Smart Homes Need Smart Plumbers
Plumbing is perhaps the least glamorous of all the skilled trades, subjected to endless potty humor. That is unfair, because plumbing is also the most fundamental of all the trades. Long before humans discovered electricity or devised central HVAC, ancient civilizations in Greece and Rome recognized that waste disposal is critical to human well-being and built systems using natural forces to bring fresh water into dwellings and safely dispose of human waste. The Romans also were famous for their public baths.
Sanitation is still the basic function of modern plumbing, but plumbers of old could scarcely dream of the tools they work with today. Modern smart homes use technology to reduce water usage, save money and provide levels of comfort and convenience unimaginable even to royals living in palaces not too long ago.
The modern smart home may be equipped with smart leak detectors that can tell when an appliance is using more water than it should – then send a message to the owner’s smartphone thousands of miles away! It can also enable the owner to send a message the other way to shut off the water supply. There are smart bathtubs that automatically sense water temperature to avoid scalding and provide just the right comfort level for individual preferences.
Smart toilets are available that reduce the amount of water needed to flush, and some come with sensors to prevent water from spilling over the bowl in case of a clog. Some toilers also include features like automatic flushing, bidet capability and even heated seating to pamper your tush! They even come with Bluetooth technology so you can listen to music while you go about your business.
Faucets and fixtures also employ smart water-saving technology, such as kitchen faucets that can be voice-activated to dispense precise amounts of water. Voice activation also eliminates the need for handles, which can limit the spread of germs and make life easier for persons with disabilities. Showerheads now exit that play music.
Today’s smart homes may also be equipped with automated lawn sprinklers that adapt to weather conditions so you don’t water when it rains and track soil status to provide the right amount of moisture for optimal growing.
In the old days, if there was a leak in a home’s water main or a sewer line blocked, it would require digging up a large part of someone’s lawn to locate and fix the problem. Nowadays, sewer cameras exist to pinpoint where to dig. In some cases, digging can be avoided altogether thanks to new lining technology that can be snaked inside the old pipe.
The best plumbers of today are much more than wrench turners. They are trained to work with sophisticated electronic equipment to diagnose and fix problems. Potty humor may never disappear, but it’s becoming increasingly irrelevant to modern plumbing.