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What Sets a Licensed Electrician Apart From Unlicensed Electricians

January 16, 2019

Whether you’re looking to have electrical work done in your home or in a place of business, hiring a licensed electrician in Toronto can make all the difference. We’ve covered why it is important to hire a licensed electrician; rather than beat a dead horse, let’s learn what it takes to become a licensed electrician in Toronto.


The licensing process

The licensing of all electricians in Ontario is administered by the Electrical Safety Authority (ESA). An electrician is only permitted to conduct electrical work if they hold a Certificate of Qualification that is deemed valid under the Trades Qualification & Apprenticeship Act. In order to apply for this certificate, one must be at least 18 years old, have completed an apprenticeship and must pass the qualifying exam within the 12-month period prior to applying. The apprenticeship lasts for 9000 hours, or around five years. Once an electrician earns their Certificate of Qualification, they may continue to pursue the designation of master electrician so they can work without supervision. A master electrician is responsible for the planning and direct supervision of electrical work, and ensuring that all electrical work is conducted according to laws such as the Electrical Safety Code, the Occupational Health and Safety Act and the Workplace Safety and Insurance Act.


A Licensed Electrical Contractor (LEC) is a business that provides master electricians and qualified electricians to perform electrical services; A.S. Electrical is an example of a Licensed Electrical Contractor. An LEC will have a license number from ECRA/ESA. They will also be able to provide you with an ESA Certificate of Inspection after they have completed a service. In addition to this, an LEC should be fully insured and be able to arrange their own permits.


How to tell if an electrician is not licensed

It is in your best interest to have any electrical work performed by a licensed electrician in Toronto. There are, however, working electricians who are not licensed and who will attempt to be hired by you even if you indicate that you are only looking to hire a licensed electrician. Here are some signs that an electrician or LEC is not licensed:


  • They do not have an ECRA/ESA license number
  • They do not arrange the permit with ESA themselves
  • The company’s name is not on the ESA website
  • They only accept cash and do not provide a receipt
  • They do more than just electrical work—they may offer additional services such as home renovation


We can guarantee that every single member of our staff at A.S. Electrical is licensed and has the training and experience to perform electrical work in a safe and professional manner. We have specialized electricians who can perform electrical work for commercial, industrial and residential projects. Get in touch with us if you need a licensed electrician in Toronto!