For those looking for a new career in a beautiful place, becoming an electrician in Hawaii may be for you. No matter what kind of HI electrician you want to become, a key step you’ll need to take is receiving your electrical license in the Aloha State. Keep reading below to learn what types of electrical licenses Hawaii offers and what you need to obtain yours today.
Do You Need an Electrical License in Hawaii?
Hawaii statutes rule that no person shall act as an electrician in the state unless properly licensed. This includes all journey worker, journey worker specialty, supervising, supervising specialty, maintenance, journey worker industrial, and supervising industrial electricians. Electrical apprentices should also be registered under an approved apprenticeship program.
Types of Electrical Licenses in Hawaii
Hawaii offers distinct electrical license options depending on your work and educational experience. You can choose from the:
- Journey Worker Electrician License (EJ)
- Supervising Electrician License (ES)
- Journey Worker Industrial Electrician License (EJI)
- Supervising Industrial Electrician License (ESI)
- Journey Worker Specialty Electrician License (EJS)
- Supervising Specialty Electrician License (ESS)
- Maintenance Electrician License (EM)
Hawaii Electrical License Requirements
Below you’ll find the requirements for each type of electrical license offered in Hawaii.
- Journey Worker Electrician License (EJ): at least 5 years (including no less than 10,000 hours) of residential or commercial wiring experience AND satisfactory completion of an appropriate program* with 240 hours of electrical coursework
- Supervising Electrician License (ES): at least 4 years of experience as a licensed journey worker electrician or similar
- Journey Worker Industrial Electrician License (EJI): at least 4 years (including no less than 8,000 hours) of industrial electrical work experience AND satisfactory completion of an appropriate program* with 200 hours of electrical coursework
- Supervising Industrial Electrician License (ESI): at least 3 years’ experience as a licensed journey worker industrial electrician or similar
- Journey Worker Specialty Electrician License (EJS): at least 3 years (including no less than 6,000 hours) in the trade AND satisfactory completion of an appropriate program* with 120 hours of electrical coursework
- Supervising Specialty Electrician License (ESS): at least 2 years’ experience as a licensed journey worker specialty electrician or similar
- Maintenance Electrician License (EM): at least 1 year of electrical maintenance work experience AND satisfactory completion of an appropriate program* with 80 hours of electrical coursework OR 2 years of trade school with at least 1,000 hours of hands-on experience
*An appropriate program is given or accepted by a University of Hawaii Community College.
You can send in your official verification of completion plus a detailed program and course description to determine if your program is approved. Send documents via email or mail to:
Mail to: Honolulu Community College
Attention: Non-Credit Registration Office
874 Dillingham Boulevard
Honolulu, HI 96817
More information on approved program requirements can be found on Pages 2-3 of this informational PDF.
How to Obtain Your Electrical License in Hawaii
Generally speaking, you must be 18+ and a U.S. citizen to apply for a HI electrical license. Most electricians will first complete an approved educational program or apprenticeship in Hawaii. For those aiming for electrical supervisor positions, you must first hold the position you are supervising. For example, supervising specialty electricians are first journey worker specialty electricians for at least 2 years.
All licenses must apply through the general exam application. You can complete it online then print it or print it and then fill it in with dark ink. Fill in all sections – if a section does not apply to you, write N/A. All applicants must have a Social Security number which should be written on the form.
Attach the verification of completed coursework to your application, as well as the Experience Verification forms. The latter forms should be filled out by the licensed electrician that supervised you in each position. If the supervisor’s license is from out-of-state, they will also have to fill out and send in the License Verification Form.
Once your application is approved, you will receive instructions on how to sit for your official electrical license exam. Exams are on set dates and offered on Oahu, Maui, Kauai, and Big Island. Between 2021-2022 exams were given in January, March, May, July, and September.
More information about the exam itself can be found on the Prometric site or by calling 808-261-8182.
Once you pass your exam you will have to pay a licensing fee, which will be prorated depending on when you passed your exam. The fee varies between $102-$306.
Unfortunately, as of 2022, Hawaii does not offer any reciprocity agreements with other states for its electrical licenses; however, if you hold or have held an electrical license in another state, you are required to fill out the License Verification Form with your application.
Renewing Your Hawaii Electrical License
All electrical licenses must be renewed before June 30th every three years beginning in 1996, which is why the licensing fee is prorated.
Renewals must prove they have fulfilled a continued competency requirement before the renewal. This requirement is twofold: 1) to attend a course on the updates to the Uniformed Plumbing Code (UPC) and the National Electrical Code (NEC), both of which are updated every three years and 2) to successfully complete an open-book exam by Prometric on the updates to the UPC or NEC.
The Honolulu Community College develops and teaches these courses, as well as the colleges in Oahu, Maui, and Kauai.
Reactivating a HI Electrical License
If your license has lapsed and you need to reactivate it, you must fill out the application and pay a $342 reactivation fee. You must also complete the same continued competency requirements as renewals listed above.
Hawaii Electrician Salaries
Hawaii takes its electrical licensing seriously, which means Hawaiian electricians can be counted on. Another enticing reason to join this dependable field is that the average electrician in Hawaii makes $75,400 per year – 33% above the national average salary for electricians. In fact, a new journey worker electrician starts out making roughly $70,000 per year plus overtime. With a decade of experience, the salary rises to well over $87,000.