How Technology Is Giving a Boost to the Plumbing Industry
For many decades, a toilet was a toilet and a shower was a shower. Now, technology is transforming plumbing products and services.
Your end-users today are used to technology in their lives. Their phones are smart. They may also have smart cars, refrigerators, doorbells, televisions and more. They want products in their homes that leverage technology to do more, more efficiently. Offering installation of high-tech products in new homes creates revenue-boosting opportunities for your plumbing company. Tankless water heaters are the most sought-after new technology, but make sure your crews can work with the full range of available new products, from pipes that detect their own leaks to water sprinklers that adjust themselves to weather forecasts.
Innovations In Plumbing
Here are the most popular high-tech plumbing items today.
Advanced Systems & Detectors
Tankless Water Heaters
A tankless water heater does not use a large storage tank, like a conventional system. When homeowners turn on the hot water, cold water travels directly into a water heater unit, where it is warmed by a gas burner or electric element. This heated water flows directly to the fixture. Tankless water heaters use 30-50 percent less energy than units with tanks and provide a continuous supply of hot water. One house may need multiple units to serve the entire family, but each unit takes up much less space than a storage water heater.
Hot Water Recirculation
Hot water circulation systems keep hot water constantly circulating through pipes. They use a circulating pump installed on the water heater to move hot water quickly to fixtures and move unused water back to the heater. Like tankless systems, hot water recirculation provides hot water instantly on-demand. These systems also save significant amounts of water.
Water Leak Detectors
Water sensors on pipes can detect moisture in locations that should be dry and relay the information to automatic shut-off valves. The sensors are installed in areas where leaks are common, such as near faucets. Shut-off valves are placed near the water main. Together, these components can prevent micro leaks from becoming major problems. Some leak detectors also monitor for changes in sound frequency which can indicate leaks.
Home Greywater Systems
Greywater systems redirect greywater — water used for laundry, handwashing and bathing but not for flushing toilets — into an irrigation or recycling system. Re-using this water can help households conserve water and minimize utility bills.
Smart Water Heaters
Smart water heaters have controllers that are more sophisticated than a traditional thermostat. They allow homeowners to set the temperature of their water more precisely, plus they offer energy-smart modes that rely on water consumption patterns or preset directions to heat water when it’s needed and turn off the heating when it isn’t, to save energy.
Smart Irrigation Controller
Smart irrigation controllers allow homeowners to turn sprinklers on and off from their smartphones and preset zones and schedules precisely. The smartest controllers can automatically adjust watering schedules to National Weather Service forecasts, soil type, sprinklers’ watering rates, evaporation and even water usage by plant type, so homeowners can increase the efficiency of their outdoor water usage.
A variety of luxury features can be found in different models of smart toilets. These can include:
- Seat warmers
- Automatic lid
- Automatic flushing
- Spray adjustments
- Overflow protection
- Bidet wash
- Bluetooth capabilities
Smart showers enable users to set their preferred water temperature, outlet (overhead rainshower vs. handheld), flow rate, shower duration, etc. via a smartphone app or even voice control.
Touchless faucets, as their name indicates, allow users to start and stop the flow of water without touching any part of the equipment. A wave of the hand under the faucet controls the flow. The primary purpose is hygiene.
Touchless toilets flush with a wave of the hand or automatically. Their primary benefit is hygiene. They may also help to conserve water.
Bluetooth Shower Head
A Bluetooth showerhead contains a Bluetooth enabled speaker through which the user can play music while connected to a mobile device. Although this is its only function, these products are very popular.
Looking For Additional Ways To Improve With Technology?
Having the ability to install new technology-based products on the job site is one way to boost your profitability. However, there are other ways in which technology can help your business.
Once you’ve built up builder confidence in your expertise, you want to keep it by running your projects and crews with professionalism and efficiency. SupplyPro GM is cloud-based construction software that enables you to manage residential projects from work order creation through approvals and payments, with visibility and consistency. Feature-rich and built for mobility, this effective contractor and supplier software gives you real-time information and control in every part of your business, so you can increase productivity, profits and builder satisfaction.
Learn more about how SupplyPro GM can help you manage your Plumbing business more effectively or schedule a demo today.