There's a lesson that all building managers learn quickly: deferred maintenance is never cheap. Fixing something that seems fine on the surface feels like a waste, but it can save an incredible amount of money in the future. Unfortunately, plumbing often finds itself in the unenviable position of being ignored until disaster strikes.
If you manage an older commercial building, you may want to find some room in your budget for some much-needed upgrades. These four upgrades can improve your facility for its occupants and save you from expensive repairs and frustrating future complaints.
1. High-Efficiency Appliances
Upgrading to newer, higher-efficiency appliances saves homeowners vast amounts of money on their utility bills. The effect on a commercial building that uses drastically more water can be much more pronounced. Newer water heaters can be excellent "bang for your buck" upgrades, even if your building's hot water needs are limited mainly to the restrooms.
Depending on your specific needs, you may want to consider upgrading to tankless heaters. These units tend to cost more upfront, but they can provide greater efficiency, reliability, and lifespan than other commercial heaters.
2. New Fixtures
Toilets and sinks alone can use tremendous amounts of water, often for little benefit to their users. If your building has older fixtures, then you may be using much more water than necessary. High flow fixtures can often use twice as much (or more!) water than newer, low flow options. Upgrading these old items is a cheap, high impact way to reduce your building's water usage.
3. Gauges and Leak Detectors
Sometimes the best way to save money is to provide yourself with the data you need to make better decisions. Pressure gauges and leak detectors are two options to monitor your building's plumbing situation. Strategically placed pressure gauges can help you locate sources of heavy water usage, while leak detectors can alert you to problems before they cause too much damage.
4. Essential Repairs and Maintenance
Are maintenance and repairs upgrades? They can be if you've been putting them off for long enough. Small leaks or faucets that don't close all the way can drive up your water bills, especially if they're present in multiple bathrooms or other areas throughout your building. A thorough plumbing inspection followed by repairs to address any discovered issues can be a highly cost-effective upgrade.
Ultimately, changing your mindset towards plumbing is more crucial than any specific actions you might take. Treat your building's plumbing as a critical element of its operation that requires occasional maintenance and upgrades, and you'll be well on your way to saving money in the future.
For more information, reach out to a commercial plumbing service in your area.