Just the Tip

When it comes to restroom breaks, office workers in the U.S. say that touchless restroom fixtures are the number one feature that would make them feel safer when using their workplace restroom. According to the Healthy Handwashing Survey™ by Bradley Corp., touch-free washroom fixtures received the highest safety ranking, followed by access to well-stocked supplies such as soap Read more

When it comes to restroom breaks, office workers in the U.S. say that touchless restroom fixtures are the number one feature that would make them feel safer when using their workplace restroom. According to the Healthy Handwashing Survey by Bradley Corp., touch-free washroom fixtures received the highest safety ranking, followed by access to well-stocked supplies such as soap and paper towels; a clean, disinfectant smell; sufficient space for social distancing; and posted signage with the restroom’s cleaning schedule.

Not only do they associate touchless fixtures with a safer restroom environment, office workers view them as must haves. Nearly four-in-five (79%) of office workers believe no-touch fixtures are an important feature in workplace restrooms. Among the general U.S. population, this sentiment is even higher – 84% say they are important in public restrooms.

“Interestingly, two-thirds of office workers use a paper towel to avoid touching restroom door handles, flushers and faucet handles,” said Jon Dommisse, vice president of marketing and corporate communications, Bradley Corp. “This evasive action further demonstrates why touch-free restroom fixtures resonate so much with restroom users.”

Handwashing is also top-of-mind for office workers, as 70% report washing their hands more now because of new Covid strains, such as the Delta variant. Overall, half of office workers are washing their hands six-plus times a day.

“Just as 9-11 changed air travel and the iPod changed how we listen to music, Covid has changed how we view handwashing and washrooms,” Dommisse said.

Rating the condition of workplace restrooms

The survey also shows 75% of office workers believe the condition of a workplace restroom is one indicator of how a company values its workforce. Fortunately, 68% of office workers rate their restrooms as excellent or very good.

That’s not to say office workers don’t experience problems with workplace restrooms. 81% have encountered at least one issue while using them. The most annoying issues – cited by 62% of workers – are empty or non-working soap, paper towel and/or toilet paper dispensers. Another 62% are concerned with restroom cleanliness.

Highlighting office hygiene improvements

Most employers (62%) have made improvements to make employees feel safer returning to work amidst the pandemic with upgrades such as adding hand sanitizing stations around the office (66%), cleaning offices and restrooms more frequently (65%) and encouraging employees to stay home while they’re sick (51%).

Interestingly, only 42% of companies have communicated these changes to their employees.

 Sharing these improvements positively impacts employers since 53% of office workers say their employer’s response to the pandemic makes them feel more valued, 50% say it shows the company cares about its employees, and 35% say it makes them feel more positive about their company.

 The Healthy Handwashing Survey from restroom equipment manufacturer, Bradley Corp., queried 1,035 American adults Aug. 3-10, 2021, about their handwashing habits, concerns about the coronavirus and their return to the workplace. A subset of 513 respondents who work in offices were identified and asked a series of applicable questions. Participants were from around the country and were evenly split between men and women. The Healthy Handwashing Survey of the general population has a margin of error of +/- 3% and the office worker subset has a margin of error of +/- 4%, with a 95% confidence level.

For more information, visit bradleycorp.com/handwashing.

Whether installing a new boiler or maintaining an existing one, it’s important to consider the inherent issues that can befall a hydronic system and impact the performance of its components. Anticipating these pitfalls and planning accordingly will result in a smarter installation.  By choosing your boiler accessories wisely, you can extend the life of your Read more

Whether installing a new boiler or maintaining an existing one, it’s important to consider the inherent issues that can befall a hydronic system and impact the performance of its components. Anticipating these pitfalls and planning accordingly will result in a smarter installation.  By choosing your boiler accessories wisely, you can extend the life of your boiler and maintain its efficiency while guarding against potential problems down the road.

One of the most common issues comes in the form of ferrous debris, a result of normal metal pipe wear that, when left unchecked, can cause major problems. Over time, rust particles and other debris in the heating loop build up, creating an iron sludge that reduces boiler efficiency or even stops it altogether from working. The resulting damage can require expensive repairs, increase heating costs, and reduce the overall lifespan of the boiler.

To combat the accumulated sludge in the pipes, a system flush may be required. Depending on the severity of the issue, this could be a costly and time-consuming process. Moreover, doing so will not reverse any damage that’s already been done to the boiler. By the same token, boiler manufacturers are becoming more stringent about their warranty claim requirements. Installing a boiler accessory as a precautionary measure is the most consistent way to ensure due diligence is being done. The best protection from iron sludge is to prevent it from ever reaching the appliance.

To protect the boiler, consider the Magnetic Boiler Filter (MBF) from Webstone®, a brand of NIBCO. It captures ferrous and non-ferrous debris before it can reach the boiler using a high-powered 12,000 Gauss magnet. Its internal filter knocks out sediment as it enters the unit, breaking down the sludge and maintaining optimal flow rate. The build-up is captured in the body, which has a large storage capacity to increase time between service. The strapped cap is also used to actuate the integrated drain valve, making it simple to remove accumulation when needed, and a service tool is included to help remove the filter housing with ease.

The MBF bodies feature G-thread ends for connection to your choice of MIP, FIP, sweat, or press union fittings. Unions and bodies can be purchased as an installation kit or as separate components depending on the installer’s preference. Optional lead-free dezincification-resistant brass isolation valves are also available to simplify future service. When installed in conjunction with a circulator pump, the flanged ball valve saves space, labor, and leak paths compared to the off-the-shelf assemblies that would normally be required to connect the two appliances. It also mitigates the risk of electrolysis and galvanic corrosion, while allowing virtually no air into the system upon pump replacement. For more simple isolation needs, Webstone offers straight and angled G-union ball valves with reversible handles.

For smaller systems, the ¾” and 1” models feature a universal diverter that allows the MBF to be used in both horizontal and vertical piping orientations on the system return line. For horizontal installations on the system run, the Magnetic Boiler Filter XL model is now available in sizes 1¼” or 1½”. Introduced in 2021, the patent-pending MBF XL is ideal for larger residential and light commercial boiler applications, with a robust 2-layer metal mesh filter and manual air vent.

Webstone offers a wide array of system performance products designed to support efficient operations and protect components. To learn more about how you can work smarter, visit Webstone Valves.

Drum-type drain cleaners vs. Sectional drain cleaning machines. What’s the difference? Question: We use a large drum-type drain cleaner to clear tree roots. But my buddy swears by his sectional machine to do the same job. What’s the difference? And which one is better? Answer: Heavy duty machines with large diameter cables are needed to Read more

Drum-type drain cleaners vs. Sectional drain cleaning machines. What’s the difference?

Question: We use a large drum-type drain cleaner to clear tree roots. But my buddy swears by his sectional machine to do the same job. What’s the difference? And which one is better?

Answer: Heavy duty machines with large diameter cables are needed to clear tree roots. Two types of machines are available – drum-type and sectional.  Each has advantages.

Drum-type machines have the advantage of being self-contained, fast, and easy to operate.  The entire length of cable is contained in one drum and can be transported in a single trip to the job site.  A variable speed automatic feed, feeding at a rate of up to 20 ft/min, makes it easier for the operator to get the cable to the clog quickly.  It also helps to retract the cable more easily.  A 100 ft. cable can weight 100 lbs.

 

Sectional drain cleaners have the advantage of being lightweight.  The cables are carried separately from the machine as 5, 8, 10, or 15 ft. sections.  No need to carry the weight of 100 ft. of cable when the job only calls for 50 ft.  Once on the job, the cables are feed into the line one section at a time and coupled together as needed.  The open coil design of the sectional cable helps corkscrew the cable down the line, making it easier to clear longer runs.  And if a section is ever damaged, it can easily be uncoupled and replaced.

As you can see, each type has its advantages. The correct answer is really, the type of machine that is right for you is the one you’re most familiar with.

For more information, or to ask a question, visit www.drainbrain.com or call the Drain Brains® at 800-245-6200.

It’s fair to say that the last year has been a significant challenge for just about every industry. Even something as essential as plumbing hasn’t gone without being impacted by the changes that have come about due to the COVID-19 pandemic. However, just because you’re facing these unique challenges, doesn’t mean that you’re not going Read more

It’s fair to say that the last year has been a significant challenge for just about every industry. Even something as essential as plumbing hasn’t gone without being impacted by the changes that have come about due to the COVID-19 pandemic. However, just because you’re facing these unique challenges, doesn’t mean that you’re not going to be able to overcome them. With that in mind, here are some things that you can do in order to keep your plumbing business afloat in a post-COVID world.

Stay safe

The most obvious thing to remember when working during the pandemic is to make sure that you, your employees, and your clients are all as safe as possible. There are plenty of ways that you can do this of course. If you’re heading out to clients then make sure that you have procedures in place so that you can maintain social distancing and that you’re always keeping yourself and your equipment clean and sanitized. This applies to your office and warehouse too. Of course, this is all alongside the other, more typical health and safety measures that you need to take. Safety should always be your number one concern, even once we’re all on the other side of this pandemic.

Present yourself properly

People are pretty frightened at the moment and they need to feel secure in whatever business they hire. They need to be sure that not only are you going to do the best job possible but that you’re going to be able to do it safely and securely. This means that you have to put your best foot forward at all times. Things like making sure that your website is as high quality as possible or using something like http://physicaladdress.com to set up a virtual mailbox that can help smaller plumbing companies look better established can make a huge difference. If you want to keep your business going during these tough times, your customers need to feel as though they can trust you completely.

Adjust your working methods

You may previously have had particular ideas about how your business is run. Everything from plumbers out on jobs to the manufacturing side to the way that the office itself functions. The reality is that in this new world there’s a good chance that you’ll need to rethink all of these in one way or another. From making sure that you’re compliant with safety regulations to ensuring that all of your staff are working to the highest possible standard no matter where they are. The modern world has changed and it’s up to you to change with it.

The reality is that, pandemic or no pandemic, your business is one that is always going to be necessary both domestically and commercially. Being able to adjust to the needs of the modern world in whatever form that takes is one of the most important things that you can do to stay ahead of the competition and to make sure that your business comes out of the totally unprecedented situation as cleanly as possible.

Everyone needs a plumber from time to time so you could be forgiven for thinking marketing isn’t too important in this line of work, but you have to take into account the number of other plumbers who may be working in your area. If you want to be successful, you need to ensure that more Read more

Everyone needs a plumber from time to time so you could be forgiven for thinking marketing isn’t too important in this line of work, but you have to take into account the number of other plumbers who may be working in your area. If you want to be successful, you need to ensure that more customers choose you than them, and the way you do that is by developing a better marketing strategy. The plumber marketing tips below will help you with that.

Submit your business to local listings

Before you do anything else. Ensure that you submit the details of your business to Google My Business listings and other local business listings online. You need to do this because the first thing most people will do when they require the services of a plumber is to look online for one nearby. If you’re not on local listings sites, chances are your name will not be one of the first ones to pop up on Google and you’ll probably lose a sale. Submitting to local listings takes seconds but it can make a huge difference to your bottom line.

Have your own website

It’s also important that you have your own website where customers can check out previous work done, read testimonials and get an idea of the services you provide. Customers like to have a lot of information available to them and a good, easy-to-read website is the best way of giving it to them in the first instance.

Get a great logo

Think having the name of your plumbing company on the die of your van is enough? Think again. Logos are undoubtedly much better for marketing purposes because they stand out and catch the eye more, If your logo becomes a familiar sight in the local area, more people will think of contacting you first, A good graphic designer should be able to whip up a logo for a reasonable price.

Manage your reputation

No professional likes bad reviews, but they happen and they are not always fair. Did you know some reviews can be removed from Glassdoor and similar review sites? If you think your business is being unfairly badmouthed, taking this step may be smart. If, however, you think a bad review is fair, sending out as public reply that addresses the concerns and does whatever possible to put things right will help to put your business back in a good light.

Use social media

As a plumber, you’ll probably be working a lot in your local area, so it makes sense to not only set up your own social media pages where local people can follow you, but also to join lots of local pages made by other people too, That way you can recommend your services (don’t spam), engage with local people, and build solid relations. It’s also a very good low-cost way of marketing yourself, but you will need to put some effort in to creating lots of quality content like how-to videos and engaging written posts.

Marketing matters so get it right!