I normally love my job as an electrician but it’s been one of those weeks and I feel the need to vent. Take what you read with a pinch of salt and remember that this is just me having a good old-fashioned moan before going back to the career that has served me so well over the last decade.
That being said you came to this post wanting to hear the bad things about being an electrician so these are the issues we electricians all face from time to time. Hope you enjoy and I’m sure by the end of this post I’ll have got it out of my system!
Worst Things About Being an Electrician
After a tough week on the tools, these are the 5 worst things about being an electrician that my colleagues and I can agree on!
- Everyone Wants You at the Same Time
- Held Responsible for Equipment Delays
- Trying to Explain Complicated Stuff in Simple Terms
- Everything Takes Twice as Long as You Think
- People Think You Earn a Fortune
I’ll break these points down in a little more detail below as they are not the usual cons of being an electrician people typically write. Of course, I could write about the long hours, lots of travel etc etc but I thought it was nice to mix things up a bit.
Everyone Wants You at the Same Time
Some days it feels like before you’ve even turned up to start the job you’re already being asked how long it’s going to take and why haven’t you finished yet. There is always another job to go on to and it can be a difficult juggling act making sure that your mind stays present on the job at hand, not constantly wandering off thinking about all the other projects on the waiting list.
Held Responsible for Equipment Delays
I’ve been on a super stressful job this week in a commercial premises trying to reinstate the electrical supply after major water leak damage. Needless to say the guys and I have been working long days to get the office back up and running as fast as possible but there are limits to our circle of control.
Parts and equipment need to be ordered from suppliers and there is little the electrician can do to ensure they arrive when estimated. Amazon hasn’t ventured into the world of electrical wholesale supplies (not on mass anyway) and in a world of people accustomed to next-day prime delivery, explaining why a part is going to take a week to arrive is often met with a look of shocked horror
Especially in the current climate of supply chain issues across all industries, electrcians are having to get more accustomed to bearing the brunt of customers’ frustrations for suppliers’ long lead times.
Trying to Explain Complicated Stuff in Simple Terms
It takes a 4-year apprenticeship to become a qualified electrician and whilst I’m not suggesting it’s on an intellectual par with becoming a doctor, there is a lot of theory to learn and electrical distribution is a pretty complicated beast.
Trying to break topics down into easy-to-understand information is not a great strength of mine but it is one I am trying to work on. Still, quite often I find myself explaining a problem to a customer and their eyes begin to glaze over as I bore them to tears explaining why a lack of continuity on the ring final circuit is a serious problem that needs addressing.
Everything Takes Twice as Long as You Think
On so many occasions I have arrived at a job, decided it looks like it will be a nice straightforward day, and then been thrown into a world of pain with problem after problem rearing its ugly head. There are so many unknown factors when starting any job that getting a good estimate in terms of time can be tricky. On the plus side, as my career has progressed I’ve gotten better at allowing extra time for the unknown factor and taking it as a bonus if everything goes according to plan.
People Think You Earn a Fortune
Before becoming an electrician I was working in kitchens as a qualified chef so I am fully aware that I am now in a privileged position to be earning a good hourly wage and not have to work loads of unsociable hours. That being said, although being an electrician will provide you with a good standard of living, it is unlikely to make you super rich. The majority of electrcians I know earn well by working lots of overtime, including evenings and weekends. This ‘chasing the money’ as it’s known, can all to easily come at the cost of neglecting home and family life.
So that’s my rant about the 5 worst things about being an electrician and I actually feel much better for getting that off my chest. As I said at the start, I do genuinely love my job and would highly recommend it to anyone. All career paths have bad points and being a tradesman is no exception, but in my experience, the good days as a sparky outnumber the bad ones by a huge factor!