More than 469,000 people worked as plumbers in 2020, and some of them have never worn a plumber uniform. For decades, homeowners have accepted professionals into their homes without expecting specific attire. Times are changing.
Providing staff with plumber uniforms ensures customer trust. When the worker arrives, the customer knows that person is a professional. The right plumber uniform can keep staff happy while at work too.
What Should a Plumber Uniform Be Made Of?
Plumbers are blue-collar professionals that do challenging dirty work. Their uniforms should be made of fabrics that support them on the job, while ensuring they can stay somewhat clean and tidy.
A perfect plumber uniform is made of materials that do the following:
Stretch: Plumbers work in tight spaces. They spend all day crawling beneath sinks, into closets and under houses. A stretching fabric keeps them covered and decent without restricting movement.
Breathe: Plumbing can be hot work. Pipes are often warm, and a plumber’s breath can quickly heat up a tight space. Fabrics with inherent breathability allow a worker to stay cool on the job.
Clean up: A plumber’s uniform will often be filthy at the end of the day, and some fluids stain. An ideal plumber uniform heads into the wash dirty and out clean.
Blended fabrics tend to meet these demands with ease. Asking for samples is wise, so people can feel and touch them before placing a large order.
What Does a Plumber Uniform Need?
An ideal uniform makes the job easy and pleasant. Designing a uniform with functionality in mind will ensure that employees put on the clothing with pride. These three items are critical to plumber uniforms:
Plumbers crouch and kneel often. Thin pants will rip quickly, meaning owners will buy new pairs or allow staff to go to the job space with torn clothing.
An added panel of fabric in front of the kneecap allows the plumber to kneel without risk. And that added padding could make crouching more comfortable too.
Plumbers need tools, writing implements, flashlights and more. Adding plenty of pockets ensures that the person can do the job quickly, without running to the truck repeatedly for missing or forgotten items. Zippered or button-closing pockets are especially helpful because they allow workers to climb into and out of tight spaces without leaving items behind.
A subtle loop on pants allows plumbers to carry wrenches to and from the work area easily. Supplying loops of different sizes can allow these workers to choose the right tool for a specific job.
Is Your Branding Important to a Plumber Uniform?
Company logos, discreetly placed, help consumers trust the workers they allow into their homes. If these customers have a good experience, they may remember the logo and offer repeat business.
It’s common to place logos above chest pockets. But because plumbers often work facing away from customers, placing logos on the back may also be wise. When consumers come for progress reports, they’ll see the logo first.
Adding a logo can be risky, especially if companies allow workers to take liberties with the uniform. Every member of the staff should understand that items with logos on them must be:
In good repair.
After training, most staffers will understand why logos are required and how the uniform should be worn.
How to Enforce a Plumber Uniform
It’s reasonable for staff to complain about the idea of a plumber uniform, especially if the company has never required such a thing in the past. Allowing staff input on the design, form and function is wise. Employees who feel part of the process are less likely to complain about the result.
Setting consequences for noncompliance may also be necessary. One business owner sends employees home if they eliminate part of the required uniform. If staff can’t seem to follow the rules as outlined, this could be a good solution.
Uniform Assistance From Alsco
Protect a uniform investment with help from Alsco. Our uniform laundry service ensures that staff look crisp and clean, and we do our work while being mindful of the environment. We use few harsh chemicals and detergents, so uniforms stay crisp without pollution — and they last longer too, reducing company costs. Making a good first impression was never so easy.
Plumbers, Pipefitters and Steamfitters. (April 2022). U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics.
Image is Everything in the Plumbing World. (June 2018). Plumber.
Image Matters When Making a First Impression. (July 2016). Plumber.