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Plumbing and Domestic Heating Technician Apprenticeship Level 3

Subject Area
Start Date
Study Mode
Typical duration 48 Months + End-Point Assessment
Level 3

Plumbing and Domestic Heating Technicians plan, select, install, service, commission and maintain all aspects of plumbing and heating systems. Plumbing and Domestic Heating Technicians can find themselves working inside or outside a property. Customer service skills and being tidy and respectful are important qualities as they can often find themselves working in customers’ homes as well as on building sites.

Entry requirements

You must be employed in a relevant role for a minimum of 30 hours per week. As a minimum, you should have 4 GCSEs at grade 4 or above, including English and Maths.

What will I study?

This apprenticeship will give you the knowledge, skills and behaviours required to work as a Plumber and Heating Engineer and will include the following:

  • Health and safety legislation, codes of practice and safe working practices.
  • Core plumbing systems to include selection, planning, installation, testing, commissioning and de-commissioning, service, maintenance, fault diagnosis and repair techniques on cold water, hot water, central heating, above ground drainage and rainwater systems.
  • Installation and testing techniques for electrical components and control systems on plumbing and domestic heating systems.

We offer either the Fossil Fuel – Natural Gas or Environmental Technologies routes so you will additionally cover the following depending on which route is chosen:

  • Selection, installation, testing, commissioning and service and maintenance techniques on domestic downstream natural gas pipework systems and appliances.


  • Selection, installation, testing, commissioning and service and maintenance techniques on solar thermal, heat pumps and water recycling systems.

You will also produce a portfolio of evidence demonstrating examples of your work throughout the apprenticeship.

Method of delivery

Plumbing and Domestic Heating Technician apprentices attend College on day/block release and work for their employer for the rest of the time.

How will I be assessed?

Continual assessment will take place throughout the duration of the apprenticeship for the NVQ Level 3 in Plumbing and Domestic Heating.

The End-Point Assessment (EPA) will comprise of 5 parts:

Multiple-choice test

  • 50 questions to be answered within a maximum of 90 minutes.

Design project

  • This will take place over seven hours and building plans are provided to the apprentice with a job specification, manufacturer’s information and data, British Standards and regulations. The apprentice is asked to complete a heating, hot water and cold water design capable of meeting the job specification.

Practical installation test

  • Apprentices complete the fabrication of a pipework frame, utilising different materials and pipework components with various jointing techniques. The assessment marking criteria will include overall performance and soundness, quality of manufacture and tolerances of ±2mm. This assessment should be completed within six hours.

Practical Application test

  • The apprentice will inspect a pre-installed unvented cylinder, functioning with electrical components and controls. The assessor will make alterations to the system to create faults on various components within the system.
  • The apprentice is then given two hours to identify the faults and repair then re-commission the system. Finally, the apprentice will complete a service on the unvented system, according to manufacturer’s instructions, this will be undertaken within one hour.

Professional discussion

  • During the end point assessment (EPA) period which is the last three months of the apprenticeship, the apprentice will produce a log book which will record the apprentice’s achievements as they progress through the EPA period and should be supplemented with employer testimonies, performance appraisals and timely endorsements of competence from line managers. This will form the basis of the professional discussion with the EPA assessor and will last 30 minutes.

Additional costs

There are no specific College programme related costs, however you will be advised of any additional costs during your application and enrolment process.

Good course combinations

It is not possible to combine this course with other Vocational, T Level or
A Level programmes.

Qualifications received

  • Plumbing and Domestic Heating Technician Level 3 Apprenticeship Standard
  • NVQ Plumbing and Heating Level 3

Your next steps

By the end of this apprenticeship the candidate will have satisfied the requirements for registration as EngTech by the Engineering Council through the Chartered Institute of Plumbing and Heating Engineering (CIPHE) and or the Chartered Institute of Building Services Engineers (CIBSE).

On completion of the health and safety assessment, as determined by the assessment plan, the candidate will have satisfied the requirements to obtain a Construction Skills Certification Scheme (CSCS) Card through the Joint Industry Board for Plumbing and Mechanical Engineering Services (JIB-PMES) at the appropriate grade.

Apprentices will progress to a wide range of employment opportunities in the workplace. Self-employment or starting a business may also be an option.

To find out more about how to become an apprentice or how to recruit an apprentice into your business, please contact York College Apprenticeships Team:

Tel: 01904 770368

"I chose to study the Plumbing Apprenticeship because I did some work experience previously and really enjoyed it, so knew that I wanted to have a career in plumbing.

I enjoy working in the workshop and learning new skills. When I’ve completed this apprenticeship, I hope to stay with this company to carry on improving my skills and gain more experience. I’d then like to open my own successful plumbing business."

Plumbing & Heating Apprenticeship
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