Iowa Plumbing & Mechanical Systems Board
About the Board
The Iowa Plumbing and Mechanical Systems Board was established to administer and enforce the provisions of Iowa law regarding the licensing and regulation of plumbers, mechanical professionals, and contractors. The board issues trade licenses to plumbers, HVAC-refrigeration, sheet metal, hydronic and mechanical professionals, specialty licenses, contractor licenses, and medical gas piping installation certification. Anyone working in these disciplines in the state of Iowa is required to be licensed with the board. The board also investigates complaints filed against licensees and investigates complaints alleging someone is practicing one of these trades without a license.
For questions, please call our toll-free number at 1-866-280-1521 or by using the "Contact Us" option on this site. If you have email, please subscribe to the Plumbing and Mechanical Systems Board topic through the GovDelivery list serve. By entering your email address at the following link, you will automatically be subscribed and receive periodic updates about upcoming board meetings and other board news.
September 25 Update
2020 Renewal Extended Six Additional Months
On September 23, 2020 the Plumbing and Mechanical Systems Board (PMSB) convened and voted to extend the 2020 renewal period for an additional six months. This extension is intended to help eliminate confusion within the industry as to when PMSB licenses will ultimately expire. One of the provisions of Governor Reynolds’ Proclamation of Disaster Emergency prevents licenses issued by the PMSB from expiring. While it appears circumstances will require further extensions of the proclamation, the proclamation may only be extended 30 days at a time. In order to prevent a situation where licenses may expire quickly after the proclamation ends, the PMSB has decided an additional six months is an appropriate extension of the 2020 renewal period at this time. The PMSB will continue to monitor the situation. To download a copy of the Memorandum of Rulemaking click here.
- Licensees will now have until March 31, 2021 to renew their license(s) without penalty for the 2020 renewal. For plumbing and mechanical contractors, this also includes the associated contractor registration with the Iowa Division of Labor.
- No new license documents will be issued (wall certificates, registrations and wallet cards). All licenses will still have an expiration date listed as June 30, 2020. All licenses with an expiration date of June 30, 2020 shall still be valid for practice until May 1, 2021.
- Late fees for an untimely renewal begin to incur on April 1, 2021. A $60 late fee shall apply during the month of April. Begining in May 2021 a late fee of $100 shall apply.
August 25 Update
CEU Guidance – COVID-19
The CEU Committee has updated its previous guidance related to CEUs. The original guidance issued in March had an expiration date of September 1, 2020. See previous guidance below.
Pursuant to 641 - 30.(2), Half of the required Continuing Education Units (CEUs) can be completed through computer-based education courses. The Governor's proclamation suspends this rule. This means all of the CEUs can be completed through computer-based education courses. Further, all currently approved in-person courses can now be offered through webinars, web conferencing, or other similar technology that allows for remote access for students.
This guidance is effective through the 2020 renewal period and ends on September 1, 2020.
The updated guidance is mostly the same with an extension through June 30, 2021. All CEUs needed for the 2020 renewal period can be completed online through June 30, 2021. All currently approved in-person courses can be offered through webinar, web conferencing, or other similar technology that allows for remote access for students through June 30, 2021. This updated guidance is meant to cover the altered 2020 renewal timelines, including any late renewal applications.
For the 2023 renewal period, the rules remain in effect and at least half of the required CEUs must be completed via in-person courses.
July 31 Update
The Licensing and Exam Committee recently approved extra time for all individuals that might have been impacted by the closed testing centers due to COVID-19. All individuals that had an active approved exam application anytime during the time period of March 1, 2020 to June 30, 2020 will have until July 1, 2021 to pass the exam. All of these individuals will receive a revised approval letter with the new expiration date the week of August 10.
June 22 Update
Examination locations are beginning to reopen across Iowa. The exams are offered at community colleges all throughout Iowa through an agreement with Kirkwood Community College. Kirkwood has reported that some locations in Iowa have recently reopened. For the most up to date information of what locations are open and when others are planning to reopen please contact Kirkwood Community College at:
Phone: 319-398-4482 or 1-800-332-8833
March 30 Guidance - COVID-19
On March 22, 2020 Governor Reynolds issued a proclamation pertaining to licensing programs in Iowa during the COVID-19 global pandemic. The Plumbing and Mechanical Systems Board (PMSB) is one of many licensing programs affected by that proclamation. The proclamation directed programs to issue rules or guidance as needed. On behalf of the PMSB, the Licensing and Exam Committee and the CEU Committee are hereby issuing the following guidance.
- Pursuant to 641 - 30.(2), Half of the required Continuing Education Units (CEUs) can be completed through computer-based education courses. The Governor's proclamation suspends this rule. This means all of the CEUs can be completed through computer-based education courses. Further, all currently approved in-person courses can now be offered through webinars, web conferencing, or other similar technology that allows for remote access for students. This guidance is effective through the 2020 renewal period and ends on September 1, 2020.
- Pursuant to 641 - 29.6, Individuals that are currently approved for an exam, but are not able to test due to the closure of the testing locations, will be given extra time to take the exam. The amount of extra time is not known at this time since it is unknown how long the testing locations will remain closed. Be assured that the Board will allow ample time to complete exams for those individuals who have already been approved. The Board will continue to assess the situation and take appropriate action as necessary to ensure individuals are able to take the exam.
The current expiration date and related renewal dates are not changing at this time. However, given that these are unprecedented times, these timelines are something the Board will monitor closely. The following are still the relevant dates for this upcoming renewal.
May 1, 2020 - The renewal period opens. This is the first day individuals and businesses can renew their licenses.
June 30, 2020 - All licenses expire.
July 31, 2020 - This is the last day licenses can be renewed without penalty.
August 1, 2020 - Late fees begin. Initial late fees will be $60 through the month of August.
September 1, 2020 - $100 late fee applies. All licenses with an expiration date of June 30, 2020 are no longer valid for practice.
Beginning on May 1, 2020, email notifications will be sent to all individuals and business regarding renewal. The notifications will contain information, directions and links on how to complete the renewal process. Throughout the renewal timeline, outlined above, similar email notifications will be sent to those that have not completed the renewal process.
This guidance does not alter any Board rules except as set forth above. If the Governor's proclamation is extended, or if the Governor issues another proclamation addressing additional rules, or if circumstances otherwise change, the Board will issue further guidance.
If you contract for plumbing, mechanical, HVAC, refrigeration, sheet metal or hydronics services in the state of Iowa your business must have a contractor license and contractor registration from the Division of Labor. Please note that the business license is separate from the master license! Simply renewing your master license is not sufficient.
You must also submit a separate renewal form and fees for the contractor license. The application and fees also include a 3-year renewal fee for contractor registration through the Division of Labor at Iowa Workforce Development. Once an application is submitted to the board office, a portion of the fees paid and data are sent to the Division of Labor electronically. The Division of Labor will review and issue a new contractor registration number and send a new contractor registration card directly to you. Once the new registration number is issued, board staff review the application to determine if the license can be issued. If all requirements are met (master license has been renewed or issued, bond and insurance on file), then the contractor license is issued. Keep in mind that BOTH are required in Iowa. If you have not received BOTH a new registration card from the Division of Labor AND a license certificate for the BUSINESS from the board office, you have not completed the requirements.
Links to the online application and forms to obtain a new license and registration or renew an existing license or registration are available on our website here: https://idph.iowa.gov/pmsb/licensure/contractor. Bond and insurance requirements are also detailed on that page.
Public Search for a License/Online License Verification -
The board's online license verification system is now available on the IDPH Regulatory Programs Public Search Portal Page. The public search page allows you to search for both individual license holders and contractor licenses. To search by an individual name, enter the search criteria in first name and last name, and then click on "Search." To search for a contractor license, enter the business name under the field for "Facility," and then click on "Search." For best results, enter the percent symbol (%) at the beginning or end of your search criteria to do a wildcard search for partial values. For example, type J% under first name and Anders% under last name to find anyone whose first name begins with a "J" and whose last name starts with "Anders," such as Andersen or Anderson. Click on the link for "Details" to see specific license details including trade licenses held, approval date of the license, and expiration date of the license. Be advised that the link for "File a Complaint" does not work at this time. If you want to know whether someone has ever been disciplined by the board, please visit our Discipline and Public Actions page.
Online Database Help
The Iowa Department of Public Health has a dedicated support team to assist users with the new online database. Support team hours are Monday through Friday, 8:00 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Please be at your computer with internet and email access when calling. If you are trying to renew your license, you should also have your continuing education course information available.
Contact the support team toll free at 1-855-824-4357.
Iowa Plumbing and Mechanical Systems Board 2019 Annual Budget
Pursuant to Iowa Code 105.9, the Iowa Plumbing and Mechanical Systems Board has submitted their 2019 Annual Budget Report to the Iowa State Legislature. The report is now available for review.
Plumbing and Mechanical Systems Board office
321 E 12th Street
Des Moines, Iowa 50319-0075
Email: Please submit your questions using our online Contact Us Form