Interior Lighting & Electrical

How Much Is the Average Electrician Salary?

Interested in making a competitive salary in a profession that’s in high demand? An electrician’s salary can range from $37,440 to $102,300 per year with the national average at $60,240.
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Electrician Salary
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Highlights

  • The typical annual salary range for an electrician is $37,440 to $102,300, with a national average of $60,240.
  • The main factors that determine an electrician’s salary include education level, experience level, the industry in which an individual works, and an electrician’s geographic location.
  • An apprentice or entry-level electrician is likely to make closer to the low end of the salary range, while a master or senior-level electrician’s salary can meet or exceed the top of the range.

A career as an electrician can be rewarding and lucrative. According to Shane Roop, owner of Table Mountain Electric Inc. in Denver, Colorado, “In my opinion, choosing the electrical field is a fail-safe avenue since there will always be the need for electricity. It is also recession-proof for that same reason.”

The average electrician salary can vary depending on factors such as experience, location, and certifications. How much do electricians make? According to the United States Bureau of Labor Statistics, the median annual salary for an electrician is $60,240, or $28.96 per hour. “There is…a lot of room for advancement in the industry and the pay can range from $20 per hour as an apprentice up to $125 per hour for a master electrician,” says Roop.

Entry-level electricians, including apprentices, can expect to earn less than the average electrician salary. In the early stages of an electrical career, an apprentice electrician salary will typically be a percentage of the journeyman electrician’s pay scale. Journeyman electricians, who have completed their apprenticeship and obtained their license, earn a higher wage that’s based on location, level of expertise, and demand for electrical services. Master electricians earn even more, and the highest-paying electrician jobs are often the specialized positions that require additional certifications or training. These positions can include electrical inspectors, electrical estimators, or electrical project managers. These specialized roles can earn upwards of $100,000 per year.

Homeowners will generally hire an electrician to repair various electrical problems around the home. On average, the cost to hire an electrician ranges from $162 and $535, with many homeowners spending an average of $346. While some homeowners prefer to tackle household repairs as a DIY project, it’s never recommended that an inexperienced homeowner perform electrical work due to the danger involved with working with electricity. For many homeowners who need to update the wiring in an older home, paying an electrician the cost to rewire a house is worth it for the peace of mind it offers to hire a professional.

Factors in Calculating the Average Electrician Salary

Electrician Salary
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Determining the average electrician salary involves considering several key factors that contribute to variations in pay. These can include education level, experience level, industry, and geographic location.

Education Level

Unlike some professions where advanced degrees directly correlate with higher earnings, electricians often follow a path that places more emphasis on practical training and apprenticeships.

For aspiring electricians, the primary educational route involves completing an apprenticeship program, which typically includes both classroom instruction and on-the-job training. While formal education beyond high school or obtaining a GED may not be a strict requirement, those who pursue additional certifications or specialized training may find themselves in higher demand, potentially leading to increased earnings.

Those who attend vocational school training programs or the best online electrician schools usually start their careers at entry-level positions. However, they may have a higher earning potential than their peers who enter the job market without any formal education. The specialized training received through vocational programs can make these individuals more marketable and efficient in their work, leading to increased wages. Aspiring electricians will want to consider the cost of vocational school tuition, and at some point, they’ll also want to look into the best electrician tool belts and purchase the best electrician tools.

Apprenticeships provide a unique learning experience where aspiring electricians receive hands-on training from industry professionals. This practical knowledge, combined with classroom instruction, enables apprentices to gain a deeper understanding of the field. As apprentices progress through their training, their salaries tend to increase incrementally. By the time they become journeyman electricians or receive their trade licenses, their earning potential can be significantly higher.

While not as common among electricians, a college degree in electrical studies or a related field can open doors to higher-paying positions. Such degrees provide a strong foundation in advanced mathematics and electrical theory, and they can also develop problem-solving skills. Graduates with a college degree often find opportunities in project management or consulting roles. These specialized positions typically command higher salaries due to the additional expertise and knowledge possessed by those with an associate or bachelor’s degree.

Experience Level

Experience level is another factor that impacts the average electrician salary. There are different electrician levels of experience, with beginning electricians starting as apprentices and advancing to journeyman. Some go on to earn additional certifications, with the master electrician designation being the highest level achievable.

An electrician apprentice salary is on the modest end of the range as aspiring electricians undergo training and gain hands-on experience. As electricians accumulate experience and successfully complete their apprenticeships, they transition to journeyman electricians, achieving a significant salary increase that reflects their enhanced skills.

Master electricians, often with years of experience and specialized training, typically earn the highest salaries in the field. A master electrician salary can range upwards of $100,000 per year, and master electricians have extensive knowledge and years of practical experience.

A pro’s electrician rates and annual salary tend to rise consistently with experience. Experienced electricians bring not only technical proficiency but also problem-solving capabilities, making them more sought after in their field. Electricians who have obtained certifications in specialized areas can expect an even higher salary. A certified electrician salary for an individual working in a niche industry, such as alternative energy or automotive, can reach even higher than a master electrician salary.

“Knowing more than your peers will always set you apart and look good for management to give you a higher competitive salary,” explains Roop. “Knowing how to do a panel replacement in one day is a huge part of the industry and what a lot of residential companies look for.” This is generally something that can only be mastered with plenty of hands-on experience.

Industry

The electrician profession is a critical component of numerous industries, ranging from construction to manufacturing and even entertainment. With their specialized skills and knowledge of electrical systems, electricians play a crucial role in these industries. Understanding the difference in salary potential in different industries can help aspiring electricians make informed decisions about their career paths.

  • Construction industry. Working as an electrician in the construction industry can be financially rewarding. In this sector, electricians are responsible for installing, repairing, and maintaining electrical systems in new residential, commercial, and industrial buildings. Since new construction projects are ongoing, there is often a higher demand for skilled electricians. As a result, electricians working in the construction industry tend to earn higher wages relative to other industries.
  • Manufacturing industry. Electricians also find opportunities in the manufacturing sector, where they install and maintain electrical equipment and machinery on production lines. The manufacturing industry usually requires electricians to have a broader set of skills beyond traditional electrical work, such as knowledge of industry machinery and controls. Electricians who work in manufacturing may receive higher salaries due to the demand for their expertise and the potentially hazardous nature of the work environment.
  • Energy sector. With the growing demand for renewable energy sources, there has been a surge in hiring electricians in the energy sector. These electricians specialize in installing, connecting, and maintaining renewable energy systems, such as solar panels and wind turbines. Due to the specialized nature of this work, electricians in this field often earn salaries above the industry average.
  • Health care industry. The health care industry relies heavily on dependable electrical systems to ensure patient safety and comfort. Electricians in this industry are responsible for maintaining electrical systems in hospitals, clinics, and other health care facilities.
  • Entertainment industry. While not traditionally considered a typical industry for electricians, the entertainment sector offers unique opportunities. Electricians working in the entertainment industry, particularly in theater, film, and television, handle lighting setups, sound systems, and special effects. Because of the expertise required for this specialized field, these electricians can earn higher salaries than their counterparts in other industries.

Geographic Location

Geographic location has a significant influence on the average electrician salary, with variations occurring based on the cost of living, demand for electrical services, and regional economic conditions. In urban areas with a higher cost of living, electrician salaries are often higher than in rural areas with a lower cost of living. Areas that are experiencing a construction boom or increased industrial development may also see an increase in electrician salaries due to increased competition for skilled professionals.

StateMean Hourly WageMean Annual Salary
Alabama$24.07$50,070
Alaska$38.78$80,660
Arizona$25.58$53,210
Arkansas$22.63$47,070
California$37.57$78,140
Colorado$28.50$59,280
Connecticut$32.47$67,540
Delaware$28.86$60,040
District of Columbia$41.30$85,910
Florida$24.38$50,710
Georgia$27.10$56,370
Hawaii$42.61$88,630
Idaho$26.18$54,460
Illinois$40.76$84,790
Indiana$32.04$66,630
Iowa$28.64$59,560
Kansas$28.72$59,750
Kentucky$26.85$55,840
Louisiana$26.39$54,900
Maine$29.25$60,840
Maryland$31.84$66,230
Massachusetts$39.53$82,220
Michigan$30.22$62,850
Minnesota$35.25$73,320
Mississippi$27.02$56,210
Missouri$30.96$64,400
Montana$29.93$62,250
Nebraska$26.33$54,760
Nevada$33.27$69,200
New Hampshire$28.25$58,760
New Jersey$38.70$80,500
New Mexico$28.05$58,350
New York$39.30$81,740
North Carolina$24.47$50,900
North Dakota$32.41$67,410
Ohio$29.37$61,090
Oklahoma$27.50$57,200
Oregon$39.99$83,180
Pennsylvania$35.36$73,540
Rhode Island$30.51$63,470
South Carolina$25.50$53,040
South Dakota$26.04$54,170
Tennessee$27.43$57,050
Texas$26.43$54,980
Utah$27.37$56,940
Vermont$25.96$53,990
Virginia$29.06$60,440
Washington$40.96$85,190
West Virginia$29.93$62,250
Wisconsin$33.74$70,180
Wyoming$29.91$62,200
Guam$21.07$43,820
Puerto Rico$15.27$31,750
Virgin Islands$27.31$56,800
Electrician Salary
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Average Electrician Salary by Level of Expertise

The average electrician salary can vary significantly based on the level of experience and expertise. It’s important to note that these salary ranges are approximate and may fluctuate based on location, industry demand, and specialized skills. Electricians can increase their earning potential by obtaining additional certifications, specializing in specific areas (such as industrial electrical work), or even starting their own electrical contracting business.

Type of ElectricianAverage Salary
Apprentice or entry-level$37,440
Journeyman or mid-level$60,240
Master or senior-level$102,300

Apprentice or Entry-Level

Apprentice or entry-level electricians are just starting their journey in the electrical trade. They often assist journeyman electricians or master electricians and receive on-the-job training. Due to their limited experience, their salaries tend to be on the lower end of the spectrum. On average, electrician starting pay is about $37,440 per year.

Journeyman or Mid-Level

After completing an apprenticeship and obtaining a license, electricians become journeyman electricians. They are skilled in various electrical tasks and can work independently. Their salaries typically increase with their level of expertise. Journeyman electrician salary is about $60,240 per year, and this can vary based on factors such as location and years of experience.

Master or Senior-Level

Master or senior-level electricians are highly experienced and have completed additional hours or years of work experience and passed the master electrician licensing exam. They often supervise and train other electricians and are responsible for complex electrical systems and installations. Their expertise commands a higher salary: On average, master electricians can earn a salary of $102,300 or more annually.

How to Increase Your Electrician Salary

With the right strategies and skills, electricians can take their earnings to the next level and achieve financial success. Here are a few tips to help electricians increase their salary.

  • Be adaptable. “The best piece of advice that I could give would be to be multifaceted in the field and not to focus just on one task,” advises Roop. “We pay our electricians that can troubleshoot, install and repair more than an electrician that can just install.”
  • Specialize in niche areas. By becoming an expert in a specific field, such as industrial or solar installations, electricians can command higher rates for their specialized knowledge and skills.
  • Obtain additional certifications. Adding certifications to their portfolio demonstrates an electrician’s commitment to professional growth and increases their value as an electrician. Certifications may be available in areas such as electrical safety, renewable energy, and advanced wiring techniques.
  • Pursue continuing education. Electricians can stay updated on the latest advancements in the electrical industry by taking continuing education courses. This shows a dedication to providing quality services, and it positions electricians as knowledgeable professionals in their field.
  • Expand your network. Networking is crucial in any profession, and the electrical industry is no exception. Attending industry events, joining professional organizations, and connecting with other electricians to expand professional contacts can lead to new job opportunities, partnerships, and referrals.
  • Focus on customer service. Providing exceptional customer service can set electricians apart from their competitors. Happy clients are more likely to leave positive reviews and recommend the electrician to others, leading to increased business and higher income.
  • Stay informed about market rates. Regularly researching and staying informed about market salary rates can help electricians stay competitive. Knowing the prevailing rates ensures that electricians can negotiate fair pay based on their skills and experience.

FAQs

Some of the most common questions people have about becoming an electrician pertain to salary potential, how long it takes to become an electrician, how to get licensed, and whether being an electrician is a dangerous profession. Here are answers to some frequently asked questions about being an electrician.

Q. How long does it take to become an electrician in the U.S.?

Some electricians start their education with vocational training, and programs can last from a few months to a few years. All aspiring electricians have to complete an apprenticeship that lasts from 4 to 5 years, or about 2,000 hours of hands-on training.

Q. How do I get an electrician license?

The requirements for electricians vary from state to state, but electricians need to pass an exam to be licensed. The required tests cover information from the National Electrical Code (NEC) and local electrical codes, which ensures the safe installation of electrical wiring. Some locations may require electricians to take continuing education classes throughout their careers to maintain their licenses.

Q. Are electricians in demand?

According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, the projected job growth for electricians is expected to increase at 6 percent through 2032, which is faster than average.

Q. Is being an electrician dangerous?

Since working with electricity is inherently dangerous, being an electrician comes with some significant safety risks. Electricians follow precise safety procedures to avoid injury, but some of the most common injuries that happen on the job are burns, electrical shocks, falls, and cuts.

Sources: Bureau of Labor Statistics, ZipRecruiter