The Master Plumber Licensure Exam is an important step in the process of becoming a master plumber in any state. While specific requirements and standards are unique to each state, there are some general features that you will encounter no matter which state you are taking it in. Still, make sure you take the licensure exam for the state where you plan to work.
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How Much Does the Master Plumber’s Licensure Exam Cost?
The exam fee varies from state to state but you can expect to pay about $70-$90 altogether. Many states also require an application fee of between $20-$35 in addition to the exam fee.
You should also make sure you meet the prerequisite requirements established by your state’s licensure board. You will need to demonstrate that you have a certain amount of professional experience (anywhere from one to four years) and, in some states, a certain level of education or relevant training.
What Should I Expect on Test Day?
The total number of questions will depend on the state you are applying for licensure in. Some state exams have 80 questions, others have 100. The amount of time you’ll have to answer those questions can range from 2 to 3 ½ hours. Some exams are open book, meaning you can bring approved references into the exam room with you. Others are closed book, meaning you won’t be able to bring any reference material with you while testing.
To get a better sense of exactly how your test day will go, you should make sure to confirm with the licensure board in your state the following details:
- Time allotted for the exam.
- Total number of questions (including any unscored questions).
- Items and reference material that is (and is not) allowed in the exam room.
- Accepted ID formats
No matter where you’re taking the exam, plan to arrive at least 30 minutes prior to the start of your appointment. Doing this will ensure that you have plenty of time to sign in, familiarize yourself with the testing center, and relax before the exam actually starts.
Which Subjects Are Covered on the Master Plumbers Licensure Exam?
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Exact content varies from state, particularly regarding regulations which are state specific. With that in mind, below is a general outline of the kind of knowledge you could be tested on during the exam:
- General Regulations, Inspections, and Permits
- Gas Piping, Equipment, and Appliances
- Traps and Cleanouts
- Fixtures, Equipment, and Clearances
- Water Heaters
- Piping, Valves, and Controls
- Water Supply
- Hangers and Supports
- Drain, Waste, and Vent
- Separators, Interceptors, and Grease Traps
- Joints and Connections
In general, all questions will be multiple choice. In some states, there will also be a practical section on the exam. The practical exam will include practical tasks to be completed. Tasks may be related to the below skills:
- Isometric Analysis
- General Trade Calculations
- Gas Piping
- Gas Venting
Regardless of the state, all questions are designed to be as relevant to the actual day to day demands of working as a master plumber, so you likely won’t see any obscure or outdated questions. Of course, particular circumstances can vary so as relevant as the exam creators try to be, there will always be some questions that deal with knowledge or skills that doesn’t really come up in your particular circumstances.
What Is the Minimum Score Needed to Pass?
While each state sets its own minimum passing score, you can generally assume that you need to correctly answer about 75% of the questions on the exam. So, if there will be 100 questions, have the goal of answering at least 75 correctly. If there will be 80 questions, your goal should be at least 60 correct responses.
Do I Need to Study for the Master Plumber Licensure Exam?
The short answer: definitely. Even with years of practical experience, you still need to spend a little time reviewing the material and getting comfortable with applying that practical knowledge to a written exam instead of real-world situations. So, no matter how confident you are in your command of the material covered on this exam, you should still take at least two weeks to review everything.
Those two weeks will help you prepare for the demands of test taking as well as refresh your memory on some of the regulations, technical vocabulary, and other things that you might not use in your day to day on the job. To make the most out of your study sessions, make sure you’re using great study aids like the Mometrix Study Guide and Mometrix Flashcards.
The study guide includes a complete overview of all the subjects covered on the exam as well as proven test taking strategies to prepare you for answering questions with tricky wording or that are just plain difficult.