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Level
Duration
4 Years
Job Zone

In Summary

Construction plant fitters are generally employed in the construction industry. The vast ranges of equipment within the industry requires that the plant fitter will be multi-skilled in the maintenance and repair of mobile equipment such as diggers, cranes, bulldozers and dumper trucks, as well as equipment that usually stays in one place such as electrical generators, pumps, air compressors and even massive concrete mixing installations. 

The ability to diagnose and rectify electrical faults in plant and to carry out welding and fitting repairs is also within the scope of the construction plant fitter. Because of the high cost of "machine time" the major part of the maintenance and repair work is carried out on site.

Click on the photo above to view the Construction Plant Fitter brochure.

View details from Apprenticeship.ie

View Occupational Profile 

To view full details of this occupation, view information from our Careers database for the following occupation: Construction Plant Fitter

Entry Requirements

The minimum age at which the employment of an apprentice may commence is 16 years of age.

The minimum educational requirements are:

Grade D or "Achieved" in five subjects in the Department of Education & Skills Junior Certificate Examination or an approved equivalent,

or

The successful completion of an approved Pre-Apprenticeship course,

or

Three years’ work experience gained over sixteen years of age in a relevant designated industrial activity as SOLAS shall deem acceptable.

You must obtain a job as an apprentice in your chosen occupation. Your employer must be approved to train apprentices and must register you as an apprentice within 2 weeks of recruitment.

In this apprenticeship applicants are required to pass a colour vision test approved by SOLAS.

Note: These are the current approved minimum educational requirements for apprenticeship programmes, however, previous experience of the following subjects would be an advantage but not essential:

  • Mathematics
  • Technical Drawing/Graphics
  • Metalwork
  • Technology
  • Physics

Training

Phase 1: With Employer 

  • Induction Training
  • Introduction to Health & Safety
  • Introduction to Tools & Equipment
  • Introduction to Basic Skills

Phase 2: Delivered in Training Centre (20 weeks) 

Course Content: 

  • Induction
  • Engines
  • Transmissions
  • Plant Electrics
  • Hydraulics
  • Plant Vehicles
  • Small Plant
  • Related Theory

Phase 3: With Employer 

  • Work Based Training and Assessments 

Phase 4: Delivered in Educational Colleges (10 weeks) 

Course Content:

  • Engines
  • Transmissions
  • Plant Electrics
  • Hydraulics
  • Plant Vehicles
  • Small Plant
  • Related Theory

Phase 5: With Employer 

  • Work Based Training and Assessments 

Phase 6: Delivered in Educational Colleges (10 weeks) 

Course Content:

  • Engines
  • Transmissions
  • Plant Electrics
  • Hydraulics
  • Wheeled and Tracked Plant
  • Related Theory

Phase 7: With Employer 

  • Work Based Training and Assessments 

The overall duration of this apprenticeship is a minimum of 4 years provided all phases are successfully completed. 

On successful completion of the programme the learner is awarded a Level 6 Advanced Certificate Craft - Construction Plant Fitting

Apprenticeship training takes place in various locations around the country. The list above is by no means exhaustive and training providers are subject to change. Please check with your local Education and Training Board (ETB) to get more information about specific training locations for this apprenticeship. To check your local ETB use this link and select your county.

Skills & Qualities

As a Construction Plant Fitter you will need to be physically active and to be able to work with your hands.

An awareness of health and safety and good housekeeping is essential as well as attention to detail.

The Construction Plant Fitter must have the ability to:

  • Plan and organise
  • Communicate effectively
  • Solve problems
  • Work independently and as part of a team
  • Show a positive attitude
  • Recognise the need for good customer relations
  • Demonstrate good work practices including time keeping, tidiness, responsibility, quality awareness and safety awareness

Core Skills

Procedures for:

  • Disassembling and assembling
  • F-gas: Describe the overall aim of Regulation No. 842/2006 of the European Parliament and of the Council of 17 of May 2006 in relation to the air conditioning systems of automotive vehicles (MACs).
  • List the dangers to personal health and related safety regulations related to the refrigerant gas contained in mobile air conditioning (MAC) systems.
  • Describe the location of possible leaks of refrigerant gas from an automotive air con unit.
  • Fault finding and diagnosing
  • Inspecting and repairing
  • Servicing and maintaining
  • Overhauling
  • Computer operating

Specialist Skills

Repair and maintenance of:

  • Tracked vehicles
  • Small two-stroke engines
  • Mobile hydraulic systems
  • Single cylinder diesel engines
  • Mobile air compressors
  • Power-shift transmissions
  • Torque-converters 
  • Mobile Air Conditioning (MAC) systems.

Discuss and demonstrate best practice for handling of F-gases storage cylinders, the safe recovery and disposal of F-gas. Perform full servicing of an air conditioning system of an automotive vehicle to include: leak detection, recovery, vacuum and refill.

Common Skills

Servicing, repair and overhaul of:

  • Electrical systems
  • Brake systems
  • Transmissions
  • Suspension systems
  • Diesel fuel systems
  • Petrol fuel systems 
  • Steering
  • Engines 
  • Safety procedures

Note: A person wishing to become an apprentice Construction Plant Fitter must pass a colour–vision test approved by SOLAS.

Personal Skills

  • Communication
  • Customer relations
  • Adaptability
  • Ability to work as a team member
  • Ability to work independently
  • Problem solving
  • Planning and organisation
  • Information gathering
  • Report writing
  • Interpretation and application of data

Work Activities

  • Carrying out the routine service procedures as recommended by the manufacturers
  • Diagnosing and resolving problems with the operation of the mechanical, hydraulic, pneumatic and electrical systems of machines and equipment such as tracked excavators, forklifts, cranes etc.
  • Carrying out all work in accordance with manufacturer’s recommended procedures.
  • Learning and developing new craft-related skills, knowledge and competence.
  • Working with and learning from experienced Craftspersons
  • Comply with Health and Safety requirements
  • Working with machines and mechanical equipment
  • Accepting responsibility for the quality of own work
  • Being physically active
  • Using the special service tools, materials and equipment
  • Reading and interpreting technical instructions and diagrams
  • Diagnose and repair mechanical and electrical systems
  • Dismantling, examining and re-assembling mechanical systems and components
  • Testing electrical and electronic systems and components
  • Record and communicate accurate work records or reports
  • Taking responsibility for own learning, including the allocation of study time
  • Being responsible for controlling or adjusting the operation of equipment
  • Driving machines/vehicles
  • Working evenings or weekends
  • Passing all your phase exams (theory, practicals, skills demonstration)
  • Earning as you learn

Career Progression

On successful completion of the apprenticeship programme, apprentices are qualified to work within the recognised trade or profession. 

Opportunities arise from time-to-time for promotion to supervisor level. Many craftspersons use their apprenticeship qualification as a platform to launch careers such as engineers, managers, owners of businesses, teachers and instructors amongst others.

People anxious to advance themselves in their careers are advised to discover for themselves what apportunities are available.

Where apprentices and crafts persons have the necessary ability, initiative and basic qualifications, opportunities are available for advancement. These include advanced technological and management courses which are available in institutes of technology, schools of management, professional institutes, etc.

Getting an Apprenticeship

In order to secure an apprenticeship, you must first secure a contract with an employer. You must apply directly to an employer rather than the training provider. Once you have found an employer to take you on as an apprentice, your employer must then register you as an apprentice with SOLAS.

  • The employer must be approved to train apprentices.
  • The employer must register you as an apprentice within two weeks of recruitment.

Note: Construction and Plant Fitter Apprenticeship applicants are required to pass a colour vision test approved by SOLAS.

Are you interested in a construction apprenticeship?
If so, register your interest by creating an account and uploading a short personal profile via this link.

Finding Vacancies

Finding an employer or registering your interest with an official Coordinating Provider is one of the first things you need to do to start an apprenticeship.

Opportunities for this apprenticeship may be available from the following organisations:

Opportunities for this apprenticeship may be available from the following organisations:

Online Jobsites

Here are some direct links to employment websites that frequently list apprenticeship vacancies.
Note: These websites may include vacancies that are not QQI accredited Apprenticeships.

Current Apprentice Construction Plant Fitter Jobs (Where Available)

Apprenticeship Courses

Search for Apprenticeship Construction Plant Fitter courses.

Pay & Fees

The employer pays the apprentice while s/he is being trained on-the-job. A training allowance is paid by the local ETB while the apprentice is attending the off-the-job training, and an Apprentice Rate of pay during the on-the-job phases of their apprenticeship. Generally, the rates of pay are based on a percentage of the fully qualified rate for the occupation:

  • 1st Years – 33.3%
  • 2nd Years – 50%
  • 3rd Years – 75%
  • 4th Years – 90%

Training Allowances

A training allowance is paid by the local ETB to apprentices while attending off-the-job training. In some cases, a contribution towards travel or accommodation costs may be paid if deemed eligible. The sector the apprentice's employer is engaged in will determine the allowance payable. These allowances are calculated on the gross wages paid by industry in each sector. The amount the apprentice gets will generally be less than that, as it is based on the net take-home pay of the relevant sector. The weekly gross wage norms for different industries can be found here 

Student Contribution

The Annual Student Contribution is charged to students attending Higher Education Institutions including Institutes of Technology (IoT). Apprentices now pay the same contribution as full time students, but their contribution is based on the time they spend in the Institute or College.

The Student Contribution is payable to the IoT /College on the date of registration for the training phase. You should consult the relevant IoT/College for details of payment options.

Note: Apprentices are required to pay an examination fee to the IoT or College for repeat exams. For further information, click here.

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