The Plumbing Code of Australia

What is the PCA?

The Plumbing Code of Australia (PCA) forms Volume Three of the NCC, which is produced and maintained by the ABCB on behalf of the Australian Government and State and Territory Governments.  The PCA is given legal effect by enabling legislation in each State and Territory which empowers the regulation of certain aspects of plumbing and drainage installations.


The PCA Goal

The goal of the PCA is to enable the achievement of nationally consistent, minimum necessary standards of relevant safety, health, amenity and sustainability objectives efficiently.

This goal is applied so that—

  • there is a rigorously tested rationale for the regulation; and
  • the regulation is effective and proportional to the issues being addressed such that the regulation will generate benefits to society greater than the costs (that is, net benefits); and
  • there is no regulatory or non-regulatory alternative (whether under the responsibility of the Board or not) that would generate higher net benefits; and
  • the competitive effects of the regulation have been considered and the regulation is no more restrictive than necessary in the public interest.


Proposals to change the PCA are subjected, as applicable, to a Regulatory Impact Assessment process.


What does the PCA cover?

The PCA contains the technical provisions for the design, construction, installation, replacement, repair, alteration and maintenance of—

  • water services;
  • sanitary plumbing and drainage systems;
  • stormwater drainage systems;
  • heating, ventilation and air conditioning systems; and
  • on-site wastewater management systems.


The PCA also contains materials and product certification procedures, such as the WaterMark Certification Scheme, for certification of plumbing and drainage materials and products so that they may be authorised for their intended use.


PCA 2013 Update

On release of the final publication of the 2013 PCA it was noted that an outdated figure had been included in Section G.  The figure is titled "Figure G1.5.3 - The WaterMark Certification Process" and is used for guidance only.  A replacement figure, which is unchanged from the 2012 edition, is available in downloadable PDF form here.

Updated: 29 July 2014