20 - February 28
  • 2020 Fall: November 9 - December 18

PBA-400 – Plumbing Apprenticeship Level 4

  • 2019 Spring: April 29 - June 21
  • 2020 Winter: March 9 - May 1


Admission Requirements

  1. Applicants must be ITA registered apprentices. 
  2. Complete and submit the NIC Application for Admission form, writing "Plumbing and Piping" and level of training as the program name. 
  3. Complete and submit the NIC Apprenticeship Training Registration form.

Upgrade with us to meet prerequisites

Upgrade your English, math and science courses for entry into the program of your choice. Succeed with the help of NIC’s supportive instructors. Courses are flexible and start several times a year so you can learn at your own pace. We offer daytime and evening options. Learn more

To Be Successful

  • You will find greater ease and success in your training if your abilities in mathematics, reading and writing are at a sufficient level. NIC Assessment Services is available to provide math and English assessments year round. For students who do need to refresh their skills or upgrade in a few areas, those classes are available at NIC.
  • Students are encouraged to develop a workplace plan with their employer to make sure they are practicing all related trade skills listed in the handbook program outline.
  • school training periods can be very intense, especially because of the quantity of reading you will be required to do. Whenever possible, you are encouraged to complete reading in advance.
  • The math pre-test link is a review exercise and can be used as an indicator of your current math skills. Should you find you need further support please contact our student services department about upgrading classes.

Nick Charette

Nick Charette
Comox Valley Campus 250-334-5000 ext. 4051
Campbell River Campus 250-923-9700

Plumbing Technical Training

All NIC training programs follow the criteria set by the Industry Training Authority (ITA) to ensure your trade qualifications meet current industry standards.

PBA-100, Level 1, six weeks
PBA-200, Level 2, six weeks
PBA-300, Level 3, six weeks
PBA-400, Level 4, eight weeks

NIC works closely with industry to ensure your apprenticeship training is of the highest quality. For upcoming apprenticeship training schedules view the Schedules tab. For more information on apprenticeships visit the ITA website.

Supply List

You are required to obtain the following basic supplies and tools:

  • steel-toed boots or shoes
  • safety glasses – CSA-approved
  • gloves
  • coveralls
  • hard hat
  • tape measure (25-foot imperial and eight-metre metric)
  • metric conversion calculator, EL520-WBBK or EL-520X recommended
  • pencils, hi-liter, binder and notepaper
  • drafting equipment: available at the NIC bookstore:
    - set square – 30/60/90 degree, Staedtler 964 16-60
    - set square – 45/45/90 degree, Staedtler 964 14-45
    - scale ruler, Imperial, Architects, Staedtler 987 18-31
    - scale ruler, Metric, Staedtler 987 18-SI
    - drawing compass, 559-02
    - good quality white eraser
    - mechanical pencils: .3mm in 6H lead; .5mm in 2H and 4H lead; .9mm in 2H lead
  • text books and learning guides for your level – details provided at NIC bookstore

Frequently Asked Questions

  1. What is an apprenticeship?
    An apprenticeship is a relationship between an employer and an employee where the employee (the apprentice) commits to learn the trade while working for the employer, and the employer commits to provide on the job training, time away from the workplace for the apprentice to attend technical training classes and to pay the apprentice a certain percentage of the journeyperson wage rate, which increases as the apprentice progresses through the training.
  2. What is a journeyperson?
    A journeyperson is a person who has received a Certification of Qualification in a trade. A journeyperson is then entitled to be referred to by the trade name (ie: carpenter, electrician, millwright, heavy duty mechanic, etc.)
  3. What training will I take?
    Apprenticeships normally consist of approximately 80 per cent on the job training and 20 per cent in-school technical training. While working on the job site you will learn the trade under the tutelage of a journeyperson, who is assigned responsibility for your training. You are also required to attend technical training classes. The classes are most commonly held in Colleges, and depending on the trade consist of six to 10 weeks of classroom training during each year of the apprenticeship.
  4. How long does an apprenticeship last?
    An apprenticeship lasts one to five years, depending on the trade, and the rate the apprentice progresses through the training. Most apprenticeships are four years.
  5. How much will I earn?
    The rate of pay depends on the rate being paid a journeyperson in the same trade with the same employer. Although it is dependent on the employer, the rates are often 50 per cent for the first six months and rising through 55 per cent, 60 per cent, 65 per cent, 70 per cent, 75 per cent, 80 per cent, 90 per cent at the end of each six month period. Rates vary by trade and by employer. 
  6. What certification will I receive upon completion of my apprenticeship?
    Once you have completed all levels of technical training and passed the Interprovincial (Red Seal) exam, you will obtain your Certificate of Qualification (C of Q) and Red Seal endorsement. Apprentices in many trades may also write the Interprovincial (Red Seal) exam. This certification is recognized across the country and enables Red-Seal qualified journeypersons to work on those trades across the country. In some trades in BC, the Red Seal exam is used as the C of Q exam.

Tuition & Costs Estimate

Additional fees may also include necessary equipment, supplies, NIC appointed uniforms, or field trips not included in these estimates.

While we do our best to share accurate and timely fee information, changes may occur. For more information, visit our tuition page.

Domestic Fees

Level 1 Level 2 Level 3 Level 4 Grand Total
Tuition $575 $575 $575 $770
NISU Fees $35 $35 $35 $35
Books $1,225 $550 $1,000 $800
Learner Resource $35 $35 $35 $35
Total $1,870 $1,195 $1,645 $1,640 $6,350

This program is tuition refund Category 4.