Important Notice Regarding Certain Licenses (most contractor licenses not affected - see below)
The North Carolina General Assembly recently enacted new legislation that became effective October 1, 2016. Unfortunately, a portion of the General Statute that allows the Board to issue certain licenses was inadvertently deleted in the legislative process.
The Board is currently not able to schedule exams or issue licenses for the affected categories until the situation is resolved, which may take several months or longer. The Board is accepting applications and will review and process the applications up to the point of being ready for examinations and license issuance. Applications are available on the Forms page of our website.
The licenses affected include:
- Plumbing, Heating & Fuel Piping Technician
- Residential Fire Sprinkler Contractor
- Fire Sprinkler Inspection Contractor
- Fire Sprinkler Inspection Technician
- Fire Sprinkler Maintenance Technician
Click here for more information regarding the status of the licenses listed above.
CONTRACTOR licenses that are NOT AFFECTED include:
- Plumbing, Heating & Fuel Piping Contractor
- Restricted Limited Plumbing Contractor
- Commercial Fire Sprinkler Installation Installation Contractor
If you have questions, please contact Dale Dawson at 919-875-3612, ext. 224.
The following information is available in Adobe PDF format.
Click here for a free download of the latest version of Adobe Acrobat Reader.
Application and Examination Process
1. Review all information contained on the Exam Information page of
2. If eligibility requirements are met, download and print the appropriate application.
3. Complete the application, making sure that signatures are notarized where required.
4. Obtain background check report from approved provider.
5. Send completed application with required documents and fee to the Board's office.
6. If application is denied or requires additional information, you will be notified of the issues.
If application is approved, you will receive notification of exam eligibility.
7. Contact the exam provider for scheduling (must be within 30 days of notification date).
8. You will be notified by mail of a pass/fail.
Failing applicants may attend an exam review in Raleigh prior to re-testing.
9. Passing applicants will need to submit the licensing fee in order to obtain the license.
Please note: Applications may be mailed to our office or delivered in person. Applicants visiting the office who wish to speak to the Exam Coordinator regarding the application may do so on Fridays only. Applicants must have an appointment to do so, as no one will be seen without an appointment. Appointments can be made by calling the Exam Coordinator at 919-875-3612, ext. 230, and must be requested at least three (3) days in advance of the desired date.
**These are general steps and apply to the majority of licensees.
Certain licenses may have slightly different procedures.
There are no reciprocity agreements with any other state. All persons desiring to obtain licensure with this Board must meet the requirements listed herein and satisfactorily complete the applicable examination(s).
Current and former military personnel or spouses may receive credit for
experience gained during active service.
Click here for more information.
All applicants are required to obtain a current copy of the Board's Laws and Rules book prior to making application to the Board for any examination or license. Click here for the book order form.
Please Note: The following eligibility requirements are provided as a general outline, and may not be detailed or inclusive of all eligibility requirements. Please consult the examination application form and the Board's Laws and Rules book for complete eligibility requirements.
License Definitions (by Group and Class) - Click here
Plumbing and/or Heating Contractor License: To be eligible to take the Plumbing, Heating Group No. 1, Heating Group No. 2 and/or Heating Group No. 3 Contractor examination(s), an applicant must have 2 years (4,000 hours) on-site full-time experience in the installation, maintenance, service, or repair of plumbing or heating systems related to the category for which license is sought, whether or not license was required for the work performed. However, up to one-half (2,000 hours) (45 quarter hours or 30 semester hours) of the experience requirement may be in academic or technical training directly related to the field of endeavor for which the examination is requested.
Restricted Limited Plumbing Contractor License: To be eligible to take the Restricted Limited Plumbing Contractor examination, an applicant must have 9 months (1,500 hours) of full-time experience in the installation, maintenance, service, or repair of plumbing systems, whether or not license was required for the work performed. However, up to one-half (750 hours) of the experience requirement may be in academic or technical training directly related to the field of endeavor for which the examination is requested. Current active licensees of the North Carolina Irrigation Contractor Licensing Board, who also hold Backflow Inspector Certification from an approved municipality in the state or demonstrates 500 hours of experience in the maintenance, service or repair of components of plumbing systems may also qualify.
Fuel Piping Contractor License: To be eligible to take the Fuel Piping Contractor examination, an applicant must have 1 year (2,000 hours) of experience in the installation, maintenance, service, or repair of fuel piping. However, up to one-half (1,000 hours) (22 quarter hours or 15 semester hours) of the experience may be in academic or technical training directly related to fuel piping. Fuel piping privileges are included in the Plumbing and Heating Group 1, 2, and 3 licenses, and do not require a separate examination for persons applying for or currently holding one or more of these licenses.
Fire Sprinkler Installation Contractor license: To be eligible to take the Fire Sprinkler Installation Contractor examination, an applicant must hold a current certification by NICET for "Fire Protection Engineering, Level III, Automatic Sprinkler System Layout".
Military Experience for Experience Qualification for Licensure
Current or former military personnel who submit
applications for license may use military experience in
accordance with the experience requirements listed in our
statutes and rules.
Military experience shall be documented by submission of the
- The applicant’s DD214 noting the military experience that is applicable to the type of license the applicant is seeking to obtain,
- Sworn statements from direct supervisor(s) who supervised the applicant, detailing the type and hours of experience the applicant has in the classification of license being sought
Current or former military spouses who submit applications for license may submit the following items as documentation of experience applicable to the type of license they wish to obtain in accordance with the experience requirements listed in our statutes and rules:
- Copies of licensure from other state(s) along with a sworn statement from the licensing authority acknowledging that the applicant obtained the licensure by examination and detailing the experience the licensing authority required from the licensee in order to obtain the license, and
- Sworn statements from direct supervisors who supervised the applicant, detailing the type and hours of experience the applicant has in the classification of license being sought.
Examinations are given on a daily basis at seven testing centers
throughout the state (Asheville, Charlotte, Winston-Salem, Raleigh,
Fayetteville, Greenville, Wlimington). Upon application
approval, the applicant will receive written notification which will
include instructions for scheduling the examination, which must be
taken within thirty (30) days of the date of the notification
Click here for a listing of examinations
and time limits.