Electrician Licensing

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Program News and Updates

New Code Requirement in the 2017 Nec Effective January 1, 2019

The 2017 National Electrical Code (NEC) contains the following requirements relating to rapid shutdown of PV systems on buildings. Please note that the sections underlined below will take effect January 1, 2019.

690.12 Rapid Shutdown of PV Systems on Buildings.

PV system circuits installed on or in buildings shall include a rapid shutdown function to reduce shock hazard for emergency responders in accordance with 690.12(A) through (D). Exception: Ground mounted PV system circuits that enter buildings, of which the sole purpose is to house PV system equipment, shall not be required to comply with 690.12.

  • (A) Controlled Conductors. Requirements for controlled conductors shall apply to PV circuits supplied by the PV system.
  • (B) Controlled Limits. The use of the term array boundary in this section is defined as 305 mm (1 ft) from the array in all directions. Controlled conductors outside the array boundary shall comply with 690.12(B)(1) and inside the array boundary shall comply with 690.12(B)(2).
    • (1) Outside the Array Boundary. Controlled conductors located outside the boundary or more than 1 m (3 ft) from the point of entry inside a building shall be limited to not more than 30 volts within 30 seconds of rapid shutdown initiation. Voltage shall be measured between any two conductors and between any conductor and ground.
    • (2) Inside the Array Boundary. The PV system shall comply with one of the following:
      • (i) The PV array shall be listed or field labeled as a rapid shutdown PV array. Such a PV array shall be installed and used in accordance with the instructions included with the rapid shutdown PV array listing or field labeling. Informational Note: A listed or field labeled rapid shutdown PV array is evaluated as an assembly or system as defined in the installation instructions to reduce but not eliminate risk of electric shock hazard within a damaged PV array during fire-fighting procedures. These rapid shutdown PV arrays are designed to reduce shock hazards by methods such as limiting access to energized components, reducing the voltage difference between energized components, limiting the electric current that might flow in an electrical circuit involving personnel with increased resistance of the conductive circuit, or by a combination of such methods.
      • (ii) Controlled conductors located inside the boundary or not more than 1 m (3 ft) from the point of penetration of the surface of the building shall be limited to not more than 80 volts within 30 seconds of rapid shutdown initiation. Voltage shall be measured between any two conductors and between any conductor and ground.
      • (iii) PV arrays with no exposed wiring methods, no exposed conductive parts, and installed more than 2.5 m (8 ft) from exposed grounded conductive parts or ground shall not be required to comply with 690.12(B)(2).

The requirement of 690.12(B)(2) shall become effective January 1, 2019.

Questions? Please contact CS.Electricians@tdlr.texas.gov

Journeyman Industrial Electrician Applications Now Available

House Bill 1698 (85th Legislature, 2017) amended the Texas Electrical Safety and Licensing Act, Occupations Code, to provide for the licensing of Journeyman Industrial Electricians. The Journeyman Industrial Electrician license application is now available for download. Download the Journeyman Industrial Electrician license application

Find answers to common questions about the new license in the Journeyman Industrial Electrician Frequently Asked Questions. Licenses will be available by September 1, 2018.

Consumer Safety Recall on Ketra D3 Recessed Downlights

Ketra is recalling its D3 recessed downlights due to an electrical shock hazard. Read the recall notice

May 2018 ARC Flash Newsletter

The new TDLR Arc Flash newsletter is here with important news about TDLR's Electrician Licensing program, warnings and recalls, summer safety tips, the 2017 National Electric Code, and more.

May is Electrical Safety Month

May is National Electrical Safety Month and TDLR is joining with the Electrical Safety Foundation International (ESFI) to launch its annual effort to help reduce electrically-related fatalities, injuries, and property loss. This year’s campaign theme is "Understanding the Code that Keeps Us Safe," which features resources to help protect against common electrical hazards and highlights the importance of the National Electrical Code.

The NEC is updated every three years to include the latest in proven safety technology, and TDLR is committed to educating the public about the important upgrades that can help prevent shock and electrocution. This year’s resources focus on common hazards including overhead powerline safety and lesser-known dangers such as electric shock drowning.

Electrical safety awareness and education among consumers, families, employees, and communities will prevent electrical fires, injuries, and fatalities.

Fact sheets and safety tips are available to download from the ESFI website:

National Electrical Code: Understanding the Code that Keeps Us Safe

Electric Shock Drowning – Water and Electricity Don’t Mix

Overhead Powerline Safety (English)

Overhead Powerline Safety (Spanish)

Workplace Fatalities and Injuries 2003 - 2016

For more information, please see the post below about TDLR’s adoption of the 2017 National Electrical Code.

To see ESFI’s complete collection of National Electrical Safety Month resources and for information on using them in your community, visit www.esfi.org.

2017 National Electrical Code is Here!

The Texas Electrical Safety and Licensing Act requires the Texas Department of Licensing and Regulation (TDLR) to adopt the revised National Electrical Code (NEC) as the electrical code for the state of Texas. In August 2017, the Texas Commission of Licensing and Regulation, which oversees TDLR, adopted amendments to Chapter 73.100 of the Electricians administrative rules and established the 2017 NEC as the "minimum standard" for all electrical work in Texas covered by the Act. The effective date was September 15, 2017.

Chapter 1305.201 of the Act provides municipalities the authority to make local amendments to the 2017 NEC; however, any proposal to amend these standards should be done in accordance with NEC 90.4 which stipulates "the authority having jurisdiction may waive specific requirements in this Code or permit alternative methods where it is assured that equivalent objectives can be achieved by establishing and maintaining effective safety."

Expectations are that any non-exempt electrical work started on or after September 15, 2017 will have to be installed in accordance with the 2017 NEC. For purposes of clarification, the “start” of electrical work is the day the electrician begins installing electrical materials or equipment within the residential or commercial building structure. Inside the corporate limits of a municipality, electricians must abide by city permitting requirements and adhere to any local code amendments.

Beginning October 1, 2017, all examinations for state electrical licenses will be based on the 2017 NEC. The state electrical exams are available through PSI, who contracts with TDLR to develop, maintain, and administer the state electrician licensing examinations. It is very important for license candidates to review the Candidate Information Bulletin (CIB) which contains detailed information regarding the examinations and is vital to understanding the process.

Questions? Contact TDLR at cs.electricians@tdlr.texas.gov or call 800-803-9202.

Re-Establishing Electrical Power After Harvey

Establishing electrical power after a major flooding incident can present many health and safety risks. Here is some helpful information to review:

Always remember to hire a licensed Texas electrical contractor. Search for licensed electrical contractors in your area.

Want to Help Texas Electrical Contractors with Harvey Recovery?

TDLR offers two paths for out-of-state electricians who want to work in Texas in response to the Harvey disaster:

  1. Experienced electricians may quickly and easily obtain a temporary apprentice license online.  Once an apprentice license is obtained, you need to coordinate with a Texas licensed electrical contractor to immediately begin performing electrical work in Texas.  Apply for apprentice license online.
  2. Texas has reciprocal licensing agreements with multiple states, including Master Electrician reciprocity with North Carolina and Louisiana, and Journeyman Electrician reciprocity with Arkansas, Idaho, Montana, Nebraska, New Mexico, Oklahoma, South Dakota, and Wyoming. A Journeyman licensed by reciprocity needs to coordinate with a Texas licensed electrical contractor. More information on how to apply by reciprocity.

TDLR is ready to fast-track reciprocal license applications so that electricians wanting to assist with the Harvey recovery efforts may quickly coordinate with Texas Electrical Contractors and begin performing electrical work in Texas.

TDLR Arc Flash - June 2017 Newsletter

Our newsletter is intended to keep city officials, electricians, and consumers throughout Texas informed of the Texas Electrical Safety and Licensing Act and TDLR’s efforts to enforce the associated requirements. Read More >>

Recall Alert for Certain Solar Panels and Connectors

The connectors, Amphenol UTX PV model connectors sold with solar panels, can develop microscopic cracks that allow moisture to leak into them while the system is producing electricity, posing an electrical shock hazard. Read More >>

TDLR Sting Operation in Houston busts dozens

Dozens of unlicensed Air Conditioning contractors and Electricians busted in a TDLR sting operation in Houston. KHOU has a report.

Recovery from Floods and Storms

'After The Storm - Floodwater Safety' (PDF) information from UL on health and safety issues following a flood


Advisory Board Meetings

December 4, 2018

The Electrical Safety and Licensing Advisory Board met December 4 in Austin. The agenda and staff reports (PDF) are available online. The meeting was archived and is available on TDLR's YouTube channel.

Electrical Safety and Licensing Program Summit - Part III

TDLR and the City of Irving held a summit on July 17, 2018 in Irving to explore how the electrical industry can increase the number of qualified electricians in Texas. The agenda is available online. The meeting was archived and is available on TDLR's YouTube channel. TDLR thanks the City of Irving, the Irving Community Television Network and Swagit Productions for their assistance in producing and broadcasting the proceedings.

Electrical Safety and Licensing Program Summit - Part II

TDLR held a summit on March 22, 2018 in Austin to explore how the electrical industry can increase the number of qualified electricians in Texas. The agenda is available online. The meeting was archived and is available on TDLR's YouTube channel.

Electrical Safety and Licensing Program Summit

On January 11, 2018, TDLR held a summit in Austin to explore how the electrical industry can increase the number of qualified electricians in Texas. The agenda is available online. The meeting was archived and is available on TDLR's YouTube channel. View the presentations: Presentation 1 (4.1 MB PowerPoint); Presentation 2 (1.2 MB PowerPoint).