As with any dangerous job, becoming a licensed electrician requires experience and the proper certifications. Working with electricity involves several work hazards, which is why it’s so important to check your electrician’s licenses before hiring them. These licenses prove your electrician has the experience and training, ensuring they’re not only qualified to do the job but also ensuring they’ll do it correctly and with the utmost regard for safety.

There are a few steps to becoming a licensed electrician in Minnesota, and the process can take several years.

Gaining Experience

In Minnesota, potential electricians need to be, at minimum, 17 years old with a high school diploma or GED. If those requirements are met, the first step to becoming a licensed electrician is to gain experience and training, which can be done in a few ways.

Aspiring electricians can take a state-approved, two-year course and complete 36 months of work experience. This usually involves becoming a paid apprentice to a licensed electrician, who will offer hands-on training and guidance. Alternatively, potential electricians can complete 48 months of work under a licensed electrician. While both are valid options, it may be easier to get an apprenticeship if an aspiring electrician has the experience of a trade school course under their belt.

After the program is completed, apprentice electricians will receive a certificate of proof.

Journeyman Electrician License

After gaining the required experience, apprentices can apply to take the journeyman electrician license test. This requires paying an exam fee, as well as providing certification or documentation of the completed apprenticeship.

After passing the test, the journeyman electrician license allows electricians to work independently, without supervision, with wires and fixtures in a commercial or residential setting. They can’t, however, design electrical systems—that’s reserved for master electricians. The journeyman electrician license is valid for two years before it’ll need to be renewed.

Master Electrician

After a year of working as a licensed journeyman electrician, the next step is taking the master electrician exam. This certification allows electricians to plan electrical systems, as well as supervise their installation.

Clearly, the process of becoming a licensed electrician requires determination and a significant time commitment. When you’re hiring an electrician, it’s essential to confirm their certifications before contracting them. If an electrician is hesitant to prove their licensure or an electrical company doesn’t mention their certifications on their website, it’s a sure red flag. At Nies Electric, all our electricians carry proof of their qualifications and licenses. Additionally, all our electricians are bonded, meaning our electrical work is financially guaranteed through the state. If you’re in need of electrical work in Central Minnesota, trust the licensed, bonded, and insured electricians of Nies Electric.