Do Lighting Technicians Need CE in California?

Written by Kacie Goff

As a licensed non-residential lighting technician in the state of California, you’ve put in the work to get the certification the state requires. And you want to make sure you don’t lose it. Otherwise, you risk paying twice as much in renewal fees, or even having to take the lighting tech exam all over again.

That means you want to stay on top of renewing your license. What, exactly, do you have to do to make that happen? Four things:

  1. Have the required work experience in the last three years (2,000 hours, which is roughly one year of full-time work so that should be pretty easy)
  2. Send in the renewal application
  3. Pay the $100 renewal fee
  4. Get the necessary continuing education

So, yes, California nonresidential lighting technicians do need continuing education during each renewal cycle. Let’s go over what you need to know — and how to knock out your CE hours as easily as possible. 

The number of hours required

The state requires all lighting technicians — along with all other certified electricians — to get 32 hours of continuing education during each three-year renewal cycle

The good news is that you don’t need to clear four full workdays to get your CE hours. The state has approved a number of schools to offer online continuing education for lighting technicians. If you choose online, on-demand CE, you can chip away at your 32 hours whenever your schedule allows. And if you choose mobile-friendly CE (like ours), you can even work on your hours from your phone. 

Once you finish, hold onto any paperwork you get. You’ll need to show proof that you’ve completed your CE in order to renew. The easiest way to do that is to include your Certificate of Completion with your renewal form. (We issue you this certificate as soon as you finish your hours with us.) 

Taking CE that counts

You can’t go to just any school to get continuing education education that will count towards your nonresidential lighting technician renewal requirements. You need to make sure your CE hours do two things:

  • Comes from a state-approved education provider. When your provider is approved by the Department of Industrial Relations (DIR), your hours will definitely count toward the renewal requirement. Check that the schools you look at have the green light. As a sample, you can scroll to the bottom of our California electrician CE page to see our approval letter from the DIR. 
  • Focuses on what you do. On their FAQs page, the DIR says that courses that qualify for CE are ones “that are relevant to the category of certification that are being requested to be renewed.” In other words, you want to make sure your CE hours focus on electrical work. 

Get your CE hours done and submit the renewal application/fee and you shouldn’t have any trouble renewing your California nonresidential lighting technician certification. You don’t need to wait until the last minute, either. If you’re within a year of your cert’s expiration, the DIR will accept your renewal paperwork.