Tuesday, December 7, 2010

Is a Tankless Water Heater the choice for you?

Tankless Water Heaters work to produce hot water as needed. A simple example of this would be: if you only need one gallon of hot water, a Tankless Water Heater will only produce (heat) enough hot water for one gallon. Unlike conventional tank-type water heaters that will continue to keep their tank’s capacity of water continually heated to the temperature set on its thermostat. Think of a tank-type water heater’s thermostat being the same as a home’s air conditioner/furnace thermostat; when the temperature drops, the water heater turns on to reheat the water. The fact that Tankless Water Heaters only heat what hot water is needed will save gas or electric by only using the needed fuel/electricity when needed. In addition to energy savings, Tankless Water Heaters are more convenient when sized properly.
In tank-type water heaters, hot water is only available for the quantity stored, not needed. Should a tank-type water heater have a 40 gallon capacity, the amount of hot water available, at maximum thermostat temperature, is about 50 percent, or 20 gallons. As a hot water valve is opened for hot water to be drawn from the storage tank of a tank-type water heater, cold water begins to enter the tank and replaces the requested hot water. If the temperature of the stored hot water is thermostatically set for 120 degrees, once hot water is replaced by cold water, the temperature begins to cool; leaving less available hot water. In a Tankless water Heater, once the thermostat is set for 120 degrees, regardless of incoming water temperature, the requested water will remain at 120 degrees. This is helpful when continual hot water is needed during long showers, baths, and heavy use.
Being energy efficient and convenient, a Tankless Water Heater can be the right fit for anyone looking for a salutation to their current tank-type hot water needs.  
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Sunday, August 29, 2010

30% Refreshing and 70% Waste

The standard drinking fountain is a refreshing site for a thirst that needs quenching. Until I was presented with a brochure on a new product that helps reduce the amount plastic bottle waste from consumers, I would have never thought about the percentage of used and wasted water at a drinking fountain. I know that my 30/70 percent ration is just from my own personal experience, but unless you can consume the water being dispensed from the water tap at the same rate, a percentage is going down the drain. Elkay has presented the plumbing industry with a new addition to their line of water coolers that helps support all of the users of sports and echo bottles. Elkay has even gone to the level of providing information to the green community by including a meter that tells how many plastic water bottles have been saved from our landfills. This kind of business thinking is what keeps companies like Elkay as a leader in their market. Check out the new EZH2O to go at: http://www.elkayusa.com/cps/rde/xchg/elkay/hs.xsl/ezh2o.aspx

Tuesday, August 3, 2010

Monday, July 26, 2010

Softening Water While Saving Water

As a plumbing contractor, Out House Plumbing Company has promoted the installation of water softeners for the protection, and longevity, of the internal plumbing system and plumbing fixtures. The condition of the water provided to a home or building is abrasive, the minerals of hardness are measured as grains per gallon (GPG) or part per million (PPM), the conversion is 17.1 PPM = 1 GPG. A water specialist will test your water for total dissolved solids (TDS) using an electronic TDS meter, there are other test kits and laboratories that will test water and a DYI test can be done using water and liquid soap.
To soften water, the most common is with a water softener. Water softeners us a charcoal and resin filter that is cleaned (backwashed) with a sodium or potassium solution (brine). As the water passes through the charcoal and resin, the resin acts as a magnet, collecting the dissolved solids in the water. To clean the dissolved solid from the resin, during the backwash, the brine is pulled over the resin and sent down a drain into your sewer or septic tank. Backwash can send 10 to 150 gallons of water, 2 to 10 times a month, depending on the use and size of a softener unit. The benefits of increasing the life of the plumbing system and fixtures, the cost savings on soap and detergent use, along with the skin and hair can offset the cost in increased water use.
To help promote green plumbing, I looked for an alternative to backwashing water down the drain, and was presented with a product called nuvoH2O. Unlike the standard water softener units, nuvoH2o is a whole house filtration system that uses citrus. This softener uses a process called chelation (pronounced key-LAY-shun), that binds with hard water minerals, preventing them from reacting with other elements to produce scale. According to nuvoH20,
“every year millions of appliances like water heaters and dishwashers breakdown prematurely due to the ravages of hard water. nuvoH20 softened water can extend the life … twenty percent (20%)… build-up in water heaters require as much as thirty percent (30%) more energy… salt-based softeners waste millions of gallons of soft water every year discharging their salty brine into the sewers and our rivers and streams.”
NuvoH20 uses a replaceable cartridge that last six months or more, for about the same cost as the bags of salt. In addition to helping save money and the environment, the nuvoH20 chelation also breaks down the existing scale build up on pipes, appliances, fixtures and the water heater. NuvoH20 also provides a cartridge recycling program to help prevent the cartridges from ending up in a landfill. The cost is less than a standard water softener and the savings have a greater return.

Wednesday, July 7, 2010

Kohler is innovative when saving water and the environment

The Kohler Company, makers of plumbing fixtures and accessories, also the EPA’s 2008 and 2009 WaterSense Partner of the Year, has given the industry a 1.28 gallon flush toilet to help save water. They have “successes fully converted their 1.6 gallon-per-flush high-performance gravity toilets to flush with a mere 1.28 gpf”. It is Kohler’s design and engineering enables the Artcher™ toilet to be the first one-piece, single-flush, gravity, high-efficiency toilet. In addition, the Devonshire™ and Wellworth™ are branded with the EPA WaterSense label that are superior in performance and price for homeowners who want value without sacrificing design. Kohler products help to meet LEED® water-efficiency, reduce facility operating costs, and accommodate the preferences of a homer. Being in the plumbing industry myself for over 30 years, Kohler has always maintained a standard, recognized in the residential and commercial markets, for quality and design. Kohler continues to prove that they are committed to remaining a driving force in the plumbing community with their willingness to design products that meet the customers’ demands. To read more visit: