The latest high efficiency water softeners offer consumers savings and installers a decent profit, says Dario Palumbo, Marketing Manager at Monarch Water.
As the colder months draw in and utility bills soar, increasingly larger numbers of consumers will be turning to professional heating and plumbing installers to help improve their homes’ energy efficiency.
With a 54% increase in household bills in April this year and a further increase of up to 27% predicted for October, consumers are right to be concerned about the efficiency of their homes.
As frontline workers, installers will undoubtedly be inundated with questions from consumers asking how they can minimise energy costs through the winter months. Although there are several ways in which consumers can make their money go further this winter, there are often other long term and affordable solutions that are overlooked.
Limescale, for example can actually have a devastating impact on a home’s energy efficiency. With over 60% of the UK receiving a hard water supply, limescale is an issue for a huge proportion of the population.
Hard water is a result of rain water seeping through the earth, picking up minerals from rocks as it travels through the ground. These minerals contained within the water only become a problem once they have been heated as this process calcifies them, producing limescale.
It is the build-up of scale inside pipes and coating heating elements inside boilers, showers, washing machines and dishwashers that causes bills to rise and efficiency to fall.
According to British Water, just 1.6mm of scale reduces a heating elements efficiency by 12% as it first needs to heat the scale before it can begin heating the water. This means wasted energy and money down the drain.
Not only that, scale deposits also make equipment failure more likely, which leads to costly calls outs to fix the problem. Limescale also reduces the working life of equipment too, so introducing a water softener can help consumers make some significant savings.
Easy does it
High efficiency water softeners are something that installers can introduce to customers to help improve their home’s efficiency by as much as 24%, which equates to significant savings. In fact, savings could be as much as £600 a year on all hard water costs, with payback on the initial purchase in just over 12 months.
Sustainability remains an important issue to consumers, so it’s important to offer environmentally conscious solutions to the problems they are facing around the home.
Technological advances have seen WRAS approved, high efficiency water softeners introduced to the market that feature Opti-Brining technology, which means the units only regenerate when necessary, minimising water consumption. Additionally, they use less salt and less water than previous models, making them a sustainable solution to water softening.
Additionally, the fact that they are compatible with any type of boiler means that every hard water home can benefit from a water softener.
Although the main draw of installing a high efficiency water softener is the financial savings they offer in terms of lower utility bills, there are many other advantages of investing.
For example, a water softener will not only prevent any further damage to household equipment by removing the scale forming minerals and metals before they can enter the heating and hot water system, but they will also remove any existing deposits too – optimising homes’ efficiency.
Not only that, they also offer numerous lifestyle benefits – from less scale deposits around the home, which means less cleaning and need for expensive chemicals, and better wash results from dishwashers and washing machines, to softer skin and silkier hair too. In fact, Carolyn Akinyemi, founder of The Eczema Academy, which has partnered with Monarch Water, says that softening and filtration solutions are key components in the effective protocols for the relief of eczema.
The heat is on
Colder weather means installers are set to receive call outs from consumers with heating and hot water issues this winter. This presents an opportunity for installers to offer their expertise and help their customers improve the way their systems run, which should include a high efficiency water softener.
It is not just consumers that will benefit from investing in a water softener – they can prove a lucrative line of revenue for installers too.
Some water softeners come complete with a rapid fit bypass, which removes the need for 80% of equipment previously needed to fit, which means they can be fitted in very little time.
At a time of economic and environmental fragility there is an urgent need to cut UK homes’ energy consumption. By explaining the long term financial and lifestyle benefits of high efficiency water softeners, installers can help to support their customers.