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Plumbing & Mechanical Systems

Iowa law requires members of every licensed or regulated profession to obtain continuing education as a condition of license renewal. (See Iowa Code chapter 272C and Iowa Code section 105.20) For each plumbing and mechanical systems board license, the basic requirement is at least eight hours of classroom instruction during each three-year licensing renewal period. For a course to be valid or continuing education, both the instructor and the course must be pre-approved by the board.

Hours Required

LicenseHours Required
Single License –
Plumbing, HVAC/R, Hydronics, Sheet Metal, Mechanical, or Specialty 
  • Two hours safety (Iowa Occupational Health & Safety)
  • Two hours code (applicable plumbing or mechanical code)
  • Four hours discipline (must be in current license discipline only)

Eight Total Hours

Multiple Mechanical Licenses (If not
combined into a single license) –
Combination of two or more licenses in the
mechanical trades of HVAC/R, sheet metal, &
hydronic systems
  • Four hours safety (Iowa Occupational Health & Safety)
  • Two hours mechanical code
  • Eight hours discipline (from one or any combination of discipline licenses held)

14 Total Hours

Multiple Licenses – Plumbing & Mechanical
Combination of one plumbing license and one or more mechanical licenses
  • Four hours safety (Iowa Occupational Health & Safety)
  • Two hours mechanical code
  • Two hours plumbing code
  • Eight hours discipline (from one or any combination of discipline licenses held)

16 Total Hours

Mechanical & Specialty Licenses

  • Mechanical trades include HVAC/refrigeration, sheet metal, and hydronic systems. If you have combined a separate HVAC/R license and hydronics license into a single mechanical license, then you only need 8 hours of continuing education for that single license. If you have not combined the licenses, you would need 14 hours of continuing education to renew both licenses. If you also have a plumbing license, you would the maximum number of hours, which is 16.
  • Disconnect/reconnect specialty licensees – follow requirements for plumbing license;
  • Hearth Systems specialty licensees – follow requirements for mechanical license;
  • Service Tech HVAC specialty licensees – follow requirements for mechanical license (HVAC trade);
  • Private school or college maintenance specialty licensees – Considered a sublicense of whatever discipline(s) in which the licensee actually practices.

No continuing education hours are required for apprentice licenses or medical gas piping certification. Persons with a medical gas certification must ensure they maintain current certification and must maintain brazer qualification.

Exemptions & Extensions

A licensee shall be exempt from the continuing education requirements for the following reasons:

  • For the first renewal of a person who was licensed as an apprentice in Iowa and successfully passed the examination and became licensed as a journeyperson in Iowa;
  • For periods the licensee served honorably on active duty in the military;
  • For periods the licensee resided in another state or district having continuing education requirements for the discipline and the licensee met all requirements of that state or district;
  • For periods the licensee was a government employee working in the licensee’s specialty and assigned to duty outside the United States; and
  • For periods the licensee was absent from the state but engaged in active practice under circumstances approved by the board.
  • Obtained a specialty, journeyperson, or master license with less than one year remaining in the continuing education compliance period (applicable for new licenses only – does not apply to late renewal or reinstatement of a lapsed license). This exemption shall apply only to the licensee’s first renewal of that license and only to each license that was issued with less than one year remaining in the continuing education compliance period.

Licensees may also apply for a permissive full or partial exemption for individual cases of exceptional hardship or extenuating circumstances, such as a physical or mental disability or  illness. Documentation is required and additional conditions may be imposed. Board rules state that permissive exemptions shall only be granted in the most exceptional and extraordinary of circumstances.

The board may also, in individual cases involving hardship or extenuating circumstances, grant an extension of time within which to fulfill the minimum continuing education requirements. There must be documented circumstances beyond the control of the licensee which prevent attendance at required activities. All requests must be made prior to the license expiration date.

Reporting Continuing Education

Continuing education is reported at the time of license renewal. The renewal application requires licensees to enter the board-approved course number, course name, and course date for all classes. You must also indicate the course topic (e.g. safety, code, HVAC, etc.) and the number  of hours awarded. This information can be found on the certificate of attendance that was provided to you at the end of each course.

It is very important that you maintain a file of all continuing education courses attended.

The board does not maintain individual files for every licensee listing the courses you took – we CANNOT tell you what courses you took. You must ask the course instructor or sponsor for this information. While instructors do submit rosters to our office, these rosters are used to audit and verify attendance for courses and hours self-reported by you at the time of license renewal. If you lose copies of your proof of attendance certifications, you should contact the course sponsor/instructor.

Classroom Training

Not all courses or instructors submit information to have their classes posted to the board training calendar. To find other courses in your area, contact your local trade unions, community colleges, or other approved instructors.

The training calendar is provided as a courtesy and is maintained by staff as time allows.

If you are a board-approved instructor and would like to have your courses posted to our training calendar, please submit the schedule of courses notification form.

Online Training

The board has approved the following providers for online training. Up to half of the continuing education hours required for each renewal can be obtained through online training. Contact these providers to register for board-approved online courses.

Please note that this list of online course providers and the training calendar are provided as a courtesy and is only maintained as staff time allows. 

Approved Instructors

These instructors have been approved by the Iowa Plumbing & Mechanical Systems Board to provide board-approved CEU classes for Iowa license renewal. 

To find a specific instructor or sponsor organization, use Ctrl-F in your browser to "Find" the information.

Instructor & Course Requests for Approval

All instructors and courses must be prior-approved by the board. In general, courses must be related to the professional competency of the licensee; pertain to subject matter that integrally relates to the practice of the discipline; be conducted by approved instructors; and cover product knowledge, methods, and systems of one or more of the following: 

  • Theory and technique of a specific discipline; 
  • Current Iowa plumbing or mechanical code; or 
  • Standards comprising the current Iowa Occupational Safety & Health Act. 

The packets and individual forms listed below contain additional details and instructions on submitting requests for approval of instructors and continuing education courses. Please allow a minimum of four weeks for all instructor and course application reviews. If your application is incomplete or the committee request additional information, the process could take up to eight weeks.

Board approval of instructors and courses is valid for a three-year period. Prior to expiration a renewal form must be submitted. If the instructor qualifications have changed or the course content has changed, a new application for approval must be submitted.

Instructors are required to provide all licensees with a certificate of attendance. Course rosters must also be submitted within 30 days of the course.