Written by Kacie Goff
Attention electricians in the state of Texas: just getting your license isn’t enough. The Texas Department of Licensing & Regulation (TDLR) requires you to take some steps to keep your license active on a periodic basis. For most license types, that includes taking a certain number of hours of Texas electrical continuing education and submitting a renewal application, along with a fee.
And while other states might give you a few years to complete the steps necessary for your license renewal, Texas works on a tighter timeline. The TDLR requires you to renew your license annually. Don’t stress. We have everything you need to know to keep your license active listed in this article.
Good news. You don’t have to deal with a bunch of paperwork to keep your license active. Instead, the TDLR now offers online license renewal for all 14 different types of electrical licenses. Here are the direct links you need to access the renewal form for your specific license type:
Click your license type and you’ll go straight to the TDLR’s online license renewal portal. Once you’re there, you’ll need your license number and either your social security number or federal tax ID to start your renewal.
If you have any trouble renewing your license online, contact the TDLR. You’re responsible for getting your renewal in on time and they won’t give you an extension just because the website wasn’t working. If the online renewal isn’t working for you, contact them and request a paper renewal form.
After you first get your license, you have 18 months from its issue date to complete your first renewal. Then, you need to renew annually. The TDLR is supposed to send you a postcard reminding you to renew 60 days before your license expires — but don’t wait for that piece of mail. It’s your responsibility to keep your license active. Mark a date on your calendar so you don’t forget to start your renewal process in time.
If you renew online, you need to complete the renewal by your expiration date. If you send in a paper renewal, make sure it’s postmarked on or before your expiration date.
The state can penalize you for operating with an expired license (if your license has been expired between one day and 18 months) or without a license (if your license has been expired for more than 18 months). Keeping your license active prevents you from having to pay any penalties or fines.
You need to pay a renewal fee when you complete your online renewal. The TDLR’s online portal takes debit and credit card, so submitting your fee along with your renewal is fairly simple.
The amount you’ll need to pay varies depending on your license type and the timing of your renewal. (You save money by renewing on time so there’s another reason to put a renewal reminder on your calendar.)
Here are the fees broken down by license type and whether or not your renew before your license expires:
It depends on your license type. The TLDR requires continuing education for the following licenses:
If you have one of these license types, you need to complete four hours of electrical continuing education in your renewal period.
Contractors and Residential Appliance Installers can skip the Texas electrical license continuing education.
You need to take your Texas electrical continuing education courses within the annual renewal period. That said, you don’t have to wait to take them to submit your renewal. Your education provider submits your completed hours to the state, so as long as the TDLR gets that info before your expiration date, you’re covered.
You can check which hours have been reported to the state on the Continuing Education Courses Look Up page on the TDLR’s website.
To find a course so you can get the four hours you need, reference the list the TDLR provides. You can sort by “Offers Internet Courses” by clicking the button towards the top. That way, you can find TDLR continuing education for electricians that you can complete at your pace and at your convenience instead of having to attend a class in person.
Make sure you choose a TDLR-approved provider from the list above or your hours won’t count towards your renewal. All of these approved providers will cover the topics required by the state in your hours, including:
Complete your online renewal each year, pay your fees, and, if required for your license type, finish your four hours of annual electrical continuing education. With these steps, you keep your Texas electrical license active and avoid penalties and fees.