Manufacturers of commercial products are hearing the continued refrains of energy and water efficiency from their customers.
“A lot of our core products we’ve been making for 95 years now always have fit into that sustainability mode,” Elkay Vice President Product Management Franco Savoni, P.E., says. “The trend we see now is more sustainability awareness from building owners and architects.”
Elkay addressed those needs with the recent introduction of its enhanced ezH20 bottle-filling station that features energy-saving benefits, including a programmable setting to reduce the power used for the unit when the facility is not in use. “It allows buildings to cut the energy usage of the product dramatically,” Savoni says.
Brian Fenske, specialty channel sales manager at tankless water heater manufacturer Navien, is seeing a shift in system layouts in commercial and multifamily settings. “The single mechanical rooms are beginning to disappear and the equipment is being located closer to the usage areas,” he says. “This can offer energy and cost savings due to the smaller required distribution systems providing quicker hot water with less waste to the fixtures.”
Along the multifamily lines, Fenske is excited about Navien’s ComfortAir+ add-on component to the NPE-A series tankless that allows the water heater to interface with an air handler. “The accessory has become extremely popular for both new construction and replacement of storage tanks mated with an air handler,” says Fenske, who adds another recent company release is its NHB hydronic boiler.
In the bathroom, aesthetics are playing an increasingly larger role in commercial designs. “We heard from facility owners that they’re looking to make commercial spaces look and feel less institutional,” says Ben Fisher, Moen’s segment manager, commercial, hospitality, A&D. “Their focus is on creating attractive spaces that remind residents of home while still providing the reliability their facilities require.”
Fisher notes Moen Commercial has added new modern designs to its heavy-duty M•Dura faucet and showerhead line and its medium-duty M•Bition line. “Both are designed to make a space feel more homelike,” he says.
Which commercial products are you seeing gaining in popularity? Let us know in the comments section below. We’d love to hear from you!