What Types of Plumbers Are Available to Service Your Home?

Types of Plumbing

When you need plumbing help in your Indianapolis area home, there are a few different types of plumbers available to assist. It helps to know the types of plumbers and what they do so you are able to find a professional with the specific skills needed to address your issues. We walk you through the different types of plumbers, the work they perform, and what to seek their help for.

Types of Plumbers Who Work in Homes

Different types of plumbers practice different specialties. Some work on commercial plumbing systems only, some specialize in residential systems, and others do both. Different types of plumbers may do only installations, only repairs and service, or both. When you need help at home, you want to find a residential plumber.

Commercial vs. Residential Plumbers

Commercial and residential plumbing systems each have unique challenges and face different types of problems. You want a plumber with specific experience working with residential plumbing systems to ensure your needs are appropriately met.

Residential plumbers are trained to install plumbing systems and piping in new construction homes as well as home additions and renovations. These plumbers are the professionals who ensure homes have working water supply pipes and drainage systems, and that all fixtures function as they should. On the other hand, types of plumbers who focus on commercial plumbing are more knowledgeable regarding the expansive plumbing systems that serve large buildings as well as their unique challenges.

Supply vs. Sanitary Plumbers

Within the realm of residential and commercial plumbers, types of plumbers are also divided based on the type of plumbing they work on – supply or drainage.

  • Water supply plumbers work primarily on water supply piping as well as fixtures and appliances that supply water to the home. These include water heaters, kitchen sinks, and bathroom sinks.

  • Sanitary plumbers work with drainage lines. They clear drain clogs as well as install drains, bathtubs, and toilet piping.

Service and Repair Plumbers

Service and repair plumbers are the types of plumbers who do repair and maintenance work on residential and/or commercial plumbing systems. They know how to assess issues, identify needed repairs, and implement solutions to restore the performance of a plumbing system. This is the type of plumber who fixes water pressure issues, repairs leaks, perform drain cleaning, and do maintenance work for your home plumbing system.

Specialty Plumbers

Other types of plumbers specialize in certain aspects of plumbing. These may include those who focus on the installation of natural gas lines and gas appliances, who are also called gas fitters, or plumbers who install, maintain, and repair fire suppression and sprinkler systems in homes or commercial buildings.

Types of Plumbers in Indianapolis

For the health and safety of Indiana residents, state law requires that anyone who engages in business as a plumber hold an Indiana plumbing license through the Indiana Plumbing Commission. The requirements are different depending on the level of license applied for.

In Indiana, there are a few different license types a plumber may apply for:

  • An Apprentice Plumber license allows someone to work under a licensed plumbing contractor or journeyman plumber while enrolled in an approved apprenticeship program. This license allows the individual to work under the direction of a skilled plumber and gain on-the-job training and real experience while completing a plumbing education program.

  • A Journeyman Plumber license is for those who have completed a minimum of four years’ apprenticeship plumbing training or hold a plumbing license in another state. A journeyman plumber works under a licensed plumber. The individual must pass the state licensing test.

  • A Plumbing Contractor license is for those who have completed a minimum of four years’ apprenticeship plumbing training, hold a plumbing license in another state, or have four years’ experience in the plumbing industry working under a licensed plumbing contractor. A plumbing contractor is a person who is responsible for a plumbing project. 

  • A Plumbing Corporation license is for corporations engaging in plumbing contracting business. At least one employee or officer must be licensed as a plumbing contractor.

The state plumbing license test consists of 90 questions that cover various general plumbing areas to verify an individual’s level of knowledge. Indiana plumbing licenses expire and must be renewed every two years. Plumbing contractors must display the business’s license number on all service vehicles and written or print advertising. Individuals must carry their licenses when performing plumbing work at any job location.

Why Work with a Licensed Plumber

Plumbing is a technical industry that requires a great deal of knowledge and skill for the safe and accurate completion of work. While there are various types of plumbers, one thing is certain: always work with someone who holds a valid plumbing license.

As a homeowner, working with an unlicensed contractor opens the door for many problems. Unlicensed plumbing contractors are not in compliance with state licensing law and are likely not compliance with other state business laws, such as workers’ compensation insurance requirements. They are often uninsured as well. This means if someone is hurt while working in your home, they may come after you for payments.

As their skills are not verified nor do they answer to a governing body, you are at risk of equipment damage and unethical business practices when you work with an unlicensed contractor. Plumbing products such as water heaters often require installation by a licensed plumber or else the warranty is voided, which robs the homeowner of valuable protection should they experience equipment issues. Plumbing damage, flooding, carbon monoxide poisoning, and other serious issues can result through the work of an unlicensed, unskilled person performing plumbing work.

Before you hire any of the above types of plumbers to work in your Indianapolis area home, verify that the person or company holds a valid Indiana plumbing license.

How to Choose a Plumber

Now that you know the different types of plumbers, you know which type you need for help addressing your home’s plumbing challenges. But, there are many, many plumbing companies in the Indianapolis area that offer residential plumbing installations as well as repair services. With so many types of plumbers and different plumbing companies in town, who do you hire?

Beyond the types of plumbers and their specialties, there are a few additional factors that are important to evaluate as you select a plumbing contractor to hire. Of course, licensing is high on this list, as previously discussed. The other factors to consider include:


Insurance coverage is a must for all types of plumbers to safely work in your home. You want to choose a plumbing company that is insured and bonded – these companies have acquired the necessary coverage to protect their businesses, which also serves to protect your home. If your home or belongings are damaged during the course of work, you are able to file an insurance claim and seek compensation to restore everything back to its previous condition.

Plumbing work can sometimes be dangerous. Even the most highly skilled and experienced types of plumbers may be injured when working at your home. The business’s workers’ compensation insurance takes care of the worker’s medical bills so that liability for payment does not fall to you.


A trustworthy residential plumber is a great asset to any Indianapolis area homeowner because you never know when plumbing problems will pop up. As such, you want to establish a relationship with a plumbing company that is able to be there when you need – no matter when that may be. 

Types of plumbers offering 24/7 emergency service are a top choice amongst Central Indiana residents. A plumbing company with around-the-clock availability is always accessible. Their ability to deliver quick help and trusted solutions when emergent situations arise helps homeowners avoid hassle and discomfort as well as prevent the severe water damage that can arise with certain plumbing challenges.


People talk, and word gets around about the positive and negative experiences homeowners have when working with different plumbing companies. Many homeowners prefer a personal reference for a company from someone they trust for an honest opinion – listen to what your friends, family, and loved ones have to say about a plumber. Some turn to online review sites to hear more experiences – this also provides an opportunity to see how the company responds to both the good and the bad.

Choose a plumbing company that has a strong reputation in your community and amongst those you trust as references. A company’s positive reputation speaks toward their professionalism, punctuality, work ethic, and more.

Types of Plumbers at Mr. Plumber

When you call Mr. Plumber by Metzler & Hallam, you gain access to any type of plumbing professional you need! Our skilled team of licensed residential and service and repair plumbers are capable of tackling any plumbing issue you face in your Indianapolis area home. Whether it’s new fixture installation, pipe replacements, drain cleaning, or leak repair, Mr. Plumber does it all!

For more than 70 years, Central Indiana homeowners have turned to Mr. Plumber for all their at-home plumbing needs. Whether you’re new to our services or we’ve worked together before, our many types of plumbers welcome the opportunity to help you make the most out of your home’s water. For plumbing installation, repair, or maintenance services, call us today to schedule an appointment.

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