View Full Version : Working in Australia

02-08-2003, 10:38 PM
Has anyone worked on construction sites in Australia?
Here in the UK we use 110v, & I was wondering if the electrical equipement I use in the uk was compatable & worth taking with me to Oz.


03-08-2003, 10:53 AM
I would of thaught that the shipping cost to take your equipment with you would be far more than purchasing new tools when you arrive:D ;)

03-08-2003, 06:01 PM
go to http:www.britishexpats.com

there is a huge load of info regarding brits etc going to au

most trades are packing their tools and taking them (after a really good clean -no dirt or dust as the customs are red hot and will charge you a fortune to have them clenaed for you)

if you are emigrating etc it's better to keep your own tools than buy new it's not cheaper by a long way...



05-08-2003, 09:21 AM
I have not heard of anything other than 240V being generally available in Australia.

We have our own version of CE called C-Tick and, in theory, an applicance must be certified locally to be legal. Union controlled building sites are very particular about electrical tools and cords and they must all be checked every 3 months.

Mark Baker

05-08-2003, 09:21 AM
I have not heard of anything other than 240V being generally available in Australia.

We have our own version of CE called C-Tick and, in theory, an applicance must be certified locally to be legal. Union controlled building sites are very particular about electrical tools and cords and they must all be checked every 3 months.

Mark Baker

750 Valve
07-09-2003, 02:20 PM
Dont bother, too much hassle. Who you workin' for in Oz?

07-09-2003, 11:48 PM
Hi 750

Have decided not to bring any electrical equipment with me as is all 110V. Looks like will be paying a visit to the tools shop when we arrive in Sydney on 23/10/03.

Haven't got a job offer as yet but am going to set up some interviews for the monday morning after we arrive. That will give me time to get over the jetlag..hopefully.

Do you know anybody who is looking for A/C engineers around that time in & around Sydney atthat time. I am hoping that we have timed our arrival to make the most of the summer demand.


P.s Interesting pic (My other half checked the e-mail & said that it was disgusting.....Women eh?....Ha Ha)

08-09-2003, 08:21 AM

This might be of interest.

Keep in touch with the forum, Stuart. I might need you to put in a good word for me one day! ;)

08-09-2003, 08:07 PM
wages in au are pretty crap

(i have this both from employers and a.c guys in oz)

....expect about 38-45k au divide by 2.3 to get 's 50+ in sydney maybe but try affording a house there...

the cost of living is pretty much the same there as here (hard to believe but TRUE!!!!!) and you are close to 'piss poor'

house prices have gone through the roof recently-unless you want to live 1000 miles from the coast..

cost of living is about the same as here food etc..
and you have to pay to visit the doc's etc..

20 yrs ago the au lifestyle was THE one to have..

now you need to think very very carefully before you leap..



p.a I know as i have completed the immigration process and have a skilled fridgeman visa 'on the hip' but with all things considered, following the yellow brick rd won' t necessarily lead to oz..

08-09-2003, 11:22 PM
Richard hi,
Sounds like you aren't too keen on the country as a whole.
Dunno why but anyway.......

I am very hopefull of having a better life for me & the family over there. Good weather, good food, great people. Ok so it may have a downside but hey there are two sides to everything.

True the cost of housing has shot up in the last few years but its been the same here. Have spent a little time over there & dont remember the cost of food being all that bad.

There is one thing that does worry me though....All the nastys spiders & sharks. Snakes dont worry me cos dont see those in the city that often. Would love to learn to surf when there but the shark thing is a BIG problem for me at the moment....Any surfers out there care to set me straight?

09-09-2003, 07:53 AM
not quite sure where you got that from stuart

but no i don't have anything against au at all -in fact we are going there next month!!

jobs are aplenty for us out there so you won't be surfin for long

good luck and i hope it all works out well



750 Valve
11-09-2003, 12:31 PM
Stuart, you shouldn't have any worries getting work, as far as what richard says, yes house prices, cost of living yada, yada, yada.... but, as far as pay goes, an avg tech, yes 40 to 50K, a good tech can double this and then some (I'm sure this goes anywhere in the world too).
This probably isn't the right category to bring this up but fridge guys (commercial and industrial) usually earn more per annum here than AC
Oh and I swim with the masses of maneaters in sydney beaches every year, i'm still here.... have nearly drowned though but thats got nothing to do with sharks. Seriously, spiders and snakes are more of a worry but every continent has there own little creepies and crawlies.
To all you freezing poms out there, you'll probably whinge about things no matter where you are, why not do it in comfort and style. Come over, experience a summer in Oz, you wont go home.

Aussie Aussie Aussie Oy! Oy! Oy!

11-09-2003, 05:41 PM
this is interesting 100k++ hmm not heard anyone mention this

i'll email paul on this

i'll invite him to this thread and see if he cares to share..



11-09-2003, 09:16 PM
750 Valve,
Sounds like the sort of thing we're after, work hard & play hard. Determined to be at the top of the A/C field after a couple of years over there.

Equally determined not to be whinging poms, looking forward to turning into real Aussies after the two years.

We are planning to live on the central coast somewhere near Warnervale, I am expecting to have to commute into the city for work, at least to make the contacts in the bigger companies.

Am going to set up some meetings with agencies to hopefuly speed the process of finding a job.

Do you have any suggestions for which ones I should try? also any particular Aussie job hunting tips?

Also have to contact the TRA when we arrive to register for license to work as A/C engineer.


11-09-2003, 09:21 PM
don't forget you have to take several exams (safe handling electrical tests etc) out there as they don't trust you to be up to their standard..;-)



02-10-2003, 03:43 PM
Hi Stuart
Most construction sites use 240v, all your drill leads will need to have plug tops replaced for ozzy type and most sites require that electrical equip be tagged by qualified sparky. Electric drills ect pretty cheap over here. I did't bring any of mine over.

09-10-2003, 10:38 PM
Hi dobbs,

Hows things?

How long have you been over there?
Can you shed any light on the TRA & the various tests that Rbartlett mentioned,Iknow they will ask for some form of test to be done but it would be great to hear from somebody who has gone through it.


P.S Only about 10 days to go now..........Should be good....looking forward to it.

17-10-2003, 10:39 AM
Hello all.

One of my mates moved earlier this year. He's just sent this:

yes i had to get a elec. lice. $400, for the test $260 for the certificate( plastic card), well ripped off.
cfc lic. $75 so far,
but its all good fun.
had to get my own,
leak tester, amp probe, mulitmeter, gauges, lines, binders.

Dobbsair, did you have this? I have heard that Oz are moving towards all fridge guys having to be qualified sparkies as well. Is there any truth in that?

17-10-2003, 07:54 PM
you need to get a restricted electrical licience for working on a.c
this will allow you to do certain tasks but you aren't allowed to work on the power side..for this you will need a full sparks licience..

from what i understand this is very expensive and takes several years



18-10-2003, 03:29 AM
yes i had to get a restricted elec. licence the test is pretty simple approx 4 hrs of hands on fault finding and safety and a small written test. They recognised English qual's but still had to do a trade test which was in the same place as the elec test but on different days (the 2 test were identical but they still charged for both!!) Had to sit a test for CFC lic without this or elec lic "no work"
friggies can do fault finding but no power hookups or electrical installation western power are pretty strict. Sparky's can do a quick course and then do our job as well as there own so they can install the split A/C's and take work from us poor hard over worked friggys we can't take theirs
Had to supply all hand tools including
leak tester, amp probe, mulitmeter, gauges, lines, binders.


750 Valve
22-10-2003, 02:42 PM
Stuart, ever worked on supermarket fridge? If so can pretty much guarantee you'll find a job, my company's looking for blokes. You'll still get AC work but like you say travel could be a bitch, no hi rises on the central coast, nice area though, kickin back on the coast, fishing on the lakes, beaches just next door, vineyards just up the road. Got a mate who lives at warnervale, so does a fellow at work and I do heaps of work up there. If looking for a big AC company, try Trane or Honeywell, the latter especially if you have controls experience. Will have to meet up for any icy cold VB on 40deg C summers day (if I can drag you away from a hose and an undersized condenser!)

26-10-2003, 11:07 AM
Sounds good 750

Although haven't got any experience working on supermarket fridges (DAMN) but if your company is looking I am here now with tools & am just itchin to get at it.....

Judging by the weather since thurs 23 oct that 40deg seems a mile away.....but we all know it will come

Warnervale is our ideal settling place but could be somewhere nearby.

regards Stu

750 Valve
18-11-2003, 10:59 AM
40 deg days... dont worry they'll hit. When they do you'll wish it was 20!!!:cool:

25-11-2003, 01:18 PM
Is there anything i can do here in uk prior to travelling to WA that can speed up the process of the tests required to gain an a/c license?
I`m travelling over to Perth in Feb , hopefully to do these tests so that when i return with the family i can start work pretty much straight away (providing a get a job).
Do i need to bring any tools with me to do the test? And any other information ie refrences , TRA ref , etc?
Is this test done through TRA?
Will my safe handling certificate from UK be valid in Australia ?
What exactly do the tests consist of ?
What happens if you don`t pass? can you take it again ? do you need to wait a certain amount of time etc?
I realise i`m asking you a lot of questions here but as you can imagine it`s a bit daunting as i`ve never even been to Oz on holiday .
Are the prospects of work good in WA?
cheers Dobbs

05-02-2004, 11:28 AM
can anyone tell me is their any jobs that are on a self employed basis as me and my family are moving to adelaide in november and id love to no what the going rate of pay is cheers everyone

05-02-2004, 11:52 AM

go to the au/nz forum and use the search function...

expats going/gone to au/adelaide

becoming s/e in au is not easy -you must firstly re TRA your skills and take any additional exams

then you must take a business course and register your application.


(they will not allow you to just wake up on monday and be 'jollycold refrigeration')

*oh and don't forget to pay!!!*

then you will find it quite hard -not impossible- to get work

(unless you know people there-as au is very close knit )

although there is a shortage of fridge men they won't all be at the airport waving flags shouting "thank god you've arrived it's baking hot here"

goe to their homepage and read/digest

as i understand it the 'going rate' for a company charge to customer is @ $60.00au per hr.what subcontractors get is probably about $30+...



05-02-2004, 03:06 PM
hi richard,

I like your humour, I guess its difficult to get a job down there, funny cos I've seen in local papers advertisments paid by ausies, looking for proffesional people to immigrate there. jobs are promised for the "right" ones. limit age is 40. lucky me I dont have to queue.

the same advertisments are also by your government????
dont you have enough proffesionals?

the only job I did there was rewiring my family house in scotland which was checked and appruved by scottish power.

funny cos it was illegal work. I brought with me the whole elecrical cupdoard and had to make some explaning at the airport.

all the tools didnt bother them.