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In 2015 the Department of Labor in Maine foresaw 400,000 more jobs available for skilled workers by 2030, as a result of people retiring.
In Maine, an electrician earns on average $46,224 per year, while the best-paid in the trade make about $52,673 annually.
By contrast, these salaries are a bit lower than at the national level, with the median one being $47,951 per year, and the highest being $54,640 per year.Annual Salary Range:
Average Salary of Electricians in Maine
Becoming an Electrician
Those who wish to work as electricians must train and then get a license from the Electricians’ Examining Board.
Here are the steps to follow:
- Gain experience as a trainee
- Pass the exam to become a journeyman
- Pass the exam for the master electrician license
- Start your own business in Maine
The trainee period lasts for 8000 hours of service as an apprentice along 576 hours of classroom study.
You can do this by enrolling in the 2-year electrical program offered by some technical high schools and then work 8,000 hours under the supervision of a master electrician.
Another option is to attend a community college through the Department of Corrections and then complete 4,000 hours of work while being supervised by a master electrician.
This route allows you to hold the journeyman exam after 1 year from your graduation.
Those who served in the military and also have some experience working in the electrical field must contact the Board to be properly accredited with the gained experienced.
As noted, some high schools have electrical training programs, called pre-apprenticeships, thus one can start their training as early as 11th grade.
These students can accumulate up to 1,000 hours of work experience.
The pre-apprenticeship programs are run by Maine’s Department of Labor’s Career Center.
9 Electrician Schools in Maine
|Central Maine Community College||1250 Turner Street Auburn, ME 04210|
|Eastern Maine Community College||354 Hogan Rd. Bangor, ME|
|JATC of Augusta||176 Main Street Fairfield, ME 04937|
|JATC of Portland||238 Goddard Road Lewiston, ME 04240|
|Kennebec Valley Community College||92 Western Ave. Fairfield, ME|
|Northern Maine Community College||33 Edgemont Dr. Presque Isle, ME|
|Southern Maine Community College||2 Fort Rd. S. Portland, ME|
|Washington County Community College||One College Drive Calais, ME 04619|
|York County Community College||112 College Drive Wells, ME 04090-5341|
The Maine Department of Labor’s Career Center also runs the programs for apprenticeships and there are more than 250 registered employers for the programs.
If you enroll in the Apprenticeship Program you may be eligible to be reimbursed almost 50% of the tuition cost.
You must meet these requirements in order to be able to enroll in the apprenticeship program:
- Be at least 16 years old
- Have a high school diploma or GED
- Be physically and intellectually capable of completing the work and courses required
- Pass a criminal history background check
- Be legally eligible to work in the United States
- Have a sponsor
Both you and the sponsor must fill out a form to apply for the program, and your sponsor must mention your salary on the form as well as any previous experience you may have – such as from the pre-apprenticeship period.
You’ll also have to apply for the Individual License and the form must be sent to the Board by mail along with $96 for the background check and the license.
You’ll have to check your status online, and you can only work after it changes from “pending” to “active.”
You have to renew this license every 2 years, you can do so online, but you also have to pay a $50 fee.
Become a Journeyman
A journeyman electrician works for someone more qualified, such as a master electrician, without being supervised, unlike an apprentice.
You can only apply for the exam when your apprenticeship period is completed, as described above.
What you need to apply:
- Paying the $25 fee (send it with your application)
- A copy of your diploma or transcript
- An application form
You can check online if you got approved to take the exam, though a notification letter will also be mailed to you.
The exam costs $75 and this fee is payable to Prometric.
You have 2 years to schedule your exam, but you can schedule it online as well.
This is a computerized exam and you must go to the test centers in Portland and Bangor to take it.
This exam lasts for 3 hours and consists of 80 questions with multiple answers, and you can have the NFPA 70 –National Electrical Code, 2005 edition with you, to consult during the exam.
- Wiring Methods and Materials – 30%
- Wiring and Protection – 25%
- Equipment for General Use – 20%
- General Electrical Knowledge – 10%
- Special Occupancies – 5%
- Communications Systems – 5%
- Special Equipment – 3%
- Special Conditions- 2%
To pass, you have to score over 70%, in which case the Board will send you a license application form to fill out.
You’ll have to renew this license every 2 years after you pay the $150 renewal fee, but the renewal can be done online.
Additionally, every 3 years you must complete 15 hours of continuing education, covering the National Electrical Code update.
Your Maine journeyman license is also valid in the following states: New Hampshire, Vermont, North Dakota, Idaho, Oregon, and Wyoming, as part of mutual agreements.
You’ll have to use a special form to ask for your license from those states to be recognized here, or vice-versa.
Earn the Master Electrician’s License
The master electrician is someone authorized to perform the following works: install electrical wires, conduits, apparatus, fixtures and other electrical equipment, while not necessarily being employed by an electrical company.
Before considering getting this license, you need to complete 4000 hours as a journeyman.
If you don’t have that license you’ll need to complete 12,000 hours as work experience, to be able to apply.
Once you meet all the requirements, you must fill out the form, pay the fees and schedule your exam on which you must score at least 70% to pass.
The exam consists of 100 questions, lasts for 4 hours and you’re allowed to consult the NFPA 70- National Electrical Code.
- Wiring and Protection – 25%
- Wiring Methods and Materials- 20%
- Equipment for General Use- 20%
- General Electrical Knowledge- 10%
- Special Occupancies-10%
- Special Equipment- 5%
- Special Conditions- 5%
- Communications Systems- 5%
New Hampshire and Vermont have reciprocal agreements with Maine for the master electrician license, and you must use a special application form for yours to be recognized here if you earned it in either of those states.
The renewal process for the master electrician license is the same as for the journeyman license.
Start Your Own Business in Maine
The process of starting an electrical business in Maine is pretty easy, especially if you’ll be the sole proprietor.
Follow these steps:
- Choose your business name – can be your own name, but make sure it’s not already taken
- File a certificate with the clerk of the city or town in which you wish to establish your business
- Obtain local licenses and permits
- Obtain an Employer Identification Number
If on the other hand, you want to hire personnel, you’ll have to start a corporation, limited partnership or limited liability company.
Additionally, you’ll have to register for sales, use tax, income tax withholding, and a business license.
It may sound a bit complicated, but you can easily find online the documentation and licenses you need for whatever type of business you want to start.