Plumbing types and their approvals

Some alterations and additions to dwellings and commercial buildings may be done under notifiable work (Form 4 - see link to forms in Related information). All new buildings will require compliance assessment. Other approvals that may be required are planning approvals, building approvals or siting variations.

Building work over or adjacent to any Council service (sewer, stormwater or reticulated water system) may require additional provisions to protect the infrastructure.

Seek advice from Council before plumbing work commences.

 

Plumbing and drainage work that doesn't require approval or notification

Using licensed plumbers and drainers is the most effective and simplest way of ensuring that plumbing work complies with regulations to minimise unnecessary risk to your family's health and safety. Rectifying defective or non-compliant work can be far more expensive than the original cost. As a consumer, using an appropriately qualified plumber or drainer will help protect you and your family.

Items listed as unregulated plumbing and drainage work do not require council approval or notification. No licence is required to perform these works, which include the following.

Sanitary plumbing and sanitary drainage:

  • Cleaning or maintaining ground level grates to traps on sanitary drains
  • Replacing caps to ground level inspection openings on sanitary drains
  • Maintaining an above or below ground irrigation system for the disposal of effluent from an on-site sewerage facility.

Water plumbing:

  • Installing or maintaining an irrigation or lawn watering system downstream from an isolating valve, tap or backflow prevention device on the supply pipe for the irrigation or lawn watering system
  • Replacing a jumper valve or washer in a tap
  • Changing a shower head
  • Replacing, in a water closet cistern, a drop valve washer, float valve washer or suction cup rubber.

All other plumbing and drainage works need to be carried out by a licensed plumber or drainer. This is law prescribed by the Plumbing and Drainage Act 2018

 

Plumbing and drainage work that may require approval or notification

Notifiable work

Notifiable work means plumbing or drainage work prescribed under the 'Schedule of notifiable work'. For example:

  • Emergency work
  • Repairing or replacing a plumbing or drainage pipe that is broken or damaged, but not if the work involves repairing a pipe or drain at a connection point or replacing more than 6m of a pipe or 3m of a drain
  • Other work of a minor nature related to, and reasonably necessary for, repairing plumbing or drainage
  • Work necessary for replacing a tempering valve, water heater, cistern, pump or water meter
  • Work necessary for maintaining, repairing or replacing a backflow prevention device or thermostatic mixing valve
  • Work temporarily installed downstream of a backflow prevention device if the work remains in place for less than 4 weeks
  • Repairing or replacing a greywater treatment plant.

Minor work

Minor work means plumbing or drainage work prescribed under the Plumbing and Drainage Regulation 2019 as minor work. For example:

  • Work necessary for maintaining, repairing or replacing a fitting or fixture
  • Work necessary for maintaining or repairing an apparatus other than a backflow prevention device or thermostatic mixing valve
  • Work necessary for replacing apparatus other than a backflow prevention device, thermostatic mixing valve, tempering valve, water heater, cistern, pump or water meter
  • Work necessary for maintaining, repairing or replacing fire hydrants or fire hose reels
  • Unblocking a pipe that is sanitary plumbing or sanitary drainage.

Unregulated work

Unregulated work means plumbing or drainage work prescribed under the Plumbing and Drainage Regulation 2019 as unregulated work.

For sanitary plumbing and sanitary drainage:

  • Cleaning or maintaining ground level grates to traps on sanitary drains
  • Replacing caps to ground level inspection openings on sanitary drains
  • Maintaining an above or below ground irrigation system for the disposal of effluent from an on-site sewerage facility.

For water plumbing:

  • Installing or maintaining an irrigation or lawn watering system downstream from an isolating valve, tap or backflow prevention device on the supply pipe for the irrigation or lawn watering system
  • Replacing a jumper valve or washer in a tap
  • Changing a shower head
  • Replacing, in a water closet (WC) cistern, a drop valve washer, float valve washer or suction cup rubber.

Pool filters that require a plumbing application:

Sand type filters are required to discharge to sewer. This requires a Form 4 to be lodged with the Plumbing Industry Council for residential properties. For commercial properties such as hotels and unit complexes, etc where sanitary drainage is carried out as a result of the installation of the sand filter, an application is required to be lodged with us.

Cartridge type filters do not require an application as they do not connect to a sewer.

 

Lodging a plumbing application

Most plumbing work that doesn’t fit into the categories above will require a plumbing approval. This includes new domestic work and nearly all commercial plumbing work.

Plumbing applications can be easily submitted and paid for using the online customer service portal, 24/7. It allows applicants to track the progress of their applications submitted through the portal by using one user account per business/individual with ease. 

Council encourages use of this service wherever possible. Register today to benefit from the full value and use of the portal!

Further information about the portal can be found in the 'Submit your development application online' article.

 

Related links and forms

Plumbing and Drainage Act 2018 forms (includes Form 4)

Development Assessment Online Customer Service Portal

Plumbing application - submitted plans checklist CL 008 (PDF for print)

Plumbing application - drawing service checklist CL 009 (PDF for print)

INFO 042 Book a Plumbing & Drainage Inspection

INFO 046 Individual Water Metering of Units

INFO 051 Responsible Person Under the Drainage Act

 

Related information

To find out if a plumber is licensed, please refer to the Building Services Authority online license search.

Regulated work as described under the Plumbing and Drainage Act 2018 means plumbing or drainage work that is not notifiable work, minor work or unregulated work. Plumbing work can include installing, changing, extending and disconnecting plumbing.

Hot water units

Homeowners are now able to choose a hot water system that best suits their circumstances, including an electric system.

Since 1 February 2013 it has no longer been a mandatory requirement to install energy efficient hot water systems such as gas, solar or heat pumps in new homes and existing houses located in a gas reticulated area.

Building development applications lodged for the construction of new class 1 buildings (houses, townhouses, terrace houses and villas) in Queensland before 1 February 2013 are required to comply with the requirements in force prior to 1 February 2013. These requirements can be found in the Queensland Plumbing and Wastewater Code.

Last Updated: Tuesday, 05 November 2019 09:21
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