How Do I Know When I Need An Engineer?


  • Somebody tells you. Often a City Building Inspector, a consultant/specialist, or a contractor will tell you that you need an engineer involved, to create a design with the assurance that it will function properly
  • You don’t understand the problem, or the solution. If you’ve talked with two contractors about fixing a problem, and they come back with wildly different proposals, that’s an indication that they don’t agree on the approach to solve the problem. You should probably have an engineer evaluate the problem and determine the best solution.
  • You need an “engineered” solution. Only a Wisconsin registered Professional Engineer (PE) can provide engineering services to the public (Wisconsin law). There is a “license lookup” site where you can find out if a person has a Wisconsin professional engineer’s license: (  You can always find “experts”, “consultants”, “professionals”, and “specialists”, plus friends and relatives, to provide you with advise, but if you hire an someone for engineering services, they are required to be a registered Professional Engineer.

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