Posts Tagged ‘plumbing’

Surfer dude plumbers bring running water to Haiti school

May 28, 2012


Surfer dude plumbers bring running water to Haiti school. After running a long-time plumbing company in Nashville, Tab Hunter was tired of the corporate white glove atmosphere. So when he purchased Pritchard Plumbing in Bradenton in October 2010, he wanted to do something a little different. His first call of action was to paint the company’s fleet like the Mystery Machine in the Scooby Doo cartoons and throw a couple of surf boards on top. Next were the technician uniforms, which now feature mandatory Vans shoes and Hawaiian leis. The rebranding to the Surfin’ Plumbers injected new energy into the company, which has helped it grow all of the way down to the North Port market. But Hunter also was ready to give back, something he says he never really did a good enough job of in Tennessee. About 600 children at a poor Haitian village now have running water because of it. Hunter and the business’ original owner, Tim Pritchard, who still works for the company, installed a free plumbing system for a school during a mission in March to Vignier, Haiti — an area ravished by the 2010 earthquake. “I didn’t really know what to expect, but it was amazing,” Hunter said. “As soon we turned the taps on, all of the children came hovering around to wash their hands and flush the toilets. They had never really been around running water before.” Pritchard had been taking missions to the school for a decade after meeting the preacher and owner at a Christian event. But the need was never greater than after the earthquake, which rocked the school into a pile of rubble. A contractor from Texas donated his time a new steel frame. Pritchard went last year to lay the underground plumbing. He took Hunter and Hunter’s 17-year-old daughter, Carly, back in March to finish the job. Because the village has no electricity, the crew installed a plumbing system that relies on gravity to power the water. The school uses a generator to bring water up the pipes to a 600-gallon tank that’s sitting on a platform about 70 feet above the ground. Once the tank is full, the generator turns off, and gravity pulls the water down to feed the sinks and toilets at the school. It’s a system only the village’s “wealthiest” residents typically can afford. “It was eye opening,” Hunter said. “The [school] is trying to teach proper hygiene because those who haven’t learned will just go on the side of the road or wherever when they have to. … There was one small river where a lady was washing a cooking pan, then several feet down a man was taking bath and then several more feet down a cow was drinking.” The schools serves about 600 children up to the age of 17, also providing one meal a day at least three times a week. It is regarded as one of the better schools in Haiti, where education is a privilege, not a segment of the government. Hunter said the experience was especially rewarding for his daughter, who was awakened by how children in less fortunate countries live — without the luxury of a Starbucks or Dunkin Donuts down the street. Pritchard also said he plans on continuing the missions, which have become almost an annual occurrence for him. “One thing is for sure, you never run out of work in Haiti,” Pritchard said. “There’s plenty that needs to be done.”

News Courtesy A-1 Plumbing Newswire


KOHLER Introduces VibrAcoustic Sound Therapy Bath Tub

May 16, 2012


Adding to the wave of its recent technology innovations, Kohler Co., a global leader in kitchen and bath design, introduces VibrAcoustic® technology on all nine models of the Underscore bath tub line. Vibroacoustic is a technology-based sound therapy defined as hearing and feeling sound vibrations through the body. Focused on complete body relaxation, the new Underscore VibrAcoustic baths are engineered to ease tension and stress. Additionally, the quality of the sound system is so good that it can be used as a stand-alone audio solution for the entire bathroom. The bather can stream music and podcasts through the bath from a mobile device via hardwire connection or wirelessly with a Bluetooth®* receiver. The VibrAcoustic technology is controlled by an intuitive full-color touch screen user interface. “KOHLER VibrAcoustic technology truly is a multi-dimensional experience. It’s like going to a rock concert – you can hear and feel the music and vibrations throughout your body,” says Ann Roever, business director for Kohler bathing products. “With four original compositions to choose from and the ability to play your own music, it’s an experience that can fit any mood –relax and unwind or rev up for a busy day or fun night out.” The four experiences are original compositions that integrate music, vibration and lighting in order to encourage the bather’s breathing rate to align with the beats or chord structures. The bather cannot help but drift into deep relaxation. The VibrAcoustic Experience – Four VibrAcoustic experiences envelop the bather in a multi-sensory environment. These original compositions were created in collaboration with a renowned sound therapist and are choreographed uniquely for this bath to optimize the vibroacoustic effect, in which the body is led into a state of complete relaxation. In addition, two massaging beat experiences add even more physical vibration that can be adjusted to the desired level of intensity to personalize the bathing experience. Six transducers producing music/vibrations are strategically placed surrounding the bath allowing the bather to not only hear but also feel the music streaming in from one of the four preset VibrAcoustic experiences. The transducers are located both below the water for the vibration experience and above the water for the audio. A newly designed touch screen user interface allows bathers full control of their experience and the option of listening to a favorite play list from their mobile device, internet radio or home computer by simply plugging your device into the amplifier or streaming wirelessly with your Bluetooth®* receiver. Chromatherapy lighting is synchronized with the four preset VibrAcoustic experiences and will also align itself with the rhythm of outside music. The four lights in the bath cycle through eight different colors and myriad color combinations and patterns. A color dial even allows bathers to choose a particular hue of each color. Underscore Bath Design. The acrylic Underscore bath is available in nine sizes ranging from 60-by-30 inches to 72-by-42 inches, including a 48-by-48-inch cube-shaped model, and is available in five colors with both drop-in and undermount installation to ensure a natural fit with other design elements in the bathroom. The Underscore baths’ simple, crisp design lines perfectly complement granite, stone or tile. Underscore baths feature a slotted overflow that creates a deeper-than-normal soaking experience. In comparison to overflow drains found on traditional baths that are round and positioned lower, limiting the water depth, the large, slotted overflow drain positioned near the Underscore bath rim maximizes the level of water in the bath for a true soaking experience.  About Kohler Co. – Founded in 1873 and headquartered in Kohler, Wis., Kohler Co. is one of America’s oldest and largest privately held companies. Kohler is a global leader in the manufacture of kitchen and bath products, engines and power generation systems, tile and home interiors, and an international host to award-winning hospitality and world-class golf destinations.

News Courtesy A-1 Plumbing Newswire

American Standard Brands Awarded Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation Grant For Hygienic and Sustainable Toilet

April 12, 2012


One of the world’s best known toilet brands has taken up the challenge to improve safety and sanitation in developing world countries. American Standard Brands has partnered with the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation to develop and test a low-cost, prefabricated toilet system. Lack of adequate sanitation facilities affects around 40 percent of the world’s population, and around 1.2 billion people worldwide practice open defecation. An estimated 1.6 million people, mostly children under the age of five, die each year from water and sanitation related diseases. “A majority of these deaths are preventable through access to proper sanitation, safe drinking water and improved hygiene,” said Jay Gould, American Standard Brands president and chief executive officer. In collaboration with the Gates Foundation’s Water, Sanitation and Hygiene Strategy, and the International Development Enterprises (iDE), American Standard engineers will work to develop a prefabricated toilet system that is more hygienic, easier to install, easier to maintain and clean, and can be economically mass-produced.  “Our goal is to develop a safe, affordable, latrine for the developing world that does not require a water and sewer based infrastructure,” explained project director, Jim McHale, Ph.D., American Standard Brands vice president, engineering. McHale notes that improved sanitation will help achieve the United Nations’ 2015 Millennium Development Goal of reducing by half the proportion of people who lack safe drinking water and basic sanitation by the year 2015.  ABOUT AMERICAN STANDARD BRANDS – American Standard Brands is a leading North American manufacturer of a wide range of high-quality building products, including faucets, fixtures, furniture, vitreous china fixtures, cast iron sinks, whirlpool tubs and other wellness products for the bath and kitchen as well as decorative panels. The company currently offers total project solutions for residential and commercial customers; employs more than 5,000 people in the United States, Canada and Mexico; and markets products under well known and respected brands, such as American Standard®, Jado®, Porcher®, Safety Tubs®, Crane Plumbing®, Eljer®, Fiat® and Decorative Panels International®. American Standard Brands is an affiliated portfolio company of Sun Capital Partners.

News Courtesy A-1 Plumbing Newswire


February 12, 2012

According to Scott Mann of Plumbing Supplies Depot “in this day and age with an uncertain economy and shifting tides of current events it is refreshing to have the World Plumbing Day 11 March”, which is intended to provide anyone or any organisation involved in the global plumbing industry with an opportunity to promote the important role played by the industry. Many plumbing industry organisations are actively involved in activities related to the environmental role of today’s plumbing industry and World Plumbing Day provides a good opportunity to emphasise this role to the general public, according to the World Plumbing Council which promotes professional standards of plumbing to the world. Organisations are encouraged to arrange an event or meeting which will highlight World Plumbing Day. Many plumbing industry organisations are actively involved in activities related to the environmental role of today’s plumbing industry and World Plumbing Day provides a good opportunity to emphasise this role to the general public. WPC has published a Fact Sheet on the environmental aspects of plumbing and this may be used by organisations to assist them in their promotional work. Last Year, the U.S. Senate passed a bipartisan resolution formally designating March 11, 2011, as World Plumbing Day. Senate Resolution 100, introduced by Sen. Michael Bennet (D-Colo.) and co-sponsored by Sens. Orrin Hatch (R-Utah), Jeff Merkley (D-Ore.) and Patty Murray (D-Wash.), highlights the role plumbing plays in safeguarding public health in the United States and worldwide, addresses the lack of safe drinking water and sanitation across the globe, declares access to such a vital human right and praises trained plumbing professionals for maintaining, repairing and rebuilding the aging water infrastructure of the United States.

News Courtesy A-1 Plumbing Newswire


January 12, 2012

The Board of Directors of American Standard Brands today announced the appointment of Jay D. Gould as President and Chief Executive Officer of the Company, a leading North American manufacturer of branded bath and kitchen products serving both the residential and commercial markets, including the new construction and remodeling markets. “We are excited to have Jay take the helm of American Standard,” said Tom Taylor, Chairman of the Board of Directors. “He brings tremendous experience in enhancing companies’ leading market positions and creating value by leading with a focus on growth, innovation and brand development.” Before joining American Standard, Gould was President of the Home & Family Group of Newell Rubbermaid. Taking an innovative, consumer-driven approach to building demand, he significantly increased revenues for the company’s Levolor, Calphalon, Rubbermaid and Graco brands throughout the economic downturn.  Prior to Newell Rubbermaid, Gould held senior executive roles at The Campbell Soup Company, The Coca-Cola Company, and General Mills, Inc., where he helped drive the growth of world class brands such as Coca-Cola, Pepperidge Farm and Minute Maid. “American Standard is an iconic brand with tremendous potential to inspire do-it-yourself consumers and to partner with professionals,” said Gould. “The Company successfully weathered the challenging business environment over the past several years, emerging as an even stronger business and now prepares for a more assertive growth agenda.  That agenda will certainly build on American Standard’s heritage of products with great design and industry-leading performance.” Gould succeeds Don Devine, who led the successful turnaround of American Standard Brands and is leaving the Company to pursue other interests. Under his leadership, the Company completed the strategic mergers of American Standard, Crane Plumbing, Eljer Plumbing, Safety Tubs and Decorative Panels International. The turnaround effort resulted in sustained profitability and a new capital structure for the Company. “While Don has done an outstanding job in building and repositioning the company, Jay will lead the next phase of the Company’s development, which will focus on growth,” Taylor said. About American Standard Brands: –  American Standard Brands is a leading North American manufacturer of a wide range of high-quality building products, including faucets, fixtures, furniture, vitreous china fixtures, cast iron sinks, whirlpool tubs and other wellness products for the bath and kitchen as well as decorative panels. The company currently offers total project solutions for residential and commercial customers; employs more than 5,000 people in the United States, Canada and Mexico; and markets products under well known and respected brands, such as American Standard®, Jado®, Porcher®, Safety Tubs®, Crane®, Eljer®, Fiat®and Decorative Panels International®. American Standard Brands is an affiliated portfolio company of Sun Capital Partners. For more information, visit About Sun Capital Partners, Inc. – Sun Capital Partners, Inc. is a leading private investment firm focused on leveraged buyouts, equity, debt, and other investments in companies that can benefit from its in–house operating professionals and experience. Sun Capital affiliates have invested in more than 285 companies worldwide with combined sales in excess of $45 billion since Sun Capital’s inception in 1995. Sun Capital has offices in Boca Raton, Los Angeles, and New York, as well as affiliates in London, Paris, Frankfurt, Luxembourg, Shanghai and Shenzhen.

News Courtesy A-1 Plumbing Newswire

American Express Small Business Saturday 2011

November 16, 2011

On November 26, we’re asking millions of Americans to Shop Small at their favorite local stores and help fuel the economy. When we all shop small, it will be huge. Some of the world’s online pioneers are uniting around a common goal: driving more business to local, independent shops for Small Business Saturday 2011. In 2010, Small Business Saturday was founded by American Express to help address small businesses’ greatest need: driving sales. It was also an occasion to recognize the importance of small business and their vital contributions to the economy, job creation, and local communities. The national initiative encourages consumers to shop at small businesses during the holiday season. All small businesses, not just those that use or accept American Express, are able to participate. Small Business Saturday falls on Thanksgiving weekend between Black Friday and Cyber Monday. This year, Small Business Saturday will be on November 26. June Blunt of A-1 Plumbing Supply Warehouse Store, a major New York City plumbing supply distributor has announced ‘We support American Express Small Business Saturday. Last year was an amazing success and we hope customers will take advantage of our fantastic holiday sales to fix that plumbing leak save money on the water and sewer bills.’ Consumer Incentives to Shop on Small Business Saturday – FedEx recently announced it would inject $1 million into the small business economy in support of Small Business Saturday by distributing 40,000 $25 Shop SmallSM American Express® gift cards for use at small businesses on November 26. A total of 30,000 gift cards are available, first-come-first-serve, beginning November 1 on FedEx will distribute an additional 10,000 gift cards directly to customers. For the second year in a row, American Express will help drive traffic through the doors of small businesses with a special incentive: a $25 statement credit offer for Cardmembers when they register their Card and spend $25 or more on Small Business Saturday at any qualifying small business that accepts the American Express Card. Cardmembers will be able to register their cards in early November. Lastly, Women Impacting Public Policy (WIPP), a non-partisan organization that advocates for small business issues, has created the Small Business Saturday Coalition. Already, the Coalition has enlisted 200 advocacy organizations to raise awareness for Small Business Saturday and motivate consumers to shop at small businesses this holiday season. About Small Business Saturday – November 26th marks the second annual Small Business Saturday, a day to support the local businesses that create jobs, boost the economy and preserve neighborhoods around the country. Small Business Saturday (SBS) was created in 2010 by American Express in response to small business owners’ most pressing need: creating more demand for their products and services. A total of 1.5 million Facebook users, 130 public and private organizations, and 41 elected officials declared their support for SBS last year. More than 100,000 small businesses downloaded SBS marketing materials, 10,000 businesses signed up for free Facebook advertising that ran on SBS, and 200,000 consumers registered their American Express cards to receive $25 statement credits when they shopped at a small business on SBS. Small retailers who accept the American Express Card saw a 28% increase in sales on SBS when compared to the Saturday after Thanksgiving in 2009. About American Express and American Express OPEN – American Express is a global services company, providing customers with access to products, insights and experiences that enrich lives and build business success. Learn more at and connect with us on, and American Express OPEN is the leading payment card issuer for small businesses in the United States and supports business owners with products and services to help them run and grow their businesses. This includes business charge and credit cards that deliver purchasing power, flexibility, rewards, savings on business services from an expanded lineup of partners and online tools and services designed to help improve profitability. Learn more at and connect with us at and

News Courtesy A-1 Plumbing Newswire

Versatile New Line of Stainless Steel Kitchen Sinks Offer Smart Features

October 31, 2011

Get more out of your kitchen with the smart, stylish, and innovative features of the new “appliance sink” now available from American Standard. The sink is already one of the most functional kitchen fixtures, serving as a place to wash dishes, rinse vegetables, defrost meats, and even wash pets or small children. American Standard has pulled it all together in a new line of stainless steel sinks that includes useful accessories like a cutting board and colander set that integrate seamlessly into the sink itself. The appliance sink features deep, spacious, straight-sided bowls to easily hold large loads of pots, pans, dishes, and glasses. Its brushed stainless steel surface is designed to compliment stainless steel appliances, while the drop-in installation style adds to the clean, contemporary look of the sink. A trio of useful accessories comes standard with the appliance sink: a colander and glass cutting board that slide along the ledge of the sink for increased stability and convenience, and a roll-up stainless steel grid to protect the surface of the sink. The new offering of kitchen sinks also includes a series of traditional single, double, and even triple bowl sinks in both undermount and top mount installation options. Prep sinks, laundry/utility sinks, and unique styles like corner mount sinks and round or oval vanity basins are also available in the same attractive brushed stainless steel. Various faucet and drain configurations can be selected for any sink to accommodate most standard faucets. The solid stainless steel construction of these sinks, in both 18 and 20 gauge, is guaranteed by a limited lifetime warranty. ABOUT AMERICAN STANDARD BRANDS – American Standard Brands is a leading North American manufacturer of a wide range of high-quality building products, including faucets, fixtures, furniture, vitreous china fixtures, cast iron sinks, whirlpool tubs and other wellness products for the bath and kitchen as well as decorative panels. The company currently offers total project solutions for residential and commercial customers; employs more than 5,000 people in the United States, Canada and Mexico; and markets products under well known and respected brands, such as American Standard®, Jado®, Porcher®, Safety Tubs®, Crane®, Eljer®, Fiat® and Decorative Panels International®. American Standard Brands is an affiliated portfolio company of Sun Capital Partners. American Standard® is a registered trademark of American Standard Brands.

News Courtesy A-1 Plumbing Newswire

October Is National Toilet Repair Month – Sleep Better At Night

October 17, 2011

With the cost of living soaring, inflation and an economy which leaves much to be desired, you should be aware that October is National Toilet Repair Month. The enlightened consumer should know that toilet flushing accounts for thirty-eight percent of residential water use and that a leaking toilet can be one of the greatest sources of water waste in the home. Scott Mann, Plumbing Supplies Depot a major national distributor of hard-to-find plumbing parts of most major brands, reports an average leaking toilet may waste up to 78,000 gallons of water per year which is enough water to fill two average-size backyard swimming pools. Mann articulated ‘Water Leaks are expensive both in the supply of water and sewer, a leak can prevent a toilet from flushing properly, which can require multiple flushes and result in still more wasted water. Noise produced by a leaking toilet can be irritating and at the worst the cause of sleepless nights in addition to fright of paying for water waste’. In the main, Mann uttered in a recent trade interview, ‘Our recommended Toilet Repair Kit Complete is a very popular item for repairing a water guzzling toilet. The kit includes everyting one would to rebuild a toilet and it is always a good idea to seek the help of a Registered Master Plumber who has proper credentials and insurances. ‘Loose levers, faulty flappers, flush valves, fill valves and valve seals are popular causes of water wasting which may raise your water and sewer bills. Ensure the peak performance of your toilet with a simple tune-up, you will save water, money, lots of aggravation and probably sleep better at night knowing you implemented an intelligent economic plan. Another good idea with the upcoming holiday season upon us is to check for the proper fit of your toilet tank lid. Scott Mann suggests ‘ Be sure your toilet tank lids are secure for the holidays, visiting relatives and friends are a major cause of toilet accidents. A broken tank lid can be a health and safety issue for homeowners. The good news for an injured toilet lid is the homeowner may find an original equipment replacement we stock, you do not have to replace the whole toilet just because the lid is broken, and simply place the new lid on the tank and you have fixed the problem’. Sleep better and enjoy the holidays.

News Courtesy A-1 Plumbing Newswire

Simple Action Tips Prevent Winter Plumbing Problems

October 6, 2011

The first chilly autumn morning is a perfect reminder when winter arrives it can be sudden, often leaving homeowners unprepared for the plumbing problems associated with cold weather.  The winter season is upon us and according to Scott Mann of Plumbing Supplies Depot  a major distributor of  hard-to-find plumbing and heating supplies, damage from old man winter is easily prevented with a couple hours worth of weekend honey do or seeking help from your local professional plumber. People in Northern sector should take preventive action to protect their plumbing systems by late October. Southerners should follow by late November. Failure to prepare early might prove costly when pipes freeze, which is why the plumbing experts recommend taking these winterization precautions early, when time is on your side, instead of waiting until cold weather arrives. These simple plumbing action tips can prevent winter plumbing problems, save you much money and are easily accomplished in between washing windows, raking leaves and carving pumpkins. – Disconnect outside water hoses. If left connected during freezing temperatures, water in hoses will freeze and expand causing connecting faucets and pipes to freeze and break. – Inspect outside faucets. If dripping or leaking, make the necessary repairs or call a plumber before a freeze. – If your home is equipped with interior shut-off valves leading to outside faucets, close them and drain water from the pipes. – Cover outside faucets using an inexpensive faucet insulation kit. – Insulate pipes in unheated areas. Apply heat tape or thermostat-controlled heat cables around exposed pipes. – Make sure your furnace is set no lower than 55 degrees during the winter to prevent pipes from freezing. Note that when pipes freeze, water pressure builds causing cracks, whether the pipe is made of plastic, copper or steel. Even a tiny crack can unleash 250 gallons of water in a single day. – Your water heater works harder during winter months. Drain corrosion-causing sediment from the tank, which reduces energy efficiency if it’s not removed. – Set water heater thermostat to 120 F for optimum performance without risk of scalding. – Clear any leaves and debris from roof gutters and downspouts to ensure proper drainage throughout the winter season. – Inspect and clean sump pit. Remove any rocks and debris from pit then dump a bucket of water into the sump pit to test the pump. If it turns on and pumps water out then turns itself off, it is operating properly. – Before going on vacation always turn off street water supply to prevent flooding; be aware how to turn off the water supply in your home. In conclusion, the first chilly autumn morning is a perfect reminder to make sure your heating system is operating properly and safely. Mann recommends ‘check your air filters, oil the circulator and blowers, proper maintenance is preservation of your home and can save you money during the heating season’.

News Courtesy A-1 Plumbing Newswire

Cheap Toilet Lids Replace Tornado Destruction

July 9, 2011

The Great American Dream shattered when your guest broke the toilet tank lid cover. You worked hard all your life, made prudent investments and now part of your biggest investment, your home, is now broken. Typically, we expect to see a toilet tank lid on the toilet when we visit our bathroom. The saga of the toilet lid often goes unnoticed when we take the toilet lid for granted, we expect to see it proudly sitting on our toilet tank to complete the traditional wholesome look of our toilet. Unprotected toilet water tanks with no lid are a serious hazard for both safety and health. Rough broken tank lid edges can cut one, the curious kitten may decide to take a swim and drown, the old hair dryer and water shock, someone with little fingers may tinker with the exposed flush parts and you may have the River Jordan greet you when you return from vacation and the list goes on. Your house guests trashed your home including the toilet tank lid top cover besides eating you out of house and home. Just when you thought you would have to replace your existing toilet because the toilet lid broke you discovered Cheap Toilet Lids which can spare you the expense of professional installation and buying another toilet just because the toilet tank lid cover top has been broken. Many will say the butler done it, but you say it was your house guest’s friend being nasty, others tell the story of a toilet bowel off the casino gaming floor at Resorts International in Atlantic City, NJ. The odds are good of finding a genuine American Standard, Kohler or other major brand factory replacement toilet tank lid cover, Cheap Toilet Lids claim 50,000 to one to have the plumbing part you need. Suzie Jackson of Cheap Toilet Lids in a recent interview related the story of a customer who ripped thru Resorts International Hotel and Casino Atlantic City public bathroom like a tornado destruction destroying every thing in the bathroom including the toilet lid. Water was everyone, flowing onto the casino gaming floor, people thought the ocean had overflowed, there were a couple of slip and falls, lost revenue from the areas having to be closed and more money spent to repair the water damage, the end of the story was when the customer walked away like nothing happened. The moral of the story is to have staff know where the water shut off valves are located. In the case of another client, Jackson reports Cheap Toilet Lids has repeat customers in a toilet lid of the month club where popular toilet lid inventory is stocked and ready for immediate shipment to the motel or condo who can not rent a unit because a toilet tank lid has been broken or is missing. Jackson noted behind every broken or missing toilet tank lid there is always a good story and while you have the toilet tank lid removed drop some food color in the tank let it sit a few hours and if the color makes it to the bowl you have a small leak which can be costing more money; often the cost of replacing a tank lid can be offset by repairing a faulty toilet valve which will save water and sewage costs. When you order the toilet tank lid from Cheap Toilet Lids you may also include plumbing parts and devices to save money which makes a story with a happy ending.

News Courtesy A-1 Plumbing Newswire