Most people know when they need an electrician’s help, but what kind of electrician do you need? Residential and commercial electricians have different specialties when it comes to the more technical aspects of the trade, and there are also some differences in where they work and even when they work. 

If you want to learn more about the differences between a residential electrician and a commercial electrician, here’s everything you should know: 

Where They Work

As you may have already guessed, the main difference between a residential electrician and a commercial electrician is where they work. Residential electricians work in homes, whether that means new construction or existing homes. They may do their work on a vacant property, but oftentimes they work while a family is residing in the home. 

Commercial electricians work in businesses or on construction sites for new properties slated for commercial use. They may work inside an operating business, but most business owners don’t want their electricity jeopardized during working hours. As a result, commercial electricians often work in the early morning hours or late evening hours. 

Technical Skills

There’s a major difference between residential and commercial electricians when it comes to the technical skills that they use daily. Both are required to have a high school diploma or GED and an apprenticeship in the field they want to work in. This is designed to prepare them for the most common aspects of work that they’ll encounter. 

One of the primary differences between them is the voltages they must work with. Residential properties typically have lower voltage systems ranging from 120 to 240 volts. On the other hand, a commercial property has extra high voltage with some properties exceeding 240 volts in their electrical systems. 

The wiring systems used in both residential and commercial properties are also a bit different. In a residential property, the wiring system is smaller, is covered with plastic sheathing, and is often tucked out of view of the homeowner. Sometimes, they may have to access the electrical system through the crawl space in the basement. 

Commercial properties have larger systems that utilize tube conduits. They aren’t as likely to have to access it through crawl spaces, though it may still be hidden out of plain sight. Commercial electricians may also be required to work with backup generators for certain types of businesses like major retail outlets or hospitals. While some homeowners do have their homes hooked up to a backup power source, this is far less common than it is for commercial properties. 

Finding the Right Electrician

When you require an electrician of any kind, you need to know who to call. Powertec Electric Inc. has a great team of experienced electricians in Winnipeg who can help you with both residential and commercial properties. Reach out to us today to learn more about how we can help you with your next major project or maintenance needs!