Millions of people love to spend time on home improvements. During lockdowns, DIY grew in popularity with more people tackling repairs and renovations than ever. Not all of them were successful either.
Major renovations can be costly, and messy. And often, calling in professional help is the best option. But, there are smaller upgrades that can be made to transform a home without major work.
Upgrading plumbing fixtures and introducing modern technology can improve a home in several ways.
The benefits of upgrading a home’s plumbing fixtures
To discover what gains plumbing upgrades would bring, some professional services were approached. Wills Plumbing Adelaide listed some possible benefits from upgrades including improved energy efficiency as well as aesthetics.
Benefits of modern plumbing fixtures include:
- Add value to a home
- Improved energy-efficiency
- More sustainable
- Lower utility bills
- Enhanced aesthetics
- Less waste
There are eight areas picked for plumbing upgrades and small renovations to transform homes.
Upgrading bathroom fixtures
Bathroom remodels involve a lot of work and investment. A bathroom remodel costs between $6,500 to $29,000.
However, some fairly simple plumbing fixture upgrades will give some modern touches while also saving you money.
Modern toilets are far more eco-friendly than traditional models. Low-flush toilets use just 1.28 gallons each flush. That can amount to a saving of 13,000 gallons a year. Water wastage is a serious concern. But, modern toilets are far more efficient now.
You can also combine luxury with sustainability. Older showers use 5 gallons of water per minute. But, eco-friendly shower heads will cut this down to 2 gallons. Spa-like experiences can be had with modern showers with elegant designs. Digital showers come with real-time displays to monitor temperature and shower time.
Smart controls keep temperatures at a consistent temperature, and modern shower heads provide water efficiency.
Enhance your landscape
A simple plumbing upgrade for the garden may do wonders for your landscaping. Smart irrigation systems are available in different models. Some allow you to preset when they are used and can be controlled through a mobile app. While others go much further.
Some enhanced smart irrigation systems will monitor the soil for moisture, and weather data. The system will then water plants and the garden based on scientific data. This results in healthy gardens and minimal water wastage.
Transform your kitchen
Touchless technology and smart fixtures help to make kitchens stylish and hygienic. It is common to call professionals for kitchen renovations but you can DIY many things. Alternatively, use a local plumber to help install modern plumbing fixtures.
Hands-free kitchen faucets not only look sleek and modern, but they also improve hygiene. These no-touch fixtures reduce the spread of bacteria and reduce mess. Smart faucets can be programmed with several pre-sets too.
Pre-sets ensure that only the correct amount of water is dispensed during operation. This can be a cup full for example. This helps to reduce wasted water and lower utility bills. But, if you want more functionality, then a smart kitchen sink might be the answer.
Smart kitchen sinks
Kitchen lovers and cooks will appreciate a smart sink. These sinks contain features such as touchscreens and voice activation. They often utilise LED lighting and workstations too. Durable and easy to clean, smart sinks add functionality and convenience.
One of the factors in starting renovations is budgeting and planning. But, a smart kitchen sink is a simple option that brings added functionality and needs little work.
Improve drinking water quality
A simple plumbing upgrade is to add an under-sink water filter. This easy plumbing job will transform the quality of your water by removing harmful water-borne bacteria.
Smart water dispensers are another option. These will provide both hot and cold filtered water on demand. Your need for plastic bottled drinking water will instantly be reduced.
Make an eco-friendly laundry room
Energy-efficient washing machines use less water and power but still clean effectively. Plumbing a new washing machine is simple. Filtration can also be added to a utility sink to improve water quality.
If you want to be even more sustainable then explore the possibilities of rainwater harvesting. A plumber can help you build a system to catch and store rainwater. Harvested rainwater is softer than tap water and better for your washing machine. There is no limescale to worry about, and you will use less detergent.
Introduce energy-efficient heating options
If your water heater is coming to the end of its life, then a tankless option is an obvious upgrade to make. Plumbers can also help with heat recovery systems.
Tankless water heaters
Tankless water heaters can be 34% more energy efficient than standard models. Water is heated only when needed. This results in less energy consumption.
Professional plumbers are needed for water heater installation though. This is a job that needs to be handled by a professional, especially if gas is involved. However, the advantages of using a plumber to install a tankless water heater include guaranteed work and a warranty. Plus your home will benefit from on-demand hot water and reduce energy bills.
Drain water heat recovery system for showers
Showers are more eco-friendly than taking a bath. Yet, showers still use a fair amount of water and energy. Water tanks require energy to heat cold water. But, drain water heat recovery systems help to reduce this need.
Hot water lost down the drain is used to preheat water before it enters your hot water tank. This helps to reduce the amount of energy needed to heat water. It is especially useful when water is being used while also flowing away – such as showers.
Add insulation to pipes
One of the simplest ways to transform your home’s heating efficiency is to insulate pipework. Your home will be more energy-efficient and you will benefit in other ways too.
Adding insulation to pipes will help to avoid condensation. Moisture leads to mould and corrosion. Therefore, insulating water pipes will reduce this risk. Insulated pipes are also less likely to freeze meaning you are in less danger of suffering a burst pipe in winter.
If your home is older you may experience strange noises from pipes such as hammering. Insulating them will reduce pipe noise.
Smart home integration
Smart plumbing devices can be integrated into smart home systems. This allows homeowners to control a number of aspects through voice activation or a mobile app. This can result in better management of water and energy usage in areas such as irrigation or heating.
Leaking pipes are common, and they cost money. Water leaks can lead to damage and repairs being needed too. Water monitoring systems can detect leaks. This data is gained through the detection of moisture or water pattern flow. Detecting leaks early reduces wastage, and helps to avoid potential plumbing disasters.
Water consumption monitoring
Smart water meters measure water consumption in real-time. Mobile apps receive this data and this can be used to practice better water usage habits. Combined with smart faucets and dual flush toilets, you can transform your water consumption and save money.
Some plumbing fixtures will transform rooms by adding aesthetic value and luxury. Others will add functionality. While some plumbing changes will add sustainability and reduce waste.
Many simple plumbing changes can be achieved through DIY, but others will need the help of a professional plumber. But, there are financial and environmental gains to be made with all.