A contractor assembles a new toilet in a residential bathroom.
Trade Talk

Why low-flow toilets benefit contractors

With more requirements restricting water use coming all the time and utility prices rising, products that conserve water are becoming more popular. Plumbing professionals offering this installation option to their customers are making a smart choice to grow their business.

Unlike dual-flush, low-flow toilets are priced similarly to traditional models, which means less of a sticker shock for your customers, and they’re simpler to use. Choosing energy-efficient options has become less confusing over the past few years, and you may be surprised to find how easy it can be to add this service for your customers.

Learn more about the benefits of low-flow toilets for contractors and how you can help customers make the right choice for their household.

What is a WaterSense toilet?

You may hear low-flow and WaterSense used interchangeably. Federal requirements for toilets to use a maximum of 1.6 gallons per flush (GPF) went into effect in the early 1990s, but WaterSense goes even further—these are certified as using 1.28 GPF.

The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) sponsors a partnership program to label products that save water, and a third-party certifies a WaterSense toilet for performance and efficiency. The label makes it easy for contractors and homeowners to know that the model they’re choosing can deliver the most energy savings.

All WaterSense-labeled toilets are certified as able to operate using at least 20% less water than federal requirements call for. Some use even less than that.

How contractors benefit from low-flow toilets

By expanding your plumbing expertise into water-saving bathrooms, your customers can enjoy long-term cost reductions in their utility bills, as well as the feeling that they’re doing their part for the planet.

In addition, WaterSense labeling makes it easier for you to find the right products for the job, and installing or retrofitting efficient toilets isn’t much different than traditional models for contractors.

So if you’re working on new construction or a remodel, or your customer simply needs to replace an old, broken toilet, water conservation can be a win-win for everyone. Discover the benefits of installing energy-efficient toilets and see how easy it can be to go green.

A low-flow toilet saves on water bills.

Not many people like flushing money down the drain, and a lot of us are taking a much closer look at our budgets.

According to the EPA, homeowners can reap a number of benefits from WaterSense-labeled toilets:

  • Prevent 20-60% of water from being flushed down the drain.

  • Conserve more than 1,000 gallons of water per month.

  • Save nearly $3,000 over the course of the toilet’s life.

In new construction, low-flow bathrooms can be part of a total green package to appeal to buyers. For a remodel or simple replacement, it’s possible the homeowner hasn’t considered energy-efficient options. Talk to your customers about how much they could save with little effort or extra costs on their part.

Helping homeowners make informed decisions for performance and energy efficiency can lead to referrals and repeat business for you, boosting your bottom line.

Customers could earn an energy-efficient toilet rebate.

The WaterSense label makes it easier for you to provide side-by-side comparisons and show how your customer’s investment will pay for itself in the long run. With improved technology, low-flow toilets typically cost the same as options that aren’t certified.

In certain areas, your customers could save even more with rebates for switching to an energy-efficient toilet. On the WaterSense rebate site, search by rebate type and state to find cities offering incentives for replacing traditional toilets with products that use less water.

Click through to see how your customer can qualify. The requirements are usually clear, and your customers may appreciate you looking out for their wallets.

High-efficiency toilets are simple to install.

Not only are these products now easier to procure, but installation usually doesn’t require special tools or extra steps. And for a retrofit, if the commode you’re swapping in has the same rough-in size as the higher GPF version, the process is straightforward.

Flowing this value-added service into your business shouldn’t be a big lift, and your customers will likely remember your ability to save them costs both upfront and over time.

Will customers have problems with low-flow toilets?

Technology has advanced since these came on to the market decades ago, so your customers’ opinions about water-saving bathrooms may be outdated. They might have questions about if the toilet clogs a lot or if they’ll have to double-flush, reducing the water savings they can expect.

Providing updated information can ease their minds. Toilets are now rated for Maximum Performance, known as MaP testing, for both water efficiency and reliable flushing. Innovations in power-assisted and gravity flushing mean flushing twice is no longer necessary.

These days, there aren’t problems with water-saving models that a customer wouldn’t have with a regular one—if a drain line is blocked, for example, any toilet would have trouble flushing.

Discuss your next bathroom project with Ferguson

With similar price points, rebate opportunities and long-term savings, low-flow toilets could have a positive impact on your customers’ budgets. Providing excellent service with energy-efficient options could create a positive impact on your bottom line as well.

To learn more about WaterSense or other bathroom options, get in touch with your local Ferguson. Our knowledgeable associates can discuss the most popular and efficient toilets to meet your needs.