Gasfitters – Class B size, install, test, adjust, maintain and repair lines, appliances, equipment and accessories in various sectors. Gases may include natural gas, manufactured gas, or mixtures of propane gas and air, propane, propylene, butanes (normal butane or isobutane), butylenes and hydrogen. They work on appliances and equipment that do not exceed 400 000 Btuh (British Thermal Units per hour) or 120 kW (kilowatts). Appliances and equipment would include boilers, burners, makeup air units, furnaces, process burners, commercial equipment and various other gas-fired equipment, some of which can be quite complex.
Gasfitters – Class B may work in the residential, manufacturing, and industrial, commercial, and institutional (ICI) sectors. They may repair and extend gas mains, and install, repair and service pipes and fittings between mains and buildings. For mechanical and service companies, they may install and maintain piping and appliances. Gasfitters – Class B may also be employed in the propane industry to install and service temporary heating, and propane metering, dispensing and pumping equipment. In some jurisdictions, to perform some tasks such as welding, rigging and hoisting, gasfitters may need to acquire additional certification.
The work environment for gasfitters – class B is varied and may involve working in extreme or adverse conditions. Gasfitters – Class B may work both indoors and outdoors. They may work in confined spaces, at heights, and around heavy equipment and piping systems. Gasfitters – Class B may respond to emergencies at any time. There are some hazards involved in working with electricity, flammable gases and power tools. Work conditions may be stressful as gasfitters – class B may need to respond to emergency hazardous situations.
Gasfitters – Class B require manual dexterity and upper and lower limb coordination to operate power tools in cramped conditions and to climb ladders. Good physical condition is important because the work often requires considerable standing, lifting and moving of heavy items. They are also required to crouch, bend, kneel, crawl and twist when moving around equipment and piping systems.
Strong mechanical aptitudes, problem solving skills and a good understanding of electrical/electronic and combustion theory are essential for working in this trade. In addition, there is a requirement for strong mathematical, spatial visualization and communication skills. Gasfitters – Class B must be able to interpret drawings and technical manuals.
This analysis recognizes similarities or overlaps with the work of other trades such as gasfitters – class A, plumbers, steamfitters/pipefitters, oil heat system technicians, welders, refrigeration and air conditioning mechanics, electricians and sheet metal workers. Experienced gasfitters – class B often act as mentors and coaches to apprentices in the trade. Career advancement opportunities may include gasfitter – class A, supervisory positions such as supervisor, maintenance manager or service manager, starting their own contracting business or becoming trainers.
For more information, see Red Seal Trades – Gasfitter – Class B