Low Voltage Technician vs. Electrician: What’s the Difference?

Low Voltage Technician vs. Electrician: What’s the Difference?

If you are considering a career in the electrical industry, it is important to understand the difference between a low-voltage technician and an electrician.

A low-voltage technician is responsible for installing and maintaining systems that use low-voltage electricity, such as fire alarms, security systems, and telecommunications systems.

An electrician, on the other hand, is responsible for installing and maintaining high-voltage electrical systems, such as those found in homes and businesses.

So which career path is right for you?

Key Differences Between Low Voltage Technicians and Electricians

Job Duties

Low-voltage technicians often perform a variety of duties, like installing and maintaining security systems, audio equipment, and video equipment. They may also troubleshoot issues with these systems and repair them when necessary.

Electricians typically have more job responsibilities related to electrical work. They install and maintain both low-voltage and high-voltage electrical systems and are trained in safely working with electricity. Electricians may also troubleshoot electrical issues and repair damaged wiring.

Key Differences Between Low Voltage Technicians and Electricians

Responsibilities And Requirements

Low-voltage technicians typically need to have a high school diploma or equivalent, although some employers may prefer candidates who have completed a vocational program or an associate degree in electronics. Electricians must have a high school diploma or equivalent and complete an electrician apprenticeship program that lasts four to five years.

During their apprenticeship, electricians learn safety procedures, blueprint reading, and other skills they need on the job. After completing their apprenticeship, electricians must obtain a license from their state before they can work independently.

Average Salary

The average salary for a low-voltage technician is $52,632 per year. Electricians have an average salary of $58,096 per year. Both roles may see their salaries vary depending on the type of work they’re doing, their location, and their experience level. Both types of professionals may earn other benefits as part of their compensation package.

While low-voltage technicians and electricians may work together on certain projects, they have different job duties and training requirements. It’s important for employers and individuals to understand the distinction between the two roles in order to ensure that all necessary tasks are completed safely and efficiently.

Key Differences Between Low Voltage Technicians and Electricians

Career Outlook

Low Voltage Technicians install and maintain low voltage systems, which are electrical systems that operate at a voltage lower than that of standard mains electricity. Low voltage systems are often used in communications and security systems and may include things like telephone lines, fiber optic cables, and CCTV cameras.

Low voltage systems typically operate at voltages below 50 volts, whereas standard mains electricity voltages can be as high as 240 volts.

Low Voltage Technicians are responsible for installing, repairing, and maintaining these types of systems.

Electricians are trained professionals who install, maintain, and repair electrical systems.

They work in a variety of settings, including residential, commercial, and industrial. Electricians may specialize in a particular type of electrical work, such as wiring, lighting, or security systems.

They use a variety of tools and equipment to complete their tasks, including multimeters, voltmeters, wire strippers, and cable cutters. Electricians must follow all local, state, and federal codes and regulations when performing their work.

Key Differences Between Low Voltage Technicians and Electricians

Work Environment

Electricians and low-voltage technicians work in different environments. Electricians typically work outdoors, installing wiring for homes and businesses. They may also work on rooftops or other high places to access electrical systems. Low voltage technicians usually work indoors, often in offices or laboratories where they can test equipment and perform maintenance.

Electricians may work outside during inclement weather conditions, such as rain or snow. However, they do not need to wear protective gear like hard hats or safety glasses because their job does not involve working with hazardous materials. Low-voltage technicians rarely work outside, but they may occasionally travel to customer sites to install new equipment.


Low-voltage technicians and electricians both need to have excellent problem-solving skills. Low-voltage technicians often work with customers to troubleshoot issues with their low-voltage systems, such as audio/visual, security, or lighting systems. Electricians typically respond to calls from customers about problems with their electrical systems.

Both low-voltage technicians and electricians need to have the technical knowledge to perform their jobs. Low-voltage technicians need to know about different types of low-voltage systems and how they work. Electricians need to understand basic electrical concepts and how electrical systems work. Both of these professionals also need to be able to follow safety protocols, as they are often working with dangerous materials.

Key Differences Between Low Voltage Technicians and Electricians

While low voltage technicians use communication skills when they are interacting with customers, they don’t necessarily need to be as personable as electricians. Electricians benefit from having strong interpersonal skills because they are often working directly with people. Skills like communication, empathy, and patience enable them to understand customers’ needs and build long-term relationships.

Cost of Hiring a Low Voltage Technician vs. an Electrician

Low voltage wiring, or wiring that does not carry the same high electrical current as wiring for things like power outlets, is something that every business needs. Unless you are skilled in low-voltage wiring installation and maintenance, outsourcing it is the most cost-effective way of installing it. However, in our experience franchises usually do not know about low-voltage installation businesses, and more often than not they hire a licensed electrician to install their TVs, phones, and other IT components, which is not the most cost-effective way of installing it.

An electrician is a specialized tradesman that is licensed to install and maintain dangerous, high-voltage, electrical systems and the cost of their supplies is high.

As a result, their flat hourly rate will reflect these costs regardless of what they are installing. In addition, it is not required for an installer of low-voltage wiring to be licensed to install high-voltage wiring.

Cost of Hiring a Low Voltage Technician vs. an Electrician

IT and Communication Systems: Nationwide Installation and Support

Low Voltage Technicians do much more than install motion detectors, security cameras, and computers. Their expertise has grown to include not only being a specially trained individual in all low voltage systems but also someone with a great deal of IT knowledge. Since businesses are becoming more technologically dependent, low-voltage contractors must keep up with the newest technology innovations and have a broader IT skill set than your standard electrician.

Low-voltage technicians are able to provide nationwide installation and support for communication systems, including phone systems, data cabling, fiber optics, audio/visual equipment, security systems, and more. Their ability to work with a variety of different technologies allows them to offer comprehensive solutions for businesses communication needs.

In conclusion, low-voltage technicians and electricians have different skill sets and specialties. Hiring a low-voltage technician is often the most cost-effective option for installing low-voltage wiring and communication systems. They also have the expertise to provide nationwide installation and support for these types of systems.

IT and Communication Systems: Nationwide Installation and Support


What is the difference between electrical and low voltage?

Electricians primarily work with high-voltage electricity and power distribution, while low-voltage technicians primarily work with smaller electrical systems such as alarm and communication wiring.

What type of education or certification does each require?

Becoming an electrician typically requires completing an apprenticeship program and passing a licensing exam. Low-voltage technicians may also complete apprenticeships or training programs and may be required to obtain specific certifications for the type of work they perform.

What types of tasks do each perform?

Electricians install, maintain, and repair electrical systems in residential, commercial, and industrial settings.

Low voltage technicians may install and maintain equipment such as burglar alarms, security systems, audio/visual equipment, and telecommunications systems.

Is low voltage considered electrical?

Technically, yes. Low voltage refers to any electrical current that is below 50 volts. However, low-voltage technicians and electricians have very different training and career paths.

While electricians primarily deal with high voltage (above 50 volts), low voltage technicians specialize in installing and maintaining equipment that runs on lower voltages, such as security systems, networking cables, and audio/visual equipment.

In terms of education and licensing requirements, low-voltage technicians usually only need a certificate or associate’s degree from a technical school. Electricians, on the other hand, typically complete a formal apprenticeship program lasting four to five years before obtaining their license.


What is a voltage technician?

A low-voltage technician is responsible for installing and maintaining equipment related to communications systems, such as phone lines, security systems, and network wiring. They may also work with audio/visual equipment and controls for HVAC systems.

An electrician is responsible for installing and maintaining electrical power systems, including wires, circuit breakers, and lighting fixtures. They often work in residential or commercial buildings.

So what sets these two roles apart? The main difference lies in the type of wiring they work with – electricians deal with high voltage (typically 110-220 volts) while low voltage technicians primarily work with low voltage (under 50 volts). Additionally, electricians are required to have a license, whereas low-voltage technicians may not necessarily need one.

One key similarity between the two roles is that they both require a strong knowledge of electrical codes and regulations to ensure safety. Both electricians and low-voltage technicians play important roles in keeping our systems functioning properly.

6. What is a low-current technician?

A low-voltage technician deals with the installation and maintenance of electrical systems that operate at lower voltages, such as those used for telecommunications, security, and audio/visual equipment.

Can low voltage damage AC?

No, low voltage is not capable of causing damage to AC systems. The main difference between a low-voltage technician and an electrician lies in the types of wiring they work with. Low-voltage technicians primarily deal with telecommunications and audio-visual wiring, while electricians handle the higher-voltage wiring that powers our homes and businesses. Both positions require specialized training and licensing for safe and efficient work.

However, it’s important to note that although low-voltage systems may not cause direct harm to AC systems, they can still pose safety risks if not properly installed or maintained. That’s why it’s crucial to have a qualified professional handle all electrical work, regardless of the type of wiring involved.

What do high-voltage electricians do?

High-voltage electricians typically work on power lines and other electrically charged equipment that operates at 600 volts or more. This type of work requires extensive training and a license from the state.

Low-voltage technicians, also known as telecommunications technicians, focus on installing and maintaining low-voltage systems such as phone lines, internet cables, security systems, and audio/visual equipment. These technicians usually require specialized training and certification in their field.

What states do electricians make the most money in?

According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the states with the highest employment levels and highest annual mean wages for electricians as of May 2018 were New York, California, Texas, Florida, and Pennsylvania. However, when looking at specific metropolitan areas, the highest-paying areas for electricians were Alaska, Hawaii, the District of Columbia, Massachusetts, and Illinois.

It is important to note that an electrician’s salary may also vary depending on their specialization within the industry. For example, those who work with high-voltage systems tend to earn higher salaries than those who work primarily with low-voltage systems. Additionally, union membership can affect an electrician’s salary as well.

How many volts do electricians deal with?

Typically, electricians work with circuits that range from 110 to 600 volts. They are trained to work with high voltage and have the knowledge and skills to handle any potential hazards that may arise.

On the other hand, low-voltage technicians typically deal with circuits that range from 24 volts or less. These can include communication wiring, security systems, audio/visual equipment, and network cabling.

While both electricians and low-voltage technicians work with electrical systems, their specific areas of expertise differ greatly. An electrician may install a new electrical panel in a home, while a low-voltage technician may install a home security system.

It’s important to note that some states require specialized licensing for low-voltage technicians, as the work they do can still present potential safety hazards if not done properly.

What about low-voltage technicians?

Low voltage technicians, on the other hand, deal primarily with systems that use less than 50 volts, such as telecommunications and security systems.

So what’s the difference in job duties?

An electrician’s job includes installing and repairing electrical power, communications, lighting, and control systems. A low-voltage technician’s job may include installing and maintaining equipment such as intercoms, video surveillance cameras, and access control systems.

Do you need a license to install low-voltage cables in Texas?

The answer may depend on your job title. While both low-voltage technicians and electricians work with electrical systems, there are key differences in their training and job responsibilities.

Electricians typically deal with high-voltage systems, while low-voltage technicians focus on installing and maintaining communication equipment such as cable TV, internet, alarm systems, and audio/visual equipment.

In some states, a license is required to work as an electrician but not necessarily for a low-voltage technician. However, many employers prefer to hire technicians who have completed an accredited program and obtained certification in their field.

So if you’re looking to enter the electrical industry in Texas, it’s important to understand the distinction between these two roles and the licensing requirements for each.

How do I get a low-voltage license in Washington state?

In Washington state, to become a licensed low-voltage technician, you must first complete an apprenticeship program or equivalent training. You must then pass the Washington State Department of Labor and Industries (L&I) examination for low-voltage technicians.

On the other hand, to become a licensed electrician in Washington state, you must also complete an apprenticeship program or equivalent training and pass the L&I examination for electricians.

So while both low-voltage technicians and electricians require similar training and licensing processes in Washington state, their job duties differ significantly. Low-voltage technicians typically work with electronic systems such as alarm and security systems, telecommunications equipment, and audio/visual equipment.

What is low voltage installation?

Low voltage installation deals with any electrical work that operates at 50 volts or less. This can include security systems, phone lines, audio and visual equipment, and networking cables.

A low-voltage technician is trained to install and maintain these types of systems. They may also troubleshoot any issues that arise with the equipment.

An electrician deals with higher voltages, typically 110-220 volts.

They are responsible for installing and maintaining electrical wiring and equipment in homes and businesses. This includes things like light fixtures, outlets, circuit breakers, and appliances. Electricians may also work on larger-scale projects such as power plants and industrial facilities.

While both low voltage technicians and electricians work with electrical systems, their scope of work is different. Electricians focus on larger, higher voltage systems while low voltage technicians specialize in smaller, lower voltage systems. It is possible for someone to be trained in both areas and hold licenses for both specialties. However, it is important to note that a low-voltage technician cannot perform the duties of an electrician, and vice versa. Both roles require specialized training and licensing in order to legally perform their job duties.

Can low voltage damage a furnace?

While low-voltage technicians may work on furnaces and other heating systems, these systems typically operate at higher voltages that would not be affected by low-voltage wiring. However, a low-voltage technician may still be responsible for installing and maintaining the thermostat or other control systems for the furnace.

In general, electricians are trained and licensed to work with high-voltage wiring and equipment, while low-voltage technicians specialize in lower-voltage systems such as security alarms, audio/visual equipment, and telecommunications. Both professions require technical knowledge and skills, but electricians often have more comprehensive training and a wider range of responsibilities.

Do I need a low-voltage license in California?

In California, a low-voltage license is not required for the installation or maintenance of low-voltage systems such as security, communication, and sound. However, these tasks must be done under the supervision of a licensed electrician.

So what sets low-voltage technicians apart from electricians? While electricians specialize in high-voltage electrical systems, low-voltage technicians focus on communication and signal transmission systems. This includes installing phone lines, network cables, audio/visual equipment, and security systems.

How do you train to become a low-voltage technician?

Unlike electricians, low-voltage technicians typically receive their training through technical schools or apprenticeship programs. They learn how to install and maintain systems such as alarm and security, audio and visual, communication, and networking systems.

What tasks do low-voltage technicians perform?

Low-voltage technicians typically focus on installing, maintaining, and troubleshooting low-voltage systems in residential, commercial, or industrial settings. This can include alarm and security systems, audio and visual equipment, communication systems, network cabling, and more. They work with blueprints and schematics to properly install these systems according to code requirements.

How long does an electrician train to become qualified?

Electricians typically train for 4-5 years before becoming fully qualified. This training includes both classroom and on-the-job experience.

On the other hand, low-voltage technicians typically have shorter training periods and may not always be required to complete an apprenticeship program. Their training often focuses on a specific area such as telecommunications or security systems.

Electricians are responsible for installing, maintaining, and repairing electrical systems in residential, commercial, and industrial buildings. This can include wiring, lighting fixtures, power supplies, and other equipment.

Is an electrician a respected career?

Absolutely. But is a low voltage technician also respected in their field? You bet they are! Both electricians and low voltage technicians work to ensure that electrical systems and equipment operate safely and efficiently, but there are key differences in the type of work they do.

Electricians primarily work with high-voltage systems, such as those used for residential and commercial buildings’ power supply. Low-voltage technicians, on the other hand, focus on lower-voltage systems like telephone lines, security systems, and audio/visual equipment.

Who are electricians governed by?

Electricians are primarily governed by the National Electrical Code (NEC), which establishes guidelines and safety standards for all electrical installations. They also adhere to state and local regulations, as well as any applicable industry codes.

Who governs low-voltage technicians?

Low voltage technicians, on the other hand, may work under different sets of codes and regulations depending on their field of specialization. For example, a low-voltage technician working in the telecommunications industry may be governed by the Telecommunications Act, while a low-voltage technician specializing in security systems may adhere to the National Fire Alarm and Signaling Code. Additionally, they may also be subject to state and local regulations.

Which organization has the responsibility for the electrical wiring regulations?

While electricians are responsible for wiring and installing electrical systems in compliance with state and local building codes, low-voltage technicians typically handle the installation of communication and security systems.

Electricians also typically have more education and training, as well as a license from the state, while low-voltage technicians may only be certified by the company they work for.

It’s important to note that both electricians and low-voltage technicians can work on similar projects, such as setting up a home automation system. However, it is crucial to check credentials and ensure proper permits are obtained before starting any electrical project. It’s always best to hire a licensed professional for safety reasons.

Useful Video: Electrician vs Electrical Technician. Big Difference


  1. https://flextechnow.com/what-is-the-difference-between-a-low-voltage-technician-vs-electrician/
  2. https://climbtheladder.com/low-voltage-technician-vs-electrician/
  3. https://1stelectricians.co.uk/blog/low-voltage-technician-vs-electrician/
  4. https://wiredtelcom.com/blog/2020/02/20/top-reasons-to-hire-a-low-voltage-technician-instead-of-an-electrician
  5. https://electricalschool.org/low-voltage-electrician-do/
  6. https://1stelectricians.co.uk/blog/low-voltage-technician-vs-electrician/
  7. https://wiredtelcom.com/blog/2020/02/20/top-reasons-to-hire-a-low-voltage-technician-instead-of-an-electrician
  8. https://electricalschool.org/low-voltage-electrician-do/