orange pvc up on a building. guide breaks down what plumbing contractors need to know about requirements when applying to the nscb

Who Needs a Plumbing Contractor License In Nevada?

  • Anyone bidding on Plumbing, Heating, or Insulation repair, installation or maintenance projects over $500 in labor or materials
  • In Nevada there are 4 sub-classifications that fall under the the plumbing contractor license
  • If you get the C-1 Plumbing and Heating License, you are allowed to bid on the following types of projects:
a plumbing contractor fixing a sink. blog post covers everything you need to know to get the nevada plumbing license

BOILERS (sub-classification C-1a): 

  • Installation of boilers including all related fittings
  • Piping, valves, gauges, pumps, radiators, and convectors 
  • Tanks and lines for fuel oil 
  • Chimneys and flues
  • Insulation and other appurtenances

FIRE SPRINKLERS (sub-classification C-1b):

  • Fabrication and installation of all systems of sprinklers for protection from fire 
  • Standpipe systems

PIPE AND DUCT INSULATION (sub-classification C-1c):

  • Pipe Insulation 
  • Duct Insulation

PLUMBING (sub-classification C-1d):

  • Material and fixtures to create sanitary conditions in buildings by providing a permanent means for a supply of safe water and any sanitary waste  
  • Vent systems that are required to ensure the appropriate removal of waste from these buildings
  • Drainage systems for roofs
  • Hydronic heating systems not exceeding 200,000 British thermal units
  • Systems of landscape irrigation
  • Systems to heat potable water, including, without limitation, solar equipment
  • Supply gas for residential and industrial purposes
  • Pipes for compressed air, vacuums and gases for medical use

Nevada Contractor License Requirements

You must meet the following basic requirements:

  • Be at least 18 years of Age
  • Form of USA Issued Identification
  • Social Security Number
  • Not Currently On Probation or Parole

You must also meet the following plumber requirements

  • 4 Years of Journeyman Level Experience
  • Be able to document your experience if the Nevada Contractors Board request
  • A Business Entity

What is a Journeyman?

Journeyman level experience means that you have reached a certain level of mastery and knowledge of your trade.

Credit for experience in Nevada is only issued at the journeyman or supervisory level.

You must be aware of every aspect of your trade as well as maintaining a certain level of safety and quality control.

  • Journeyman can perform all of the duties associated with their trade un-supervised. This person has either completed an apprenticeship or is an experienced worker
  • Foreman is a supervising employee on a job-site and has full knowledge of all of the duties and skills that a journeyman would have
  • Contractor is an independent tradesman who manages and supervises several phases of a construction job
logo of the nevada state contractors board. the governing body for plumbing contractors in nevada

The Contractors Board in Nevada may request to see the documentation of your experience.

It is important that you have some way to prove your claim of being a journeyman.

Nevada Journeyman Plumber Certification

Journeyman plumbers in Nevada are certified by the National Board of Plumbing Examiners. 

  • All applicants must have either completed a 4 year state registered and accredited apprenticeship program or 8,000 of documented experience in the plumbing trade
  • To take the Nevada master plumbers test you will need to show proof of holding the NBOPE journeyman certificate for at least 1 year or 2,000 Hours
  • The current costs and application can be found here

It is important to understand the difference between a Journeyman Plumber and a Contractor

Journeyman Plumber
  • Knowledge and Expertise
  • May have completed an apprenticeship or training program 
  • Has at-least 8,000 hours of experience
  • May be a minimum requirement to work for a plumbing contractor or company
  • Holds a NBOPE plumbing certificate
Plumbing Contractor
  • Knowledge and Expertise
  • 4 Years Journeyman Level Experience
  • Has passed an exam covering construction management, accounting, job site safety, tax law, labor law, contracts and bidding
  • Offers plumbing services and can bid over $500
  • Holds a plumbing contractor license

Proving Your Plumbing Experience

You may document your 4 years of experience in the following ways:

  • W2’s
  • Tax Returns
  • Check Stubs
  • Contracts
  • Letter from a licensed contractor

Who can sign off on your experience?

The NSCB will require you to submit 4 notarized references verifying your construction experience.

These references must be from people who have first hand knowledge of your experience and who have witnessed you work. 

You may use any of the following people to sign off on your experience:

  • Building inspector 
  • Architect  
  • Engineer
  • Client 
  • Customer

Description of work experience

In addition to references. You must also include a detailed description of your experience. 

Each reference must include

  • Name
  • Current Address
  • Phone Number
  • Dates of Employment

Your description must go into a certain level of detail:

"Jim is a great guy and an experienced plumber" - Is not descriptive enough

An example of a more descriptive explanation would be:

"Jim has installed piping, valves and controls. He is experienced with setting up water supply, checking drains, joints, and connections. He has installed fire sprinklers, cleared storm drains, engaged in isometric analysis and tested back-flow...etc"

a plumbing contractor tightening a pipe outside. to get the nevada plumbing license you will need to apply with the NSCB

Series of plumber fixing up ourdoor water filter with glue on pvc piping

You will want to talk about the:

  • Types of construction projects
  • Trades
  • Crafts
  • Task and Duties

Forming a Business Entity in Nevada

You will have to form a legal entity before you can get a license and offer plumbing services. You can learn more about setting up a business entity on the Nevada Secretary of State Website.

You must first choose a name and then you can choose the type of entity you want.

Typically, construction companies choose either:

  • Sole Proprietor
  • Partnership
  • LLC
  • S-Corporation

For a complete explanation of the difference between these types of entities and which one makes the most sense for someone applying for a contractor license, check out this free guide!

Nevada Plumbing License Exam

a plumbing contractor fixing a pipe using a wrench. if you are looking to get the plumbing license in nevada you will need to pass a two part exam

To get licensed and bonded in Nevada you will need to pass a two part exam which is administered by PSI.

  • Construction Management Survey Exam 
  • Plumbing Trade Exam

Lets start with the Construction Management Survey Exam...

This is a LAW & BUSINESS focused test that will cover the following topics:

  • Licensing
  • Estimating and Bidding
  • Lien Law
  • Financial Management
  • Tax Laws
  • Labor Laws
  • Project Management
  • Contracts
  • Risk Management
  • Environmental Safety and Health Department Regulations
  • Occupational Safety
  • Construction Regulations

If you are unfamiliar with the contractor license laws, it could be helpful for you to enroll in a Nevada contractor license school. 

However, make sure you understand the scope of what contractor classes actually teach you.

To learn more about the difference between a trade school and a contractor license school, check out this article!

Plumbing Trade Test

The Nevada plumbing license test will cover the following topics:

  • General Plumbing Requirements
  • Gas Systems
  • Clean outs
  • Fixtures and Equipment
  • Hydronics
  • Water Heaters/Venting
  • Safety
  • Industrial Piping
  • Breathing Systems for Firefighters
  • Chilled Water Piping
  • Storm Drainage
  • Piping, Valves, and Controls
  • Sheet Metal
  • Water Supply
  • Hangers and Supports
  • Drain, Waste, and Vents
  • Back-flow
  • Traps and Interceptors
  • Isometric Analysis/Plumbing Mathematics
  • Joints and Connections
  • Solar  
  • Boilers and Fire Sprinklers 

Testing Information

Construction Management Exam

  • 60 Questions
  • 120 Minutes
  • 75% Minimum Score

Plumbing Trade Exam

  • 120 Questions
  • 5 Hours
  • 84% Minimum Score

You must first register for an examination at the (NSCB) Nevada State Contractors Board website.

Once the board accepts your application packet, they will mail you a candidate eligibility letter that will include a PSI Registration Form with instructions on how to select an exam date. 

  • You will get 3 chances to pass the exam (2 weeks between each exam date)
  • One Examination $95
  • Two Examinations $140 (if the second exam is the Construction Management Exam)
  • Computerized Test
  • Bring 2 forms of Identification
  • Open Book
  • Arrive 30 minutes before scheduled exam time
  • You will have to forfeit your exam fee if you cancel less than 2 days before your date, are late or fail to bring identification

Exam Locations

There are three available testing locations:

  • LAS VEGAS

3210 East Tropicana Avenue

Las Vegas, Nevada 89121

  • RENO

Airport Plaza Office Building

1755 E Plumb Lane Ste 108

Reno, Nevada 89502

  • ELKO 

225 Silver Street Ste 102

Elko, Nevada 89801

NSCB Licensing Fees and Application

  • The Application Fee is currently ---------$300 
  • License Activation ----------- $680 (every two years)
  • Bond Fee for Cash Bond ------------- $200
  • Residential Recovery Fund ------------ $200 - $1000 (for residential contractors only)

Submit Application - You can find an application here

Send to:

2310 CORPORATE CIRCLE, SUITE 200, 

HENDERSON, NEVADA, 89074

Nevada Contractor License Lookup Page

For consumers looking for a licensed and bonded contractor in the state of Nevada, you can check out this page

You may be also required to register and get  a Nevada state business license. The Nevada department of business and Industry has information about this process.

Nevada Contractor License Reciprocity Agreement

Can I use my Nevada Contractor license in California? 

Contractor License reciprocity is an agreement between the Contractor licensing boards of two different states.

It can mean that they have similar building standards, allowing contractors to work freely between states.

an illustration of the state of california. blog post covers the contractor license reciprocity agreement between california and nevada

In the context of licensing, it means that a contractor who is licensed in one state, may not need to retake an exam to get licensed in another state.

Learn more about Nevada's reciprocity agreement with California, Arizona and Utah!

Plumbers apprenticeships

Whether you are looking to get a journeyman card in Nevada or begin a career in the plumbing trade.

One of the best ways to build a solid foundation in your career is by looking into an apprenticeship program school.

If you are new to the world of construction and have heard the term “journeyman” or “apprentice” and are not sure what these terms mean, or perhaps where to even start.

Learn more about the step by step path from an Apprentice to Journeyman!

Learn how to Read Construction Blueprints

a desk with a ruler and book laying on top of it. image is for a blog post covering blueprint reading for those looking to get a nevada plumbing license

Those looking to do pursue a career in construction should be able to read construction blueprints and identify basic lines and symbols.

Construction blueprints communicate important information about the way in which a structure is built as well as what materials are necessary or have been used for its construction.

Being comfortable with construction blueprints is an invaluable skill for those looking to get the contractor license.

See our Free Blueprint Reading Course!

Nevada OSHA Guidelines

two contractors up on a building being built. blog post covers osha safety regulations

Statistically, 21% of all work-related fatalities are in construction.

That equals about 1 and 5 worker deaths on average.

In the construction industry, the leading cause of worker deaths is reported as falls, struck by an object, electrocution, and caught-in/between.

If you or your workers are not properly trained, it can place unnecessary risk to not only your personal safety but your bottom line as a business. 

For employment with a licensed contractor in Nevada, you may be asked to complete some level of Nevada OSHA Safety Training.

Conclusion

Getting a Nevada state contractor license can be a huge step up in your career if you are looking to start your own business or become an RMO for an existing company!

The Construction industry is highly lucrative.

The key is to take action and follow these steps from beginning to end.

If you have found this article, be sure to let us know! and check back for more updates in the future.

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