In the Air Force:
Water and Fuel Systems Maintenance; Water and Fuel Systems Maintenance Apprentice; Water and Fuel Systems Maintenance Craftsman; Water and Fuel Systems Maintenance Helper; Water and Fuel Systems Maintenance Journeyman
In the Army:
Allied Trades Specialist; Construction Engineering Technician; Plumber
Running water available at the twist of a faucet handle, makes human habitations more comfortable, sanitary, and refreshing. In order to keep the water running, and prevent it from backing up in unpleasant places, pipelayers perform their work with diligence and precision. These skilled tradespeople construct storm drains, sanitation sewers, and water mains. Workers lay pipe for many different projects; they must measure and cut pieces, then position them, and seal joints using welding equipment, cement or glue. Pipelayers also dig trenches for water lines to run underground. Pipelayers follow blueprints and written instructions to ensure the position and slope of pipes conforms to requirements. The work is physically demanding and can be stressful when deadlines approach. There are some hazards to working as a pipelayer, but following safety practices can eliminate most of the risk. Pipelayers work with their hands every day and it’s extremely important that they maintain attention to detail, even when they’re knee-deep in dirt, working outdoors in all kinds of weather conditions. Work schedules are typically full-time, often more than 40 hours a week. There are no formal education requirements for pipelayers, and most learn on the job, although some undertake apprenticeship or other training programs.
What they do:
Lay pipe for storm or sanitation sewers, drains, and water mains. Perform any combination of the following tasks: grade trenches or culverts, position pipe, or seal joints.
On the job, you would:
Install or use instruments such as lasers, grade rods, or transit levels.
Cut pipes to required lengths.
Connect pipe pieces and seal joints, using welding equipment, cement, or glue.
Engineering and Technology
building and construction
Math and Science
arithmetic, algebra, geometry, calculus, or statistics
Safety and Government
public safety and security
listening to others, not interrupting, and asking good questions
thinking about the pros and cons of different ways to solve a problem
noticing a problem and figuring out the best way to solve it
Hand and Finger Use
keep your arm or hand steady
hold or move items with your hands
listen and understand what people say
communicate by speaking
quickly change the controls of a machine, car, truck or boat
use your arms and/or legs together while sitting, standing, or lying down
People interested in this work like activities that include practical, hands-on problems and solutions.
They do well at jobs that need:
Attention to Detail
You might use software like this on the job:
Office suite software
Word processing software
high school diploma/GED or no high school diploma/GED usually needed
Get started on your career:
New job opportunities are very likely in the future.