About Local 9
The Plumbers and Pipefitters of Local 9 play a critical role in all aspects of business and industry - from healthcare to manufacturing.
Most people can recall when their household had to call in a plumber to unclog pipes or repair appliances. Every building has a network of pipes that carries water.
However, this is only the tip of the iceberg of the pipe trades profession.
The Local 9 Professionals in the pipe trades build and repair all of the complex systems that rely on the
circulation of liquid, steam, or gas. Plumbers and Pipefitters Local 9 is involved in a variety of high-tech construction projects from nuclear power plants to energy refineries to manufacturing facilities. United Association plumbers are even an integral part of the nation's space program.
We assemble and maintain industrial refrigeration and climate control systems. Our sister locals even install the sophisticated sprinkler systems that extinguish fires in building and factories.
The range of options for pipe trades professionals is vast, and our services continue to grow with each technological advance.
The genius of this profession was not with water, as some may assume, but rather, with gas. In the days before electricity, homes were lit by gas lamps. When the lights went out, people called a pipefitter. With the advent of indoor water, waste and climate control systems, the trade expanded to what it is today.
As pipe trade professionals, we work on a host of different projects, including schools, hospitals, pharmaceutical manufacturing facilities, oil refineries and chemical plants.
Our tools of the trade include wrenches, soldering and welding equipment, and heavy cutting equipment.
The Local 9 pipe trades professionals are required to interpret plans and blueprints, measure and cut sections of piping to exact specifications and install the system of pipes, valves, pumps and backflow prevention equipment. We connect sections of pipe by welding, soldering or brazing them together. We must often cut sections of pipe using a variety of techniques from simple manual pipe cutters to heavy saws or oxy-acetylene for the thickest materials.
Our trade involves more than simply connecting pipes and valves. The Local 9 professionals understand the physics of how liquids and gases flow and we often use computer assisted design (CAD) software to create intricate systems for highly sophisticated industrial and commercial projects.
When the project has been completed, we make sure every section is leak free - particularly critical for systems that carry toxic materials.
Though professionals in both branches of our trade, plumbing and pipefitting, focus on assembling and maintaining systems that rely on pipes to transport materials, our members differ based on the systems in which we work.
The Local 9 Plumbers work with pipes that carry water and gas. They are separated into two categories:
Commercial Plumbers work on commercial and industrial buildings larger than three stories, and they install the water and gas systems in large multipurpose dwellings, such as apartment buildings or major nursing and assisted living homes. Their work in hospitals is particularly important, as they install the systems that distribute oxygen and other essential medical gases to operating, recovery and patient rooms.
Residential Plumbers, as you would expect, work on the indoor plumbing in homes, apartments and small commercial properties.
The Local 9 Pipefitters, aka Steamfitters, install and maintain the pipes that carry hot water, steam, air or other liquids or gases needed for manufacturing or other industrial purposes. Pipefitters work only on commercial and industrial projects. For example, they install ammonia carrying pipelines in refrigeration plants; complex pipe systems in oil refineries and chemical and food processing plants; and, pipelines for carrying compressed air and industrial gases in many types of industrial establishments.
Our Pipefitters also work in the defense and aerospace industries, assembling and maintaining the pipes that are essential components of missile launching and testing sites. Pipefitters do not work with pipes that carry potable water or natural gas.
If you're interested in a career with Local 9 and are currently an experienced journeyperson, visit the Organizing page and Apply for Membership. If you're interested in becoming a Local 9 apprentice, visit the Apprenticeship page for more information on a life-long career.
What We Deliver
Our contractors and our Technicians are respected for their Quality, Safety, and Reliability. This comes from performing high quality work, on-time and within budget. We earn our reputation one job at a time, and we take pride in EVERY job we do!
How We Do It
- High Productivity
Pride in Craftsmanship
Safe Working Environment
Quality & Quantity of Skilled Technicians
Management & Labor Cooperation
5-year Apprenticeship Training
Continued Journeyperson Education
21st Century Mentality
Apprenticeship Training, continued Journeyman Education, an unprecedented open line of communication with our Signatory Contractors to meet their needs, Experience, Dedication, Respect for Workers and, most importantly, Respect for our Customers... This is how we remain competitive in our field.
If you know anything about the Mechanical Contracting Industry, "the Veins and Arteries of any structure," you know that it is a serious business. Nobody wins by taking chances or cutting corner. We do it Right, and we do it Right the First Time!
Local 9's commitment to Training is exemplified by its investment of over 1.6 million dollars annually, which enables us to employ experienced technical instructors and maintain state-of-the-art training facilities that utilize the latest technology and equipment. Our instructors are required to upgrade their skills on an annual basis by attending classes at Washtenaw college in Ann arbor, Michigan.
Our apprentices are required to undergo an intensive 5-year program which mandates 1,100 hours of classroom instruction and 9,000 hours of on-the-job training, but education does not end here.
Journeymen continuously update their skills and remain current with the latest industry codes and standards, as well as the developing technology in specialized areas. Certification programs that are unparalleled in the building and construction trades provide pre-tested, certified, immediately available journeyman, at no cost to the construction user.
End result... If you prosper, so do we. Mechanical systems that work the way they were engineered, Mechanical systems that come in within budget and provide value throughout the entire life of the facility.