COMPANY: Arndt & Son Plumbing, Brooklyn, Wisconsin
TITLE: Master plumber
How long have you been in the PHCP-PVF industry?
TA: Officially, I started on weekends and summers when I was seven. That job was a brand new house, we did the in-floor heat and plumbing. So my first job ever was to hold the pipe while they stapled it down to the floor. It just progressed after that. The jobs got a little bit better after that.
What drew you into the industry?
TA: When I was a kid, I just loved tearing stuff apart and putting it back together — seeing how it worked and why it worked. I would always get birdhouse kits and stuff like that from the store. My mom would give it to me when we got home and I would work on it all night until it was done. I just loved making things and seeing the final product. My best traits were working with my hands, problem-solving and troubleshooting — so plumbing just felt like a good fit.
What is the most rewarding aspect of working in the industry?
TA: The self-fullfilment. At the end of the day, you can say, “I made that,” or “I did that,” or “I helped those people.” There’s affirmation at the end of the day that I got something done. Yes, other jobs get things done, but how do you scale that? It’s a lot harder to put that on a scale vs. being on a project or replacing someone’s water heater.
What is one thing you wish more people knew/understood about the PHCP-PVF industry?
TA: The one thing I wish people knew is it’s not the grubby, dirty, you’re no good for college job. I wish people knew it was a family-supporting job — the wages can support a family. I wish it wasn’t looked down upon as much, and that it was looked at as equal to getting a four-year college degree. You actually get a foot forward because you don’t have all the student loan debt. I’m 29 and just built my house (spoiler: It’s all in-floor radiant heat). Most people my age are still paying college debt.
What has been the proudest moment in your career so far?
TA: I have two — it’s a tie between getting my master plumber’s license two years ago when I was 27 and winning the PHCC Apprenticeship Competition. I won that when I was a third-year apprentice in 2014. Not many people can say they won a national piping competition, but not everyone can say they’re a master plumber either.
What is one thing most people don’t know about you?
TA: I feel like I’m an open book, so this is a hard one. A lot of people don’t know that I won the piping competition when I was younger. Or that I was child labor when I was seven! The funniest thing I do when I’m at a customer’s house and they say, “Boy, you’re pretty young!” And I go, “Yeah, I’m 29, but I got 22 years in the industry!”
Why he was chosen as a Next Gen All Star Top 20 Under 40 winner:
“At only seven years old, Tyler Arndt eagerly wanted to start working alongside his dad, Dale Arndt, owner of Arndt and Son’s Plumbing in Brooklyn, Wisconsin. Dale, an industry veteran and recognized PHCC, QSC and RPA member welcomed the curiosity, drive and early work ethic Tyler displayed. Tyler's family has been in the plumbing business for years. It was Louis Arndt, his paternal grandfather, who influenced Tyler’s decision to be part of the industry. Louis started the company in 1972, Arndt and Son Plumbing LLC is a three-generation company, providing ‘Prompt, Professional Service.’
“After graduating high school, Tyler became a plumbing apprentice, and during his five years of schooling, he maintained an A average before writing his journeyman’s test. He wrote his master’s license three years after passing his journeyman's test, Wisconsin requires eight years of training before you can write for your master’s license.
“Tyler knows the importance of training and development, and staying on top of industry trends and his craft. He takes manufacturer training classes to keep up on the latest products, classes to advance knowledge on products as well as leadership and business courses to ensure he is not only staying on top of the technical side of his trade but the personal side as well. Tyler has attended conventions and classes for the PHCC, QSC and the RPA (even when he was a kid).
Throughout Tyler’s life, he loved hands-on work, and naturally, he is mechanically oriented, so for him to dive in and figure out the inner workings of plumbing, he was a natural. However, what gave him the most pleasure was the relationships he was developing with clients, vendors, and the community. This remains true still to this day. He values and nurtures his relationships, and no doubt, these relationships will still be in place for generations to come,” says his father, Dale Arndt of Arndt & Sons Plumbing.