With more homeowners becoming environmentally aware, attentions are turning towards new ways to improve green credentials and cut costs. Sandra Everett, senior marketing manager at Plumbfix, talks about the growing interest in domestic water harvesting and the new opportunities this presents for plumbers.

I’m sure we can all agree that energy efficiency has been the industry hot topic for a number of years now, with homeowners and businesses alike looking to reduce their carbon footprint and save on energy bills. Although there is still a long way to go, recent years have seen simple energy saving practices become almost second nature to many consumers, whether it be switching off unnecessary lighting or installing a high efficiency heating system.

With heating efficiencies now a familiar concept, we have to ask: where does the industry look next in its drive to help consumers become even more sustainable? The answer is in water harvesting. Although the market is still in its infancy, our customers at Plumbfix are telling us that this is a fast evolving area which is experiencing increased interest from homeowners. In fact, rainwater harvesting systems are now one of the most searched for products across search engines.

With water conservation now a serious issue for UK customers, especially in the south where it is estimated there is less water available per person than in many Mediterranean countries, it is anticipated that the water harvesting market is set to grow by approximately 10%. This will generate new business opportunities for those plumbers who are equipped with the expertise to not only recognise potential prospects among eco-conscious consumers, but to also recommend the right products to meet their needs.

Increased water usage per household, coupled with a rise in the annual cost of water, is leading many homeowners to recognise the economic benefits that water recycling offers. Rainwater harvesting systems are just one of the ways in which households can recycle their water, offering potential savings on water bills of up to 50%.

By collecting and filtering water in an underground tank, rainwater harvesting provides homeowners with reusable water for non-drinking applications, such as in washing machines, flushing toilets and garden use. In addition, rainwater harvesting also helps to improve a user’s sustainability by reducing the demand for mains water, so will enable them to continue to water the garden when restrictions are imposed. By helping customers recognise the benefits rainwater harvesting can offer and developing a sound knowledge of the options available, plumbers can generate opportunities for business growth.

To enable qualified plumbers to take advantage of the growing demand for water harvesting products, Plumbfix is looking to introduce new products and brands to provide more options for customers. For example, we have recently launched a new range of low energy FloPlast StormSaver rainwater harvesting systems, which use up to 75% less energy than traditional pump systems. Available in three sizes, the tanks feature a flow rate of 10 Litres per minute, the same as mains pressure. The range also comes with a 25 year guarantee and an ‘auto switch to mains water’ if the tank runs dry.

We are also regularly reviewing our website to provide up-to-date and efficient products on the market as soon as they are available. These efficiencies help plumbers provide an improved service for their customers, and in turn build their own businesses.