What is the difference between industrial and commercial electricians?

Commercial Electricians & Electrical Contractors

Without the necessary skills, knowledge and experience, electrical work can be dangerous to figure out. It’s worth hiring an electrician, even for the smallest of jobs.

But the question is – should you hire an industrial electrician or a commercial electrician?

Though the two are often used interchangeably, it’s important to note that they are not the same. In fact, they undergo different training and work in different environments.

Here the team at Downtown Electrical outline the key differences between industrial and commercial electricians so, in the unfortunate event of an electrical emergency, you know who to call.

Let’s start by looking closely at what the two are in a little more detail and when you might require their services.


What is an industrial electrician?

After studying long and hard to become licensed, an industrial electrician tends to have a higher level of expertise in their field and works within an industrial setting.

In most cases, they will have gained their experience, skills, and knowledge through an apprenticeship scheme or attending trade school. Or, sometimes, a combination of both.

Training includes a mix of classroom-based learning and practical exercises, allowing them to broaden their understanding and learn hands-on. Sitting and successfully passing a licensing exam is necessary to become an industrial electrician.


When should you hire an industrial electrician?

The primary focus of industrial electricians is to keep factories and other industrial environments operating smoothly – ensuring the safety and efficacy of vital machinery.

Though their duties can vary daily, some of the common jobs performed by industrial electricians include:

  • Installing electrical systems and components for businesses
  • Testing electronics in industrial settings
  • Performing inspections on electricity and electronics
  • Cleaning and repairing wiring and circuits
  • Installing outlets, fixtures, and other electrical-based necessities
  • Maintenance and repair of electrical systems and components


What is a commercial electrician?

Commercial electricians are required to have a degree and/or apprenticeship. They also need to be licensed to perform their work in commercial settings, such as offices, restaurants, retail stores, and various other areas that are readily accessible by the public.

No two days are the same, but the main role of a commercial electrician is to make sure that electrical components and systems in the workplace are functioning correctly and safely. This includes air conditioning, heating, and lighting systems.

A commercial electrician typically works with hand tools, including screwdrivers, pliers, and knives, as well as various power tools and drills. They follow national guidelines for wiring and electrical systems and may also lead a team of electricians or apprentices.


When should you hire a commercial electrician?

If you own, run or manage a business, you may need a commercial electrician to tend to your electrical and power needs.

Commercial electricians will either work from or create a blueprint of the building’s electrical system. They will install conduits or run electrical wiring – according to the plan – and make sure that it’s up to code.

Other tasks and duties carried out by commercial electricians include:

  • Installing new electrical equipment
  • Rewiring existing equipment
  • Installing security systems
  • Designing electrical systems


Key differences between industrial and commercial electricians

  • Industrial electricians are skilled at troubleshooting problems within industrial settings whilst commercial electricians specialise in electrical repairs and maintenance within the working environment.


  • Whilst both types have a similar educational background, industrial electricians are required to study a comprehensive course that takes longer to complete.


  • Commercial electricians can design, plan, and create electrical systems and conduits of pipes or tubes to suit your business needs.


  • Given that factories have different power and electricity needs, industrial electricians need to be flexible and adaptive to handle high voltage systems and critical electrical components.


Need a commercial electrician?

Downtown Electrical is the first choice of customers seeking help from commercial electricians in Leeds. We offer everything from extensive electrical installations to office lighting upgrades and emergency repairs.

Our team of experts can also supply and install electric vehicle (EV) charging stations – helping to boost your reputation as a green, sustainable business.

To find out more about the services our experienced electricians provide, don’t hesitate to call 0113 345 6798 or email enquiries@downtownelectrical.co.uk, and we’ll get back to you as soon as possible.


Click to Call Us