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Plumbing

Did you know you are required by law to use a licensed plumber? This is due to the fact that your plumbing system is vital to the functioning of your home. Just think of the inconvenience a burst pipe has, not to mention the health and safety implications. Plumbers undergo special training to safely work on various aspect of your plumbing. Licensed plumbers are also instrumental in home renovations, where the removal and installation of plumbing elements are integral to the functioning of rooms - specifically kitchens, bathrooms and laundries.

The Plumbing Code of Australia (PCA) is the technical reference for all plumbing work, and is an integral part of the National Construction Code (NCC). It applies to all aspects of plumbing work, specifically:

  • sanitary plumbing
  • drainage & stormwater drainage systems
  • heating, ventilation and air conditioning systems
  • wastewater systems

Licensing of Plumbers

Plumbing is governed on a state by state basis, with dedicated regulatory bodies that manage the issuing and renewal of licenses. Depending on the state you are in, a plumbers licence may include drainage and gasfitting, typically detailed as an endorsement or seperate class on the contractors physical licence. It is illegal for a contractor to undertake work that he is not licensed for. There are also different types of licences, which may effect what plumbing work the licence holder can undertake. A tradesperson licence may be required to be supervised, while a contractor licence enables the individual to contract and advertise for work. some states also have a supervisor licence type. Licences are typically issued for a number of years.

Read more about licensing of plumbers where you live in our state overview.

Types of Plumbing Jobs

A licensed plumber is able to undertake a wide range of tasks related to the maintenance and repair of a buildings plumbing and drainage system. This could include:

  • Plumbing installation
  • Plumbing repairs
  • Plumbing maintenance
  • New drain install & repairs
  • Hot water system install & repairs
  • Guttering
  • Home renovation plumbing
  • 24/7 Emergency plumbing service

Plumbing - NSW

Plumbers in NSW are regulated by NSW Fair Trading and all work must conform to the Plumbing Code of Australia. All plumbing work requires the use of an appropriately licensed tradesperson to carry out the work.

You will encounter the following types of licences in NSW:

  • Qualified supervisor - supervise and carry out work
  • Contractor - contract and advertise work
  • Tradesperson certificate - all work needs to be signed off by a contractor or supervisor class

Plumbing work could include the following:

  • Water plumbing
  • Draining
  • Roof plumbing
  • Gasfitting

All jobs that involve this type of activity will require In addition there are specific licence classes for certain types of plumbing work. These are typically endorsed on the tradespersons physical licence. Licences are typically issued for one to three years.

Plumbing - Victoria

All plumbing work in Victoria needs to be carried out by a licensed or registered plumber. It is illegal to perform or undertake plumbing work without the appropriate qualifications and accreditation.

Plumbing work in Victoria is regulated by the Plumbing Industry Council (PIC) which is under the auspices of the Victorian Building Authority (VBA).In addition, any plumbing work over $750 requires the issuing of a Compliance Certificate.

Plumbing licensing and registration in Victoria are covered by three main categories of plumbing work:

  • Main
  • Restricted
  • Specialised

Plumbers in Victoria are licensed in eight classes: Water Supply, Gasfitting, Sanitary, Roofing (Stormwater), Drainage, Mechanical Services, Fire Protection or Irrigation (Non-agricultural). They need to be licensed in a specific class to legally carry out work of that type.

Licences are typically issued for one to three years. You can easily check a plumbers credentials by asking them for their photo ID card, which details the validity of their licence and the classes they are licensed for.

Plumbing - Queensland

Plumbing work in Queensland is governed by the Queensland Building and Construction Commission, with licences issued by the Plumbing Industry Council. A licence is required for all types of plumbing work in this state, irrespective of the value of the work.

Licensed plumbers are able to install, commission, maintain and test plumbing and drainage in all types of buildings and premises. This may include roof repair and restoration work, rainwater tank installation as well as jobs involving solar panel and hot water systems.

Plumbers in Queensland can be registred in two licence grades:

  • Trade contractor
  • Nominee supervisor

The nominee supervisor is typically an employee of a company, with the trade contractor grade denoting the full licence class. You can easily check a plumbers credentials by asking them for their photo ID card, which details the validity of their licence and the classes they are licensed for. Licences are typically issued for one to three years.

Plumbing - South Australia (SA)

Plumbing work in South Australia is governed by Consumer and Business Services (CBS), and includes all domestic/commercial work such as:

  • Connections of water pipes and sewage
  • Fire protection systems

All plumbing work in South Australia needs to conducted by a licensed individual, who must hold the appropriate qualifications to qualify. Persons undergoing training, such as apprentices who are being supervised on the job, are also required to be registred. Plumbers also need to provide Certificates of Compliance (COC) for the work they carry out.

There are two classes of plumbing licences for individuals:

  • Workers - for individuals carrying out plumbing work.
  • Contractors - for anyone wanting to contract or sub-contract plumbing work.

You can easily check a plumbers credentials by asking them for their photo ID card, which details the validity of their licence and the classes they are licensed for. Licences are typically issued for one to three years.

Plumbing - Western Australia (WA)

All plumbers in Western Australia are regulated by the Plumbers Licensing Board. Plumbing or drainage work requires a licence, irrespective of the value of the job. The scope of works for this licence applies to all jobs involving:

  • water
  • sanitary
  • drainage plumbing

There are three classes of plumbers licence in Western Australia:

  • Plumbing Contractor
  • Plumbing Contractor (Drainage Plumbing)
  • Tradesperson

Only a licensed plumbing contractor is qualified to certify that the work complies with the relevant plumbing standards. Licensed tradespersons therefore require supervision for the work they carry out. You can easily check a plumbers credentials by asking them for their photo ID card, which details the validity of their licence and the classes they are licensed for. Licences are typically issued for one to three years.

Plumbing - Tasmania

Plumbing work in Tasmania is governed by the Department of Justice. All plumbing work is required to be conducted by a licensed individual. There are a range of plumbing classes, including: sanitary, drainage and roof stormwater - all of which will be listed on the holders physical licence.

Plumbing licences exist in three categories for Tasmania:

  • Practitioner - to undertake plumbing work
  • Contractor - to contract or manage plumbing work
  • Provisional

In addition a Nominated Manager is responsible for certifying plumbing work for a plumbing contractor business. You can easily check a plumbers credentials by asking them for their photo ID card, which details the validity of their licence and the classes they are licensed for. Licences are typically issued for one to three years.

Plumbing - ACT

Plumbers are licensed and accredited in the ACT by the Planning and Land Authority (ACTPLA). It includes a broad scope of works, including water supply, drain work, rainwater tanks & greywater systems, hot water systems, backflow prevention devices, sprinkler or spray systems.

You will encounter the following types of plumbers licences in the ACT:

  • Sanitary
  • Advanced Sanitary
  • Journeyman - restricted works and supervised

You can easily check a plumbers credentials by asking them for their photo ID card, which details the validity of their licence and the classes they are licensed for. Licences are typically issued for one to three years.

Plumbing - Northern Territory (NT)

In the Northern Territory the Plumbers & Drainers Licensing Board regulates that sector. All plumbing work, irrespective of the cost of the job, needs to be undertaken by an appropriately licensed individual. There are two classes of plumbers in this jurisdiction:

  • Journeyman
  • Advanced Tradesman

Journeyman are required to be supervised by an Advanced Tradesman and are not allowed to contract for plumbing work. Plumbing work will typically involve installation, maintenance or repair. Additional training is required for work involving backflow prevention or thermostatic mixing valves, and these are endorsed on the plumbers physical licence.

You can easily check a plumbers credentials by asking them for their photo ID card, which details the validity of their licence and the classes they are licensed for. Licences are typically issued for one to three years.

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