Glazier Kaimahi Karaehe

Glaziers install or replace glass or mirrors in buildings, vehicles or boats and may create decorative glass features.

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Glaziers may do some or all of the following:

  • select, shape and cut glass or mirrors
  • remove broken glass
  • install or replace flat glass (such as windows), fittings (such as showers) or fixtures (such as splashbacks)
  • repair, install or replace windscreens in vehicles or boats
  • seal glass using putty, rubber or other sealing products
  • create decorative glass features.

Physical Requirements

Glaziers need to have strong arms and a strong back as they lift heavy sheets of glass. They also need to have steady hands.

Useful Experience

Useful experience for glaziers includes any work in the glass or building construction industries.

Personal Qualities

Glaziers need to be:

  • careful and safety-conscious
  • observant, accurate and able to follow instructions
  • practical and organised
  • honest and polite, because they often work on-site at people's homes
  • comfortable with heights
  • good at basic maths.

Skills

Glaziers need to have:

  • knowledge of types of glass and how to work with them
  • skill in cutting, smoothing and installing glass
  • knowledge of building standards and regulations for glaziers
  • knowledge of safety procedures, and health and safety regulations.

Glaziers who are self-employed also need business skills.

Conditions

Glaziers:

  • usually work regular hours, but may work overtime or be on call at night or early in the morning
  • work in workshops, on construction sites and in buildings needing window repairs
  • may have to work at heights on high-rise buildings.

Subject Recommendations

No specific secondary education is required for this job, but English, maths, science, and design and visual communication to at least NCEA Level 2 are useful.

Year 11 and 12 learners can find out more about the construction industry, and gain relevant skills, by doing a National Certificate in Building, Construction and Allied Trades (Level 1 and 2) through the BConstructive programme.

For Year 11 to 13 learners, trades academies and the STAR and Gateway programmes are good ways to gain relevant experience and skills.

These programmes may help you gain an apprenticeship, but do not reduce the amount of time it takes to complete it.

Glaziers can earn around $21-$30 per hour.

Chances of getting a job as a Glazier are good due to a shortage of people interested in this type of work.

Pay for glaziers varies depending on experience and where they work. 

  • Apprentice glaziers usually start on the minimum wage, but earn more as they gain experience.
  • Qualified glaziers usually earn between $21 and $30 an hour, depending on experience. 
  • Self-employed glaziers may earn more than this, depending on the success of their business.

Source: Window & Glass Association NZ, 2019.

Experienced glaziers may progress to set up their own business, or move into sales, management, or technical roles such as estimating.  

Glaziers may specialise in:

  • automotive glazing – installing glass and mirrors in vehicles and boats
  • creating decorative features such as glass walls, staircases and stained glass windows.

Years Of Training

1-3 years of training usually required.

There are no specific requirements to become a glazier as you gain skills on the job. However, many employers prefer to hire glaziers who have or are working towards a qualification.

To become a qualified glazier you need to complete an apprenticeship and gain a glazing qualification such as:

  • New Zealand Certificate in Automotive Re-glazing (Level 3) – for installing or repairing glass in vehicles
  • New Zealand Certificate in Glazing (Level 4) – for manufacturing glass or installing glass in buildings. 

The Building and Construction Industry Training Organisation oversees glazier apprenticeships.

Glazier