We may not think too much about the plumbing in our home. Turn the faucet on, and water comes out. Need to flush the toilet? Just press the handle. New technologies have affected everything from garage door openers to refrigerators and now our plumbing systems! Smart faucets, tankless technology and other innovations are making home plumbing systems more efficient and stylish as well as cost-effective, saving you money over the long term.
For most of us, turning water on-and-off in our homes is as simple as turning handle(s) over the sink or in the shower. New technologies enable you to turn the water off-and-on with a simple touch of a finger or a swipe of a hand under the faucet itself!
Need to determine if the water flowing out of your faucet is too hot or too cold? Installing a smart faucet that shows the water temperature is what you need. Digital faucets tell you the water temperature and enable you to adjust the temperature. This is not only for sink faucets, but for tub and shower faucets, too.
Within the next year, a new faucet – named the Tern Faucet – will be on the market. This new smart plumbing device attaches to your water tap to analyze the water you are using, monitor your water filter, and tracks water use so that you can control how much water you are using and how much it costs.
Tankless technology has been around for a while. However, this smart plumbing technology has evolved to be more efficient as well as being constructed in forward-trending styles. For example, tankless toilets offer several advantages over traditional models including using less water (e.g., using only one gallon of water per flush), weighing less than older models (e.g., weighing just over 60 pounds), and, because of its low-profile design, it can fit in smaller spaces.
Tankless technology can now also be found in water heaters. Heated by gas or electricity, tankless water heaters are slowly replacing older models. Both types typically have an on-board computer that monitors the water temperature that you set and heats the water as needed, reducing energy costs. Installed with a safety switch, tankless technologies tend to run very quietly.
There is nothing better than taking a long, relaxing shower after a hard day at work or after an energetic workout. Fortunately, you no longer have to stand under a single showerhead that dribbles out water. Today’s smart shower technology offer many options!
Some new smart shower technologies enable you to set the shower temperature and the length of time the shower will run. This will save you money by stopping the water flow at a specific time. In some cases, you can actually lose about 2.5 gallons of water every time you take a shower since you are adjusting the water temperature.
Showerheads are available in very forward thinking styles embedded with smart technology! Available in a wide variety of styles (e.g., rain shower, pulsing/message, etc.) and made from various materials (brass, stainless steel), showerheads are multi-adjustable. Some types include Bluetooth technology so that you can have music streaming while you are cleaning off. And, showerheads do not need to be fixed to the wall. You can install multiple showerheads – on the walls and on the ceiling – and you can also have hand-held units to give you flexibility.
Leak Detection Sensors
One of the newest plumbing technologies on the market, leak detection sensors are a must especially in older homes that are more susceptible to leaks as well as homes in flood zones. Leak detection sensors are typically installed in the areas of the home where water is prevalent, such as in laundry rooms, attics, and basements. Similar to other detectors (smoke alarms and carbon monoxide detectors), leak detection systems are important if you have any concerns about potential flooding and/or creation of mold in your home.
Smart Technology Systems
The trend for smart technologies in homes is not to have technology for each individual appliance or item, such as for your water or heating systems, but to have one integrated system for the entire house! Personal assistance devices (think Amazon’s Echo and Google’s Home) enable you to connect your smart devices into one digital unit allowing you to control systems in and outside of your home. For example, through these systems you can not only control home security technologies while you are away, but also turn your automatic watering unit to water your grass.
Great Time to Be Smart
If you are at all hesitant about installing smart plumbing technology devices in your home, remember a few things. Most smart plumbing technologies have been market-tested to the point that installation and use is easy and dependable. These technologies will lessen the amount of water you use, save you money, and make it easier to detect any potential water issues inside and outside of your home.