Dismiss Notice
Join Physics Forums Today!
The friendliest, high quality science and math community on the planet! Everyone who loves science is here!

Does need to have a PE license?

  1. Oct 11, 2006 #1
    Hi all,

    I am new to this forum and always wanted to participate and become a member of an engineering forum. I used to work as a Field Engineer for a company that creates control engineering systems. I spent alot of time out there in the field fixing and repairing alot of VFD's.

    I have come into a confrontation with someone specificaly telling me that I need to have a PE inorder for me to assist my customers in fixing the VFD's.

    The question I pose to you all is this...Does one need to have a PE license in order to work as a Field Service Engineer for troubleshooting drive parameters and diagnosing electrical circuits?

    Any feedback would help

  2. jcsd
  3. Oct 11, 2006 #2


    User Avatar

    Staff: Mentor

    Welcome to the PF, vsdguy. I think you need to post more information about the environment that you are working in. For example, I got pressure in my consulting days here in Northern California, USA that I needed to have PE credentials in order to consult, but my true performance resume was generally more than enough to get me work.
  4. Oct 12, 2006 #3


    User Avatar

    Staff: Mentor

    No, you absolutely do not need a PE for that, though they should probably call you a technician instead of an engineer to avoid confusion.
  5. Oct 12, 2006 #4
    Thank you all,

    I have the same thing happening to me berkeman. I guess I spent alot of time out in the field working with various industrial applications.
    I guess after all as long as I fixed the problems and got production up and running it all that mattered. The environment I have been and am working is mostly industrial and involving industrial control systems involving Vfd's and electric motors.
    The reason I chose to become a member of PF forum is that I see alot of information is being exchanged for the purpose of good.

    Thank you for the quick response.

  6. Oct 13, 2006 #5


    User Avatar
    Science Advisor

    The big question is who is telling you that you need the PE? If it is a customer, that could be one of their contractor requirements as a CYA on their end. If it is someone in your organisation, have them do the homework and show you written documentation stating the PE requirement. Usually the PE is for signing off designs, not troubleshooting/repairing existing ones.
  7. Oct 13, 2006 #6


    User Avatar
    Gold Member

    That is the big question. When I was consulting for pulp and paper mills, (writing system descriptions and training manuals for chemical recovery boilers, power boilers, steam systems, turbine generators, and electrical distribution systems, primarily) my resume was sufficient for most jobs. The most stringent requirement was from Georgia-Pacific in Cedar Springs GA. They demanded that I be covered not only by $1M liability insurance (not a problem), but by worker's comp insurance. Since I was self-employed, that was a stretch, but I bought a policy anyway. Shortly afterward, the Maine State department of taxation sent me threatening letters every few weeks because I was not paying witholding taxes on my "employees", and every few weeks I sent them another letter explaining that the worker's comp insurance was a corporate requirement and that I was self-empoyed, but needed the WC certificate to gain access to the mill. They never gave up until the contract expired and I cancelled the insurance. Talk about Catch 22! I could never have filed a WC claim against myself even if I had been injured!
  8. Nov 5, 2006 #7
    No.... your not involved in designing but basicaly on trouble shooting VFD's...
Share this great discussion with others via Reddit, Google+, Twitter, or Facebook