Water

Water Efficient Bathroom Products

27/09/2010 | After months of market research and detailed negotiation with government officials the Water Efficiency Product Labelling Scheme has been completely revised and upgraded. At the time of its original launch in September 2007 WEPLS was seen as a major step forward in the push for water efficiency in both domestic and commercial premises. Bathroom manufacturers across the globe have been aiding governments in their drive to reduce water consumption by producing innovative and technologically advanced bathroom products. But they wanted to ensure that these products were gaining the best exposure to architects and specifiers. WEPLS was the answer and the scheme rapidly established itself as the most important resource for information about the products available in the UK market. But, two years on, the bathroom market has changed. Innovative water saving and energy efficient products have appeared, but more importantly the regulations governing new build have changed. So it was time to upgrade the scheme to meet the new conditions. The WEPLS database includes the most water efficient, sustainable and eco-sensitive bathroom products currently available in the UK market. The scheme is open to all suppliers of bathroom products (not just members of the BMA trade association) and over 800 products are listed. The list is growing. The recent addition of two new product categories – grey water recycling units and shower handsets have enhanced the range of goods available, all of which help specifiers meet the requirements of both the Code for Sustainable Homes 2008, The Water Regulations, and the latest Building Regulations Approved Document G. The fully searchable database is entirely web based. Users can browse the site to look for products from the range of categories which, amongst others, include WCs, taps and fittings, and showers, all of which are illustrated. An interesting recent addition allows users to create their own 'shopping list' of favourites and to instantly print technical details to assist in their application for planning permission. The re-designed website has important links to manufacturers and their retail and merchant stockists. Links to scheme partners and government sites are also included. Water efficiency events and conferences are listed and the 'news room' will keep users bang up to date and encourage return visits. To assist in the growing demand for more information about water and energy efficient products new downloadable factsheets, hints and tips pages and consumer flyers are just a click away. Underlying the whole scheme are the WEPLS labels themselves. These, too, have had a makeover and the new design has a familiar feel. Loosely based on the energy efficiency labels found on white goods the labels quickly show how well a particular product performs. Manufacturers, retailers, big DIY stores and builders merchants are being encouraged to use the labels and a collection of POS material is available for use on the products, in showroom windows and in literature. The WEPLS scheme has grown fast since its inception in 2007 and the latest upgrade adds to its importance as the number one portal for information about water and energy efficient bathroom products. In March 2010 the scheme won a major award at the UK 'ecobuild' exhibition when judges, in their citation, said "plain and simply, this represents a world-first for water labelling and is notable for being industry led, not Government imposed." Visit www.water-efficiencylabel.org.uk/

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