Home Featured The Internet of Things (IOT) is Moving the Plumbing Industry to Preventative Maintenance

The Internet of Things (IOT) is Moving the Plumbing Industry to Preventative Maintenance

The Internet of Things (IOT) is Moving the Plumbing Industry to Preventative Maintenance

By: Henry Halimi

Internet of ThingsInternet of ThingsIn the last five years, the Internet of Things (IoT) has revolutionized the way people interact with their homes in many different ways. It has empowered interconnectivity in a way that most of us couldn’t imagine. With the prevalence of smartphones and IoT, people’s “smart devices” offer convenience in all corners of their homes: toasters that automatically toast when a morning alarm goes off, thermostats that automatically adjust settings based on people being home or not, and even voice-enabled devices to play music and read the news. The plumbing industry has been no exception to this IoT revolution, which has revitalized the industry with innovation. Professional trades people have built entire businesses around installing tankless water heaters, filtration systems, and water purification systems that are now Wi-Fi enabled and “smart.”

This first wave of IoT has been about individual devices and the convenience of smart, Wi-Fi enabled devices. The next wave will provide much more than the convenience of Wi-Fi control of devices. It will open up truly smart and interconnected devices in the home.

IoT will allow “smart” plumbing devices to move into a more proactive and preventative posture, which offers enormous benefits for all involved, especially plumbing professionals. More than just helping to just minimize damages and harm, IoT will allow proactive maintenance of the home to prevent losses altogether. For example, instead of leak detectors that beep after damage has occurred, we will have detectors that send notifications straight to a homeowner’s phone and help them contact a plumber right away. Even better will be devices with machine learning capabilities that can learn to shut the water off themselves.

Due to these new devices, plumbing professionals will now be able to offer 24/7 water monitoring services for homeowners, condo and apartment owners who want a preventive, not reactive approach. With an aging housing stock and the natural breakdown of plumbing infrastructure, there is a real opportunity for the plumbing industry to benefit alongside customers, insurance companies and municipalities as water leaks are eliminated and catastrophic water damage disappears. The amount of money and heartache that can be saved with these new devices and services will quickly drive adoption and transform the industry.

To put it simply, IoT will move plumbers and the plumbing industry into a completely new, preventive role. Those that embrace this new approach stand to dominate the industry and develop relationships with customers that are much stronger and stickier than in the past. And in my humble opinion, the newly enlightened plumbing professionals will see enormous amounts of growth along the way.

Henry Halimi is the founder of Flo Technologies, Inc. (meetflo.com) and inventor of the Flo Water Monitoring and Shut-off device. Halimi has been a consultant to the top tier plumbing manufacturers in the past 14 years. (henry@flotechnologies.com)