Electrician or Domestic Installer what is the difference?


I was contacted by a lady recently and she explained she was searching on her computer using the search phrase "Electrician in Shoreham" for some outside lights she wanted installed and was confused by the results she was getting back there was a mixture of Electricians and Domestic Installers and asked me to explain the difference?


This got me thinking that there must be a lot of people who would appreciate the differences explained, I have made a straight comparison table at the bottom of this page but thought I would explain the differences in a little more detail here.



Basically a Electrician is a person who has completed a full apprenticeships over 4 years with a mixture of 1 day per week at college and 4 days per week site based practical training under a qualified Electrician, during this time they would sit approx. 30+ exams/assessments in a class room and just as importantly on site to learning the practical aspect of the job, they also have to do a occupational practical assessment called a AM2 which is a full on assessment where you have to install a complete installation from scratch using just the site plan with no outside help, this installation has to be tested and commissioned all within a fixed timescale.

All of this training over the four years is geared towards the final qualification a Level.3 NVQ Diploma in Installing Electro Technical Systems and Equipment, only after this qualification is achieved can you call yourself a Electrician.


Domestic Installer:

Basically a Domestic Installer only has to do a 3 week course at college covering the basics of Domestic Electrical work in a classroom based environment, upon completion then register with one of the many Part P scheme providers, show them a couple of small jobs they have done normally from there own homes and if the provider is happy with what they see they are able to go out start work.



As you can see there is quite a bit of difference between the two and unfortunately most Domestic Installers will still brand themselves Electricians or Domestic Electricians when they are not they are "Domestic Installers", when selecting somebody to work for you I would always consider asking to see a copy of qualifications, comparing quotes purely on price isn't always the best way to decide.




Training Time

Level of Qualification

Domestic Training

Commercial Training

Industrial Training

Domestic Installer


3 Weeks

Short course Level.2

Short course Level.2





4 Years

NVQ.3 Diploma

NVQ.3 Diploma

NVQ.3 Diploma

NVQ.3 Diploma