At first glance, it may not seem like there would be many differences between a residential and a commercial plumber. After all, both types of plumbers in Melbourne or worldwide install and repair pipes and plumbing fixtures. Well, yes, but that's just the tip of the iceberg. There are quite a few key ways commercial and residential plumbing differ. Here are just a few of the most important ones:

What Is Residential Plumbing?

Residential plumbing involves installing pipes, fixtures, and other plumbing equipment at home. Various residential plumbing services include-

  • Exterior and interior installation of pipes and fixtures in residential buildings
  • Modification of drainage systems
  • Installation of gas installations

What Is Commercial Plumbing?

A commercial plumber maintains, repairs, and installs plumbing systems in commercial facilities, such as retail stores, schools, universities, hospitals, restaurants, warehouses, manufacturing facilities, and nursing homes. Commercial plumbers must be able to-

  • Follow blueprints and designs and typically work on much larger and more complex plumbing systems
  • Work on large areas consisting of multiple floors
  • Design commercial plumbing infrastructure such as boiler systems, piping, water sewage system, etc.

Key Differences Between Commercial and Residential Plumbing

Scale of Work

The first and most obvious difference is scale. Commercial plumbing systems are generally much larger and more complex than residential ones. That's because they have to be able to accommodate the needs of businesses, which often have dozens or even hundreds of employees. As a result, commercial plumbers must be able to handle projects of all sizes.

Training & Certification

Because commercial plumbing systems are so complex, commercial plumbers need to undergo more training than their residential counterparts. In addition, they also need to be licensed and certified. That's because only certified journeyman plumbers are allowed to work on commercial projects in most states.

Services Offered

A key difference between the two is the range of services offered. Commercial plumbers in Melbourne and worldwide typically provide a much more comprehensive range of services than residential ones. Businesses need specialised services, such as grease trap cleaning and backflow prevention. As a result, commercial plumbers need to be experts in various areas to serve their clients best.


It's important to note that commercial plumbing services are more expensive than residential ones. That's because commercial plumbing projects are generally more complex than residential ones.


Commercial buildings have different plumbing requirements than residential buildings, so the types of machinery and equipment that plumbers work with will differ between these two settings. One of the biggest differences is, of course, the tube size. Homes typically use 3/4-inch utility lines and 3 to 4-inch drainage lines. But in a commercial building with dozens of toilets, sinks, and other fixtures that require water, a plumber might be dealing with 4-inch utility lines and 10-inch or 12-inch drainage lines.

Professional plumbers in Melbourne working in large-scale buildings or factories will likely work with large boilers, site sewer lines, lift stations, and industrial-grade fixtures. Commercial settings may also require the installation of more demanding and complex appliances in commercial settings.

Complexity of Work

While detecting and fixing damages in a residential building is significantly easier due to limited pipes and fixtures, spotting and repairing these can be challenging in a commercial complex. It may also make it more difficult to complete repairs on time and close the deal until the issue resolves. More frequent and thorough inspections are mandatory in commercial buildings because many people use the facility and the hygiene needs ate maximum there.

Work Timings

Home plumbers are often called in on weekends and evenings to deal with emergencies like burst pipes and leaking toilets. If they work for  24/7 emergency plumbing services, they may be on-call on certain nights and weekends to address these issues (off-peak work is subject to additional charges). Otherwise, the home installer maintains near-standard weekday hours of 9-5.

On the other hand, commercial plumbers in Melbourne often have to work after hours when their employees or the public are away from work. For example, plumbing is usually done at night when the facility is unused in offices or shopping malls. Commercial plumbers often adapt to irregular working hours to minimise public impact and inconvenience.

Code Requirement

All residential buildings are subject to the same building codes. However, commercial buildings have specific requirements varying from factories and industrial plants to hospitals and restaurants. Commercial kitchens, for example, require grease traps to prevent grease, oil and grease from clogging pipes and stagnating sewage. Hospitals must directly connect to at least two public water supplies to ensure reliable water supply for critical functions. Commercial plumbers should know different code requirements for other structures they work with.


As you can see, there are quite a few key differences between commercial and residential plumbers. From the type of training they receive to the prices they charge, these two types of plumbers are quite different. Once you know the difference, it becomes easy to decide whom to give a call for your needs.

Melbourne-Wide 24/7 Emergency Plumbing Services From NLK Plumbing

If you are seeking a reliable, experienced, professional plumber in Melbourne, NLK Plumbing is the name to call. We offer all kinds of plumbing services in residential and commercial complexes. Our services include and are not limited to unclogging blocked drains, roof plumbing, gas installation, gutter replacement, backflow plumbing, and other plumbing-related services.

Here are our key service features-

  • Round-the-clock service for every plumbing emergency
  • Offering services on the same day of complaint registration
  • Work with updated, modern equipment
  • Guaranteed results
  • Serving Melbourne-wide
  • Offer fast and reliable solutions
  • Well-experienced, intensively trained and licenced professionals

If you want the best services of a trustworthy, experienced professional plumber in Melbourne, do not hesitate to call us on 0404803333. We shall be glad to help.