What is the difference between high commercial grade and residential grade?
There is a significant difference in the way the material is constructed and its resulting longevity.
We have clients who say to us, ‘We don’t need top end, we just want something mid-range.’ The difference between mid-range and top end in terms of longevity and service life is often not hugely different because to meet minimum commercial grades, it’s got to be good. For example, our joinery has a 10–year construction warranty, and our seating has a lifetime warranty. This is very different to buying a cheap chair online with a 2–year warranty. If someone who is under 50kgs sits on it, it would be fine. However, in a commercial application where products are subjected to a wide range of users, you need to have the proper engineering, proper steel thickness and proper plywood thickness in the seating, joinery and any component of your workplace.
Some of the desking that we come across that clients ask about is seriously blow away self-assembly type products, in the range of a toy, which would be fine in a low use residential application. However, once the product is rated for commercial grade, irrespective of whether it’s high end or mid-range, it still needs to be commercial quality. It’s still got to last the distance.
An interesting procedure that a lot of government departments use for testing workstations is called the ‘electrician test’. Can an electrician stand on it to change a light globe? In many situations, it’s not a possibility to get to the light above with a ladder, so you need the quality.
We seriously recommend that when we’re doing your project that we go through and hammer out all the details to make sure you’ve got the high commercial grade that you need so your team can do their best work, safely, effectively, and it’ll last the distance.
Getting the commercial quality right is the best value proposition for your team to thrive.