The Difference Between Residential, Commercial & Industrial Electricians
We understand that there is a lot of confusion surrounding the different electrician types.
Many people are under the assumption that all electricians are the same. While residential, industrial, and commercial electricians may sound similar, each type is very different. The foundations of the skill sets may include a basic level of electrical knowledge and skills, but how they apply their extended and specialized training is what distinguishes the different titles.
What Is A Residential Electrician?
To become a residential electrician, the candidate must have a high school diploma, attend classes, participate in apprenticeship programs, and complete 8,000 to 10,000 hours of experience on the job. They are also required to successfully complete a competency examination to receive a license so that they can qualify to perform work.
In general, residential electricians work with 120 or 240 volts, single-phase power supplies.
Residential electricians work in apartments and homes.
The daily pressures and essential tasks of most residential electricians usually involve electrical repairs, installing fixtures and lighting, wiring newly-built homes, and common household electrical requirements.
What Is A Commercial Electrician?
A commercial electrician must complete a high school diploma, attend classes, participate in apprenticeship programs, complete 8,000 to 10,000 hours of experience on the job. They are also required to pass a competency examination.
Commercial electricians generally work in commercial settings, such as restaurants, retail stores, business offices, and any of the areas that the public has access to.
The daily pressures and general tasks of commercial electricians usually involve electrical installation and repairs of specific electrical equipment.
What Is An Industrial Electrician?
An industrial electrician must first complete a high school diploma, attend classes, participate in apprenticeship programs, complete 8,000 to 10,000 hours of experience on the job. From here they are required to pass the competency exam.
The general experience for industrial electricians involves installing process equipment. This requires specialized knowledge and skills in manufacturing industries. For example, the wiring involved in food processing plants involves different procedures when compared to the wiring involved in automotive production facilities.
Industrial electricians generally work in production facilities and plants with sensitive, expensive, and complex electrical systems and machinery. Production and manufacturing facilities involve power requirements that are very different from common requirements involved in commercial and residential areas.
Industrial electricians work with and maintain a far wider variety of electrical components and systems. These include high voltage to micro-current components.
Typical jobs include:
- The installation of electrical components and systems for processing equipment in the manufacturing industry.
- Conducting inspections on equipment and machinery in industrial-based structures.
- Troubleshooting electronics and controls in industrial settings.
- Ensuring that manufacturing equipment and systems are properly grounded.
- Regular repair and maintenance of electrical components and systems.
While the foundation or origins of industrial, commercial, and residential are similar or the same, these professions are very different. The knowledge base of either a commercial, industrial, or residential electrician allows these individuals to choose from three very different, yet equally important sectors of electrical-based work.
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