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a new way to harness energy BLUE IS THE NEW GREEN

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welcome F R O M



Australian Plumbing Industry Magazine Plumbing Industry House 525 King Street West Melbourne VIC 3003 T 03 9329 9622 F 03 9329 5060 E The Australian Plumbing Industry Magazine (Industry and Member editions and occasional supplements including the MPMSAA Group Training News, are official journals produced by the Master Plumbers’ and Mechanical Services Association of Australia (MPMSAA) ABN: 56 296 473 997 Print Post number: 381712/02399 ISSN: 1325-6289

MASTER PLUMBERS ASSOCIATION LOCATIONS Head Office 525 King Street West Melbourne VIC 3003 T 03 9329 9622 F 03 9329 5060 Brisbane Group Training 91-93 Commercial Road Teneriffe QLD 4006 T 07 3854 2345 F 07 3854 2346


As the implementation of the carbon tax levy approaches, the development of green and sustainable technologies will become more readily embraced as people seek solutions that are friendly to both the environment and their wallets. In this issue, Chief Executive of the Green Building Council of Australia Romilly Madew discusses the importance of investing in technologies that preserve our water resources. Tom Andronas takes a closer look at the geothermal revolution that is currently taking place; this technology has been utilised by many other countries for decades, but is only now taking off in Australia and presents many interesting opportunities for the plumbing sector. As winter sets in heating becomes an important consideration, particularly in the colder states such as Victoria and Tasmania. Matthew da Silva reports on how heating systems should be fit-for-purpose and talks to the experts to find out how they advise clients on heating requirements and options. With the end of the financial year approaching, our tax time update discusses some of the key changes to tax rules and reporting that will affect small businesses and the construction industry.

Also important, our story on commercial contracts explores changes to the Personal Properties Security Act and explains how getting contracts right can mean less risk for your business. So far 2012 has proved to be a busy year for the plumbing industry and there are plenty of events still to come during the second half of the year. Check out the round up of industry events on page 22 of this issue, including information on the 2012 Australasian Plumbing Conference which is scheduled to take place in Cairns in October. Don’t forget to check out our member news section for reports on our recent milestone certificate presentations, apprentice graduation, the results of our member survey and news on our upcoming networking events. Happy reading,

Melissa Chrys Editor Australian Plumbing Industry Magazine COVER IMAGE: FLINDERS MEDICAL CENTRE – NEW SOUTH WING



JUNE 2012

Plumbing Industry Climate Action Centre 306 Albert Street Brunswick VIC 3065 T 03 9356 8921 F 03 9356 8929

CONTACTS Publisher The Master Plumbers’ and Mechanical Services Association of Australia (MPMSAA) Editor Melissa Chrys T 03 9321 0703 E Advertising Tremain Walles T 03 9321 0780 E Suppliers Salt Creative Printgraphics Direct Mail Corporation

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2012 Industry events / see page 22



14 34 62

From the CEO / page 9 A message from our CEO and our Association’s President

Blue is the new green / page 34 Romilly Madew discusses the importance of preserving our precious water resources

Member news / page 10 Industry news / page 17 Industry events / page 22 Industry development / page 24 The latest training on offer at PICAC Geothermal revolution / page 26 Geothermal technology is set to burst onto the Australian market. Tom Andronas explores a new way to harness energy.

The heat is on / page 36 Heating systems should be fit-for-purpose reports Matthew da Silva Out of sight, out of mind / page 36 Roger Lambie discusses the importance of leakage testing when installing kitchen fixtures and appliances Commercial contracts / page 44 Getting contracts right means less risk for your business

Mastering workplace relations: termination / page 46 Tax time update / page 48 Getting on top of your financial situation On the road / page 50 Apprentice update / page 52 Safety update / page 54 Product news / page 56 WPC news / page 62 The latest from the World Plumbing Council

Disclaimer Statements and information appearing in this publication must not be interpreted as having the endorsement of being the opinion of the publisher, which takes no responsibility for the correctness of the statements made. It is a condition of purchase or acceptance of this publication that the publisher does not assume any responsibility or liability for any loss or damage which may result from any inaccuracy or omission in the publication, or from the use of information contained herein and the publisher makes no warranties, expressed or implied, with respect to any of the material contained herein. The publisher shall not be liable for any failure to publish any advertisement where such failure results from circumstances beyond their control. If advertising material is not supplied in accordance with deadlines, the publisher reserves the right to repeat any material previously provided by the advertiser. The publisher reserves the right to refuse and edit material. All prices and specifications are subject to change without notice. Copyright Australian Plumbing Industry Magazine. All rights reserved. No part of this publication may be reproduced or transmitted in any form or by any means without permission in writing from the publisher.

W W W. P LU M B E R . C O M . A U



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welcome F R O M







So far, 2012 has proved to be a busy year with a number of Association events taking place. In March, the Association held a graduation ceremony for recent graduates of our group training scheme. Plumbing Industry Commissioner Mr Michael Kefford attended the event and presented the graduates with their certificates. I was very impressed with the calibre of our graduates. I believe this reflects the emphasis that Master Plumbers places on training and education – both of which are essential for the future of our industry. Read more about this event on page 12 of this issue. In April, members gathered at Plumbing Industry House to attend the Association’s annual general meeting and for the presentation of the member milestone certificates. Milestone certificates are presented to companies that have been Association members for over 30 years. It was wonderful to see so many member businesses be presented with certificates. It is thanks to the continuing support and contribution of our members that the Association is able to continue to represent our industry. Of particular note was Premier Plumbing Service, who received a 60 year milestone certificate. I encourage you to read their story and those of other members on page 10 of this issue. June is another busy month for our Association, with the Gold Medal and Training Awards being announced later in the month. It is also membership renewal time, and I am pleased to announce that the Association has launched a new Member Benefits Program designed to offer you and your staff a wonderful range of savings and benefits.

The importance of apprenticeship-based training and particularly plumbing training was recognised in change to the budget for VET training in Victoria. The funding levels for plumbing apprenticeship training was increased and there will be requirements placed on training providers to demonstrate a capability to deliver the particular courses they wish to offer under governmentsubsidised arrangements. These changes are most welcome, as is the desire for more industry input into training policy through associations like the Master Plumbers. The importance of training and apprenticeships to the Association was again on full display at our group training scheme’s 2011 graduation ceremony (for apprentices who finished during the preceding 12 months). The group training scheme was recently boosted by amalgamating with the plumbing apprentices from the 360° program. I am also pleased to announce that the Master Plumbers Group Training Scheme is now trading as Plumbing Apprenticeships Victoria. Our aim is to ensure that Plumbing Apprenticeships Victoria provides the industry with high quality, highly skilled apprentices. Find out more on page 52 of this issue. The training offered at PICAC will also benefit Plumbing Apprenticeships Victoria apprentices, with access to green skills training and a broad range of specific safety and machine operating training available. It is always fantastic to see the quality of the plumbing graduates and it makes the Association very enthusiastic about what our industry has to offer.

Ken Gardner CEO, Master Plumbers Association

Stephen Atherton President, Master Plumbers Association

W W W. P LU M B E R . C O M . A U




news MEMBER MILESTONES Members gathered at Plumbing Industry House on Thursday 26 April to attend the Association’s AGM. A highlight of the meeting was the presentation of the Milestone Certificates for members who have been with the Association for over 30 years. Congratulations to all the Milestone Certificate recipients, as well as those who could not be present on the evening, including: 30 YEARS

A & D Plumbing Malcolm J McDonald Plumbing Geelong Roofing Pty Ltd Collingwood Building Services Pty Ltd Wyndham Vale Plumbing Wy 35 YEARS

BR & M Bishop Nominees Pty Ltd Bunnik Pty Ltd Bu M & L Plumbing Roe & Cook Ro 40 YEARS

Philippou Plumbing Services Pty Ltd Ph 45 YEARS

Dumesny & Diwell Pty Ltd Du 50 YEARS

Dixon & Lee Pty Ltd Dix 55 YEARS

W R Wilson Pty Ltd



JUNE 2012


TUCK PLUMBING PTY LTD After completing year 12 at Shepparton Tech, John Tuck came to Melbourne and started his apprenticeship with his d uncle, Alex Alder, in Box Hill. He enjoyed working with his uncle who was not only a great bloke but also an excellent teacher. In the final year of his apprenticeship John was awarded the Association’s prestigious Andrew Letten Award. At the age of 23 John set out to establish his own business with three weeks work ahead of him – after three weeks, he had none. After advertising in the local Progress Press, work quickly picked up and in 1979 his parents sold their farm and moved to Melbourne where his father joined him in the business and they worked together for the next 12 years. John has always maintained a high standard and hopes the people that he has trained over the years appreciate this and will continue these standards. 30 YEARS

CJD FAMILY TRUST While completing their apprenticeships during the early 70’s, Geoff Smith and Chris Dungey began dreaming of running their own plumbing business. Smith & Dungey Plumbing Services was created in 1980 before joining the Master plumbers in 1982. The partnership was dissolved in 1987 and Dungey Plumbing was formed, working mainly in the maintenance market, keeping abreast of new products and, in particular, environmental green plumbing and backflow. Chris has trained six apprentices and employs three to four plumbers and a secretary, who is one of the most important people in the business. Over the years Chris has formed many friendships and contacts through attending conferences and seminars run by the Master Plumbers and was a member of the executive of the Backflow Prevention Association of Australia.


KENNEDY PLUMBING SERVICES Allan Kennedy began Kennedy Plumbing Services in 1975 in his parent’s backyard in Williamstown. His first apprentice was younger brother Michael. The mid 70s were a great time to expand with growth opportunities available for all, and a second apprentice was signed up, Rick Slevison, who is the company’s longest serving employee of more than 30 years. The mid 80s were a tough time, with many businesses succumbing to the recession. Needing to find new avenues for business, Kennedy Plumbing Services became registered Asbestos Removalists. This decision proved to be a key element in the sustainability of the business. Family has always been important to the business. Cousin Andrew Jackson has been with the company for 25 years, sister Maree joined in 1988 and Allan’s sons Shannon, Christopher and John are also part of the team. Allan maintains a full time active role within the company and believes that Kennedy Plumbing has been able to capture new clients by offering all aspects of plumbing, no job is too small or too big, efficient service is the key. 30 YEARS

GAINHILL PTY LTD (ORIGINALLY KNOWN AS SIGNAL & HOBBS) Peter Signal and Ivan Hobbs met in 1969 whilst working for Max Beck Constructions. They formed Sighob Pty Ltd in 1974 and the company grew to upwards of 45 employees. As roofers they felt they were classed as “second class plumbers”, so joined the Roofers Division of the Master Plumbers Association. Ivan chaired this division for many years and later became President of the Association. In 2005 with retirement approaching Peter Signal, identified the need for succession and promoted his son Rodney Signal and Sam Curnow to manage the business.

Under Rodney and Sam’s management, Signal & Hobbs has grown to 80 employees (including their sheetmetal operation and administration Staff) and worked on some of Victoria’s Major construction projects. They continue to manage the business (now operating under the banner of Gainhill Pty Ltd) following Peter Signals retirement in 2008 and remain committed to the plumbing industry and the Master Plumbers Association. 35 YEARS

HADFIELD INDUSTRIES HOLDINGS PTY LTD Roy Simon and Richard Hadfield went into partnership in 1975, primarily doing steel roofs for large commercial and industrial buildings. Richard retired from the business within a few years and today the business operates throughout metropolitan and country Victoria, Southern NSW and also the ACT. During the past 37 years Hadfield’s Roofing has fixed a roof to the highest structure in Australia at Perisher and roofed over 10 acres at Laverton. Hadfield Industries have achieved a five star safety rating from the National Safety Council of Australia, the first to be awarded on a construction site in Australia, and have been awarded a steel roof design award from the Australian Steel Institute. At present, the next generation, Erik Simon is in the fourth year of his plumbing apprenticeship and hopefully he will continue Hadfield’s business into the future. 35 YEARS

TAYLORHEAT Rick Taylor started his apprenticeship in January 1964. He moved his business to Ballarat in 1975, before marrying his wife Heather in 1976. Warm air ducted central heating as we know it was a fledgling industry then and Rick was asked by a Ballarat builder to install central heating in the homes he was building, plus provide general plumbing, roofing, drainage, heating and gasfitting services to the community.

After working with the builder for eight months, Rick bought the business, changed the name to Taylorheat and joined the Victorian Master Plumbers Association. In 1988 Rick, Heather, Wes and Megan shut the doors and went to live in England for 6 months. The kids went to school and Rick and Heather took in places of interest with Rick noticing particularly how plumbing standards had dropped since the deregulation of the trade over there. In December 1996 he changed the focus of the business by reducing the client base and in 2007 became a warranty service provider when Climate Technologies ceased which he continues to do today along with a new focus on gas. As a promise to Heather, Rick is now working a four day week and gratefully acknowledges that his partnership and marriage to Heather is the most important and rewarding part of this history. 40 YEARS

A FAVALORO PLUMBING PTY LTD Since the age of eight Angelo Favaloro always wanted to be a plumber. Growing up in the northern suburbs of Melbourne, he was intrigued by the contents of TD Plumbing, a shop owned by Tommy Clements. During holidays and on days off, he would be found in Tommy’s shop or working out on site with Tommy’s plumbers. After finishing high school he started a Plumbing and Gasfitting apprenticeship in July 1965 and completed his apprenticeship in October 1970. After working for 10 yars, Angelo started his own business, A Favaloro Plumbing Pty Ltd, in Thornbury in 1980. The business has a vast experience in commercial, industrial and domestic plumbing and has worked on new installations and maintenance in several hospitals, hotels, motels and factories.

W W W. P LU M B E R . C O M . A U




news 50 YEARS




Dunkley Plumbing is a third generation family business. The founder Ray Dunkley started the business in the late 1950’s as an energetic young man and built the business up over time. Ray really enjoyed his working life in the plumbing industry and the many enduring relationships he maintained during his working life. Sadly, Ray passed away seven years ago. The current director of the business is Ray’s son Wayne and the most recent member to join the business is his grandson, Stuart Dunkley. The company remains a small family business and has diversified into development and construction as a Registered Builder with Housing Industry Association membership for more than 25 years. The core business will remain a plumbing company for the foreseeable future in a vibrant, challenging and rapidly changing industry, just as Ray would have wanted.

Michael Dillon started his six year apprenticeship at Galliers & Klaerr of St Kilda in 1947. Once completed he was approached to join Hayes and Geschke. After approximately three years with Hayes & Geschke, Michael started his own general plumbing business from his parent’s house in Carnegie and joined the Association in April 1957. In 1962 Michael married and moved to East Bentleigh. The business was run from home and his wife Marie looked after the administration whilst Michael worked the tools. The business maintained a workforce of Michael, two plumbers and one apprentice. In 1997 Michael handed over the business to his son Anthony, who now runs the business with his wife Donna and a similar sized workforce.



JUNE 2012


PREMIER PLUMBING SERVICE (VICTORIA) PTY LTD Premier Plumbing Service (Victoria) is a family owned business established in 1951 in Ballarat by the late Neville Donald and Vawyn Donald. They had six children all of whom have worked within the business, either within the office or as plumbers on site. Premier Plumbing Service is now owned and operated by three of their sons, Jim, Grant and Alastair Donald. The company has continued to expand and now employs 25 staff including Jim’s sons, Michael and Tim Donald who started as apprentices and are now fully qualified plumbers working in the business. Grant’s son, Scott works as storeman and draftsman, with many other family members keen to join the plumbing industry and carry on the plumbing tradition. In the early days Premier Plumbing Service was renowned as the house connection specialists, and would travel from town to town connecting houses to the new sewer systems for local Sewerage Authorities. Today the business specialises in commercial and industrial plumbing projects throughout Victoria and contract to all major construction companies. Over the last 61 years Premier Plumbing O Service has put through an estimated S 100 apprentices and takes pride in the 10 fact that they have trained so many fa plumbing industry professionals. p

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Congratulations to the 2011/12 graduates from the Master Plumbers Group Training Scheme. The graduates were recognised at a function held in Richmond on Thursday 29 March and Plumbing Industry Commissioner Mr Michael Kefford was in attendance to present the graduates with their certificates. Recent graduate Rick Chandler was awarded the CBUS Encouragement Award for being one of the scheme’s high achieving apprentices. Rick said, “Receiving the Encouragement Award was a great honour, I’ve really enjoyed my time with the Group Training Scheme and am looking forward to starting my career in the plumbing industry.” Master Plumbers CEO, Ken Gardner, was impressed with the calibre of the graduates. “These graduates are entering the sector at a time of high demand and they have a fantastic opportunity to contribute to the future of the plumbing industry,” he added. This is the 31st year of operation of the Group Training Scheme, which has qualified over 1400 plumbers over the years.



Master Plumbers is adding value to your membership with the new Member Benefits Program! As a member, you and your staff can access exclusive discounts and savings on a wide range of lifestyle and financial services from well known and high quality brands. Reap the benefits Through the Member Benefits Program you will receive offers and discounts on: > Lifestyle products: dining and entertainment, groceries, movie tickets, petrol, shopping, electrical and white goods and much more. > Travel products: package tours, attractions and activities, accommodation, car rental and more. > Financial products and services: credit cards, home loans, car purchasing and health insurance Registration is FREE and easy The Member Benefits Program is free for you and your staff! Members will have received their registration form with their renewal pack in May. For more information on registration, contact the Membership Services team on 03 9329 9622. To find out more about the Member Benefits program visit

JUNE 2012


NETWORKING EVENINGS Throughout March, Master Plumbers held a series of Networking Evenings across Metropolitan Melbourne and Geelong. The events were well received by members, who found them to be a great networking opportunity and a chance to meet with suppliers, affiliates and other members, as well as hear from the Association and water suppliers. General Manager Membership and Business Development, Bryan Smith, has been pleased with the response to the events. “These events are a great way to meet other businesses in your local area,” says Bryan. “Master Plumbers is coming to you and these networking evenings are not only a chance to meet some of our staff, but also a great opportunity to catch up with fellow members, discuss concerns or even receive business referrals.” The next round of Networking Evenings will be held during July and August as follows: Tuesday 24 July – Springvale Tuesday 31 July – Greensborough Tuesday 7 August – Hoppers Crossing Tuesday 14 August – Ballarat For details visit or call the Membership Services team on 03 9329 9622.

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news ARE YOU UP TO DATE WITH BEST PRACTICE TESTING PROCEDURES? The Master Plumbers Carbon Monoxide Testing training course is back by popular demand! Gain the skills and knowledge required to use carbon monoxide (CO) testing equipment and complete the practical procedure to test gas appliances for CO emissions. The course will also cover the process you should follow to identify situations that could result in CO spillage within a residence and will reference the recently released Gas Information Sheets No. 37 and 38 produced by Energy Safe Victoria (ESV). Training is free! This course is free for plumbers and training sessions are available across metropolitan and regional Victoria. For training dates, locations and registration visit


PLUMBING INDUSTRY TRAINING AWARDS The Plumbing Industry Commission (PIC) held the 2012 Plumbing Industry Training Awards (PITAs) on Thursday 8 March. The awards recognise plumbing practitioners commitment to further learning. Plumbing Industry Commissioner Michael Kefford said the awards recognise and encourage post-apprenticeship training and development in the plumbing industry. There were eight awards presented over a number of categories. Master Plumbers would like to congratulate their member, Brenden Day of Warringal Plumbing, who received the Environment Award – Energy for his studies in geothermal technology (read more about Brenden on page 27 of this issue). The 2012 PITA winners were… Return to Study Award Brett Congues, NSG Plumbing Pty Ltd Recognises a plumbing practitioner who has completed post-trade training after at least a 10 year absence from formal study. Environment Award – Energy Brenden Day, Warringal Plumbing Recognises a plumbing practitioner who has completed studies to enhance their contribution to sustainable energy use. Challenge Award George Miller, Unlimited Plumbing Recognises a person who has pursued post apprenticeship training under difficult personal circumstances.

Individual Award Russell Menzies, CEPUTEC Recognises a plumbing practitioner who has completed post-trade studies in specific trade training. Environment Award – Water Troy Diston, Diston Sewage Purification Recognises a plumbing practitioner who has completed studies to enhance their contribution to sustainable water use. Innovation Award Plumbing Industry Climate Action Centre (PICAC) A training organisation that has developed new resources or delivery methods to meet post-apprenticeship needs of the plumbing industry. Employer’s Award NSG Plumbing Pty Ltd An employer who has demonstrated support and commitment to the development of its employees. Trainer Award Lyle Kelson, Bendigo Regional Institute of TAFE Recognises a trainer who has made a difference to plumbing practitioners.

W W W. P LU M B E R . C O M . A U






Organisation is well underway for the 2012 Australasian Plumbing Conference to be held from 24 to 26 October in Cairns in far north Queensland.

Plumbers across Victoria came together on Friday 9 March to celebrate the third annual World Plumbing Day. In Melbourne, plumbers, apprentices and industry representatives attended a lunch at the Plumbing Industry Climate Action Centre, while regional practitioners attended breakfast events in Ballarat, Bendigo, Geelong and Shepparton.

This industry event will combine a mix of technical, regulatory and business sessions, along with memorable social and networking events. The conference will bring together all sectors of the industry, including hydraulic consultants, plumbing contractors, plumbing inspectors, business managers, teachers and suppliers. To ďŹ nd out more visit



JUNE 2012









The Council of Australian Governments (COAG) has announced that the introduction of national licensing will now start in 2013. This first wave of licenses to be affected includes plumbing, gasfitting, refrigeration and air-conditioning. In their official statement, COAG members noted that the complexity of the reforms made it impossible for national occupational licensing to commence from the original start date of 1 July 2012. The Chair of the National Occupational Licensing Authority’s Board (NOLA), Elizabeth Crouch, says the confirmation of this new timeframe has provided certainty to businesses and individuals who are waiting for the introduction of this reform. “Now we can proceed with the important job of talking with businesses and tradespeople to ensure that the new national licensing scheme maximises benefits for all such as improved labour mobility and better productivity,” Ms Crouch said. “The NOLA Board is moving quickly to establish the new Authority which will be based in Sydney”, Ms Crouch said. “Work is also progressing on the development of a new national licensing register that will allow anyone to check whether a person holds the licence that they say they do”. This new system will greatly assist individuals and businesses who work across state boundaries. To find out more visit


To highlight the role plumbing plays in preventing public health hazards, the Plumbing Industry Commission, in partnership with the Department of Health, has released a new publication.

Practitioners should consider archiving Entitled The role of plumbing practitioners their NCC 2011 version for reference in managing current and emerging public purposes and replacing them with health hazards, the booklet covers a new volumes. range of topics, including some of the The NCC is available for purchase history of plumbing, the challenges of through the Australian Building achieving sanitised plumbing throughout Codes Board (ABCB) website. the world and the future direction of Visit for more plumbing. information. The booklet was tabled in September 2011 at the World Plumbing Council Conference in Scotland and is a reference for all plumbing professionals, apprentices, the plumbing industry and consumers to put in context the contribution of plumbing to community health and the importance of ensuring well designed, installed and tems. maintained plumbing systems. The booklet is available forr free download at the PIC website, site, THE R visit OLE C RORF PLUMBERS IN M PUBU LIC HEENT ANDANEAGING ALTH MERG HAZA ING RDS




The National Construction Code (NCC) came into effect on 1 May 2012, with the latest amendments incorporated into both the Building and Plumbing Codes of Australia.

JUNE 2012

















F R A DRINK GET DOWN TO YOUR NEAREST PUB FOR Victoria: 18 July 3:30pm Croydon Hotel Maroondah Hwy, Hwy y, Croydon Croydon 19 July 3:30p 3:30pm Berwick Springs Hotel k 20 July 3:30pm Templestowe cnr Clyde and Greaves Rd, Berwick Templest plestowe Hotel 23 Parker Parke St 25 July 3:30pm Longbeach Hotel 380 Nepean Hwy, Chelsea 26 July 3:30pm Waterloo oo Cup Hotel 252 Maribyronong Marib Rd, Maribynong 27 July m 3:30pm Pakenham Hotel 226-230 Princes Hwy, Pakenham Tasmania: 18 July 3pm Country Club Villas 10 Casino Rise,, Prospect 25 July 3pm C Cooley Hotel 45 Main Rd, Moonah


M B E RtS’S 16 July 7am Reece 421-427 Bridge Rd, Richmond 17 July 7am Reece P2LU Milli Millicent St, Burwood 23 July 7am Harris 21 MA A Waldheim Rd, Bayswater 24 July 7am McCanns 498 Latrobe obe Terrace, Geelong 30 July 7am Swan 8-10 Vesper Dr, Narre Warrenvic 23 August 7am Bentons 2 Webber Parade, de, Keilor East 24 August Augus 7am Bentons Unit 4, 186 York St, Sth Melbourne 2 August 7am Burdens 101 Whitehorse Rd, Balwyn 3 August 7a 7am Burdens 1825 Ferntree Gully Rd, Ferntree Gully 10 August 7am Gottliebs 1083 Dandenong ong Rd, Malvern Malvern n East E Eas asstt 8 August 7am Reece Clayton 2133 Princes Hwy, Clayton 9 August 7am Reece Doveton Lot 2,, Green en St, St Do S Doveton ove eton 6 A August Au 7am Tradelink Bayswater 280 Canterbury Rd, Bayswater 7 August 7am Tradelink Bulleen 202-206 Bulleen Rd, Bulleen 14 August 7am Plumbers Co Op 40 Beecher St, Preston 15 August 7am Plumbers Co Op 11A/56 Keys Rd, Cheltenham 16 August 7am Harris 16 Weir St, Glen Iris

For more information visit or call 03 9206 1400


news INDUSTRY EVENTS REFRIGERATION 2012 – ADAPTING TO A LOW CARBON REALITY The Australian Institute of Refrigeration, Air Conditioning and Heating (AIRAH) is heading to Brisbane to host a conference dedicated to refrigeration. Refrigeration 2012 – adapting to a low carbon reality, slated for July 24, will look at refrigeration issues in the age of the carbon tax. AIRAH CEO Phil Wilkinson, M. AIRAH, says Refrigeration 2012 is a logical follow-up to AIRAH’s enormously popular and successful refrigeration conference held in Melbourne last year. “Given that we are on the eve of the implementation of the carbon tax and levy, we feel now is an appropriate time for AIRAH to host the second refrigeration conference,” he says. “Refrigeration 2012 will deal with refrigeration issues in the age of the carbon tax. The cost impact to refrigerants, the skills shortage and the latest technical developments all need to be discussed in detail.” Professor Don Cleland from New Zealand’s Massey University and Katie Volter from the Australian Government Department of Sustainability, Environment, Water, Population and Communities (DSEWPaC) have been named as keynote speakers. For more information or to register, go to

SAVE TIME AND MONEY WITH SAFER, SMARTER TOOLS ON SHOW AT DESIGNBUILD DesignBUILD returns to Melbourne with a host of new features and improvements including all new Tool Demonstration Stations as well as over 250 leading suppliers and manufacturers, making it a must attend event for tradies and builders. Save time with smarter tools. Save money with access to discounted supplies. Be at DesignBUILD 2012. DesignBUILD opens at the Melbourne Convention and Exhibition Centre from 27 – 29 June and is the ideal place to get a complete overview of the latest products and innovations from within the building industry. It’s also free to attend for trades and professionals with an easy to navigate floor plan including Plumbing, Tools and Equipment, Building Materials and much more, so that visitors can make a beeline to the areas and suppliers that interest them. To find out more and register, visit

SAVE THE DATE: 10TH WORLD PLUMBING CONFERENCE 2013 The 10th World Plumbing Conference will be held in New Delhi, India from 14-15 November 2013. India offers a fascinating and diverse range of cultural experiences. Anywhere Travel can assist with early bird reservations and tour/cruise options. To find out more contact Anywhere Travel on 02 9663 0411




JUNE 2012

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INDUSTRY DEVELOPMENT CALLING ALL BRIGHT SPARKS! Are you sick of having to call an electrician to disconnect and then reconnect electrical equipment you need to work on such as hot water systems, air conditioning and refrigeration units or pump motors? There is a solution! Learn to do it yourself – safely and legally. Master Plumbers offers Disconnect/ reconnect training courses at PICAC designed specifically for plumbers who want to apply for their Restricted Electrical Licence (REL) with Energy Safe Victoria. Recent changes to the licensing system mean there are now two classes of REL. The Master Plumbers course addresses the requirements of the Class 2 licence whcih allows the holder to disconnect and reconnect fixed electrical appliances connected to a low voltage supply. The Disconnect/reconnect course will provide you with skills you need to safely isolate and disconnect electrical appliances then reconnect and test those appliances following the specified procedure. It will cover important information such as electrical safety and basic electrical principles. You will learn how to accurately complete danger tags and Certificates of Electrical Safety. You will also complete a mock assessment during class to prepare you for your ESV practical assessment.

If you want to get your REL Class 2 licence you will need to confirm your eligibility for licence with ESV. You should do this before you start the training course. All you need to do is contact ESV Licensing and Registration, visit You will need to provide information about the type of work you do and why you need the licence. There are two courses scheduled at PICAC for the remainder of 2012. Each course is seven days. Course 1 starts 30 July 2012 (afternoon/evenings, 2pm – 9pm) Course 2 starts 8 October 2012 (days, 8am – 4pm) Places fill quickly so register now if you want to complete your training this year. Contact PICAC on 03 9356 8902 for more information or assistance on licence eligibility.

BE YOUR OWN BOSS: LICENCE LEVEL TRAINING NOW AVAILABLE Registered plumbers who wish to obtain their licence in a class of plumbing in Victoria are entitled to attempt the Plumbing Industry Commission’s licence theory assessment at any time for that class. However it is highly recommended that plumbers attend training to help them develop the skills and knowledge they require to successfully undertake the exam. In 2012, Master Plumbers is delivering the three common licence level training courses at PICAC. Plumbers who want to apply for their licence in any stream must produce evidence of competency in the following skills; > Carry out work based risk control processes; > estimate and cost work; and > small business legal and risk management requirements Participants who successfully complete these courses with the Master Plumbers will be issued with a Statement of Attainment. The PIC will accept this Statement as evidence of competency and will not require the plumber to sit the theory examination in these areas. Training courses in stream-specific units will commence in 2013. These courses are suitable for a variety of participants and regional participants are welcome! We now offer online training options for participants who wish to study from home. Course dates and times: > Carry out work based risk control processes: 6-9pm every second Thursday evening July 19, August 2, 16, 30 (total 4 face to face classes) > Estimate and cost work: 6-9pm every second Tuesday evening September 4, 18, October 2, 16, 30 (total 5 face to face classes) Contact PICAC on 03 9356 8902 for more information. Note: Training conducted at PICAC is funded in whole or in part by Incolink, the construction industry’s redundancy fund.



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Tom Andronas explores a new way to harness energy

Thereâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s a revolution brewing in the renewable energy sector, with geothermal technology set to burst onto the Australian market. Geothermal technology harnesses the sunâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s warmth from the ground, and has the potential to save up to 75% on the average power bill.



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It works by installing a three-phase system including a geothermal heat pump into new, or existing buildings. The energy generated by the geothermal heat pump system can be used to heat or cool air and water. “The systems are commonly used for reverse-cycle ducted refrigerated heating and cooling. They’re also commonly used for hydronic floors and radiant wall panels, domestic water heating, and also swimming pool heating,” SOLAR’S GOOD says Justin McFarlane, WHEN THE Co-founder and former SUN SHINES, CEO of Direct Energy. WIND’S He says the technology is yet GOOD WHEN to take off in Australia due to a THE WIND lack of knowledge about it, but BLOWS, BUT it is well established overseas GEOTHERMAL with around three million IS THERE 24/7 systems installed worldwide. Geothermal systems are made up of three elements: a ground loop, a heat pump, and a building that needs heating or cooling. The systems operate by passing water or refrigerant through a ground loop system, where they pick up warmth. In Victoria the average ground temperature is around 18 degrees Celsius. At the surface the water or refrigerant gets pushed through a geothermal heat pump where the temperature differential is enough to drive a heat exchange process. The water or refrigerant is then pumped back into the ground, while the warmth it has brought to the surface is used to vary the temperature of the water or air needed to heat or cool the building. There are two types of geothermal heat pump systems: water loop systems, and copper refrigerant loop systems.

According to Justin McFarlane, both systems can be used in similar applications. “There are certainly some advantages for the water loop systems in scale, and in different environments where you may not need to drill. They can be a very cost effective, affordable way of putting in a geothermal heat pump system,” he says. Water loop systems push water through a 150mm polyethylene pipe and are most appropriate for largescale projects. They can be drilled down vertically to a depth of up to 200 metres, or inserted inside the piles of commercial buildings. They can also be buried horizontally at a depth of only a few metres, in order to save on the cost of drilling. “When drilling’s required, the best bang for buck is going to be doing the least drilling you [can], and the refrigerant loop systems provide you with much less drilling requirement than water loop systems,” Mr McFarlane says. Refrigerant loop systems rely on pumping refrigerant through copper tubing rather than water through plastic tubing. “Copper is obviously a better thermal conductor than plastic is, so you’re getting higher heat transfer rates. That means that the direct exchange systems with refrigerant can be a bit more efficient,” Mr McFarlane says. In contrast to water loop systems, copper loop systems are limited to a depth of 30 metres, which makes them more appropriate for domestic applications.

There are also some environmental concerns about pumping refrigerant – which has a boiling point of 15 degrees Celsius – through the ground. The undeniable advantage of installing a geothermal heat pump system is the enormous saving on the amount of mains electricity needed to heat or cool a building. “Roughly speaking, if you have one kilowatt of electrical energy coming in to drive the heat pump, you will get something like four kilowatts of heating and cooling to go to your house,” says Professor Ian Johnston, Golder Associates Chair of Geotechnical Engineering at the University of Melbourne. “This means you’re only paying for one quarter of your heating and cooling, and you’re getting three quarters of it free.” “And of course [that means] there’s only a quarter that is drawing carbon from the Latrobe Valley, the rest of it’s coming out of the ground with no carbon at all,” he says, emphasizing the environmental benefits of the technology. Prof Johnston says the introduction of the Gillard Government’s carbon tax will also make renewable energy technologies like geothermal heat pump systems more attractive, due to the inevitable tax hit to the consumer’s hip pocket. The disadvantage to installing a geothermal heat pump system in today’s market is the high initial capital cost. “The cost of putting in a geothermal heat pump system will vary, basically by what the ground infrastructure cost is,” says Justin McFarlane.

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“The rest of the heat pump system and the ducting or water heating systems will be about the same as what conventional systems would cost,” he says. At today’s prices it would cost in the vicinity of $25,000 to install a geothermal heat pump system to an average 180sq home. However, this relatively large initial outlay is negated by energy and cost savings across the life of the building. “If it’s a high use environment, it could be as little as two years to reclaim the differential between what a conventional system would cost, and what upgrading to a geothermal system would cost,” Mr McFarlane says. “If it’s a normal residential property it may stretch out to around five years for that to be paid back, but once you’ve made that pay back differential, you’re saving money every time you pay a utility bill from that point on.” In addition, the initial outlay to installing a geothermal system can be minimized by designing the system to supply 50-60% of the building’s peak supply, therefore decreasing the number of ground loops required. According to Prof Johnston a half-peak system will cover 90-95% of a building’s energy needs, and extra power will only be drawn from the grid on very hot or very cold days.



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The high cost of installing geothermal heat pump systems will also be reduced by the development of the industry across the next decade, with Australian standards expected to be finalized over the next 9-18 months. This will be aided by a $1.6 million grant from the Victorian government, which was awarded early this year, and will be put towards the installation of geothermal monitoring equipment on around forty buildings across the state. “That will allow us to get all these case studies on geothermal and actually identify what the energy savings are, how these things are performing, [and] what the ground is doing,” says Dr Donald Payne, Co-leader of the Direct Use Sub-Committee of the Australian Geothermal Energy Group. The results will generate measurable local data that will form the basis of Australian standards and policy decisions, including installation incentives. “That’s why things like this Victorian program for performance monitoring are so important, because it gives [governments] a quantitative basis to then figure out how much money to give clients on the energy savings they’re going to yield,” Dr Payne says. Ultimately, he says, geothermal technology will almost certainly be incorporated into the federal government’s white certificate program, in order to jump-start the market.

Similar programs have succeeded in spurring the geothermal industry in the United Kingdom, the United States and especially Canada, where a rebate of around $8500 is offered to householders who install geothermal heat pump systems. According to Garry Waters, Trainer at the Plumbing Industry Climate Action Centre (PICAC), this forecast spike in demand is the nudge plumbers need to get educated on geothermal heat pump systems. “If we look at the business opportunities for a plumber in this particular field, that is going to come from the opening up of financial incentives from the government and standards to support that, but one of the things that plumbers need to understand is that we’re moving away from traditional plumbing methods into new technology, and this is one of those areas.” PICAC runs a one-day introductory course to geothermal heat pump systems at its training facility in Brunswick. The course is specifically tailored to teach plumbers the basics about geothermal technology and aims to give them enough knowledge to provide recommendations and advice to clients about the use of the systems for heating and cooling, and to improve environmental sustainability.

“We’re continually evolving and technology’s catching up with us very quickly, and if we don’t get on board, then we’re going to be left behind,” Mr Waters says. Currently there are only about 200 geothermally supplemented sites in Australia, but Dr Payne says it’s only a matter time before the technology takes off. “Economically it’s going to make sense to put geothermal in for the simple physical reason that you’ve got a 24/7 source of energy in the ground,” he says. “Solar’s good when the sun shines, wind’s good when the wind blows, geothermal is there 24/7.”


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GEOTHERMAL FAST FACTS > Geothermal technology has the potential to save up to 70% on the average household power bill. > Geothermal does not rely on the sun to shine or the wind to blow, but operates 24/7. > Ground loops can be drilled into the ground to a depth of up to 200 metres, or buried horizontally at shallow depth to save on drilling costs. > Cost differential can be reclaimed within 2-5 years, which results in huge electricity bill savings from then on. > Installing a half-peak system will cover 90-95% of a building’s energy needs, and will reduce the cost of installation by decreasing the number of ground loops required. > Government incentives will almost certainly be offered for the installation of geothermal systems once Australian standards are developed.

GET SMART, GET TRAINED The Pluming Industry Climate Action Centre (PICAC) in Brunswick runs a one-day introductory course to geothermal heat pump systems. It’s specifically tailored to teach plumbers the basics about geothermal technology. The one-day course gives plumbers enough knowledge to provide recommendations and advice to clients about the use of the systems for heating and cooling, and to improve environmental sustainability. PICAC trainer Garry Waters says the course starts at first principals. “We start off with some basic principles of refrigeration,” he says. “The process works on what they call heat pump technology, so how does a heat pump work?” “Understanding how refrigeration changes its state from a liquid to a vapour and back, and how the earth [acts as] a solar collector,” Waters says. “The next transition is, what are the sorts of systems that are available? Water loop systems versus refrigeration systems, and then we get into sizing, and the advantages and disadvantages of the systems.”



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The course takes plumbers from a limited understanding of geothermal heat pump systems, to being able to size a system for somebody’s home. Plumber Greg George, who took part in PICAC’s pilot course, says customers are already showing interest. “I’ve talked with a few clients about it. They’re looking at ways of saving energy costs and bills and thought it was a pretty good system,” he says. Garry Waters says it makes smart business sense to start learning about new technologies. “Potentially as energy costs rise, and it’s happening very quickly, I think that drives a lot more attention and a lot more need for people to really look at these types of systems, so I think potentially it’s going to be huge.” “If you’re a good businessman and you’re a smart businessman, then you need to be able to understand what all the recommendations are,” he says. For more information contact PICAC on 03 9356 8902 or

THE CANADIAN EXPERIENCE > Figures from the Canadian GeoExchange Coalition show that the domestic market for geothermal heat pumps grew by more than 40% in 2005 and by more than 60% annually in 2006, 2007 and 2008. More recently, growth has slowed. > In Canada, 20% of all the residential geothermal heat pump installations are done by nine companies, and 50% of all installations by 47 companies. > All together more than 16,000 systems have been installed by more than 800 companies. > 56% of residential systems have a horizontal ground loop system and 24% have a vertical ground loop system. > The Canadian government encourages the installation of geothermal heat pump systems by offering a rebate of around $8500 dollars per household. The US and UK governments also offer financial incentives for installations. For more information visit

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BLUE is the new green

Romilly Madew, Chief Executive of the Green Building Council of Australia discusses the importance of preserving our precious water resources.





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While 70 per cent of the earth is covered with water, just three per cent is fit for human consumption. This figure isn’t about to increase any time soon. Failure to protect our water resources will result in lost biodiversity, higher temperatures, increased flooding and unsafe, unsanitary water. And as our water is wasted, so too is the energy required to treat, transport, deliver and dispose of it. The drought may have broken in many locations but Australians still live on the world’s driest inhabited continent, which means that complacency is not an option. The green building industry is finding new ways to manage and monitor our water resources, and taking steps to reduce water consumption through the use of water saving fixtures, rainwater recovery systems and innovative water technologies. In doing so, we are demonstrating that ‘blue is the new green’. Around 11 per cent of mains water is used in offices and other commercial buildings for drinking water and kitchen use, fire sprinkler testing, toilet flushing, showering, garden watering and cooling. With only a small percentage of these uses requiring potable water, 90–95 per cent of this water could be saved if nonpotable water sources were available.

Large office buildings can consume between 15,000 and 50,000 kilolitres of fresh potable water per year. At workplace6, however, the first building in NSW to achieve a 6 Star Green Star – Office Design v2 rating, and only the second to gain a 6 Star Green Star – Office As Built v2 rating, a blackwater recycling system means the property uses just 10 per cent of the potable water of a typical building of comparable size. The 18,000 square metre building also features 40 solar panels on the roof to provide energy for the building’s hot water, as well as a tri-generation plant to heat, cool and power the property. Instead of using cooling towers to reject heat from the building, water from Sydney Harbour is sucked into the basement to help cool the building, saving about 4.8 million litres of water annually. A blackwater treatment plant with sewer mining capabilities is located on the site and processes the building’s wastewater into clean recycled water for flushing toilets and site irrigation. As a first for Australia, it also supplies irrigation water to the two neighbouring parks. The system has the capacity to produce 45,000 litres of fresh water per day. What’s more, if the building is not producing enough wastewater, the system draws on the public sewer and converts this waste into usable water.

While workplace6 represents the leading-edge of new green buildings, IAG House at 388 George Street, also in Sydney, has been transformed from a water-wasting tower into a symbol of sustainability. The 4 Star Green Star – Office As Built v2 refurbishment has reduced water consumption by 5.5 million litres per year by upgrading bathrooms and installing WELS-rated fixtures and fittings. A new dual flush system was installed on all existing toilets to reduce the demand on the municipal water supply. A rainwater harvesting system supplements cooling tower water and will reduce storm water runoff and lower demand for potable drinking water. All these environmental features were integrated while the building remained tenanted. Smart water-saving measures are not limited to commercial office spaces. In the residential sector, the 31-storey Convesso project at 8 Waterside Place is one of Australia’s first residential developments to achieve a 4 Green Star – Multi Unit Residential PILOT rating. Convesso’s apartments feature water-efficient shower heads, washing machines and dishwashers – all of which achieve a minimum 4 star WELS rating. Outside the apartments, a tank captures rainwater for landscape irrigation, keeping Convesso’s gardens green while reducing potable water use.

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Efficient fixtures and fittings reduce the Centre’s water consumption, while a water- harvesting system has been designed to meet 100 per cent of average monthly demand for the toilets and urinals. On the other side of the country in Brisbane, Bay View State School has reduced potable water consumption and achieved a 4 Star Green Star – Education As Built v1 rating into the bargain. A water harvesting system supplies the school’s toilets and garden irrigation system; since operation commenced, this has reduced demand for potable water by more than 100,000 litres per year. The school also features water meters, which are linked to a real-time monitoring system, and which allows students to observe, record and reduce their water consumption. This interactive learning resource enables students, teachers and visitors to learn about the building’s water saving features, and then apply those lessons to their own homes. It is only through a combination of innovative technologies, leading-edge building practices and behavioural change that we will preserve the precious water resources in our own backyards.


compared with an average retail centre of equivalent size. A recycled water treatment system with the capacity to handle 300,000 litres per day, equivalent to 44 Olympic sized swimming pools if run at capacity for a year, was installed as part of the refurbishment. This will catch, treat and recycle rainwater and wastewater from buildings across the site for re-use in cooling towers and the irrigation system. WELS-rated sanitary fixtures and a fire system which re-uses test water complement the treatment system and will further minimise potable water usage. Part of the Green Building Council of Australia’s role is to expand industry knowledge about Green Star and green building practices in general. Many Green Star buildings are delivering hands-on education opportunities and providing daily lessons in water-wise behaviour. Take the Australian Institute of Management’s new building in Perth, which achieved a 6 Star Green Star – Education Design v1 rating representing ‘World Leadership’. The Katitjin Centre tackles the water-saving challenge head on, with a number of water-efficient features, such as a 42,000 litre rainwater tank for toilet flushing and a ‘xeriscape’ garden – a method of landscape design that eliminates the need for watering.


These features, and more, will reduce potable water consumption by 25 per cent, saving residents money and preserving Melbourne’s scarce water resources. Hospitals and industrial facilities can also save water. South Australia’s long-standing drought made minimising water use a priority during the design of the 5 Star Green Star-rated Flinders Medical Centre – New South Wing. By installing extensive rainwater harvesting that provides water for urinals and toilets, as well as a water-efficient heat rejection system, FMC has reduced water consumption by an estimated 20 per cent in the new wing. Lot 12, TradeCoast Central in Brisbane gained a Green Star innovation point for its shared, precinct non-potable water storage and distribution system. The system reduces potable water consumption by 80 per cent – the equivalent of more than 10,000 litres a day – and the only potable water used within the precinct is for kitchens, showers and hand basins. Shopping centres are also ‘greening their blue’, and iconic Westfield Sydney has the 5 Star Green Star – Retail Centre Design v1 rating to prove it. The refurbished centre will slash potable water use by 80 per cent when

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THE HEAT IS ON Heating systems should be ямБt-for-purpose reports Matthew da Silva



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Recommending a heating system is not child’s play, and there are obligations on installers to give appropriate advice to customers. But what kinds of things do the experts think about when given a job like this? This story may help you to understand what’s involved. Advising customers about a heating system can be a complex process and it requires qualified, experienced installers to be involved. “There is an obligation and a responsibility for people who are doing this work to advise and inform the public on the most suitable, fit-for-purpose, energy-efficient product,” says Peter Kikos, Divisional Executive Officer of the Master Plumbers Association. THERE IS AN Where in Australia the residence OBLIGATION is situated, for a start, is a major TO INFORM driver in deciding what kind of CLIENTS ON equipment to purchase. THE MOST SUITABLE, FIT“Talking about heating for FOR-PURPOSE, Queensland is completely different from talking about ENERGY heating for Melbourne because EFFICIENT we have long, cold winters,” PRODUCTS says Melbourne-based Craig Lee of C. W. Lee Airconditioning. “We need to have heating in our house virtually for months at a time. In Queensland, you might get maybe three or four days where you might use it continually.” Buying an electric blow heater might well serve a Sydneysider but would work out to be too expensive for a Melburnian. “You wouldn’t even think of trying to heat a house in Melbourne with that,” says Lee. “You just couldn’t afford to run it. But in Sydney, where you might only have it [on] for a couple of hours a night, it would be alright.” Craig Lee is a member of the Heating, Cooling Alliance of Australia (HCAA), a peak body that provides advice and guidance on systems and installation practices. Its website,, has been developed with the industry in mind.

“ was developed with heating and cooling experts. The members of this alliance – and there are about 50 of them in Victoria—specialise in this area of plumbing and provide advice well above the [capacities of your] average installer,” says Kikos. Even where the need for a larger heating system is obvious there are many factors for installers to consider, so having a place to go for information can be extremely valuable for an installer who has been asked to provide advice to a client. “To choose the type or size of the unit, if you’re doing a complete house, you measure up the size of the house,” says Michael Shannon of Angus Eeles Plumbing, in Ballarat. “You measure up every single room so you’ve got your dimensions, window sizes, ceiling heights and what construction the house is, if it’s weatherboard or brick. Has it got an iron roof, has it got a tile roof, which direction does it face? “Then we put all that in through a program and that gives us what size unit, or how many kilowatts we need to condition the space required.” Like Shannon, John Stevens of John Stevens Plumbing, in Ballarat, is an HCAA member. Stevens considers access first when advising a customer. This includes working out whether the house has a concrete or a timber floor, if there is access below the floor, and whether there is ceiling space above it. “Cost comes into it but at the end of the day having what you need or having what suits the house is probably more important than cost alone,” he says.

Another factor is whether cooling is also required. Craig Lee asks owners if they also need to have cooling included in the system. “Because you can get systems that will heat and cool, reverse-cycle, wall-hung, split. Things like that. Or you can get gas with add-on cooling,” says Lee. “Most of the time natural gas and electricity are going to be the two cheapest options,” says Stevens. “For your heating, natural gas is usually the best option. Even with the carbon tax. “Electricity, if you don’t have natural gas available, is probably your next best option.” Lee says that “probably” for a threebedroom house in Melbourne a ducted heating system would be the most cost-efficient way of making it comfortable. “If you’re talking an apartment, you’re probably going to be going for something electric, like a split-type machine. It’s easier to get the electricity in, and the place isn’t as big, and it gives you your heating and your cooling.” John Stevens says that sometimes a more expensive, hydronic system is the only option. “Sometimes it doesn’t matter whether you want to spend the money or not, it’s not possible to put any other kind of heating in some homes except for hydronic heating. This is particularly true in the old Victorian or Edwardian homes that have high ceilings. You can’t blow hot air down from the top and you can’t always put anything under the floor either.” Michael Shannon says that most of his heating work is in hydronic systems.

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“Pipes, radiator panels and a boiler throughout the house; a hydronic system is absolutely brilliant for colder climates. It is probably a little bit more expensive to install compared to a ducted system, but it will last longer. And the boilers are generally a bit more efficient than a furnace is as well.” Efficiency will usually be something an installer will take into account when advising customers, and John Stevens says he always sells something that is the most economical to run. “I do that in the form of selling the most energy-efficient equipment rather than saying that one type of system is cheaper to run than another type of system. I sell more along the lines of the most efficient equipment to do the particular job.” But Craig Lee says more efficient systems are more expensive to purchase and also require more maintenance. “Generally, more efficient machines require slightly more maintenance to keep them working efficiently. The standard ones will run for longer, but what you’ll find is with the high efficiencies, is that unless they’re looked at to check that they are working properly they might not be as efficient as you think they are.” Shannon recommends his customers to have their systems serviced annually, and agrees that more highly efficient equipment is more expensive to purchase.



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“We would love to see everybody put in five or six star units. It’s the right thing for the environment as well. But at the end of the day there is a lot of difference in cost between putting in a midefficiency unit compared to a highefficiency unit.” The type of system that is selected for installation in a house can also be determined to some extent by the type of job it is, says Craig Lee. If an owneroccupier asks for a quote the deciding factors would most likely be different than if a builder, who is constructing multiple homes, makes the request. “They aren’t paying the running costs once they move out,” he says. “The same thing applies if we’re talking about a rental property for the same house. It’s completely different. If I’m going to give you a car to drive to Melbourne in you want something decent. If I have to supply a car for Joe Blow to blog to Melbourne, the cheapest car on the market will get him there.” Equipment that provides a high level of comfort can also cost more, says John Stevens, and Craig Lee agrees. “With my clients, if you can be sitting in the room and not be aware of where the heating or cooling is coming from, that’s an ideal system,” Lee says. “Rather than, ‘Yes, I know where it’s coming from because my left ear is freezing cold.’” Michael Shannon says that architectural design elements are also a factor in deciding what heating equipment to install in new and modern homes. “They tend to have more and more glass windows, less wall space. Floor coverings, there are a lot of houses that have either got tiles or similar, instead of carpet. That’s where [hydronics] comes into its own, it’s lovely and warm.

“You can put as much ducted heating into a house as you like, but if it has a tiled floor, you will still feel the cold. If your feet feel cold as you’re walking around in the morning, the rest of you feels cold.” Peter Kikos says that when consumers ring up the Master Plumbers Association and ask for somebody to install a heating system he doesn’t recommend “your average plumber”. “The specialists are the best people to ask because they are aware of energy efficiency. They are also aware of the quality of the products that they are installing. This is based on the call-backs they get for repairs, break-downs and servicing.” Master Plumbers is developing a handbook along with Australian Standards for use as a guide for installations. For more information, visit the Heating and Cooling Alliance of Australia (HCAA) website

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Trainer and consultant, Roger Lambie discusses the dangers of pyrolysis and the importance of leakage testing when installing kitchen ďŹ xtures and appliances.



JUNE 2012



One of the earliest lessons I received as a plumbing apprentice was when the boss said, “All your good work should be hidden from view with only the finished fixture or appliance showing. The quality and effort of your work remains behind walls or partitions and that’s why it all has to be exact. Any mistake could be costly.”

Today is no different and extra caution has to be taken when installing a gas appliance, particularly the final connection. Soap testing the final connection is not always the surest method to ensure it is sound and no leakage is present. When a new gas installation is being installed on premises, the fitting line and appliances are all subjected to a pressure test and no leakage in the installation is allowed. Where an appliance is to be replaced with a new one or an additional appliance fitted, the safest practice is to test the fitting line prior to carrying out any work.



Energy Safe Victoria (ESV) has an allowable leakage rate for existing standard installations at a nominal supply pressure of 1.1 kPa. (See ESV Gas Information Sheet No.4 ESV at There is no allowable leakage rate for Liquid Petroleum Gas (LPG) or for Natural Gas (NG) installations where the supply pressure is 2.75 kPa. Dependent on the leakage rate and whether any gas smell is present, as detailed on Gas Information Sheet No 4, the leakage rate may be acceptable.

Testing an existing installation prior to doing any work is highly recommended as this helps to avoid any dispute with the customer arising from an escape after a new or replacement appliance is installed. Furthermore, any work required to rectify any escape is additional work at an additional cost. Where an escape is within the allowable limit, it is an advantage to gauge and time the degree of the escape so that when any new or replacement appliance is installed, a pressure test will indicate all the work you have done (and the new or replacement appliance) is sound. When replacing an appliance, or after having disconnected an appliance to carry out any service work, if you decide to only soap test the final connection ensure you are able to visually inspect the joint for any leaks. Take your time checking this thoroughly, as minor leaks may take some time to detect. The final connection to some appliances can be in awkward locations and it is recommended to use a mirror to help carry out the leakage inspection.

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The leak shown in Image 1 may result in a fire, as shown in Image 2. However the result could much worse, especially in the case where any escaping gas builds up in a cavity, causing an explosion. The mentality of ‘out of sight, out of mind’ has led to some poor installations where work has been left incomplete, has been completed incorrectly, or where shortcuts are taken to save money. These below-average installations are eventually discovered, either through and incident or during servicing. Image 3 shows an instance where ‘out of sight, out of mind’ has led to incorrect installation of a wall oven. Instead of being connected to an appropriate isolation switch adjacent to the gas appliance and the switch being accessible when the appliance is installed, instead it was hard wired directly through an electrical junction box. Connecting a wall oven, or any gas appliance in this manner, contravenes AS 5601 and in these instances an electrician should be engaged to provide the correct means of isolation.

Image 4 shows an installation of another wall oven in a custom-built cavity. The installation instruction for this particular wall oven requires a flue to be fitted that rises to atmosphere above the roof line. The design of the residence also included a shelf above the oven cavity to accommodate a microwave. As a result the underside of the microwave shelf has being subjected to the hot flue products discharging from the appliance and pyrolysis has occurred, affecting both the shelf and electrical wiring. Pyrolysis is the decomposition of organic compounds or other substances created by the hot flue gases. Preventing pyrolysis in common materials like wood, plastic and clothing is essential for fire safety. Pyrolysis is a process that can be likened to a sleeping volcano; it may take months, or even years to develop, but can eventually result in a fire.

Remember, in situations like those illustrated here, it is your responsibility as the plumber/gasfitter to advise the client of the appropriate appliance that suits their requirements and meets Australian Standards.



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About Roger Lambie Roger Lambie has worked in the plumbing industry for over 40 years. He has a broad range of experience and has worked at the Gas & Fuel Corporation, Reece, Accutherm and Homesglen TAFE. He was previously employed as a Gas Safety Officer at Energy Safe Victoria and delivers the Master Plumbers Carbon Monoxide training series across Victoria.







S M A R T E R C L I M AT E L I V I N G ®



GETTING CONTRACTS RIGHT MEANS LESS RISK FOR YOUR BUSINESS Commercial contracts are at the heart of your business operations. In essence, every sale of a product or service is a contract, whether in writing or simply a verbal agreement. Effective contracts and contract management can minimise disruption and loss to your business. While legislation can vary between the states, the following provides an overview of commercial contract matters which should be considered.

CONTRACT LAW In the simplest form, a contract will exist where: > one party has made an offer (“Offer”) > another party has accepted the offer (“Acceptance”) > something of value is exchanged (“Consideration”) > it is the intention of the parties to enter into a legal arrangement (“Intention”) > the parties have the ability (i.e. are not impaired) to enter into binding agreement (“Capacity”)



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Example: Party A offers Party B $2000 in exchange for completion of certain plumbing works. In the circumstance of a commercial arrangement, it is assumed that the parties intend to enter into a legal arrangement. A contract can be verbal however failure to identify the specific contract terms in writing can give rise to dispute between the parties. It is always recommended that the terms and conditions of a contract should be specified in writing prior to the commencement of work.

Example: Party A provides specific details of the works to be completed no later than a particular date and agrees to make payment of $2000 upon completion of the works. Party B agrees to complete such works in exchange for $2000 on the basis that there is no alteration or obstacle to the works.

CONTRACT CONTENT Contracts should record at least the following information in writing: > Correct legal names of the contractor and the client, including ACN / ABN; > Current address and contact details for the contractor and the client; > Information identifying if the client is a corporation e.g. Pty Ltd or Ltd (if no corporate identifier exists, then you are dealing with a trading name only and you must obtain the correct legal identity which is either a person or a corporation); > Where the client is not a corporation confirm the legal identify through Date of Birth and Drivers Licence details (number, and state of issue); > Detailed description of the goods and services (scope of works*) to be provided; > Correct amounts payable including the treatment of Goods and Services Tax**; > Include any details of any dates/ stages where progress payment claims apply; > Ensure the client approves the terms and conditions of the contract before commencing works (signature of client); and > Clarification that ownership and responsibility of equipment and tools used will remain the property of the contractor (i.e. avoid any terms that may be regarded as a leasing arrangement).


BUILDING AND CONSTRUCTION INDUSTRY SECURITY OF i PAYMENT ACT (VIC) 2002 The Act applies to a person (“Claimant”) who has carried out work or supplied goods and services in connection construction projects in Victoria.*** The Act facilitates contractor payments and offers a streamlined process for recovering outstanding amounts. The Act does not apply to contracts for domestic building work where the building owner is not engaged in the building industry. Claims for payment must be made within three months of the reference date. Unless otherwise specified in the contract, the Act provides the following reference dates: > 20 business days after the work commenced and, every 20 days after until completion of works; > single payment on the day after the work was completed; and > final payment on the day after completion of any defect period or issue of final certificate. A valid payment claim must: > identify the scope of works carried out; > state the amount claimed; > notify the respondent that “This is a payment claim under the Building and Construction Industry Security of Payment Act 2002”; and > be “served” on the respondent via personal delivery, post, fax or other method as specified in the contract (NB: Date of service may vary between 0-2 business days depending on the method of service). Where the respondent fails to make payment or disputes the claim (respondent must provide a ‘payment schedule’ stating reasons) within ten business days, the respondent will be liable for the full amount. Disputes about payment can be referred to independent adjudication by the Authorised Nominating Authority or (depending on the amount claimed) the Magistrates Court, County Court or Supreme Court. Note: Statements claiming payment under the terms of the Act should be reserved for invoicing or individual payment claims.

* A new contract should be issued with respect to any variation or change to the scope of works. ** For works, good and services that may be provided over an extended period, ensure the amounts quoted include provision for anticipated cost increase during the period of the work (e.g. labour, goods, overheads). *** Similar legislation currently operates in New South Wales, Queensland, Western Australia and the Northern Territory.

PERSONAL PROPERTYii SECURITIES ACT 2009 The Personal Property Securities Act (PPSA) took effect from 1 January 2012 and has significantly changed securities law in Australia including: > Australia-wide application with consistent terms and conditions for all borrowers; > Potential to be recognised as a secured creditor in circumstances of bankruptcy/liquidation; > Consolidation of existing State and Commonwealth securities registers (now at; > Risks associated with loss of company owned or leased equipment deemed to be the builder’s assets for liquidation purposes; and > Security interests registered against business by suppliers (terms of credit and impact on credit rating). It is recommended that businesses should seek specialist legal advice relating to the security of their assets and especially where businesses are providing goods and services on credit.

SMALL CLAIMS (NON-COMMERCIAL WORK) In circumstances where a domestic client has failed to make payment or disputes the payment, individuals can pursue options to recover payment of small claims through the civil disputes resolution process. Individuals are generally self-represented (unless given consent for representation) and application fees may apply.

RECORD KEEPING Businesses should retain accurate records relating to works including correspondence, records of verbal discussions, timesheets (recording labour) and materials used. It is recommended that any variation to a contract be done in writing, including the scope of the variation and the applicable cost. i Information provided by the Building and Construction Commission of Victoria ii Information and assistance provided by James Hope (BEc JD) of Ponte Earle Lawyers

Master Plumbers members can access template contract/invoice documents, information and legal referral services relating to commercial contract matters. Contact Sharon Kraemer, Workplace Relations Adviser on 03 9329 9622 or 1800 133 871.

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termination of employment

The Australian Workplace Relations environment presents a unique set of challenges for employers. In this series, Sharon Kraemer (Master Plumbers Workplace Relations Adviser) explores how implementing simple and practical employment practices can be the key to improving employee performance and effectively manage risk. A number of issues are covered by the term termination of employment and can be generally classified into three categories: > Employee initiated termination (resignation, retirement, abandonment); > Employer initiated termination (redundancy, dismissal); and > Circumstances occur which effectively terminate the contract (frustration). In circumstances where the employer has decided to terminate employment or take steps to end the employment relationship, it is important to consider whether the reasons and procedure for termination are consistent with employment legislation. Taking the correct steps can minimise or prevent legal action by the employee in relation to unfair dismissal or unlawful termination claims. Always seek advice as soon as possible before proceeding with termination.

Master Plumbers members can access information, advice and resources relating to workplace relations matters. Our dedicated Workplace Relations Adviser can help you clarify your obligations in relations to terms and conditions of employment, wages, entitlements and other matters. Contact Sharon Kraemer on 03 9329 9622 or 1800 133 871.



TYPES OF TERMINATION Resignation (incl. retirement) is where the employee voluntarily decides to end his/her employment and communicates that decision to the employer. Employers should obtain written confirmation of resignation, including: employee’s full name; date of the notice of resignation; last date of work; and signature. Abandonment of Employment occurs where an employee has determined to terminate their employment and has not notified the employer of his/her intentions. Abandonment initially presents as an unauthorised absence (i.e. no prior notification/approval). The employer should make reasonable attempts to contact the employee. In circumstances where it is not possible to contact the employee, employers should seek further advice immediately.

Termination With Notice includes termination due to redundancy or failure to perform or conduct themselves to the appropriate standard. Redundancy occurs when an employee is no longer required for work (through no fault of their own) because the employer no longer requires the job to be performed by anyone. Employer’s must follow specific consultation/ notifications procedures in relation to the redundancy process. Termination Without Notice (Summary Dismissal) is where the employer decides to proceed with termination in circumstances where an employee has engaged in misconduct or serious misconduct. Before proceeding with termination, the employer must be satisfied that the

elements of substantive and procedure fairness have been met. Frustration of Contract occurs where the employee is unable to fulfil the inherent requirements (full duties) of their job role. This most often occurs due to a personal illness/injury, carer’s commitments or criminal conviction (eg. loss of driver’s license, incarceration) that impacts on the employee’s capacity to perform their duties safely and effectively. Further advice should be sought in these circumstances. In all cases, Termination of Apprentice or Trainee requires specific advice and assistance from the relevant state training authority as early as possible.




Employers are required to give notice of termination in accordance with the relevant award or enterprise agreement or the National Employment Standard. The employer will have the option to make payment in lieu of notice. In this circumstance, the employee will be entitled to all amounts that he or she would have received if the employee had worked during the notice period. Employees are required to provide the same amount of notice (excepting any additional notice relating to the age of the employee). Failure to provide sufficient notice may result in forfeiture of wages and/or other amounts as above.

Depending on the nature of the termination, an employee’s final pay may include the following: wages and allowances to the last day worked; accrued RDOs; accrued annual leave entitlements; any payment in lieu of notice; redundancy/severance payment; and any other amounts specified by the relevant Award or Agreement.

The employer has an obligation to notify the employee of termination in writing, stating the reasons for termination and the last date of employment. A copy of this letter should always be retained in addition to any records of termination payment. In cases of multiple redundancies, the employer may be required to notify Centrelink of proposed terminations.

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Robert Hutt, from the Association of Accounting Technicians Australia, discusses some of the key changes to tax rules and reporting that will affect small businesses and the construction industry.

TAXABLE PAYMENTS REPORTING From 1 July 2012, businesses in the building and construction industry need to report the total payments they make to each contractor for building and construction services they engage each year. These payments must be reported to the Australian Tax Office (ATO) on the Taxable payments annual report.



As part of the 2011-12 Federal Budget, the Government announced the introduction of taxable payments reporting for businesses in the building and construction industry. The aim of the system is to improve compliance with tax obligations by those contractors who are currently not doing the right thing. The information reported about payments made to contractors will be used for ATO’s data matching to detect contractors who have not: > lodged tax returns > included all their income in returns that have been lodged. To make it easier to complete the annual report you may need to change the way you currently record your contractor information.

From 1 July 2012, your business is required to report contractor payments if all of the following apply: > your business is a business that is primarily in the building and construction industry; and > your business makes payments to contractors for building and construction services; and > your business has an Australian business number (ABN). You are considered to be a business that is primarily in the building and construction industry if any of the following apply: > in the current financial year, 50 per cent or more of your business activity relates to building and construction services > in the current financial year, 50 per cent or more of your business income is derived from providing building and construction services > in the financial year immediately before the current financial year, 50 per cent or more of your business income was derived from providing building and construction services. For more information, visit the ATO website



JUNE 2012

SMALL BUSINESS CONCESSIONS: CHANGES TO SIMPLER DEPRECIATION RULES From 2012-13 the small business instant asset write-off threshold has been increased from $1,000 to $6,500. Small businesses can also claim an accelerated initial deduction for motor vehicles acquired in 2012-13 and subsequent years. These amendments only apply to small businesses that have an aggregated turnover of less than $2 million. Aggregated turnover includes the annual turnover of the small business and the annual turnovers of any connected or affiliated businesses.

ELIGIBILITY A small business would generally qualify for the small business entity concessions if your business is a 'small business entity' for the year in question. However, some of the concessions have additional conditions which you will also need to meet. You are a small business if you carry on a business and your business turnover (aggregated turnover) is less than $2 million. Your turnover includes all income earned in the ordinary course of business for the income year. Turnover refers to your gross income or proceeds, rather than your net profit. It does not include any goods and services tax (GST) amounts you have charged on your sales.

Your aggregated turnover is the sum of your turnover for an income year and the annual turnover of any entity you are connected with or that is an affiliate of yours at any time during that income year. There are rules about when and how you calculate your aggregated turnover. Some concessions will not be available if you use your actual current year turnover to qualify. There are aggregation rules that determine whether you need to include the turnover of another entity in your aggregated turnover. You satisfy the turnover test for the current year if your aggregated turnover: > was less than $2 million in the previous income year; > is estimated to be less than $2 million for the current year (provided that your aggregated turnover was less than $2 million for at least one of the two previous income years), or > is actually less than $2 million at the end of the current year.

You need to review your eligibility against these criteria each year. Business means the individual, partnership, company or trust that carries on the business activity. When referring to 'small business' it is meant to be 'small business entity', which is an individual, partnership, trust or company with aggregated turnover less than $2 million. These changes apply from 2012-13 onwards. For more information visit ATO website ( or talk to your accountant or tax adviser for professional advice. Robert Hutt is the Technical and Education manager of the Association of Accounting Technicians Australia, to find out more visit

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A tradesman’s work vehicle has to be many things over the course of its life. Obviously it provides a means of transport from one site to another, but consideration must also be given to comfort, safety, security and performance. You want your vehicle to be tough but look good, have suitable load carrying capacity and also be affordable. It should be user friendly and functional and above all, safe. Choosing the right vehicle can be a challenge, so it is important to consider the following: Usage requirements Take a ‘whole of life’ view to determine the most suitable size, features and mechanics of your vehicle. Consider things like frequency of use, distances driven, load carrying requirements, etc. Features These days vehicles offer a multitude of features and extras and while they may be tempting, try not to get carried away with all the bells and whistles. Think carefully about the features and extras you really need and what will deliver a valuable return on your investment. Resale value Choosing a vehicle with certain features may help to improve its resale value in the future. Doing your homework on resale values could help you save thousands. Fuel efficiency A quick calculation of current and projected fuel costs can help you compare the fuel efficiencies of different vehicles. Also, consider diesel and hybrid options, which may offer increased fuel economy. Safety and reliability Choosing a vehicle that is both safe and reliable will allow your business to run smoothly and efficiently.



JUNE 2012

HYUNDAI’S iLOAD LOADED WITH MORE The multi-award winning and highly acclaimed Hyundai iLoad range is loaded with safety and convenience features and has proven a hit with customers having won ‘People’s Choice Award’ in the Light Commercial Van category for the past two years. The iLoad range connects with buyers by offering an outstanding combination of efficiency, practicality, reliability, and versatility. Equipped with an array of highly advanced active and passive safety enhancements and standard features, models across the range now come with Bluetooth™ Connectivity and full iPod Integration.

The audio system which includes radio, CD, MP3 player as well as a USB port provides enhanced convenience and improved functionality. Bluetooth™ connectivity provides safe hands-free telephone use and audio streaming with any compatible device. Full iPod® integration (via the USB port) allows customers to connect using their original iPod cables, conveniently making operation possible via the head unit. Hyundai takes safety seriously, with the iLoad attaining a 4 star ANCAP safety rating, and fitted with a suite of active and passive safety features including four-channel, four-sensor Anti-skid Braking System (ABS) and Electronic Brakeforce Distribution (EBD), driver and passenger airbags and three-point retractable seat belts for all occupants. Whether its urban business or family touring the Hyundai iLoad ensures the task gets done with added safety and comfort. For more information visit:


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UNDERSTANDING THE INSURANCE NEEDS OF PLUMBERS IS OUR BUSINESS. Marsh Pty Ltd, trading as Master Plumbers Insurance Brokers (Aust), has been operating in the plumbing industry for over 10 years. We have been working closely with Master Plumbers to provide insurance solutions tailored to the plumbing industry. For your insurance needs, contact Marsh, the preferred insurance broker to Master Plumbers & Mechanical Services Association of Australia. For obligation-free quote, call 1300 300 511 or email Marsh Pty Ltd (ABN 86 004 651512 AFSL 238983) trading as Master Plumbers Insurance Brokers (Aust) (â&#x20AC;&#x153;MPIBâ&#x20AC;?) arranges this insurance and is not the insurer. The MPIB name is owned by the Master Plumbers and Mechanical Services Association of Australia (MPMSAA) and used under licence by Marsh. MPMSAA receives a financial benefit when a policy is arranged by MPIB, enabling it to continue to provide further services to the plumbing industry. This ad contains general information only and does not take into account your individual objectives, financial situation or needs. For further information about Marsh, visit 11/0204

Partnering for impactSM Marsh is one of the Marsh & McLennan Companies, together with Guy Carpenter, Mercer, and Oliver Wyman.

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INTRODUCING PLUMBING APPRENTICESHIPS VICTORIA The Master Plumbers Group Training Scheme is now trading as Plumbing Apprenticeships Victoria.

Plumbing Apprenticeships Victoria is the industry’s group training scheme, dedicated to providing plumbing businesses with high quality, highly skilled apprentices to meet their needs. Manager of the scheme John Clarke says Plumbing Apprenticeships Victoria represents a great opportunity for the industry. “Our aim is to train our apprentices to become exceptional, multi-skilled plumbers of the future,” he says. “All our apprentices complete preemployment training and are continually monitored by our dedicated field staff both on and off the job. “Choosing a Plumbing Apprenticeships Victoria apprentice makes a lot of sense for businesses. We look after everything, allowing you to access additional resources when and where you need them. And with over 100 apprentices in Victoria, our scheme can cater for businesses of any size.”




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WHY CHOOSE A PLUMBING APPRENTICESHIPS VICTORIA APPRENTICE? It’s flexible The plumbing industry has a flexible workload and sometimes demand for your services can be overwhelming. By choosing a Plumbing Apprenticeships Victoria apprentice you can have the flexibility of calling on extra labour when you need it most, without having to make the long term commitment of employing an extra person. It’s cost effective Because you only call on labour when you need it, you only pay for what you use. Choosing a Plumbing Apprenticeships Victoria apprentice can help you manage labour costs and help you complete projects on time and within budget. There are no hassles or paperwork Hiring an apprentice often involves a lot of time, money and paperwork. Plumbing Apprenticeships Victoria takes care of everything, including: > Process and payment of apprentice wages, superannuation, redundancy, sick leave, long service leave and taxation > Supply and issue of protective clothing > WorkCover > Enrolment and monitoring of trade school > Completion and lodgement of training agreement We do everything for you so you can concentrate on getting the job done. To find out more about hiring an apprentice, contact John Clarke at Plumbing Apprenticeships Victoria on 03 9329 9622.


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A MIGHTY GREAT IDEA Using ladders, ropes and manpower to manoeuvre heavy equipment onto single or double story roofs can be cumbersome and dangerous. The Mighty Lift has been specifically designed for plumbers, electrical contractors and other tradespeople who install equipment on roofs or in roof spaces. The Mighty Lift is lightweight, versatile, strong and safe and will allow you to complete lifting jobs quickly and easily. With a reach of just over six metres, the Mighty lift can conquer most installation jobs quickly and easily. The equipment can be carried on most roof racks and can be installed by one person in just minutes. The longest piece of the unit is only 3.6 metres and weighs just 95kgs when fully assembled. No power on your job site? No worries! A major advantage of the Mighty Lift is that it can be powered by a standard cordless drill or rattle gun, or manually via v its own hand winch.



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What plumbers are saying about the Mighty Lift… “The Mighty Lift is a valuable asset in our OHS armoury. We use our unit mainly for solar installs and not only does it give us a much safer workplace, it is an invaluable tool the guys love to use because it has made their jobs easier and safer.” Phill Kelly, Kelly Plumbing “I highly recommend the Mighty Lift for any roof top work to obtain the efficiency and safe work environment that is required in any workplace.” Stephen O’Brien, McDonald O’Brien Plumbing


$550 rebate

Master Plumbers hass partnered with WorkSafe to offer eligible businesses a rebate of $550 (including GST) on the purchase of a Mighty Lift unit. Master Plumbers members can also take advantage of a special price on the basic Mighty Lift unit – meaning extra savings! To see the Mighty Lift in action, visit For details on special pricing and the rebate program, contact Master Plumbers on 03 9329 9622.

SAFETY REMINDER: THE DANGERS OF LEAD Lead can have many subtle, but serious, long term health effects. Lead is a cumulative poison and when inhaled, ingested or absorbed through the skin it is toxic to virtually every human organ. From a single exposure, lead is quickly distributed and stored tthrough the body where it remains a llong term source of internal exposure. Exposure to lead can have a broad range E of health effects depending on the o amount of lead present and the length a of exposure. o Generally, the greater the exposure, the G greater the impact on health, though g children will be more affected at lower levels of exposure than adults.* A high lead blood level is currently defined as more than 10 micrograms of lead per decilitre of blood (10 μg/dL). However, an increased likelihood of death from heart attack or stroke has started to be seen in people with blood levels as low as 2 μg/dL. It is now widely acknowledged by health professionals that there is no such thing as a ‘safe’ level of lead in the blood. The negative health impacts linked with lead in the blood include problems with the heart and brain, rising blood pressure, hypertension and kidney damage.


Who can be affected? Roof installers are exposed to serious health risks from handling lead flashing. These include absorption of lead into the blood from contact and the inhalation of toxic lead dust.** Home owners and the community the health risks from lead contamination of run-off rain water for drinking have brought about changes to the Building Code of Australia as well as State building codes to prohibit the use of lead in any roof system coming in contact with potable water.

Lead flashing Lead flashing has been used on roofs for generations simply because there has not been any better solution available. However with the advent of Polymer engineering, new materials such as Polyisobutylene or Butyl Rubber mean that there is at last a better alternative to using lead. Evo Building Products provides a solution With WAKAFLEX lead-free flexible flashing, there are none of the problems associated with using lead. WAKAFLEX’s inert qualities and non-toxic materials mean that it can be installed with most

roofing materials and will not contaminate any harvested run-off water for tanks and grey-water systems and is therefore safer for the installer, home owner and the environment. WAKAFLEX lead-free flashing is also lighter and easier to use than lead. For more information on WAKAFLEX and a free health & safety fact sheet on the dangers of lead, visit www.evobuild. or contact Evo Building Products on (02) 9666 1069 * Source: NSW Lead Reference Centre and the Workers Health Centre, ** Source: The Lead Group

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Philmac are proud to release the newest addition to the innovative 3G Metric range – 3G Poly to Copper – which makes joining poly pressure pipe to copper pipe even easier. The 3G Metric poly connection incorporates the 80 years of experience Philmac has in developing innovating compression fitting technology for the global market, and it’s made right here in Australia. “I found it worked quickly and easily; there were no dramas,” said Mike Gessey, a Master Plumber based in Bundaberg, Queensland. “I do a lot of repairs on rental properties and these connections worked a treat. Most properties run poly up to the house then have a copper riser going inside and these worked really well to repair an old connection. “I am also interested in doing a bit more on new houses and think these will work well coming off the mainlines going into the house.” Another benefit from this new range is the incorporation of the 3G Metric poly connection. “Compared to competitor fittings where I had to take the head off the nut, the Philmac joiner allows me to just insert the pipe and tighten her up” Mike said. The 3G Poly to Copper means that you can “set and forget” – simply insert the pipe, tighten the nut up to the flange and you are done. For more information please visit or call 1800 755 899 to get in touch with your local representative.



Bacteria in pipes is a big problem, but as John Fennell points out, copper’s growing reputation as a germ fighter could help. When a brand new Hong Kong government building had to be closed recently due to high levels of Legionella bacteria in the water, the stainless steel plumbing was the initial focus. The investigation found nothing wrong with the design, materials or testing of the plumbing, but suggested poor flow and tepid temperatures could have been the culprits. Water born diseases are a growing problem everywhere and research has suggested that one of the biggest reasons is due to the build-up of bacterial biofilm in pipes that can break away and infect humans. Choosing pipe materials carefully appears to help, say researchers. One large study looked at all types of plumbing systems, finding the heaviest build up of bacteria was on rubber components like tap washers, moderate on synthetic plastic tubing and lower on steel. Copper didn’t show any build up and the researchers even concluded that copper seemed to kill off the Legionella bacteria. Other studies have also confirmed these findings. A French study in 1995 compared copper to PVC, polyethylene and polybutylene pipes and found copper had the lowest biofilm and bacterial load of all, especially at temperatures above 20 degrees Centigrade. A 2010 paper in the Water Science & Technology Journal studied microbial build up in biofilm across a whole range of plumbing pipes, found that copper had the least build up of any material while stainless steel had the worst. Copper has always been a premium product and the biofilm research just confirms why. For more information and links to scientific studies on plumbing systems go to John Fennell is the head of the International Copper Association Australia, contact JUNE 2012

PISTON PUMP UPGRADE The latest developments in triplex piston pump design are now available in Australia. Manufactured by Idromechanica Bertolini in Northern Italy, the new heavy duty TTL range is now available from Australian Pump Industries. The TTL Series represents state of the art piston pump technology with a view to providing both longevity and lower through life operating costs to end users. “Bertolini and Aussie Pumps share a passion for quality and performance,” said Aussie Pumps’ Adrian Fiatarone. “We are proud to use these top quality pumps across our range of Scud blasters and drain cleaning jetters. They deliver on performance and are backed by a three year Bertolini warranty, unique in the industry,” he said. Australian Pump is the only Bertolini authorised Australian Distributor. Their massive build programme has seen Aussie doubling production of professional contractor high pressure blasters and drain cleaning jetters three years in a row. This huge increase in volume has meant lower costs with savings passed on to consumers. The TTL range of pumps all come with a standard 24mm steel shaft. This means that they can be easily interchanged with other brands like Interpump and Hawke. Australian Pump has published a handy reference guide for OEM’s and service technicians to assist with pump selection for change-outs and upgrades. Further information on the new series of Bertolini Pumps is available from Australian Pump Industries.



1800 all for d 029 30 0 your etails o n f dea earest ler.

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NEW SPEED SLOT Bi-metal Hole Saws ®

for WOOD and METAL cutting

CUTTING THE HOLE IS PRODUCTIVE. STRUGGLING TO REMOVE THE PLUG ISN’T. Introducing the new LENOX SPEED SLOT T hole saw — it cuts wood 2X faster and lasts 2X longer when cutting through metal.* The job goes even faster with our T which makes plug removal easy. revolutionary SPEED SLOT,

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news DUX SUNPRO® ®

The new Sunpro MP15 Gas Boosted Solar Water heater from Dux is the latest addition Australia’s most highly awarded environmental water heater range. The MP15 is packed full of the latest in water heater technology advancements delivering a number of benefits including outstanding energy efficiency, low running costs and carbon emissions, improved solar panel protection in extreme climates, minimal water wastage, mains pressure hot water supply and the convenience of only requiring a gas supply pipe size similar to that of traditional gas storage tanks. The new Sunpro® MP15 also has a unique pre-boost feature, which heats the water in the top of the tank before it is needed, eradicating this water wastage. This feature also allows the system to provide a constant supply of hot water at mains pressure; unlike traditional continuous flow boosted models which have a lower flow rate available the more the gas boost is required. An intelligent Complete Panel Management system is also incorporated into the unit, providing complete frost protection in winter by removing the water from the solar panel lines so that it is not able to freeze and damage the panels. The system also runs an overheating protection cycle when summer temperatures get too high. Of particular benefit to the installing plumber, is the quick recovery, low megajoule gas booster used on the MP15. At just 45MJ, the MP15 install typically does not require a gas pipe upgrade when replacing an existing gas unit. This is in contrast to standard gas continuous boosted solar units which carry up to a 200MJ rating and require larger gas pipe size to meet standards. For further information on Dux Hot Water please visit

BOSCH SETS A NEW BENCHMARK IN ENERGY EFFICIENT HYDRONIC HEATING. The Bosch Hot Water & Heating range consists of high quality and high energy efficiency products to suit modern households. Bosch have recently introduced a condensing hydronic heating boiler range, the Condens 5000W, to the Australian market. Condensing appliances capture “hidden” energy that is usually expelled as hot air through the flue terminal of a non-condensing appliance making them approximately 10-15% more energy efficient than non-condensing appliances. Bosch Condens 5000W Hydronic Heating Boilers are therefore 91% energy efficient. Hydronic heating is the predominant heating technology used around the world and is becoming increasingly popular in Australia too. Either radiator panels or underfloor heating coils can be used to heat the air in a natural way leading to a superior level of comfort. Hydronic heating is also a quiet and allergy friendly way of heating as it avoids the airborne distribution of particles experienced with gas ducted heating systems. The new Bosch Hydronic Heating Boiler range includes 18 kW and 30 kW models, which are the heart of a hydronic heating system and take care of heating the home. The 37 kW ‘combi’ model combines heating and domestic hot water supply in the one appliance, which saves installation costs, space and reduces gas bills in two ways by utilising condensing technology for both, hot water and heating. Bosch regularly offer free hydronic heating training courses for qualified installers. To find out more, call 1300 30 70 37 or visit

HUNT HEATING EXPANDS INTELLIGENT BOILER RANGE Hydronic Heating specialist Hunt Heating has launched a new range of high-efficiency gas boilers containing a revolutionary electronic management system designed to suit both single and dual systems. The new additions to the Murelle MGP HE range is the most versatile and intelligent collection of boilers ever produced by Italian manufacturer Sime SpA and the new AGA approved 50 & 110Kw enables variants of power, ranging from 30Kw-1200Kw, internal and external cascade module kits inclusive. Completely compatible with renewable technologies and optional weather compensation controls, Murelle MGP HE is also Sime’s most environmentallyfriendly range yet, achieving over 96% efficiency. The range’s green credentials are made possible via an advanced combustion system that extracts the most heat possible from burnt gas, resulting in the highest levels of efficiency, as well as dramatically reducing CO2 emissions. The boilers also contain a sophisticated pre-mix system which, together with constant temperature monitoring to ensure the boiler output is always perfectly matched to demand, also helps to significantly bolster efficiency levels. Speaking about the new range Hunt Heating General manager, Paul Linley said: “The launch of the additional Murelle MGP HE range represents the single biggest launch of new products we have ever undertaken and I’m delighted to introduce to the collection to the Australian market.” “We invested heavily in new product development to create a range that delivers outstanding levels of versatility and energy efficiency and I have every confidence that it will prove highly popular with both installers and consumers alike.” To find out more, visit or call 1300 00 1800

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news NEW FROM VIEGA Viega has introduced a simple bronze support insert for DN50 (2") Type D thin-walled tube applications. The Viega Propress press-fit system for copper tube joining has been widely adopted by both commercial and residential plumbing contractors since its introduction to the Australian market in 2006. In the majority of cases the Viega system is completely compatible for repairing and extending old installations. However in some applications, contractors have found non-approved DN50 (2") Type D tube or other existing thin-walled 2" tube which no longer conforms to Type A or B specifications, may deform during pressing, causing an unsatisfactory pressed joint. To overcome this tube weakness, Viega has now released a simple bronze sleeve that is inserted into the end of the thin-walled tube to provided adequate support, ensuring a perfect Viega pressed joint every time. Viega Propress is available throughout Australia from Tradelink and Northern’s Plumbing Supplies. For assistance contact Crane Copper Tube on 1800 043 117 or visit


Getting superannuation advice can seem like a daunting process for many workers, however Cbus has developed a Workplace ‘Super and Advice’ Program which provides access to a team of qualified and experienced coordinators and financial planners. They can provide expert information and help employees understand the fundamentals of superannuation. A flexible and adaptable program There are a variety of flexible formats that are delivered at your workplace. Group presentations vary from 30-40 minutes and are designed to help members better understand general superannuation more effectively, covering topics such as transition to retirement and salary sacrifice. Individual meetings go for around 15-30 minutes and are tailored to suit employees who want to discuss financial matters in a private forum with a qualified Cbus financial planner*. If one of your employees is interested in speaking with a financial planner, call 1300 361 784 to arrange an appointment. Employer Calendar Cbus has developed a small desk calendar for employers. The calendar can be stuck to your computer screen, or anywhere on your workstation, and highlights the dates your SG payments are due with Cbus. This is just another way Cbus is making super easier for employers. If you would like one of these calendars, please contact Phillip Horne on 03 9657 4228 or

Finally, an air-conditioner that comes with no outdoor unit. With the Olimpia Splendid Unico the outdoor compressor is completely eliminated, yes thats right the all new Italian designed and manufactured Unico is the first fixed air-conditioner without the outdoor unit. Climate control now comes without external pipework or condensors and makes installation a breeze. The Unico comes with both inverter and fixed speed technology enabling it to deliver great perfermance. With the capability of delivering cool clean air in summer and warm fresh air in winter the Unico is perfect for any aspect of climate control. One of the Unico’s other is great benefits is it’s extremely silent making it ideal for bedrooms infact you could call it perfectly noiseless. For more detailed information on the unique Unico contact Noirot Australia on 03 9563 2778 AUSTRALIAN PLUMBING INDUSTRY MAGAZINE


*Cbus Financial Planners are representatives of Industry Fund Financial Planning a division of Industry Fund Services Limited (IFS). Licencees for Advice ABN 540070 16195, AFSL No. 232514


JUNE 2012 – THE NEW REVOLUTION IN SUPPLY FOR PLUMBERS Australian owned manufacturer/ importer Mania National has launched Mania National (now Mania Group Australia) provides plumbers with quality product, which is locally backed (and manufactured in some cases) with manufacturer/importer direct pricing. “We have plumbing merchants and wholesalers supplying direct to the public and/or DIY hardware chains. This is compromising the quality of work out there and to put it bluntly taking money from the plumber’s pockets,” Mania Group Australia General Manager, Daniel Whiting stated in a recent interview. deals strictly with plumbers only and a strict registration regime is in place, where specific details including licensing numbers are requested to establish and maintain trading accounts. “Sure, we sacrifice some potential business this way, but the integrity of the industry and giving the plumber a good margin to work with is something we are sincerely passionate about,” says Dan. “If someone needs something a bit outside the box or designed and manufactured for specific jobs, we are the ones to call!” Orders can be placed via the website and iPhone/Android apps, however has all standard ordering services including a 1800 number, trade desk and good old fashioned fax machine. To find out more visit

BLE A L I AVA ths NOW m leng er in 2 t copp ou with


wpc news F R O M






As part of the celebrations for the third annual World Plumbing Day, the World Plumbing Council (WPC) invited children under the age of 10 to participate in the global competition by designing a poster illustrating the important role plumbing plays in our society. A total of 81 finalists were chosen from the hundreds of posters submitted by school children from many countries including Jamaica, Trinidad, Scotland, Canada, Newfoundland and the USA. The posters were judged primarily for the message that World Plumbing Day represents: that plumbing is vital to good health; the role that plumbing plays in our everyday life; and the role that plumbing plays in environmental issues. The artistic merit of the posters was secondary. Of the 81 posters the judging panel from the American Society of Sanitary Engineering (ASSE), on behalf of WPC, chose the 10 best posters, which were then put on display at the ASSE Mid-Year Board meetings for judging. The winners chosen were: 1st Place – Alexis Briano, Grade 5, La Verne Heights Elementary School, California 2nd Place – Jordan Weekes, Grade 4, Bishop Anstey Junior School, Trinidad 3rd Place – Olivia Cooley, Grade 3, Crestview Elementary, Brunswick, Ohio



JUNE 2012

The talent shown in all the posters submitted was outstanding but more importantly, all of these children heard the message of World Plumbing Day and displayed it exceptionally well. Winner Alexis Briano, was presented with her prize (US$1,000 for her school and US$100 for herself) at her school on Friday 27 April by WPC Chairman GP Russ Chaney. When asked what she was going to do with her prize money, Alexis smiled and replied, “I’m not sure yet.” During his presentation to the school, Chaney reminded the students that there are children their age in other countries who are not fortunate enough to have plumbing systems and that they should use water wisely.

2012 WPC EDUCATION & TRAINING SCHOLARSHIP Applications are now open for the 2012 WPC Education & Training Scholarship. The scholarship is open to individuals involved in plumbing industry training wishing to visit another country for the purpose of researching and furthering plumbing training and skills development. The recipients of the scholarship in 2010 and 2011 are great examples of the diversity that is available through the WPC Education and Training Scholarship Program.

In 2010 Robert Goodchild of Perth, Western Australia, travelled to South Africa and as a part of his study tour visited a township of some 33,000 people with a poor water supply, few toilets and no sewerage, with little or no infrastructure to support sustainable living for that community. His report illustrated the value of a well qualified and trained plumber supported by an effective regulatory system. The 2011 recipient Chintan Daiya of Mumbai, India, chose to visit Singapore, which boasts a highly developed water reclamation system (NEWater) and desalination system to ensure adequate water supply for the well developed and populous island state. WPC Executive Board Director Rich Prospal, Chairman of the WPC Education & Training Standing Committee, commented “The WPC Education & Training Scholarship opens a multitude of opportunities for the recipient. If only to broaden your horizons on how things are done in other parts of the world… The whole idea is to expand the thought that plumbing is important in everyone’s health and everyday life.” The value of the WPC Education and Training Scholarship is up to US$10,000, which covers the costs associated with return travel, lodging, meals and incidentals. Applications close on 31 July 2012, to find out more visit

Hunt Heating. The smart choice. Experts in Domestic and Commercial Hydronic Heating.

30 YEARS 1982 ~ 2012

Hunt Heating was established in 1982, Australian owned the company has continued to invest and secure well established long term partnerships with major manufacturers throughout Europe, supplying some exclusive leading Hydronic Heating brands, providing the Australian market with innovative energy HI他FLHQWK\GURQLFKHDWLQJVROXWLRQVDQG SUHVHQWLQJ続&RPIRUWLQ(I他FLHQF\卒

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1300 00 1800

11 Fiveways Blvd, Keysborough, Victoria T: (+61 3) 9798 5111 F: (+61 3) 9798 5133 E:


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6021 API Magazine Jun 2012  
6021 API Magazine Jun 2012  

6021 API Magazine Jun 2012 LR