electrician jobs in canada

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electrician jobs canada
electrician jobs in canada
electrician jobs in canada

everything you need to know about electrician jobs

Electricians are skilled workers entrusted with the responsibility of developing, servicing and maintaining a safe and reliable supply of power in our homes, businesses, and institutions throughout Canada.

As one of the skilled trades in demand in Canada, electricians can earn a good living after several years of on-the-job training. You could perform a variety of electrician jobs such as installing, repairing and upgrading electrical services, wiring a new building, completing small projects for homeowners or working in industrial settings. You could be an industrial, maintenance or construction electrician or an outdoor lineworker, maintaining hydro lines.

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average electrician salaries in canada

Depending on where you work as an electrician in Canada, you’ll make between $22 and $38 per hour (up to $80,000 annually) with experienced workers and those in large metropolitan areas at the higher end of the scale.

As an apprentice electrician, you’ll start at the entry pay level, but you’ll receive on-the-job training with the benefit of earning as you learn. Electrician salaries vary depending on the project, company, collective agreements and local economic conditions. The good news is that the current demand for skilled workers is creating an upward pressure on wages and salaries for electricians.



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what electrician jobs entail

As an electrician, you may work in residential, commercial or industrial jobs sites on new installations, repairs or upgrades to electrical services. You’ll use materials like wiring, cables, circuit breakers and panel boxes. You’ll use hand or power tools and specialized equipment to detect faults and measure voltage or amperage. You will report to a foreman, supervisor, project manager or business owner.

You’ll learn and apply safety procedures and building codes. Working safely and using safety equipment will be the highest priority for you, your co-workers and building occupants or bystanders. You may have to work at heights, in small or uncomfortable spaces or in inclement weather.

You will usually work 40 hours a week either indoors or outside. Most electricians have a very early start between 6 to 8 a.m. You may need to work overtime in the case of emergency situations, urgent repairs or large projects on a tight schedule. You could work after a facility is closed so that maintenance does not interfere with working conditions for others.

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your day to day work

As an electrical worker, you could have a great variety of tasks depending on the type of project you are working on. You could work at a large construction site, a business, an institution or a residence. You may do any of the following tasks:

  • diagnosing faulty electrical systems and determine needed repairs
  • planning, measuring, and creating job specifications
  • creating estimates, quoting on the cost of materials and labour
  • following plans, instructions, drawings, and procedures
  • loading or removing building materials
  • installing wiring, lighting, fixtures, electrical panels and other materials
  • supervising and instructing general labourers and apprentices
  • testing electrical systems to ensure compliance with codes
  • reinstalling finishing materials and cleaning up
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where you can work

With the average age of Canada’s electricians hovering around 50 years old, there will soon be a huge exodus of these skilled workers from the job market. Because electricity is needed in every developed or developing area in Canada, a qualified electrician or apprentice can work just about anywhere in the country. You can work in industries such as construction, mining, oil and gas, or film production, to name a few.

Currently, the shortage of electricians extends nationwide, but the strongest opportunities are in construction jobs in western cities such as Victoria, Edmonton, Calgary, Regina, and south-west Saskatchewan.

what you bring to the table

If you're considering becoming an electrician, you enjoy technical or mechanical tasks and making things work. Your aptitude is complemented by your desire to learn and understand complex ideas. You also enjoy or are good at problem solving. Your abilities include:

  • strength, manual dexterity and the desire to work with your hands
  • physical fitness, endurance, ability to stand for long periods
  • mechanical aptitude and ability to use hand and power tools
  • ability to create and interpret plans using language and math skills
  • willingness to learn and take direction as a closely supervised apprentice

training and certifications

To become a licensed electrician you must complete a paid electrical apprenticeship, which normally lasts about four or five years. Like any of the skilled trades, you will need at least a high school graduation diploma to become an electrician apprentice.

Proficiency in language and math skills is required, so you’ll have an advantage if you completed courses in math, english and physics in high school. Apprenticeship hours may even be reduced if you are given credit for related courses, such as electronics or mechanical drawing.

Electrical worker unions, which sponsor apprenticeship programs, could require you to complete a pre-apprentice program to be accepted into an apprenticeship. Check with a union local or apprenticeship council in your area.

where your career is headed

A career as an electrician in Canada is both physically and intellectually demanding, but will provide you with a secure salary and a good living. Throughout your career, you’ll form satisfying relationships with business people and co-workers, be proud of your trade and enjoy the respect shown to you as a skilled worker with specialized knowledge.

After becoming a licensed electrician, you might broaden your opportunities by attaining certification in a specialty, such as working with fiber-optic cable and local area networks. You could become a foreman, estimator, safety inspector or project manager. With further training or a university degree, you could become an instructor or electrical engineer.

After many years of experience, you might decide to start your own electrical contracting firm to enjoy the freedom of setting your own hours, and choosing the projects and clients that interest you. But remember that most business owners work far more than the standard 40 hours per week with the additional responsibilities of customer service and business development.

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