Plumbing and Water Management
Finalists in the Plumbing and Water Management category for the 2012 Product of the Year competition
Emma Renee Dutton, Content Specialist
This Selectronic commercial hands-free, battery-powered, dual-flush toilet valve from American Standard automatically adjusts flush volume. The valve releases a light flush when motion is detected for less than 60 secs. Otherwise, a standard flush volume is used. The sensor’s range is preset at the factory and can be adjusted either manually or via remote control. Valve features include a self-cleaning piston, chemical-resistant seals, and piston operation that eliminates rubber diaphragms. This valve is offered as a complete 11½- or 27-in. rough-in version, as well as a retrofit model without the stop valve and vacuum breaker.
Aquatherm has extended its Greenpipe potable water pipe line up to an 18-in. diameter, and the Climatherm HVAC pipe line up to a 24-in. diameter. These large polypropylene-random pipes are recyclable and ideal for large chilled water systems. The pipes have a reduced standard dimension ratio of pipe diameter to wall thickness in order to keep weight and costs down. Systems using Climatherm SDR 17.6 or Greenpipe SDR 11 are connected via heat fusion, which turns the pipe and fitting into a single material, creating durable monolithic connections that eliminate toxic materials, glues, resins, and open flames from piping installations.
Chicago Faucets’ concealed undermount faucet features a retrofittable restricted-swing spout option that keeps the water off the deck and in the sink, complementing vandal-proof outlets and handles for high-abuse installations. A one-piece, cast brass body delivers durability and strength with flexible stainless steel hoses for adjustability. Fewer parts and pre-assembled components allow one-person installation and reduced maintenance. This faucet features a fully threaded valve body that adjusts to almost any deck thickness, using interchangeable handles, spouts, outlets, and cartridges from the company. To meet the latest codes and standards, options include ECAST faucets for lead-reduction laws and CALGreen-compliant models.
A natural gas engine powers the Ilios high-efficiency water heater from Ilios Dynamics, a subsidiary of Tecogen. The modular unit captures and repurposes waste heat with a 1.2 to 1.8 coefficient of performance, offering up to twice the efficiency and half the fuel consumption of a conventional gas-fired boiler. This water heater can produce 400,000 to 600,000 Btu/hr of hot water for domestic, commercial, and industrial facilities, and it is scalable to serve larger thermal loads with a gas demand of 2,000 therms per month or more. With Tecogen’s ultra-low emissions exhaust, criteria pollutants are reduced to near zero. Federal investment tax credits and accelerated depreciation are available, reducing the payback time to an estimated four-year range.
This KWC AVA single-lever, fixed-spout basin faucet with COOLFIX technology provides cold water in the standard middle position. The only way to draw warm water is to rotate the lever clockwise and away from the middle position. This basin faucet also incorporates the Neoperl Caché aerator, which reduces water flow from the conventional 2.5 gpm to 1.5 gpm. The slim proportions and cubic contours of this faucet are designed to offer years of reliable service with minimal maintenance. Features include continuously variable flow rate and temperature, flexible connection hoses with 3/8-in. compression, and fastening by means of a threaded sleeve M33 x 1.5.
Moen Commercial’s slide-bar grab-bar shower system provides a safe and environmentally friendly solution for commercial showering applications. This system includes a chrome hand shower and a heavy-duty 1½-in.-diameter stainless steel, ADA-compliant grab bar. The hand shower includes a nonpositive pause function, and the grab bar can be mounted to hold up to 500 lbs at any angle with no studs required. Three flow rates are available: 1.5 gpm or 1.75 gpm eco-performance models, and a 2.5 gpm model. This system features balance pressure to maintain temperature, integral stops allowing water supply shutoff at the valve, and brass Posi-Temp rough-in values with adjustable temperature limit stops.
Water control valve
The Circuit Solver Thermostatic Recirculation Valve (TRV) from Therm-Omega-Tech eliminates oversize recirculating pumps, minimizes heat loss, and lowers flow in hot water return lines. Installed on each hot water supply branch line immediately downstream of the last runout to a hot tap, this valve includes a thermal actuator that opens or closes to establish a flow rate that maintains water temperature within 3 F of the setpoint. This TRV is available for a multibranch domestic hot water system or a system with no branches, saving energy by modulating flow to precisely match system heat loss. It is rated for at least 200,000 cycles, is NSF-61 certified, and meets ANSI/AWWA C800.
Viega designed the MegaPress and MegaPressG systems for installing schedule 5 to schedule 40 black iron pipe in sizes of ½ to 2 in. The systems make watertight and airtight connections in less than seven seconds under flow conditions without hot permits, welding rods, or cutting oils. The systems use a stainless-steel grip ring with an EPDM sealing element for the MegaPress system that is ASME B31-compliant for pressure and boiler piping, or HNBR for the MegaPressG system that is CSA LC4-compliant for fuel gas and oil applications. The company’s Smart Connect feature quickly and easily identifies connections that need pressing.
Water control valve
This drain tempering valve (DTV) from Therm-Omega-Tech is designed for applications where discharge flow to a drain or sewer must be tempered. Hot effluent passes over the thermal actuator, which opens the cold water inlet port only when the effluent exceeds a specific setpoint temperature. As the hot effluent cools, the DTV automatically modulates to reduce the cold water inlet flow. At about 10 F below the full open temperature, the cold water inlet is fully closed to conserve water. This self-operating, clog-resistant valve requires no outside power source and is easy to install with standard pipe fittings and tools.
Water heater tank
PVI Industries designed the AquaPLEX hot water storage vessel, which eliminates the need for tank linings. This tank is a blend of austenitic and ferritic steels that combine grain structures to make it highly resistant to various types of corrosion, higher in tensile and yield strength than carbon steel, and typically 15% less in weight than a polymer- or nickel-lined water heater. A passive layer of protection is formed when the high chromium content combines with the oxygen, resulting in virtually no material loss or corrosion when the tank is exposed to the dissolved oxygen or other aggressive agents found in potable waters.
Pipe press system
Victaulic designed the Vic-Press, a flame-free press system that joins pipe in seconds. This press-to-connect system, designed for off-the-shelf stainless steel pipe, is an industrial-grade solution for quickly and reliably joining small-diameter piping systems. Pipe is cut to size and deburred, marked for visual verification, and inserted into a lubricated coupling, fitting, or valve. A handheld tool presses the component onto the pipe-end, providing a positive mechanical interlock and creating a rigid, permanent, leak-tight joint. Press detection technology confirms any unpressed joints as the system is filled. This system reduces rework and requires 70% fewer hours than welding to install.
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