These days, more and more things can be controlled through smart technology. From security, to lighting, to entertainment, smart solutions can be activated or controlled by voice. And in the past few years, plumbing has become one of areas where smart technology isn’t just a possibility, but a viable option.
On the whole, smart plumbing may lessen the possibility of having to call a 24 hour licensed plumber, but beyond that, what else can you expect? Let’s take a look at different areas of your home where you may find smart products.
In the kitchen, smart plumbing is mostly focused on the sink. Companies like Kohler and Delta have smart faucets that you can connect to Google Assistant or Amazon Alexa and are built to follow voice commands. With such a setup, you could ask the faucet to, say, fill a pot or saucepan, or just turn the faucet on and off without having to physically touch it.
However, this same setup would require a power supply that’s always on, and the faucet handle always being in the “on” position. Then you’ll have to turn the water off with motion sensing, so that voice commands can be enabled. In other words, this can get expensive, and can be a lot of work for just being able to get the faucet to dispense water without using your hands.
With showers, such solutions range from shower systems that can save profiles for each family member, complete with temperature presets, to shower heads that let you pause water flow instead of completely shutting it off while you lather up. There are even shower systems that run only on the water going through them, or that come with LEDs that light up in different colours depending on how much water you’ve used – which is handy if your goal is water conservation.
As for smart toilets, there are models like the Numi Smart Toilet that help save water thanks to a low gallon-per-flush rate. Then there are models like Kohler’s mega toilet that can heat the seat and the floor below the toilet, not to mention put on a light show – in addition to automatically flushing. In other words, smart toilets aren’t the best thing to invest in right now unless you can afford it and you like the convenience.
Overall Water Monitoring
Leak detectors and whole-home monitoring systems are good investments. As the name implies, a leak detector can tell you when a leak develops in hard-to-spot areas, therefore allowing you to call a plumber sooner rather than later. Whole home monitoring systems, meanwhile, can check on anything from water temperature – especially during the cooler months – to water pressure. Some can even shut off the water supply in case something goes really wrong.
These smart plumbing options are extremely helpful if you want to keep your water bill low, not to mention keep an eye on your plumbing even if you don’t have the time to physically check each area yourself.
As you can see, whether a smart upgrade to your plumbing is worth it or not depends on several variables, namely: what you want out of the upgrade, what solutions are available and what they can do. All in all, if the benefits are worth the investment, then it’s a smart idea to go smart.