Plumber Salary Guide & Career Outlook

Plumbers in the United States earn around $50,568 and in South Africa, the pay is R121,006 ($9,042). The average plumber salary in Canada and Australia is very similar at C$78,856 ($42,177) and AU$58,597 ($43,262). However, those who work in the United Kingdom can expect to make E23,675 ($25,885) and in India, they earn Rs 315,384 ($4,914).

This plumber career guide covers various aspects of being a plumber from their salary ranges to the impact of industry and experience and from the working schedule to job benefits. After reading this article you should have a better idea of what a plumber earns and if it is a good job.

How Much Does a Plumber Make per Year by Country?

Plumber Salary US Canada UK Australia New Zealand India South Africa
Hourly Pay $20.03 C$27.67 ($20.17) E11.16 ($12.20) AU$28.29 ($20.89) NZ$25.48 ($17.48) Rs 151.62* ($2.36) R48.61 ($3.63)
Annual Pay $50,568 C$57,856 ($42,177) E23,675 ($25,885) AU$58,597 ($43,262) NZ$50,444 ($34,614) Rs 315,384 ($4,914) R121,006 ($9,042)

Pay information denoted with a (*) indicates the hourly pay was correlated from the annual salary.

plumber salary

Plumber Salary Influencing Factors

Plumbers self-report pay information to Payscale for all of the tables listed below. The only country with limited data was India.

1. Location

How Much Does a Plumber Make in the US?

Plumber Salary US Per Year Per Hour
Minimum $28,913 $13.17
Maximum $91,775 $32.50
Bonus/Tip $245.24 to $5,817 No additional pay
Overtime No additional pay $18.46 to $50.04
Total Pay $28,755 to $76,987

How Much Does a Plumber Make in Canada?

Plumber Salary Canada Per Year Per Hour
Minimum C$31,500 C$15.95
Maximum C$96,023 C$38.65
Bonus/Tip NZ$2,500 No additional pay
Overtime No additional pay C$25.98 to C$68.87
Total Pay C$33,566 to C$85,309

How Much Does a Plumber Make in the UK?

Plumber Salary UK Per Year Per Hour
Minimum E12,435 E6.89
Maximum E34,355 E17.62
Bonus/Tip E200.00 to E7,122 No additional pay
Overtime No additional pay E9.57 to E23.32
Total Pay E13,847 to E36,196

How Much Does a Plumber Make in Australia?

Plumber Salary Australia Per Year Per Hour
Minimum AU$30,579 AU$19.66
Maximum AU$82,838 AU$40.40
Bonus/Tip AU$1,000 No additional pay
Overtime No additional pay AU$28.78 to AU$61.25
Total Pay AU$39,609 to AU$85,788

How Much Does a Plumber make in New Zealand?

Plumber Salary New Zealand Per Year Per Hour
Minimum NZ$39,149 NZ$18.09
Maximum NZ$81,703 NZ$34.61
Bonus/Tip NZ$2,500 No additional pay
Overtime No additional pay NZ$22.47 to NZ$48.94
Total Pay NZ$38,482 to NZ$78,672

How Much Does a Plumber make in India?

Plumber Salary India Per Year
Average Rs 315,384
Bonus/Tip No additional pay
Overtime No additional pay
Total Pay Rs 315,384

How Much Does a Plumber Make in South Africa?

Plumber Salary South Africa Per Year Per Hour
Minimum R51,896 R24.09
Maximum R222,109 R175.61
Bonus/Tip R1,163 to R231,381 R3.85
Overtime No additional pay R15.47 to R201.34
Total Pay R51,393 to R231,381

2. Experience

The pay in Australia for entry-level plumbers is AU$50,000 and for late-career professionals, it is AU$71,000. Pay in New Zealand increases on a similar scale from NZ$44,000 to NZ$60,000. The salary peak in Canada is at 5 years of experience at C$67,000. However, those who worked longer reported a lower salary. In the United Kingdom, pay increases linearly with experience from 17 percent below the average to 25 percent above the average. Their salary in the United States increases from $35,000 to $55,000. Finally, in South Africa, they earn from R100,000 to R170,000.

The most common years of experience in Australia, South Africa, and New Zealand was 5-9 years. On the other hand, in Canada and the United Kingdom, those who have 1-4 years of experience entered their data the most. While in the United States, the most common experience level was 10-19 years.

3. Industry

Plumbers work exclusively with plumbing and watering systems. They had an industry-wide employment of about 425,000 jobs in the United States in 2014. Theirs is a dangerous working environment because they frequently are exposed to harmful conditions and harsh chemicals. Moreover, they need to be able to lift heavy materials and work in all environments.

Plumbers are just recently becoming recognized as a professional body of workers in India.

However, there are certain locations where the industry pays more. The promising locations in Australia, Canada, the United Kingdom, the United States, and South Africa are Gold Coast, Edmonton, Manchester, Seattle, and Pretoria, respectively. Conversely, lower salaries are seen in Geelong, Vancouver, Bournemouth, San Diego, and Durban, AU.

Schedule & Working Hours

Most plumbers work full-time and some are self-employed. Self-employed plumbers get to set their own hours. However, they will also be the ones who report in the event of a plumbing emergency. Plumbers are expected to work at all hours of the day and even on weekends and holidays. As evidenced by the countries reporting overtime hours above, this is extremely common.

Bonuses & Benefits

One of the biggest benefits of being a plumber is that it is a job available to people without the funds to pursue a full collegiate degree. After a short period of training, they are able to enter the workforce. In addition, plumbers get paid while they are training. Because there are not loans, the salary goes further than it would for someone who has student debt.

Many plumbers are self-employed. Thus they must pursue their own benefits like healthcare and retirement. Those who work for a company may receive some benefits, but only after a period of time.

The table below shows healthcare benefits by country. A (–) indicates that the health care benefits were not available.

Country United States Canada United Kingdom Australia New Zealand India South Africa
Medical 53 60 6 9 9 20
Dental 32 55 2 1 4 5
Vision 25 38 3 1 4 5
None 45 36 93 91 87 78

Career Outlook

The projected job growth for plumbers in the United States is 12 percent through the year 2024. Plumbers are needed for all new construction and for improving water efficiency in existing structures. For example, if new fire regulations require a sprinkling system to be installed, the plumber completes that job.

Plumbing is definitely a male dominated profession. In the United States, 100 percent of reported salaries are from male and in Australia and South Africa, it is 99 percent. Finally, in Canada, the ratio is 98 percent male.

Because plumbing is a vocational profession there is not much room for advancement to other careers. The training to become a plumber focuses only on the skills needed to be a plumber. They could become the lead plumber.


Plumbers earn a high salary compared to the education required to have a plumber career. They will function as an apprentice until they have completed their training and are ready to start working on their own. A similar indispensable job you might want to consider it that of an electrician.

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