Often, one hears the terms carpenter and joiner being used interchangeably in conversations, but the two professions have distinct differences since a joiner usually works in a woodworking factory or workshop where he creates elements for the house by joining together pieces of wood. A carpenter works onsite on tasks such as the installation of wooden elements like doors, windows and cabinetry.
Most homeowners rarely encounter joiners as architects and interior designers place orders directly with them and the finished products are delivered to the construction site, ready to be installed or assembled by the carpenter. However, if a homeowner has a small project for which he doesn’t want to hire an architect as the consulting fees payable to him would add to the costs, hiring joiners is an economical alternative.
The work of joiners and carpenters have many similarities. Therefore, it’s essential that one understands the differences between the professions to make it easier to decide which one is more suitable for a specific job.
Since both professions involve working with wood, it’s not unusual to find a joiner who can undertake carpentry work or a carpenter who also works as a joiner. In general, the differences between the two professionals are:
The decision on which of these professionals to hire for a job will depend on the scope of the work. For tasks that need to be built onsite, such as creating the framework for a roof or a partition wall, a carpenter can undertake the job. For a custom-made bed or large wardrobe for the study, one needs a joiner who will build these pieces in the workshop, before arranging for them to be delivered to the house.
Joining is a craft that is learned by working as an apprentice. However, joiners should be able to read plans, understand technical drawings, have basic woodworking and machinery skills, be aware of the various types of wood and timber as well as how each one responds to processes such as cutting, glueing and sanding. Besides this, a joiner needs basic knowledge of math to calculate costs and work out measurements. Safety requirements and procedures are other factors that joiners should know as they work with heavy machinery, which comes with a high risk of accidents.
In India, there is no separate vocational qualification offered for joiners. Most professionals who provide services as joiners would have completed the ITI certified carpenter trade course. To be eligible for the course, they should have completed education at least up to the 8th standard.
It’s essential to find an experienced and skilled joiner for a project as it will ensure that the finish and quality of the furniture and wooden elements meet the required standards. Before hiring a professional, be sure to check the following:
A simple web search can throw up a lengthy list of joiners in almost any Indian city. However, before hiring a professional, we recommend verifying their portfolio and getting client references to be sure that the job will be carried out as expected.
On homify, our joiners’ directory has city-wise listings of skilled joiners. By browsing through their profiles, you can see photographs of their work and ascertain whether they are suitable for your project requirements. Additionally, you can select a few professionals and request for an online quote before deciding whether to hire them.