Household and professional appliances. What’s the difference?

Since 1 January 2022, the destinction between household or professional appliances has been determined on the basis of their intended use, and no longer on the basis of objective criteria such as weight/size/capacity, which was the case up to and including 31 December 2021.  

Appliances that are used in both household and professional environments are considered as household appliances. If they are intended to be exclusively used in a professional environment, they are considered to be professional appliances. An appliance shall be considered a household appliance unless it can be proven, that due to its nature, it is solely intended for professional use.

Note: An appliance is considered to be a household appliance unless it can be proven to be of a professional nature.

The distinction between “all-inclusive” and “administrative” contributions remains.

Example: a laptop can be used for domestic or professional purposes and is therefore considered household equipment (i.e. it is not exclusively used for professional purposes). A barcode scanner is exclusively for professional use and is thus considered to be a professional device.

A coffee machine designed for professional use (office, bar, etc.) that an individual could potentially use at home is still considered as a professional appliance. In this case, the use by an individual is considered as exceptional and not as reasonably foreseeable.

In the appliance list, you will find definitions, examples and exceptions. You must act in accordance with this list. If this list proves inconclusive, follow the three steps in our step-by-step guide. It is important to respect the order of the steps. If step one already gives the solution, there is no need to move on to step two. Consult our step-by-step guide here.

Watch the video for more info on the difference between household and professional electricals