To many people, a plumber is a plumber, and the same one that installs the plumbing in your home can install the plumbing at your place of business. That may or may not be true, but the difference between a residential plumber and a commercial plumbing contractor boils down to one big separator: expertise. A plumber who specializes in residential plumbing may be an expert at laying pipes and installing showers, but a plumber who does commercial plumbing has a totally different skill set, like the ones listed below.
Knowledge of Codes
Residential plumbing codes are different from the ones that you'll need with your commercial plumbing, and a good plumber will usually know both. Still, a commercial plumbing contractor will have a more thorough understanding of the commercial codes from the outset, which reduces the amount of time and cost associated with any potential repairs down the road.
Even the largest homes usually fall on the small end of a commercial plumbing project in respect to size. A large home can typically be considered anything above 3,000 feet, whereas a business may have 3,000 feet just in its warehouse, not to mention the office and any other buildings on the premises. Commercial plumbing contractors have the ability to schedule and manage large projects, which is a feat all by itself.
Along with larger projects comes the need to service more people. A residential home may only service 5-10 people at once, whereas a commercial plumbing system may need to serve hundreds. An issue at one point may affect everybody else in the building, so it's imperative that the commercial plumbing contractor know how to make the system as efficient as possible.
Have you ever seen a building that stretches several stories high? The plumbing system that is necessary for a building like that is incredibly complex, especially when it comes to water pressure. A commercial plumber will need to compensate for the gravitational pull the higher up they go in the complex — something residential plumbers usually never have to worry about.
Residential homes usually have very similar needs: showers, faucets, sinks, etc. The types of needs a commercial plumbing job may require can be as varied as the business, from high water pressure for washing trucks to regular shower heads to provide safety and cleanliness. Every job site is unique, and the contractor that manages these different sites needs to be able to adapt quickly.
Contact a commercial plumbing contractor to learn more.