Welcome To Signs101.com: Largest Forum for Signmaking Professionals

Signs101.com: Largest Forum for Signmaking Professionals is the LARGEST online community & discussion forum for professional sign-makers and graphic designers.

 


  1. This site uses cookies. By continuing to use this site, you are agreeing to our use of cookies. Learn More.

Electric license needed?

Discussion in 'General Signmaking Topics' started by Texas_Signmaker, Aug 12, 2017.

  1. Texas_Signmaker

    Texas_Signmaker Member

    100
    16
    18
    Oct 21, 2016
    DFW
    In Texas, do you need an electrician license to swap out polycarb panels on electric sign boxes? Do you need one to change bulbs?
     
    Tags:
  2. The Yanki & The Brit

    The Yanki & The Brit The Yanki & The Brit Signs and Radio Show

    71
    13
    8
    Sep 3, 2014
    Texas
    What part of Texas? I've never gotten one for swapping monument faces, or some wall mounted signs..... You can go online and search City of.... and look or search for the sign codes. I usually check and see what I can find first! Outside of the Metroplex, I rarely get a permit for that sort of work unless it's a big puppy! Which you don't find many away from the bright lights of the city! But that's me. Places like Los Colinas, Lewisville or any large city around the Metroplex, I wouldn't go near them if they require a permit. They will eat you alive if you do something with out a permit, and it goes haywire later on. Took a number of years to figure it all out! If your just starting up your business, check online first, then call the building dept. if you have more question. I'm a small business, and CYA is my moto!
     
  3. Gino

    Gino Premium Subscriber

    28,419
    497
    83
    Jun 7, 2006
    PA
    As mentioned, you should find out first-hand what you do and don't need in the municipality where the work is to be done. They will all vary.

    However, even if you don't need a license, and someone wants you to change out the lamps, wouldn't it be ice to know if the ballast is bad as well ?? Without rhat license, most likely you won't be allowed to. What if someone says they want you to retrofit for LEDs. Now, you're screwed. When working on electric signs, it's a good idea to have someone there, who is licensed, then you can answer all questions, should any arise.

    Around here, if you change out faces on an electrical sign and there are other problems, the last person working on that sign will carry full responsibility for what or could go wrong, if nothing was done to address the problem(s).
     
    • Like Like x 1
  4. The Yanki & The Brit

    The Yanki & The Brit The Yanki & The Brit Signs and Radio Show

    71
    13
    8
    Sep 3, 2014
    Texas
    Well said Gino.
     
  5. Texas_Signmaker

    Texas_Signmaker Member

    100
    16
    18
    Oct 21, 2016
    DFW
    I figured bulbs would require license but what about just the faces?. Not asking about permits or specific city, asking about the state. I read what TDLR stated but they didnt mention or exclude sign faces.
     
    Last edited: Aug 12, 2017
  6. ams

    ams Very Active Member

    1,040
    34
    48
    Oct 28, 2010
    Virginia
    Most places do not require it and the ones that do have the very old sign manual.
     
  7. Texas_Signmaker

    Texas_Signmaker Member

    100
    16
    18
    Oct 21, 2016
    DFW
    My particular city has issued permits to me to replace sign faces before so I thought it was OK. But they have also issued us a permit to install channel letters and connect them which I know are against TDLR so I'm questioning if the faces are even OK. Another sign company in town said were not supposed to change faces or even touch them, but the owner is very "Trump" like so its hard to trust what comes out of his mouth.

    BTW we had an electrician inspect and connect the channel letter sign, we just mounted it.
     
    • Disagree Disagree x 1
  8. Gino

    Gino Premium Subscriber

    28,419
    497
    83
    Jun 7, 2006
    PA
    Ya know what........ ?? With those last statements go f*ck yourself. What a cheap shot, using those examples for your stupidity. Do whatever you want and either lie and get away with sh!t or just go down in flames covering your arse.
     
    • Disagree Disagree x 2
    • Like Like x 1
  9. Texas_Signmaker

    Texas_Signmaker Member

    100
    16
    18
    Oct 21, 2016
    DFW
    Sometimes there are golden nuggets hidden in Gino's pile of [email protected] responses, yea just gotta look hard and dig deep to find them.
     
  10. Jordan

    Jordan New Member

    5
    2
    3
    Feb 29, 2016
    yo mama
    You do not need an electrical contractor license to change acrylic/polycarb faces of backlit signs. You do need a license to perform any electrical task to a sign, including changing the bulbs. Also, per the letter of the law, you need a license to conduct "business of designing, manufacturing, installing, connecting, reconnecting, or servicing an electric sign, cold cathode, neon gas tubing, or outline gas tubing, or altering electric sign wiring or conductors either inside or outside of a building."

    As far as getting permits, the permitting office is suppose to deny applications unless there's an electrical contractor attached (meaning you have to have a master electrician as a w2 employee). But, the TDLR is the one that needs to notified of it for you to get in trouble. We had another sign company wait until we lost our electrician before they called the TDLR on us for installing (and advertising on our website) electrical signs. We got a new electrician shortly after the "friendly" letter from the TDLR, so all was fine with the world.
     
    • Like Like x 1
    • Agree Agree x 1
  11. Texas_Signmaker

    Texas_Signmaker Member

    100
    16
    18
    Oct 21, 2016
    DFW
    Thanks for your answer. The part that says "servicing an electric sign" is where I was confused, didn't know if that included face changes. A decent part of my higher profit jobs are face changes and would hate to loose that.
     
  12. Jordan

    Jordan New Member

    5
    2
    3
    Feb 29, 2016
    yo mama
    Yep, I had a long conversation with a TDLR rep some 3 years ago about it, and you're technically not servicing the electrical sign when you're simply replacing the face.

    Another clarification I got out of that conversation was that installing any interior electrical sign that simply plugs into an existing standard 110v outlet doesn't require a license either. Primarily because it generally doesn't require a permit, but also because it doesn't require any "wiring."
     
  13. bannertime

    bannertime "You guys do banners, right?"

    392
    64
    28
    Sep 8, 2016
    DFW
    Sign face changes do not require a TDLR license. Only if constructing or servicing the electrical components will you need the TDLR Electrical Sign License.
     
  14. Texas_Signmaker

    Texas_Signmaker Member

    100
    16
    18
    Oct 21, 2016
    DFW
    Thanks! This is music to my ears!
     
  15. The Yanki & The Brit

    The Yanki & The Brit The Yanki & The Brit Signs and Radio Show

    71
    13
    8
    Sep 3, 2014
    Texas
    My experiences say to check first, because some of the smaller cities or towns if you will, are changing the way they do things, like in some, if you replace a face, it may have to be of a new design to meet what some call their "NEW" look. The owner could get busted for not meeting the new standards, and that, of course, will fall back on you, somehow. It always does.
    It's not 10 or 20 years ago when "do what you want and ask for forgiveness later works.
    Learn the new ways, then learn how to cheat!
     
  16. Moze

    Moze Premium Subscriber

    1,761
    25
    48
    Feb 27, 2012
    Dallas, TX
    About a month ago, an inspector at TDLR told me you DO need to be licensed to change a face in an illuminated sign. I was told the same thing about 5 years ago by a different TDLR inspector.

    TDLR regulates the entire State of Texas. Municipalities don't supersede TDLR and permitting has nothing to do with whether you're 'allowed' to change out faces.

    TDLR also conducts sting operations to ensure people offering these services are indeed licensed.

    Since there are opposing answers here from individuals in Texas, your best bet is to get on the phone and ask TDLR and not get your answer from an internet forum (that includes my answer - just relaying what I was told).
     
  17. Texas_Signmaker

    Texas_Signmaker Member

    100
    16
    18
    Oct 21, 2016
    DFW
    Seems that TDLR needs to clarify this in the wording of their regulations.
     
    • Agree Agree x 2
  18. Johnny Best

    Johnny Best Active Member

    934
    479
    63
    Dec 9, 2015
    buffalo ny
    Hey Texas Signmaker, make sure you have your IPhone recording when the TDLR sting operation bust you for changing out a cabinet face. Then it would put this subject to rest.
     
  19. Moze

    Moze Premium Subscriber

    1,761
    25
    48
    Feb 27, 2012
    Dallas, TX
    I agree 100%

    The way it was explained to me was that if I'm exposing the internals of the sign, I should be qualified to note & repair potentially dangerous issues but also be able to perform repairs if something unforeseen were to happen while changing a face. If there are hanging wires, GTO, etc., and you snag and tear one while sliding the face in and it, pull a wire loose, etc., you should be qualified to make the repair.

    The sting operations consist of undercover TDLR inspectors inviting contractors (mostly from Facebook and Craigslist) to quote an electrical sign job (and HVAC jobs) at a fake job site. They do it every few years in an effort to keep unlicensed contractors from performing electrical work.

    You're not even supposed to give a verbal or written price to do electrical work in Texas unless you're licensed and have that license number on your advertisements (Facebook, Craigslist, website, vehicle, business card, quotes, etc.).

    The only exception I'm aware of is if the sign is an interior sign and simply plugs in.
     
    • Like Like x 1
  20. Texas_Signmaker

    Texas_Signmaker Member

    100
    16
    18
    Oct 21, 2016
    DFW
    Ok, I just got a call back from the compliance department at TDLR and they said you DO NOT need a license to change faces. You also DO NOT need a license to change light-bulbs. You DO need a license to touch the ballast, the lamp connectors and that such. I'm going to save that call recording!

    So it looks like this info varies depending on who you talk to. Seems to me that they really need to clarify this in their regulations because it's vague as how it written now.
     
Loading...

Share This Page

Loading...