Plumbing and Drainage
What plumbing or drainage work requires Council approval?
All plumbing work in Queensland is regulated by state government legislative requirements and is categorised as:
- permit work
- notifiable work
- minor work
- unregulated work
Only permit work is approved by Council. Information on permit work, how to lodge applications and the services offered by the Hydraulics Team is provided below. Further information on plumbing and drainage can also be found in our Plumbing and Drainage FAQs.
Permit work is a type of plumbing and drainage work that requires a licensed person to perform. You can only perform the permit work covered by your license (for example, a licensed drainer can perform related permit work). All permit work must be assessed by Council, and before commencing permit work, you must obtain a compliance approval for your proposed work. Once the permit work has been satisfactorily completed, Council will issue a compliance permit.
Notifiable work extends the amount of work a plumber or drainer can perform without a local government permit or mandatory inspections. Notifiable work is defined in Schedule 2 of the Plumbing and Drainage Regulation 2019. It includes most plumbing and drainage work performed in existing homes including:
- kitchen and bathroom additions and renovations
- installing or replacing hot water heaters and including electric, solar or heat pump hot water heaters
- installing fixtures such as toilets, showers and sinks in an existing home
- extending or altering pipe work
For more information on notifiable work visit the Queensland Building and Construction Commission (QBCC) website.
Lodging an application
Applications to Council for Permit work use the Queensland state government Plumbing and Drainage Act 2018 forms, found on the Department of Housing and Public Works website:
Form 1 - Permit work application for plumbing, drainage and on-site sewerage work
- *Use this form to apply to Council before commencing Permit work
Form 7 - Notification of responsible person
- Use this form to notify us of the licenced person performing your permit work.
Online: Townsville Online Lodgement System (TOLS)
Post: Assets and Hydraulics Unit, PO Box 1268, Townsville QLD 4810
Visit: 103 Walker Street, Townsville City, QLD, 4810
When can I expect my application to be assessed?
The Plumbing and Drainage Act 2018 requires Council to approve applications within 2 business days for Fast Track applications and 10 business days for all other applications for permit work.
Council also offers a Rapid Assessment application process at an additional cost for all non-fast track applications. To find out more, please contact Council, or view the Planning and Development fees and charges schedule.
Services council provide
As well as assessment and inspection of permit work, the Assets and Hydraulics Unit at Council also:
- conducts physical inspections (report provided) of the condition of plumbing and drainage located at premises (pre-sale inspections)
- offers searches of Council's electronic records of plumbing and drainage installations within a property
- supplies a consultancy service for plumbing and drainage related issues.
These services are provided at a competitive price. For more information on fees, refer to the Planning Services schedule of fees and charges.
As constructed drainage plans
Council can also supply existing "as constructed drainage plans" and "all services plans" of council assets. To request an as constructed drainage plan, please complete this online form. For more information, read our As Constructed Drainage Plans information sheet, or contact council.
Plumbing and drainage information and resources
On Tap is a newsletter released every four months from the Assets and Hydraulics Unit to our customers in the trade community, for general updates as well as the latest in processes and legislation.
For more information, subscribe to On Tap.
Dial before you Dig
Dial before you dig is a free referral service for information on underground pipes and cables anywhere in Australia. Using Dial before you dig can prevent damage, disruption, injury, and even death.