What is a Low Voltage Electrician? (License & Training)

Search Electrician Programs

Get information on Electrician programs by entering your zip code and request enrollment information.

Sponsored Ad

What is a Low Voltage Electrician

Low voltage electricians are specialists that install, maintain, repair and upgrade wiring and electrical systems in commercial and residential buildings.

For the first time, these specialists appeared at the beginning of the 20th century and they installed, maintained, and repaired telephone networks.

Nowadays, considering the growth of usage of low voltage systems including security, CCTV, and fiber optic systems, these specialists are in great demand.

Speaking of low voltage electricians licensing, there is a whole bunch of requirements you should be able to meet.

Search Electrician Programs

Get information on Electrician programs by entering your zip code and request enrollment information.

Sponsored Ad

However, the National Electrical Code (NEC) standardizes professional guidelines, tools, and techniques well.

After obtaining a license, low voltage electricians can get a stable job environment as well as a competitive salary.

Electrical Systems and Job Settings that Require Low Voltage Electricians

Low voltage electricians are also known as voice-data-video (VDV) electricians.

They are professionals that install, repair and maintain various types of low voltage electrical systems including:

  • Broadband internet;
  • Cable and digital television;
  • CCTV (closed-circuit television) systems;
  • Fiber optic networks;
  • LAN (local area network) and WAN (wide area network);
  • Landline telephones;
  • Home entertainment systems;
  • Security and fire alarms;
  • Telephone systems.

The National Electrical Code (NEC) has a certain definition of low voltage electrical systems.

They are defined as systems that use the electricity of between 0 and 49 volts.

Nevertheless, some states and jurisdictions can have their own specific definition of low voltage systems.

In the modern world, low voltage electrical systems are widely used and can be found almost everywhere.

They are used in:

  • Hospitals and schools;
  • Industrial settings;
  • Offices and businesses;
  • Public services settings;
  • Residential settings;
  • Ships, airplanes, trains, buses, and automobiles.

Duties and Skill Requirements for Low Voltage Electricians

As was mentioned before, low voltage electricians are responsible for the installation, maintenance, repair, and troubleshooting of low voltage systems.

The list of their duties may include such points as:

  • Working with low voltage cable, conduit, and circuits
  • Pulling and terminating wiring cables, such as Cat 5E or 6
  • Working with DC battery systems
  • Trimming out security devices
  • Programming video surveillance equipment
  • Installing and wiring alarm panels
  • Working with coaxial cables, category rated cables, and fiber optics
  • Testing and adjusting connections to diagnose problems
  • Analyzing schematics, blueprints, and drawings of low voltage electronic systems
  • Installing j-hooks and ladder racks
  • WAP and card access system installations
  • Roughing in new installations
  • Installing alarm systems that include pull stations, strobes, horns, detectors, and exit signs
  • Dressing and terminating distribution frames

Training and License Requirements for Low Voltage Electricians

Speaking of the license requirements for low voltage electricians, they vary from one state and jurisdiction to another.

You can find low voltage electrician licensing requirements by occupation are provided by the National Electrical Contractors Association (NECA).

Below, we’ve prepared a summary of this directory for you.

If you want to obtain a low voltage electrician license, you can do it in three common ways:

  • In some jurisdictions, low voltage electricians are in the same licensing category as residential electricians. In such a case, you need to complete the same steps and meet the same licensing requirements as residential electricians including apprentice (4-6 years plus exam)-journeyman (2-4 years plus exam)-master electrician.
  • In some jurisdictions, low voltage electricians are considered as a separate category. In such a case, less training and experience are required for obtaining a license. However, it may still include standard stages that are apprentice, journeyman, and master electrician.
  • In some jurisdictions, low voltage electricians licensing depends on their individual role. In other words, security alarm technicians, fire alarm electricians, phone line electricians, and others have their own licensing processes. In such cases, training doesn’t take much time and sometimes can be completed in a few months.

As you can see, depending on your jurisdiction, you may be obliged to pass a standard licensing process or meet a bunch of additional requirements.

Just make sure to learn about the licensing process in your jurisdiction addressing local regulatory agency or the International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers (IBEW).

Certification for Low Voltage Electricians

In some jurisdictions, licensing is the same thing as certification.

If a formal education program is required for licensing in your area, you may be able to enter one of the in-state colleges and universities and complete a certification program.

There is also a professional specialty certification that is another type of certification you can obtain addressing one of the national organizations.

It is a great opportunity to improve your career prospects and find better employment.

Also, these nationally recognized credentials can be optional or obligatory depending on your location and jurisdiction.

Addressing one of the national organizations, you have an opportunity to obtain low voltage electrician certifications in specific categories.

The list of available options includes:

Also, there are some third-party companies that provide some extra training for those who want to get ready for their certification exam.

If you want to be prepared for the exam, you can address:

Salaries and Major Employers of Low Voltage Electricians

After obtaining a license, you can increase your income significantly.

Below, you can find info about the salaries of licensed low voltage electricians in various jurisdictions.

Just keep in mind that this data aims to provide you with some extra info and doesn’t represent the level of pay completely.

  • Low Voltage Technician with South Bay Communications in San Jose, California: $31,200 – $62,400
  • Low Voltage Electrician with Urban Alarm in Washington DC: $47,923
  • Low Voltage Service Technician in Atlanta, Georgia: $45,760 – $62,400
  • Communications Technician with IES in Irvine, California: $37,440
  • Low Voltage Technician with Outsource in San Jose, California: $62,400 minimum

Below, we’ve collected some of the best employers in the biggest cities in the USA.

Atlanta

  • American Systems;
  • Atlantic Workforce;
  • Cana Communications;
  • TEKSystems;
  • Videojet Technologies.

Chicago

  • MAC Property Management;
  • Prime Communications;
  • Pangea Real Estate;
  • Spencer Technologies;
  • Toshiba.

Dallas-Fort Worth

  • Archon Inc;
  • City of Fort Worth;
  • Facility Solutions Group;
  • National Switchgear;
  • Prime Communications Inc.

Philadelphia

  • Automated Digital Homes;
  • Armstrong Group of Companies;
  • L-3 Communications;
  • Siemens;
  • VC Corp.

San Francisco

  • Amazon;
  • IES Communications;
  • Mobile Tech Inc;
  • MGA Employee Services Inc;
  • Outsource.

Low Voltage Licensing Requirements By State

Below, there is some licensing info provided by the National Electrical Contractors Association (NECA).

Using this info, you’ll be able to understand whether you need to get a license as a low voltage electrician and what requirements you need to meet.

There is info about types of licenses low voltage electricians can obtain.

Alabama

  • General low voltage systems
  • Locksmiths

Alaska

  • Communications systems
  • Fire and security alarms

Arizona

  • Communication systems
  • Fire alarms

Arkansas

  • Security alarm systems

California

  • General low voltage systems
  • Security alarm systems

Colorado

Does not specifically license low-voltage electricians at the state level

Connecticut

  • General low voltage systems, especially those related to security systems

Delaware

Does not specifically license low-voltage electricians at the state level

Florida

  • General low voltage systems
  • Security alarm systems
  • Fire and security alarm systems

Georgia

  • General low voltage systems

Hawaii

Does not specifically license low-voltage electricians at the state level

Idaho

Does not specifically license low-voltage electricians at the state level

Illinois

  • Fire and security alarm systems

Indiana

Does not specifically license low-voltage electricians at the state level

Iowa

Does not specifically license low-voltage electricians at the state level

Kansas

Does not specifically license low-voltage electricians at the state level

Kentucky

  • Fire and security alarm systems

Louisiana

  • Security alarm systems
  • Fire alarm systems
  • CCTV security systems

Maine

  • Fire alarm systems
  • General low energy electronics
  • Low voltage landscape lighting

Maryland

Does not specifically license low-voltage electricians at the state level

Massachusetts

  • Fire alarm systems
  • Security alarm systems

Michigan

  • Fire and security alarm systems

Minnesota

  • Low voltage technology systems

Mississippi

Does not specifically license low-voltage electricians at the state level

Missouri

  • Fire and security alarm systems

Montana

  • All types of alarm systems (fire and security)

Nebraska

  • Fire alarm systems

Nevada

  • Fire alarm systems
  • Photovoltaic systems
  • General low voltage systems

New Hampshire

Does not specifically license low-voltage electricians at the state level

New Jersey

  • Security alarm systems
  • Fire alarm systems

New Mexico

  • Telephone systems
  • Fire and security systems

New York

  • Security alarm systems
  • Fire alarm systems

North Carolina

  • General low voltage systems

North Dakota

Does not specifically license low-voltage electricians at the state level

Ohio

Does not specifically license low-voltage electricians at the state level

Oklahoma

  • Security alarm systems
  • Fire alarm systems
  • Alarm company systems

Oregon

  • General low voltage systems

Pennsylvania

Does not specifically license low-voltage electricians at the state level

Rhode Island

  • General alarm systems
  • General telecommunication systems

South Carolina

  • Security and fire alarm systems
  • Security alarm systems

South Dakota

Does not specifically license low-voltage electricians at the state level

Tennessee

General low voltage systems, which can cover:

  • Sound systems
  • Intercom systems
  • Fire alarm systems
  • Security systems
  • Telephone line systems and telecommunications cables

Texas

  • Fire alarm systems
  • Security alarm systems

Utah

  • Security alarm systems

Vermont

  • Residential fire alarm systems
  • Commercial fire alarm systems

Virginia

Does not specifically license low-voltage electricians at the state level

Washington

  • Telecommunication systems

West Virginia

  • Fire and security alarm systems

Wisconsin

Does not specifically license low-voltage electricians at the state level

Wyoming

  • General low voltage systems

Leave a Comment

Find a Program
×
Search Electrician Programs

Get information on Electrician programs by entering your zip code and request enrollment information.

Sponsored Ad