Best Work Boots For Plumbers: Our Editor’s Picks And FAQs

People who were kids in the late Eighties to early Nineties will remember a rather goofy tv show called The Super Mario Bros. Super Show based on the popular Nintendo game. Its theme song was a “totally radical” rap including the lyrics “We’re not like the others who get all the fame.”

Are there really that many famous plumbers? Well, Ozzy Osbourne, Michael Flatley, and Sir Michael Caine were plumbers before they went into show biz. Frederick Bremer was a plumber and all-around engineer who became the first Englishman to build a car in 1892. You can guess what Thomas Crapper made popular.

Real plumbers hardly ever save princesses from giant turtles. Their primary job is to install and maintain systems used for potable water, sewage, and draining. The word “plumber” comes from the Latin word for lead, the material used to make the first pipes. (Since realized to be unsafe for drinking water.)

A modern plumber has to be able to determine the layout of water supply, waste, and venting systems. They are employed to install, repair, and maintain plumbing fixtures and systems.

best work boots for plumbers

What Work Boots Are Best For Plumbers?

The two biggest risks on the job of being a plumber are slippery surfaces and heavy tools. After all, the reason most people call a plumber is something is leaking. The tools used on the job are heavy and accidents happen. A plumber’s boots need to be durable and slip-proof. Cushioning is always good. The boots need to be waterproof and warm.

Do Plumbers Need Steel Toe Boots?

Some boots meant for plumbers do. Since steel toe boots can be helpful if you accidentally drop one of those big plumber’s wrenched on your foot.

Our Picks:

Here is a list of the five boots that we believe will be of good help to plumbers. Comparison shop to find out which one is best for you.

1. Timberland PRO Men’s 6 Pit Boss Steel-Toe Work Boot

Timberland PRO Men's Pitboss 6" Steel-Toe Boot, Brown , 12 D - Medium

The Timberland Pit Boss is one of the preferred boots for plumbers largely due to the fact that it is oil resistant. It also provides excellent traction in wet and slick environments. This boot comes with three standard metal eyelets across the arch plus two quick lace open eyelets across the ankle.

Features and Benefit:

  • The boots meet ANSI Z41PT99, ASTM F2412-11, ASTM 2413-11, and F2892-11 standards making them safe to wear around electricity.
  • The steel safety toe keeps the toe safe from crushing injury.
  • The padded top collar makes the shoe very comfortable to wear.
  • The patented Timberland PRO 24/7 Comfort Suspension technology makes for a shoe that is both comfortable and safe to wear.
  • The odor-resistant technology ensures that the boots always smell fresh.
  • The rubber outsole is heat, abrasion, slip, and oil-resistant making it safe to walk in no matter the environment.
  • It features a polyurethane footbed with Agion antimicrobial cover in order to make a boot that is supportive and does not attract microbes easily.
  • The Goodyear welt construction makes durable boots that will last a long time.

What We Like:

  • Plenty of room in the toe box.
  • The padding is comfortable and supportive.
  • The sock liner is removable.

What We Don’t:

  • They run a bit small.

2. EVER BOOTS “Ultra Dry” Men’s Waterproof Work Boot

EVER BOOTS Men's Premium Leather Waterproof Work Boots Insulated Rubber Outsole for Hiking (10 D(M), Copper)

You will find that this model from Ever Boots has some durable and high-quality features as well as some excellent waterproofing. For starters, they offer top quality soles. This is a sign of their lasting nature. The rubber utilized in this product is quite soft and delivers wonderful traction even when it’s freezing cold.

Features and Benefit:

  • The rubber sole is flexible and grippy.
  • The waterproof leather and liner keep your feet dry and the insulated lining keeps your feet warm.
  • The soft leather takes the pain out of breaking in a new pair of work boots.
  • The Insole Removal option provides a custom insole of your own to ensure maximum comfort.
  • These lightweight work boots feature speedy hooks and backloop for convenient wear.
  • The PU removable insole offers ultimate comfort to your feet.
  • The rubber outsole is oil, slip, and abrasion-resistant.
  • The tread pattern offers traction on all terrains, wet or dry.
  • The steel shank lightens the pressure while climbing downstairs or ladders.

What We Like:

  • There is no break-in period.
  • The boot is strong and durable.
  • The fit is true to size.
  • The insulation works well.

What We Don’t:

  • The stitching is slipshod.
  • The eyelets come off easily.

3. Wolverine Men’s Raider Steel-Toe 6″ Work Boot

Wolverine Men's W02419 Raider Boot, Brown, 10.5 M US

Wolverine is an iconic American brand that puts together only the best materials and classic craftsmanship. Wolverine boots are made to endure the most rugged of environments and deliver all-day comfort. These days, Wolverine is at the front of the industry with a relentless dedication to innovation and patented technology.

Features and Benefit:

  • The rubber sole is flexible and grippy.
  • The multishock shock absorbing compression pads molded into the outsole absorb the impact of every step making this boot easy to walk in.
  • The lightweight PU midsole reduces foot fatigue.
  • The moisture-managing mesh linings keep the foot dry.
  • The Wolverine multishox contour welt construction makes for a durable boot that will stay in one piece for a long time even in rough conditions.
  • The full-cushion footbed adds to the comfort levels and can be removed for convenience.
  • The nylon shank makes the shoe sturdy and more supportive.

What We Like:

  • The boots are very comfortable.
  • There is no break-in period.
  • The fit is true to size.

What We Don’t:

  • The laces break easily.

4. Carhartt Men’s CMF6380 Rugged Flex Waterproof Work Boot

Carhartt Men's 6" Rugged Flex Waterproof Breathable Composite Toe Leather Work Boot CMF6380, Dark Brown Oil Tanned, 11 W US

This is a serviceable everyday work boot. It is lightweight and comfortable with a strong composite toe without the added weight of a steel toe. It has a good deal of safety features to guard you against all types of hazards while still being gentle to your feet.

Features and Benefit:

  • The six-inch Rugged Flex™ Waterproof Boot from Carhartt® will keep the foot dry in damp conditions.
  • The premium leather upper makes a durable and long-lasting boot.
  • The composite toe protection keeps the toe safe from crushing damage.
  • The cement construction will keep this boot in one piece for a long time.
  • The rubber heel and toe provide additional support and durability.
  • The lace-up closure features a six-eyelet design with speed hooks to make an adjustable fit.

What We Like:

  • They are very comfortable.
  • There is a little break-in period.
  • There are many safety features.
  • The inserts are removable.

What We Don’t:

  • There isn’t much insulation.
  • The boots are not waterproof.

5. Irish Setter Men’s 83606 6″ Aluminum Toe Work Boot

Irish Setter Men's 83606 6" Aluminum Toe Work Boot,Brown,11 D US

These work boots keep things cool even when the temperature isn’t. The tough outsole resists melting up to 475° F. It’s the ideal choice for anyone who works in extreme heat. This leather boot can do it.

Features and Benefit:

  • The rubber sole is flexible and grippy.
  • The wide boot opening makes the shoe easy to put on and take off.
  • This protective aluminum-toe work made with full-grain leather is waterproof to keep the foot dry and safe.
  • These boots meet ASTM F2413-11, M/I/75/C/75 Safety Standards so that they can be worn safely in electrical hazards.
  • The heat resistant outsole resists melting at a minimum of 475 Fahrenheit.

What We Like:

  • The polyurethane footbed is removable.
  • The leather is soft but durable.
  • It has good safety features.

What We Don’t:

  • The soles are a bit wider than they should be.

What Do Plumbers Wear?

A common comedy gag with plumbers is for them to have their pants slipping while working. Mario and Luigi got around that by wearing overalls. A plumber’s trousers will be made out of thick material, perhaps with some padding on the knees. The trousers will have lots of roomy pockets to carry tools in.

A plumber needs to be able to move around easily so they typically wear t-shirts to work in. A durable workman jacket is useful for working in cold temperatures. Safety equipment will vary based on the type of job and where it’s being done.

What Are The Basic Plumbing Tools?

The plumber’s wrench, sometimes just called a pipe wrench, is the first thing many would think of. It is actually becoming less common but still needed for dealing with large threaded iron or galvanized steel pipes. Tongue-and-groove pliers are now the favorite go-to tool for plumbers.

This is a tool with angled jaws, long handles, and a wide range of adjustment positions. The basin wrench, sometimes called a sink wrench, is used for changing faucets. The compression sleeve puller is used to pull off the nut and compression sleeve without doing damage to the pipe.

Some plumbers like to use a hacksaw for cutting pipes but there are specialized tubing cutters for different materials. Drain augers sometimes called drain snakes, and plungers are things the average person can use before calling a plumber. Screwdrivers, Allen wrenches and a good propane torch are also handy tools for a plumber to have.

Is Plumbing A Good Career?

Well, it can’t be outsourced, that’s a plus. It’s a job that will always be in demand. Less than two hundred years with indoor plumbing and humanity has decided they can’t do without it. It’s an earn while you learn a profession so you’ll be making some money right away.

What Does A Plumber Do On A Daily Basis?

A plumber must keep a daily record of all assignments. The majority of the job entails installing things such as pipe assemblies, fittings, valves, and appliances like dishwashers or water heaters.

They may also install fixtures like sinks or toilets using either hand or power tools. They may be called on to do maintenance or repairs to plumbing by replacing or fixing defective washers or pipes. Sometimes a clogged drain needs to be opened.

Before work even really starts the plumber has to review blueprints, building codes, or specs to figure out work details or procedures and then estimate the time, material, or labor costs required in project plans. Welding, cutting, and assemblage of pipes are often done.

What Skills Do You Need To Be A Plumber?

The first and foremost skill needed for the job is manual dexterity and mechanical know-how. Problem-solving skills are useful. If you work independently you will need general business and administrative skills.

There are protocols, codes, and regulations that must be followed. Customer service skills are always a plus. An experienced plumber who wants to take on an apprentice or helper needs to know how not only to get along with them but to teach them what to do.

Do Plumbers Need To Know Math?

it is a big part of most trade jobs. Algebra and geometry are particularly important when it comes to layouts on the job. Basic math comes in quite handy when a job requires measuring. It is vital that every plumber knows how to connect two pieces of pipe.

Because of this, it is essential for plumbers to grasp a set of math procedures known as the forty-five-degree formula. This formula takes the center measurement between the two pipes and multiplies it by the constant 1.414.

What Benefits Do Plumbers Get?

Good plumbers can earn quite a comfortable living, whether they work for a plumbing company or as independent contractors. Many plumbers join a union. They get great benefits such as health insurance, a 401(k), life insurance, and more. This is a secure job with plenty of opportunities for entrepreneurship.

Do Plumbers Make Good Money?

This varies from one part of the country to another, of course, but according to recent data available from the BLS, the median income for plumbers nationwide is over $50,620 per year. That’s quite a bit higher than the national median income for all occupations at $36,200.

Is Plumbing A Stressful Job?

Well, there’s a reason dripping water is used as torture in some countries. There’s also the raw sewage and harsh chemicals to work with. And then there are difficult clients to work with. Add to the fact that a plumber can’t leave until the job is done and things can get pretty stressful.

What Are The Risks Of Being A Plumber?

Depending on where the job takes place, confined spaces or heights can be a problem. Repetitive movements can cause soft tissue damage to the shoulders, neck, and wrists plus strains and sprains of the muscles.

Exposure to bacteria and foreign objects can lead to an eye injury but this can be avoided by wearing safety goggles. Asbestos is a hazard when working on older homes.

Banging tools, noisy pipes, and electronic machinery can damage hearing. Extreme temperatures have their risks. Mold and infected water can cause illness. Hand tool injuries can lead to broken bones, fractures, cuts, and more.

Do Plumbers Get Sick A Lot?

Close encounters with human waste can put plumbers at risk for a myriad of different illnesses. These include E. coli, stomach parasites, and hepatitis A. This can be avoided or at least reduced by, among other things, cleaning and dressing wounds immediately, antibacterial hand wipes on the job, and using respirators when needed.

Is Plumbing Difficult To Learn?

It isn’t very difficult if you put your mind to it. There are a plethora of pathways and options for study. The best-advised way to begin a career as a qualified plumber is to start a plumbing apprenticeship that is often offered by many trade schools.

How Do I Get Started As A Plumber?

First, you need to get your high school diploma or at least a GED. Then you can qualify for a vocational plumbing course. After you complete your apprenticeship you can get licensed and grow in your career.

How Long Does It Take To Get Certified In Plumbing?

Depending on circumstances, it can be anywhere from two to five years.

How Long Does It Take To Be A Master Plumber?

Depending on training, this can take anywhere from seven to ten years.


Moe Howard of The Three Stooges once decided to tackle a plumbing problem himself. (Though a rich and famous comedian at the time, being a struggling actor in The Great Depression made him thrifty by habit.) The result ended up costing him more than if he had just hired a plumber to start with.

On the plus side, it inspired the short “A Plumbing We Will Go”. Not saying the average person would be quite as incompetent as Howard, Fine, and Howard but a plumber just has more know-how to get the job done.


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