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your industry magazine

The Water Issue innovation, clever ideas and new technology

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Australian Plumbing Industry Magazine

welcome. f r o m

t h e

E dit o r

Plumbing Industry House 525 King Street West Melbourne VIC 3003 T (03) 9329 9622 F (03) 9329 5060 E info@plumber.com.au www.plumber.com.au 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 SkillsTech Australia 760-776 Kingsford Smith Drive Eagle Farm QLD 4006 T 0424 165 308 F (07) 3854 2346

Plumbing Industry Climate Action Centre

Welcome to the December issue of Australian Plumbing Magazine. In this issue we are focussing on water. Our water feature takes a closer look at water testing and investigates the use of vacuum toilet technology in local buildings.

In this issue our focus is on water

Charlotte Roseby visits Melbourne’s Royal Botanic Gardens and reports on the latest innovations in the Working Wetlands project, which is revitalising the water landscapes and water bodies of the gardens. We meet with Master Plumbers member Worboys Plumbing who have been in business for over 90 years and members for over 70! Also in this issue, Don Smith from BCI Australia takes a look at what lies ahead for the construction industry in the new year. We’ve also got some important information on workplace bullying, which is quickly becoming one of the biggest challenges for today’s employers.

4 | Australian Plumbing Industry Magazine | December 2013

Following another year full of change in employment-related legislation, Sharon Kraemer takes a look back at some of the biggest changes of the last 12 months and how they will affect employers and the industry.

306 Albert Street Brunswick VIC 3065 T (03) 9356 8921 F (03) 9356 8929

Our summer safety update has some timely reminders about keeping safe around the workplace during the warmer months.

Publisher

Also in this issue, we’ve got some great tips on getting more from your website, advice on Self Managed Super Funds and information on business disaster planning.

Editor

I’d like to wish all our readers a safe and happy festive season and we look forward to seeing you again in the New Year!

Advertising

Happy reading!

Contacts The Master Plumbers’ and Mechanical Services Association of Australia (MPMSAA)

Melissa Chrys T (03) 9321 0703 E publications@plumber.com.au

Tremain Walles T (03) 9321 0780 E tremain.walles@plumber.com.au

Suppliers Salt Creative www.saltcreative.com.au

Melissa Chrys Editor Australian Plumbing Industry Magazine

Printgraphics www.printgraphics.com.au Direct Mail Corporation www.directmail.com.au


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contents.

24

28

From the CEO / 9

Water feature / 28

A message from our CEO and the Association’s President

Find out more about vacuum toilet technology and water testing

Member news / 10

Australia’s hardest-working wetlands / 32

Pictures from the Golf Day, winners are grinners and new members!

Industry news / 17 Worboys / 24 Meet Worboys, a Master Plumber member for over 70 years

Get involved / 26 Being part of a small business community can lower your stress levels

Charlotte Roseby visits Melbourne’s Royal Botanic Gardens to see why they are the leaders in water management

Looking ahead: 2014 construction forecast / 36 Six simple tips for better website performance / 38 Summer safety update / 40 Hear me out / 42

lower your stress levels see page 26

32 Self Managed Super Funds – right for you? / 44 Bullseye on bullying / 46 Workplace bullying is a huge challenge for employers, ensure your business doesn’t become a target

Workplace relations roundup / 48 The year in review

Business disaster planning / 50 Product news / 52 Understanding the WaterMark Certification Scheme / 62 Get the full story on WaterMark

John Fennell says a new Construction Code is big news for plumbers

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.


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I would encourage members to take full advantage of all the services offered by our Association

Welcome.

from the President and CEO

Seasons greetings to all our members

Another year draws to a close

As we approach the end of another year, I would like to thank all our members for their continued support; 2013 has been a year of change and challenge and I am pleased that the Association is able to continue to support our industry and its members.

As we come to the end of 2013 there are still many cranes on the skyline around Melbourne’s inner city, and residential developments are driving construction activity. The level of work in other areas is reported to be patchy and many members have concerns about their level of committed work for next year.

The Board has been working hard to ensure the Association promotes the interests of its members and we have continued to lobby state and federal governments on issues that affect our industry. In April we acknowledged our long-standing members with a presentation of Milestone Certificates for businesses who have been members of the Association for over 30 years. This included Milestone Certificates being presented to W J Bugg and Son and C W Lee Air Conditioning who have been members for 75 and 85 years respectively! In June we once again recognised the talent in our industry, with the 106th Gold Medal and Training Awards being presented to our top performing apprentices and plumbers. Throughout the year the Association held a number of meetings, networking events and industry briefings to keep members up-to-date on the latest happenings in our industry. In October, the annual Bendigo Charity Golf Day was once again a highly successful event, with over 120 golfers in attendance and over $20,000 raised for Camp Quality. I’d like to thank all the sponsors of the day and the hard working event organisers: Geoff Moroney, Phil Kelly and Brett Crapper. You can read more about the golf day on page 10 of this issue. As we head into another year, I would encourage members to take full advantage of all the services offered by our Association. We are fortunate to have access to a huge range of benefits, and in the next year I encourage each of you to consider the following: • Hire an apprentice through Plumbing Apprenticeships Victoria • Build your skills through a training course at PICAC (members receive a significant discount on training) • Incorporate the new Master Plumbers branding into your marketing (car decals are available for free) • Contact the Association for advice on workplace health and safety • Attend an event: the Association holds member meetings, industry briefings and various other events throughout the year • Take advantage of some great discounts on cars, fuel, banking and workwear I am proud that our Association continues to be a leader in what is an exciting and dynamic industry and I look forward to 2014 as another year where we strive to make a positive impact on the environment and the community. On behalf of the Board, I would like to wish all our members, associates, affiliates, families and friends a very safe and merry Christmas and Happy New Year.

Scott Dowsett President, Master Plumbers Association

Forecasts for 2014 onwards are still predicting a small overall increase in activity but it is hard to see where this will occur. During the year the Association continued its strong advocacy work on the following issues: • National Licensing • TAFE funding and training outcomes • Representation on the new Victorian Building Authority The Association also increased liaison activities with the water authorities and the Association of Hydraulic Services Consultants (AHSCA) in relation to improved application processes and common standards. The number of training programs at the Plumbing Industry Climate Action Centre (PICAC) has increased, as has the number of participants. The Green Skills for Trades program was finalised at the end of July, and I am pleased to report that during a two and a half year period we delivered 3737 units of Green Plumber training to 1644 apprentices across Victoria. The preapprenticeship training program at PICAC has been strongly supported and the Association has commenced development of the full apprenticeship training program which is planned to begin in 2015. During the year the Association undertook a re-branding program, adopting the tag line: “Expert, Committed, Professional.” In 2014 we plan to build to further develop our branding and marketing strategy to improve consumer awareness. Our Association remains an industry leader and a trusted source of knowledge, advice and expertise for our members, the construction sector, training providers and government. We will continue to protect the vital role plumbing plays in developing and maintaining public health and make positive improvements to secure the future of the plumbing industry. I’d like to thank you for your continued support throughout the year. On behalf of everyone here at Master Plumbers I wish you and your families a safe and Merry Christmas and all the best for the New Year.

Ken Gardner CEO Master Plumbers

www.plumber.com.au | 9


member news Bigger and better than ever Plumbers turn out for annual Bendigo Charity Golf Day!

The 2013 annual Bendigo Charity Golf Day was held on Friday 4 October at Neangar Park Golf Club in Bendigo. The weather was near perfect with beautiful sunshine and over 120 people were in attendance, ready to enjoy a great day of golf, a traditional country BBQ and most importantly, raise valuable funds for Camp Quality. According to event organiser Geoff Moroney, “There was some great, good, average and downright terrible golf played on the day by a great variety of players. “The day was an Ambrose event and the huge field of players managed to keep up a good pace around the course which allowed everyone to put up their feet in the club house afterwards and share the stories about the day’s play over a few drinks.”

10 | Australian Plumbing Industry Magazine | December 2013

Thanks to the generosity of the event’s sponsors, there were some fantastic prizes up for grabs across a number of categories including golf prizes, a raffle, a silent auction and the Mega Auction. While the serious players had their eyes on the golf prizes, the Mega Auction and silent auction were where the real competitions were played out, with vigorous bidding from all in attendance. This ensured that Camp Quality were the real winners on the day, with all profits going to this great cause. A big thank you to all the fantastic sponsors for this event, without these generous businesses and people, the Golf Day would not be a success.

A special thank you to the Elite Sponsors for the day: Seeley International, Reece Plumbing, IGA Supermarkets (Mag7 Bgo group) and the Hindsight Club. We’d also like to thank our Major Sponsors, including: Rheem, RMC Valves, Bosch, L W Gemmell, Pentair Water, Rogers Industries, Grundfos Pumps, Marsh Insurance, Steeline Roofing, Zip Industries, All Seasons Motel, Tradelink, KOR Equipment Solutions, Hauslers – John Deere, WIN TV, Gas & Cool and Yellow Brick Road. A big thank you also goes out to our Intermediate and Minor sponsors on the day. This year the golf day raised approximately $26,000! “It’s a far cry from the $200 total that we made at the first event 24 years ago,” says Geoff.


This year

$26,000 raised for charity A big thank you to the hard working event organisers: Geoff Moroney, Phil Kelly and Brett Crapper as well as their wives Helen, Marg and Jenny. It takes a lot of hard work to organise the day but all agree that the money raised to help kids in need is well worth the time and effort. Geoff adds, “As always, a great day was had by all and I think this is one of the premier golfing events in the Victorian plumbing industry, with the field filling up almost a month before the closing date!

Making a difference The money was once again donated to the Camp Quality Cancer Foundation and will go a long way into paying the costs for a camp for kids and their families in the Bendigo region.

“We anticipate another successful and popular golf day once again next year, so if you intend to play, make sure your registration and payment are sent in early.�

www.plumber.com.au | 11


member news Proud Master Plumbers Thanks to everyone who sent in photos of their vehicles featuring the new look Master Plumbers branding. The competition is still open and there are some great prizes up for grabs, so don’t forget to send you photos in!

How to win! Take a photo of yourself with your vehicle/s displaying the Master Plumbers branding and send it to us at publications@plumber.com.au along with your name and membership number. All the photos we receive will be published in future issues of Australian Plumbing Industry magazine and on the Master Plumbers website. Winners will be announced in early 2014. Don’t have the new branding? You should have received two new car decals with your renewal pack. Call the Membership Services team on 03 9329 9622 if you haven’t received yours or if you’d like some extra decals.

Get more from your membership Master Plumbers members can access a great range of discounts through our Member Benefits program. The wide range of leisure, lifestyle and financial services has something for everyone. Here are some of the latest offers. Save with HotelClub Planning a holiday or short getaway? Don’t forget to check for accommodation through HotelClub. Master Plumbers members can save up to 15% off already reduced accommodation rates on a range of 74,000 hotels globally. There is something to suit everyone with a range of one-five star properties, including luxury resorts, serviced apartments, budget motels and more.

Golfing discounts As part of your Master Plumbers benefit program, you are entitled to discounts on your next game of golf. Discounts are available at participating golf clubs across Australia and include complimentary membership fees or one green fee for one paid.

Save on admissions to major attractions Enjoy discounts on a variety of attractions, available throughout Australia and New Zealand, including: • Museums – National Dinosaur Museum (ACT), Australian National Maritime Museum (NSW) • Animal Sanctuaries – Ballarat Wildlife Park (VIC), Australian Reptile Park (NSW) • Cruises – Pride of Auckland (NZ), Captain Cook Cruises (WA) • Tourist Attractions – Melbourne Aquarium (VIC), Alice Springs Desert Park (NT) • Leisure activities – Skydive Adelaide (SA), Putt Putt Golf (QLD) For more information on any of the above offers or to access the full range of benefits available to you, visit member-advantage.com/masterplumbers

2014 wall planner out now Worboys

Plumbing

Members will have received a copy of the 2014 Master Plumbers wall planner with this issue of Australian Plumbing Industry magazine.

sAVe TiMe AnD Money

2014 wall planner.

There are some great prizes up for grabs

haley

It highlights the key dates for 2014 including Victorian RDOs and public holidays. If you require additional copies of the wall planner, please email publications@plumber.com.au

February

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beCoMe A MeMber ToDAy!

GeT More ouT of your business

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neeD An APPrenTiCe? CALL 03 9329 9622

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www.plumber.com.au | 13


member news VALE Kevin Connolly 1924-2013 Kevin Connolly had been a member of the Master Plumbers for over 55 years. He commenced his apprenticeship at the age of 14 in Kalgoorlie where both he and his boss rode bicycles and often carried a length of spouting or pipe to jobs. Not long after commencing his apprenticeship Kevin’s family moved to Port Pirie as work had become harder to find for his father, with this change came a new mode of transport – Bubbles the horse and a cart, which Kevin had to harness each day. Following the war, Kevin returned to Melbourne where he continued his plumbing before starting his own business in 1955.

Welcome New Members

Master Plumbers welcomes the following new members and affiliates who have joined the Association since September 2013. We’d also like to acknowledge our Plumbing Apprenticeship Victoria and Queensland group training scheme apprentices, who have come on board as affiliate members. LA Gibson Plumbing

Adam Crean Plumbing Pty Ltd

Australian Chillers & HVAC Solutions

Your Friendly Plumber Pty Ltd

Shaq & Sons Plumbing & Gasfitting

Metrowest Plumbing Services Pty Ltd

Aqua Domain Melbourne

Brent Fuller Plumbing

Design 62

Renda Air Services

Vita Group Pty Ltd

Aquatic Projects Pty Ltd

KJ Connolly is a general plumbing business, completing plumbing work from below the ground to roof and gutters, and has worked on retirement villages, churches, schools, apartments and private homes in Melbourne’s south eastern suburbs. The business also worked for some well-known Melbourne identities in the Toorak and Caulfield areas.

Bacchus Marsh Plumbing Service

Horizon Roofing Services Pty Ltd

Express Plumbing & Gas Pty Ltd

Liquid Vision Plumbing Group Pty Ltd

The Commercial Plumbers Pty Ltd

Ultimate Steel Roofing Pty Ltd

Jorob Plumbing Services Pty Ltd

Purple Hayes Plumbing

Paul Bills Plumbing & Gas

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Janda Plumbing and Gas Fitting Pty Ltd

Tony Rongwood Drainage & Plumbing

PSD Plumbing

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Kevin’s mission for his business was to maintain KJ Connolly Pty Ltd as craftsman not simply plumbers and perform their work to the highest standards at all times and at the same time he was always willing to help his workers and their families in any way he could, he treated all as friends.

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Winners are grinners Congratulations to Les Brundenell of Maidstone, who was the winner of our Renew and Win competition. Les was the lucky winner of a Milwaukee 18 piece hole saw kit. Les Brundenell of Maidstone is presented with his prize.

14 | Australian Plumbing Industry Magazine | December 2013


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industry news Drinking water through recycling: new report The Drinking Water Through Recycling report by Dr Stuart Khan from the University of NSW found recycling effluent is “technically feasible and can safely supply potable water directly into the water distribution system”. Dr Khan said Australia had to plan now for the introduction of treated waste water to the drinking supply because of the time it would take to establish. “I can’t imagine a direct potable reuse scheme in Australia in anything less than a decade, perhaps 20 years, perhaps 30 years is more likely,” Dr Khan said. Advanced water treatment for drinking involves removing suspended solids, reducing the concentration of dissolved substances and disinfection.

The Western Australian government has taken a major step towards the use of recycled effluent with plans to send recycled water into aquifers to be used in 20 to 30 years’ time for drinking purposes. The government hopes the system will one day supply 20 per cent of Perth’s drinking water. The “direct potable reuse” outlined in the report by Dr Khan and the Australian Academy of Technological Sciences and Engineering is even more ambitious, envisioning a recycling plant directly supplying households. The report said the method has been used in Namibia since 1968 and other projects are active or under consideration in the US and South Africa. The report was commissioned by the Australian Water Recycling Centre of Excellence and the centre’s chief executive, Mark O’Donohue, said recycled water had a significant role in future water supply. Dr Khan said recycled water was already entering water storages. “In the long term, I see direct potable reuse as being universally inevitable. I see that if we are going to have increasing population pressures, potentially increasing climate pressures in many areas, we really do need get a lot smarter about this one-directional use of water,” he said. To find out more about the report visit australianwaterrecycling.com.au Article source: Sydney Morning Herald (smh.com.au) October 15 2013

World Plumbing Industry coming to Melbourne in 2019 The Plumbing Industry Climate Action Centre (PICAC) has secured the 12th Triennial World Plumbing Conference for Melbourne in 2019. The winning bid was presented by Shayne La Combre, Chief Executive Officer, PICAC at the World Plumbing Council (WPC) General Meeting held in India earlier this month, before the 10th World Plumbing Conference commenced in New Delhi. ‘Given the important work of plumbers and the contribution plumbing systems make to our community health and amenity, can there be a more important and vital gathering than the World Plumbing Conference’, said Shayne, ‘Melbourne and PICAC will strive to highlight this on a world stage in 2019.’ Hosting the Conference will welcome up to 1,000 like-minded plumbing industry delegates to Melbourne to witness the technological advancements continually being made, particularly in the areas of sustainability, HVAC, fire protection and building management systems. Australia’s plumbing industry will greatly benefit from bringing the world’s plumbing industry to Melbourne by sharing in the transfer of information and ideas. This will be the second time Australia has hosted a World Plumbing Conference. The Master Plumber’s and Mechanical Contractors Association of NSW hosted the inaugural Conference in Sydney in 1985. For more information please visit www.worldplumbing.org

www.plumber.com.au | 17


industry news Keeping your Christmas party safe End of year workplace parties and celebrations are regarded as an extension of the workplace. As an employer, you are required to take reasonable steps to ensure duty of care to Workplace Health and Safety. Consider the following when planning your Christmas event: Remind staff about standards of acceptable behaviour prior to the event (e.g. gifts, jokes, language) and their responsibilities to other employees and family members. Hold the event away from the workplace and limit the length. Ensure there is a responsible person who can monitor the hazards and responsible alcohol levels. Where alcohol is provided, always supply food and low or non-alcoholic beverages. Consider how employees will get home safely.

Have a safe and happy festive season!

Aussie training delegation travels to the United States of America On 7 August 2013, an Australian Training Delegation from PICAC travelled to the United States of America to visit the United Association (UA) training facilities and participate in the UA Instructor Training Program (ITP), held in Ann Arbor, Michigan. ‘Because of its sheer size and exposure to the very exacting requirements of the nuclear energy, military and semiconductor industries, the US has developing technologies not seen in Australia.’ said Earl. ‘Exposure to an event of this nature by delegates gives insight into the absolute latest practices.’ Ann Arbor showcased some of the latest technology and equipment being used by Industry. Delegates were able to see this in action and note how the UA is adapting their training for these technologies. Much of the equipment is not widely used in Australia or in some cases not even available particularly in respect to some of the advanced welding equipment and BIM. Four delegates; Greg Tink, Lucas Blyth, Russell Menzies and Steve Rocco participated in the ITP and received certificates in Medical Gas Instructor, Introduction to BIM, Industrial Rigging Certification and Occupational Safety and Health Standards 500. ‘The training and resources I received at the ITP were taken back to Australia, to PICAC where I implemented what I had learned in the first Medical Gases pipeline installation course ran in October this year. The development of this course is a prime example of PICAC benefiting from the partnership with the UA.’ said Greg Tink of his time training in America.

A highlight of the week for the Australian delegates was the UA International Apprentice Skills Competition. Alex de Koeyer represented PICAC, the first Australian ever to participate. Alex won the Inaugural World Plumbing Day Plumbing Apprentice Skills Competition held at PICAC in March 2013, and became eligible to compete in Ann Arbor. This gruelling competition was held over three days and was designed not only to test competitor’s technical skills and theory knowledge, but also their characters. It was widely commented that Alex was a wonderful Ambassador for PICAC and Australia as a result, the UA has already extended an invitation to Australia to participate in next year’s competition. It is anticipated that another training delegation will travel to the 61st UA ITP next year to continue to build on our affiliation with the UA and benefit from skill sharing, therefore allowing us to be at the leading edge of the industry.


industry news DIY Disasters is back! Reece is once again on the hunt for Australia’s worst DIY plumbing gaffes in the annual DIY Disasters competition. Exposing the unique and bizarre DIY plumbing jobs from across Australia, the popular and long-running Reece DIY Disaster competition is on again to provide entertaining anecdotes and highlight the dangers involved when amateurs take on the role of plumber. Gutters made out of plastic bottles? Garden hoses being used for gas lines? It probably seemed like a good idea at the time, right? While there are humorous elements to DIY gaffes, there’s a serious and dangerous side to ‘giving it a go’ without enlisting a licensed plumber. Reece Plumbing’s Business Development Manager Adam Watson has seen hundreds of entries over the years and says the competition remains an important part of Reece’s efforts to educate DIY enthusiasts about the potential dangers of going it alone on plumbing jobs. “It’s scary how often we see people putting their family and their own safety at risk by trying to save a buck. Every year we’re astounded by the lengths enthusiastic amateurs will go to. We see a lot of shortcuts that become big problems, put people at risk, and ultimately cost our customers in the long run,” said Adam.

It probably seemed like a good idea at the time

Think you’ve seen it all? Think again, visit reece.com.au/diydisasters to see more. Winners will be announced in December 2013.

20 | Australian Plumbing Industry Magazine | December 2013

RMIT recognised at Sustainability Awards RMIT University has won the Infrastructure and Buildings category in the Premier’s Sustainability Awards 2013 for their Swanston Academic Building (SAB). The SAB was developed to meet a changing academic environment. It provides a world-class facility, comprising some 35,000m2 of floor space over 12 levels, as home to 850 academic and administration staff and 6000 students. Sustainability Victoria CEO, Stan Krpan, congratulated the RMIT team for their innovative work in developing their Swanston Academic Building as a leading-edge learning and teaching environment. “RMIT is strongly committed to transforming its own built environment to help create sustainable and resilient cities, and to demonstrate leadership excellence in sustainable design and innovation,” he said. “The building, which is a Swanston Street icon, has deservedly been awarded a Green Building Council of Australia (GBCA) 5-star Green Star Education Rating for environmentally sustainable design and stands as a showcase for integrating sustainability features in outstanding design.” Now in their eleventh year, the Premier’s Sustainability Awards celebrate efficient use of water, resources and energy, better waste management and recycling practices, the enhancement of the environment and effective, practical community action. Overall winner for the night, recipient of the Premier’s Recognition Award, was a project by Moonee Valley City Council and Wingate Avenue Community Centre for introducing recycling to a community housing estate. For the first time in the awards’ history, the Premier also chose Victoria Carpets as the winner of the inaugural Premier’s Regional Recognition Award.


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industry news 2013 NAWIC Crystal Vision Award Brisbane plumbing inspector Carlie Low won a 2013 National Association of Women in Construction’s (NAWIC) Crystal Vision Award at a gala dinner on Friday night.

Supporting women within the industry

Carlie won her category for the Laing O’Rourke Crystal Vision Award for Advancing and Furthering the Interests of Women in the Construction Industry.

The awards epitomise NAWIC’s core objectives of encouraging and supporting women along with recognising that within the industry lies a vital, dynamic and progressive group of women dedicated to the betterment of construction.

Melbourne: a global leader in sustainability The City of Melbourne has been recognised as a global leader in cultivating green buildings, receiving a prestigious international award. Lord Mayor Robert Doyle was presented with the C40 and Siemens Climate Leadership Award in the category of Energy Efficient Built Environment at a ceremony in London. Berlin and New York were also shortlisted for the award.

Melbourne’s pioneering efforts to create an energy efficient landscape for retrofitting existing buildings and setting minimum standards for new buildings have led to the highest density of new green buildings in Australia.

“Melbourne, the most liveable city in the world, has now been recognised as having some of the smartest buildings in the world,” the Lord Mayor said.

1 ID Consulting 2012

“We know that sustainability and liveability are inexorably linked. For us to maintain a high standard of living we need to set the highest standards in sustainability. “Every piece of research tells me that a sustainable city with high quality of life will attract the best and brightest and that’s what drives innovation and economic growth. “We know that our retrofitting program 1200 Buildings is expected to generate economic uplift of $2 billion and create 8000 jobs. Research1 suggests that the Gross Local Product of the City of Melbourne increased from $58 billion in 2008 to $68 billion in 2012. Employment has received a major boost with 50,000 additional jobs created over the same period2. The construction and building industries, professional services and downstream real estate services have experienced the largest jobs growth,” he said.

22 | Australian Plumbing Industry Magazine | December 2013

2 City of Melbourne Census of Land Use and Employment. Preliminary Estimate 2012.


Get ready – individual metering of units is coming. Plan ahead and design multi-level buildings so they are ready for individual meters. We can help you get ready – read the guide on our plumbing page at sydneywater.com.au Questions: Email us at meters@sydneywater.com.au


Worboys Plumbing

standing the test of time

It’s a big achievement being in business for over 90 years, but Melbourne-based Worboys Plumbing has stood the test of time. We meet Peter Jensen and Geoff Tresidder, two of the owners of Worboys Plumbing. Worboys Plumbing was established by George Worboys in 1921, after his return from World War 1. George built his business through his connections from the service and all of his apprentices were legatees – the sons of fallen soldiers who were without a dad and looking for work. For many years the Worboys logo featured two soldiers carrying rifles and even today, Melbourne Legacy remains one of the company’s oldest clients. A thoroughly Melbourne-based business, the Worboys’ workshop has been located everywhere from Fitzroy to Little Bourke, Lonsdale and Collins Streets in the CBD before settling into the West Melbourne headquarters which has been the company’s home for over 20 years. Today Worboys is primarily involved in programmed maintenance and servicing in large and commercial buildings in and around the CBD. “Specialisation is much more common now, but we’ve always been general plumbers and tried to do a bit of everything,” says Peter. “A lot of our work is programmed service work such as cleaning tanks, pump servicing, roof checks and backflow testing. “It may seem mundane, but it’s this work that gets us in the door and then allows us to do all the client’s ad-hoc work as well.”

Worboys employees are steadfastly loyal to the company One of George Worboys’ first employees was Albert Tresidder, his grandson Geoff is now one of the company’s owners and has been with the business for nearly 40 years. “I always knew I’d end up here,” says Geoff who joined the business in the early 70s after completing his plumbing apprenticeship.

24 | Australian Plumbing Industry Magazine | December 2013

“My dad, brother, uncles and in-laws have all worked at Worboys. I reckon there would have been at least 10 of my relatives who have worked here over the years in various capacities, including carpenters, labourers, electricians and, of course, plumbers.”

that’s all he did. He was fantastic at it, but the poor kid hadn’t had any variety or learned any other skills.”

Peter has been with Worboys for over 40 years and says, “I just love the job and the interesting people and clients I’ve been able to meet along the way.”

“But there’s also a flip-side,” adds Peter. “We’re noticing older and more educated apprentices entering the industry. They’ve completed their VCE and often have completed other qualifications before they start their apprenticeships – they’ve got great work ethic and a commitment to the job.”

There are 11 plumbers on the tools at Worboys as well as a number of staff in the office

Peter and Geoff have noticed many other changes to the industry over the years

“We have four apprentices at the moment, one in each year,” says Peter.

“Clients don’t have an open cheque book anymore,” says Peter. “Today people are expected to get multiple quotes, whereas back in the day it was more of a handshake agreement. There are also more concerns about costs exploding.

“We train them up and they get to know all the different buildings we work on – they get exposure to lots of different parts of the plumbing trade.” Ensuring apprentices get a wide range of experience is important to both Geoff and Peter, with both men lamenting the advent of the ‘installer plumber’. “Unfortunately, the industry seems to have dumbed itself down a bit over the years,” says Peter. “Many apprentices working on big sites are just doing the same thing day in, day out and aren’t getting a well-rounded learning experience.” Geoff agrees. “We met a guy who’d spent his whole apprenticeship working on a big site installing hand basins;


My dad, brother, uncles and in-laws have all worked at Worboys

“Technology has obviously advanced dramatically, and not just on the plumbing side of things. With mobile phones, computers and email, we’re now expected to be on call at all times. People call at any time of the day or night expecting instant answers and they expect quotes the very next day.

Surely working with these old systems can be challenging at times, do they always find the parts they need?

“Everything has sped up, but of course there are many benefits too. Now it’s so easy to source information, materials and equipment, you can buy things online and get paid for jobs instantly too.”

“We also have a great ability to improvise,” adds Peter.

The plumbers of Worboys have worked in some of Melbourne’s oldest and most prestigious buildings and locations, including the Block Arcade, Windsor Hotel, the Rialto, Old Melbourne Gaol, Domain Park and the Shrine of Remembrance. Their focus on customer service has lead to many long-standing relationships with clients, including National Australia Bank, which has been a client for over 70 years.

“Amazingly enough, I always manage it,” says Geoff. “The part we need will always turn up, probably because of how long I’ve been in the industry and all the contacts I’ve got.”

“Many of the new generation want a quick fix; they’ll just buy something new to replace an old system. People of our generation will take the time to fix something and try to save the client that extra money.” But doing things the old fashioned way doesn’t mean Worboys has fallen behind, they know the importance of innovating and moving forward. “A couple of years ago we updated our image; we created a new logo, built a great website and got our branding on our vehicles and uniforms,” says Peter.

So how has the company managed to stay relevant and successful for so long?

Being a member of the Master Plumbers has also been important for Worboys

Peter says: “We’ve always tried to run the business according to our philosophy which is: to provide excellent customer service; to take over the client’s job worries; to keep clients informed; to continue to employ and train our own apprentices and; to provide stable employment to our employees.”

The company joined the Master Plumbers in 1941 and have been an active voice within the Association for over 72 years. Peter currently sits on the National Council and is a Director on the Association’s Board.

“We are highly experienced working in old buildings with old systems,” says Peter. “So we can do things that other companies can’t.”

“There are a lot of reasons to be a Master Plumber member,” says Peter. “It’s great having access to information and assistance – the industrial relations help is invaluable. But it’s also great being kept up-to-date on the latest industry information and news through the regular newsletters.” “Networking is easily one of the biggest benefits. It’s great getting together with other like-minded plumbers and discussing our issues and problems. It gives you a chance to get things off your chest and it’s comforting to know that other people are facing the same challenges as you. We talk about things, share information and help each other out with advice. “However, for me the most important thing is the camaraderie experienced and friendships that I’ve gained over the years.” To find out more about Worboys visit worboys.com.au

In 2005 Worboys took out the Association’s Green Plumber Award for Domestic Project of the Year for their work on a 100 year old terrace in Fitzroy where the company installed multiple water saving systems which saved the occupants around 125,000 litres of water each year.

www.plumber.com.au | 25


Get involved Being part of a small business community can lower your stress levels Life as a business owner usually consists of running from client emergency to cash flow crisis, extinguishing a “shoddy work” brushfire on the way, while juggling a supplier disaster and ending the day with a staff meltdown – only to do it all again the next day. Most business owners feel overwhelmed, in information overload and at a loss of where to focus their attention next.

Nobody “gets” it The other common experience of small business owners is the feeling that nobody else “gets” it. You may be surrounded by well-meaning partners and friends, but they rarely understand what it is like to be in charge every day, wearing all the hats of marketing, sales, finance, customer satisfaction, quality control, tax, work cover, staff wellbeing, systems and innovation etc. The buck always stops with you and nobody else! The feeling of being alone adds to the consistent feelings of being overwhelmed and stressed and can cost the business owner dearly in personal health and wellbeing, and in their business from bad decision making and stifled business development.

Soldier on Most business owners tend to “soldier on” regardless. However, if you really want to build long term sustainable businesses you need to make the time to put strategies in place to support yourself.

26 | Australian Plumbing Industry Magazine | December 2013

One of the most effective ways to build your business to sustain you for years to come is to take the time to get involved with local business communities.

Options Here are some options for getting involved:

1 Support and feedback from others who do get it!

1 Join your local trade organisation, such as the Master Plumbers Association and attend their barbeques, training and other gatherings.

2 Shared knowledge and access to experts.

2 Join your local or State Chamber of Commerce and get involved.

3 Building relationships and alliances for future business development.

3 Join a business referral group, such as BNI (BNI.com.au) and get involved.

4 Support when you are struggling.

4 Attend small business workshops, such as Small Business Masterminds http://tiny.cc/npmasterminds

The benefits of doing this are well documented and include:

5 Assistance from those who have probably ‘been there and done that’ before.

Bob gets involved A client of mine, let’s call him Bob, has a small plumbing business based in the eastern suburbs of Sydney. Like many business owners Bob was suffering from stress and feeling overwhelmed. He had been a member of the local Chamber of Commerce for years and occasionally showed up for the odd function. One day, a real estate client invited Bob to come along to the AGM of the Chamber. To cut a long story short, Bob ended up on the executive of the Chamber with specific responsibility for education of members. Although Bob had his misgivings at first, he now considers it one of the best business decisions he ever made. His increased visibility in the community led to lots of new customers and he found that he started to attract the right staff more easily. Also his monthly attendance at the Chamber executive meetings led to building strong relationships with other like-minded business owners that he could chat and brainstorm with regularly. Ultimately, this led to reducing Bob’s stress levels enormously.

5 Attend specialist trade functions and seminars such as golf days, industry briefings and supplier trade nights. 6 Join a “Virtual Board of Directors” program made up of fellow business owners. 7 Implement a Board of Advisers for your business.

As a business owner, it is important for you to make the time to surround yourself with like-minded people. It will reduce your stress levels and be one of the best business decisions you make. Bob will be involved with his community for years to come… What will you get involved with?

Roland Hanekroot is a business coach and mentor, founder of New Perspectives Business Coaching. He is also the author of the acclaimed “The Ten Truths for Business Owners” series of books. To find out more about Roland, visit www.newperspectives.com.au


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Clever technology: vacuum toilets

Vacuum toilet technology is helping save water, energy and space in one of Melbourne’s newer buildings.

A vacuum toilet looks like any other toilet, but the difference is that waste is transported by air and not water. Vacuum toilets use less than one litre of water per flush as compared to the six litres most normal toilets use, or up to 12 litres of older style toilets; because water is used only to rinse the bowl and not flush the waste this equates to serious water savings. While the technology is popular overseas (where vacuum toilets are used in residential buildings, stadiums, hotels, hospitals and trains), local demand is building slowly. Most recently, Melbourne Water has incorporated the technology into their new headquarters in Melbourne’s Docklands precinct. The nine storey commercial building accommodates over 1000 employees and is equipped with a Jets Vacuum Toilet System supplied by Vacuum Toilets Australia.

28 | Australian Plumbing Industry Magazine | December 2013

There are 72 Jets 50M floor mounted vacuum toilet pans installed in the building and these are serviced by a Jets 13/195 MBA vacuum pump located on the building’s lower level. The vacuum pump station is fed power via a constantly active Uniform Power Supply that is used in a backup mode to drive the vacuum pumps should there ever be a power failure.

How the system works The vacuum piping network is a totally closed network with no vents and is kept at a vacuum level of 35–55 per cent (0.35bar to -0.55 bar) by the vacuum pumps which are controlled by a vacuum sensor mounted directly to the piping. As toilets are being flushed, vacuum drops to the start level (35% vacuum) and the vacuum pump(s) restart building the vacuum to 55% and then stop, only starting when more toilets are flushed, dropping the vacuum level once again.

This process continues all day whilst toilets are being used, at night the vacuum pumps lay idle not consuming power. When a toilet is flushed, the waste is forced into the pipe system by atmospheric pressure and travels approximately 15m/second through the pipework to the vacuum pump. At the pump it is macerated into a fine ‘soup’ by the inbuilt macerator and is discharged by the pump to the sewer point. There is no intermediate tankage for holding collected waste, all waste travels directly from pan to pump to sewer. The Jets 50M floor mounted pans are completely operated by the attendant vacuum directly behind the pan in the outlet piping. The pan’s discharge valve, water valve and activation button are operated without power being required. The Jets vacuum toilets use air to transport waste, not water, and as such each flush only consumes 0.8 litres of water, not for flushing but simply for rinsing of the bowl.


The Melbourne Water building is saving over 24,000 litres of water each day!

The benefits of vacuum technology

Water savings

Design flexibility

Core drilling not required

A gravity pan system uses approximately 4.5 litres per flush whilst a Jets vacuum pan consumes only 0.8 litres per flush. The Melbourne Water building with it’s population of 1100 occupants is saving over 24,000 litres of water each day!

A vacuum toilet allows you to place a toilet pretty much anywhere because vacuum pans evacuate vertically up or down or sideways. This means the 50mm piping can be run inside a wall cavity and up to the ceiling spaces. Smaller piping and flexible options mean new design possibilities not previously available to architects or hydraulic designers.

A conventional gravity toilet system is severally hampered by the need to obey gravity fall to allow the water to be pushed in by large volumes of water down the sloping sewer line. Due to this need, any gravity toilet system must involve core drilling of the plate – a costly and time-consuming exercise which also determines where a gravity toilet pan can be located. The design of the hydraulic system is determined by gravity and aesthetics of the floor below.

Over the course of one year, the Melbourne Water building has consumed 8,791,200 litres less water than it would have had it been installed with a low flush gravity toilet system.

Macerated waste Vacuum pumps have an inbuilt macerator that macerates waste into a fine soup that flows unaided through sewer piping because there are no solids that need lifting or floating.

Odours and venting When a vacuum toilet is flushed between 60 and 100 litres of air are forced down into the pan by atmospheric pressure (it is this air that transports the waste). This means each time the vacuum pan is flushed, the toilet cubicle is refreshed with fresh, clean smelling air, making odours a thing of the past.

Because vacuum pans evacuate vertically upwards into the ceiling spaces or sideways along wall cavities (they can also evacuate down if required), this means they can be placed anywhere and, importantly, the location can be changed at anytime during the build process with no detriment to the system. Find out more about vacuum toilets at www.vacuumtoiletsaustralia.com.au

www.plumber.com.au | 29


For more information please contact:

Products and materials that may affect the quality of drinking water Michael Glasson from Australian Water Quality Centre discusses AS/NZS 4020 ‘Testing of Products for Use in Contact with Drinking Water’ AS/NZS 4020 – Testing of Products for Use in Contact with Drinking Water was developed to assess the suitability of materials used in contact with drinking water. Water Authorities strive to maintain drinking water of a high standard for customers and cannot afford to introduce into their supplies, products that may jeopardise water quality. Consequently, there is a need to ensure products in contact with drinking water do not introduce substances that will cause deterioration in quality. A wide range of products is tested to the Standard including valves, pipes, coatings and end-of-line fittings including taps. The Standard requires that products do not affect the taste or appearance of water; do not support the growth of microorganisms; and do not release cytotoxic or mutagenic compounds or metals. The tests required are specific to the type of product submitted. The products are assessed by exposure to test waters. The exposed surface areas to volume test requirements are detailed in the Standard. After the product has been exposed to test water, a sample of the test water extract is analysed in accordance with the specifications in each Appendix of the Standard. Scaling factors or dilution factors may be applied depending on the end use of the product. There may also be a requirement for hot water tests for products that are used at high temperature including waterheating systems.

30 | Australian Plumbing Industry Magazine | December 2013

Australian Water Quality Centre PO Box 1751, Adelaide, South Australia 5001 Tel: 1300 883 171 awqc@sawater.com.au www.awqc.com.au

The following points provide a brief description of the Appendices that relate to the test methods associated with AS/NZS 4020:

Taste of water extract

Cytotoxic activity of water extract

Trained panellist’s taste water extracts to determine whether products leach compounds that impart a discernible taste.

Water extracts are tested for cytotoxicity using mammalian cell lines. An adverse effect on the health of the cells is recorded as a cytotoxic effect.

Appearance of water extract Water extracts are analysed for an increase in colour and turbidity.

Mutagenic activity of water extract The Ames test is a reverse mutation assay. The test is used to determine whether products release mutagenic compounds into water extracts. The water extracts are mixed with specific bacteria. Any change in the genetic nature of the bacteria is regarded as evidence of mutagenic activity.

Growth of aquatic microorganisms The test is performed by immersion exposure with products examined for the ability to support bacterial growth by monitoring dissolved oxygen levels in water extracts.

Extraction of metals Water extracts are examined for the release of Arsenic, Antimony, Barium, Cadmium, Chromium, Copper, Lead, Mercury, Molybdenum, Nickel, Selenium and Silver. The limits are in-line with the Australian Drinking Water Guidelines.

In the past 20 years the Australian Water Quality Centre (AWQC) has tested over 3000 products in accordance with the Standard. Listed in the following table are a few examples of products tested to the Standard and the respective materials used. PRODUCTS AND MATERIALS TESTED TO AS/NZS 4020

Product Materials Pipes/Tubes

Polybutylene, Polyethylene, Polypropylene, PEX, Copper, Stainless Steel, Cement

O-rings

EPDM, Nitrile, Natural Rubber, Silicone, NBR

Gaskets EPDM, Nitrile, Natural Rubber, Silicone, Water Connectors

Polypropylene, HDPE, Brass

Filter Housings

Polycarbonate, Acetal Copolymer, Polypropylene

Sink Mixer Components Brass, EPDM, Nitrile, Natural Rubber, Acetal Olives Acetal, Brass Flexible Hoses

EPDM, Soft PEX

Hoses (dishwasher)

Plastic PVC

Jumper Valves

EPDM, Nitrile, Natural Rubber, Acetal

It should be noted that similar products that are manufactured using different processes may have different performance characteristics affecting the ability of the product to leach compounds into drinking water.

The challenge for manufacturers is to produce commercially viable products that will not leach harmful compounds into drinking water, or compounds that alter drinking water making it aesthetically undesirable. Testing to AS/NZS4020 provides an important step in assuring the suitability of products for use with drinking water.


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Australia’s hardest-working wetlands The Royal Botanic Gardens Melbourne have been leaders in water management for many years. Charlotte Roseby reports on the latest innovations in the $6.5 million Working Wetlands project that is revitalising the water landscapes and water bodies of the gardens. The 38 hectares of the Royal Botanic Gardens have been at the centre of Melbourne’s horticultural life for more than 165 years. The ‘Bot Gardens’ are more than the joys of picnicking on the lawns, and admiring the perennial borders – and they are much more than their collection of 10,000 plant species (and 50,000 plants). They are an important intersection between education, conservation, science and horticulture and sustainable management.

The long-term challenge: sustaining the gardens in a changing climate Water supply is a serious challenge when you’re managing 38 hectares of gardens, three picturesque lakes, and collections of rare and threatened plants. Significant droughts, the growth of Melbourne’s population and the effects of climate change – drier landscapes with less rainfall and higher temperatures – means the Royal Botanic Gardens have had to do more with less. Before 1995, water consumption at the RBG was 250 megalitres per annum. The RBG adopted a range of strategies and, by 2010, sustainable efforts reduced use to an annual average of 107 megalitres. Now, the RBG’s $6.5 million sustainable water management project ‘Working Wetlands’ is improving water quality, restoring lake levels, providing water suitable for irrigating the gardens and reducing reliance on potable water.

32 | Australian Plumbing Industry Magazine | December 2013

Working Wetlands: rejuvenating the lake system After 10 years of drought, the lakes were showing the pressure. Evaporation, lack of seasonal flushing and lack of water circulation exposed the mud flats and triggered blue-green algae blooms. The lakes clearly needed something, and not just for appearances’ sake: the lake system provides important habitat for aquatic flora and native aquatic fauna. The lakes are also a very important part of Melbourne’s landscape heritage. The Ornamental Lake and the Fern Gully are both remnants of a natural water system that predates European settlement of Melbourne, and were a food source (particularly Short-finned eels) for local Aboriginal people.


It’s a living system. That’s what we really like about it. We’re using plants to solve an urban problem.

The Royal Botanic Gardens Melbourne

Guilfoyle’s volcano flows again The first major step in the Working Wetlands project was to restore Guilfoyle’s Volcano. Of course, there’s no actual volcano in the Royal Botanic Gardens. Originally built in 1876 under the direction of William Guilfoyle, the second Director of the Royal Botanic Gardens, Guilfoyle’s Volcano is a spectacular bluestone-lined water reservoir that rises up out of the south-east corner of the gardens. Its original purpose was to store water for gravity-feeding and, in fact, it was part of the main water supply for the gardens for about 70 years before it fell into disrepair. Styled in the form of a volcanic crater – complete with garden beds to look like lava flows – this ‘folly’ very much followed the landscape fashions of the time, says Peter Symes, Curator, Environmental Horticulture, who coordinates irrigation and water quality programs including Working Wetlands. Eccentric, ornamental follies like this were important features of English and French gardens in the 1700s, usually in the form of ‘sham’ ruins of castles, fake Gothic abbeys or monasteries, or pretend temples.

“We wanted to incorporate the history of Guilfoyle’s Volcano as a water storage and landscape element back into a modern, integrated water management scheme,” says Peter. “The volcano is now an important part of the water storage and recirculation system to help treat the water and provide a constant flow around the gardens… It’s restoring life to the gardens.”

Utilising local stormwater Up until the second stage of the Working Wetlands project, the gardens could only utilise water from their own internal catchments. Installing new stormwater harvesting pipes now means water can be intercepted from adjacent streetscapes, capitalising on an additional catchment area of 21.1 hectares. Two large gross pollutant traps strip out large materials like bottles, cans and rubbish – “the larger gunk”, says Peter – but also have the capacity to collect smaller pollutants and hydrocarbons so oil films can’t enter the site. The water then flows into a traditional wetland construction: which is a series of sinuous pathways through vegetation so the water’s velocity slows down and, while it moves through the vegetation, nutrients and pollutants are stripped out.

The lakes and the volcano act as storage for the water and can provide up to 55 megalitres for irrigation per year. The stormwater harvesting system can now supply, on average, up to 40% of irrigation water per year.

Floating treatment plants: a living cleaning system A fascinating feature for gardeners and plumbers (not to mention plumbers keen on gardening), is the innovative use of floating treatment wetlands within both Ornamental Lake and Guilfoyle’s Volcano. Made from recycled PET plastic injected with a marine-grade polyurethane for buoyancy, the new wetland ‘islands’ are covered in coconut fibre matting and planted with an assortment of Indigenous, semi-aquatic plants. The beauty of these plants is that their roots, suspended in the water, trap fine particles and absorb nutrients, effectively cleaning the water. The microorganisms, present in the biofilm covering the roots, increase the efficiency of this process. Combined with the other wetlands, the overall theoretical reduction in total nitrogen is 94%, and the reduction in phosphorus is 90%. (Although, says Peter, there is a large bank of nutrients already in the lake system and this could take a number of years to be reduced.)

www.plumber.com.au | 33


This is not the normal practice with irrigation, but innovation has to be pursued when you don’t have enough water

“Lakes and wetlands are very complex living systems. The concept is based on observations of a natural system with natural floating islands. Floating treatment wetlands have been used elsewhere in the world – a few people in Australia know how to use them – but to our knowledge they’re mainly untried in the field in Australia.” The RBG now has 14 of these islands, creating a surface area of over 1000 square metres. The extra benefit is that their treatment effectiveness is not subject to water level, says Peter, and they don’t silt-up. “It’s a living system. That’s what we really like about it. We’re using plants to solve an urban problem.” The first year’s indicative results are in and they’re significant. The phosphorus levels in the water have dropped around 50%, compared to the previous decade’s average, which is very encouraging.

34 | Australian Plumbing Industry Magazine | December 2013

Moving water: pipes, pumps and plant The third stage of Working Wetlands was building the infrastructure to move the water around the site more effectively. “It’s not just putting on a pump and ‘away we go’. It’s a holistic approach,” says Peter. The system now boasts its own pump station and water treatment plant with tank storage, as well as some new pipework through the gardens. Integrating infrastructure needed for potable-sourced water supply was a technical challenge. Unfortunately, explains Peter, the stormwater catchments aren’t big enough to supply 100% of water needed for irrigation; they also needed the capacity to switch between potable supply and lake water at a moment’s notice. “If there’s a storm, and something horrible got into the lake, we can immediately switch over.” Most pipework was put in with directional boring or pipe jacking. “Trenching can look cheaper on paper, but by the time you restore the landscape it’s more expensive and threatens the health of plants. We try and avoid trenching like the plague because of the risk of damage to the roots of our tree root systems,” says Peter.

Water travels via pumps to a unique set-up of disc filters. The water then undergoes UV disinfection to reduce risk of infections to humans, but also to reduce plant pathogens such as Phytophthora species (whose name means ‘plant destroyer’). They also have the option of chlorine dosing as a backup treatment. “If you’re harvesting from catchments outside your control, it’s so important not to bring in new infections,” says Peter. “These are historic plant collections!”

Irrigating innovations: water banking Water travels into a multistage, variable speed pump that delivers water to the irrigation network at flow rates of up to 80 litres per second and can supply up to 2 megalitres of treated water each night in high peak demands. “We used hydraulic models to get the best out of the pipework. There’s controlled complexity in the system. The extra pumps and connections make the project sing.” To maximise the use of stormwater, the RBG is also researching the application of stormwater, when it is more readily available, to recharge deeper soil profiles through irrigation during the winter and spring, for later use by trees – what they are calling subsoil storage and recovery (SSR) or ‘water banking’.


How do wetlands work? “This is not the normal practice with irrigation, but innovation has to be pursued when you don’t have enough water… Some indicative results of plant water use shown by soil moisture sensors suggest that the soil profile from 1–4 metres deep could bank about 2.3 Ornamental Lakes’ worth of water.”

Educating the community about effective water management Now that the wetlands are working – and the staff have got the hang of operating the PLC-controlled system and have learned to avoid watering the evening Botanic Gardens theatre crowds – Peter is very excited about the educational opportunities. It’s a unique opportunity for RBG staff to educate visitors about integrated water management principles in action, says Peter. “It has huge demonstration value,” says Peter. “People can actually see water management happening in front of them. When we were working on the Floating Treatment Wetlands there was a ring of people around the volcano, watching. We took time to explain. Because it’s the personal contact that matters most.”

Now that the thick vegetation and weedy species have been removed from Guilfoyle’s Volcano, a remarkable new landscape showcases climate-adapted vegetation and sustainable gardening. The floating wetlands are garnering a lot of interest and a student from the Water Studies Centre, Monash University, is starting PhD research on their effectiveness. The wetland areas are helping to attract and retain waterbirds and other native aquatic fauna in the lake system. Longnecked tortoises, eels and native water rats are finding more cover and a wider range of plants around the water’s edge. Introduction of some sloping gradients to the lake edges are encouraging migration and increased populations of frogs. The project’s vision was to improve the health of the lakes, but the benefits are clearly continuing to flow.

Floating treatment wetlands are engineered to enhance the interactions that occur in natural wetlands between water, plants, microorganisms, soil and the atmosphere to remove contaminants. Bio-filtration, a pollution control technique using live material, biologically degrades and processes pollutants, and captures chemicals from surface runoff. Biofilms, a sticky mass aggregate of microorganisms growing on the roots of the plants, help trap fine particles and absorb nutrients from the water. Rock riffles are created with quarried rock placed on a slope that is steeper than the natural stream to create a graded weir. Benefits include control of water flow, stabilisation of sediment, creation of wildlife habitats and increased oxygenation of the water.

www.plumber.com.au | 35


Looking ahead 2014 construction forecast Don Smith from BCI Australia takes a look at what lies ahead for the construction industry in the new year.

Economic background During 2013, we have observed that not all countries are emerging from the Global Financial Crisis at the same rate. A number, such as Indonesia, are in good shape but, especially in Europe, not many have come through unscathed and the USA has had its own set of worries. Fortunately, Australia has benefited from a strong trade relationship with China but as their growth is winding back, there has been a commensurate reduction in mining related investment. This year, the Reserve Bank of Australia has been trying to stimulate growth in investment by other business sectors but the results of their strategy are yet to become evident. A number of surveys have indicated that business and consumer confidence have been improving but there is concern that these effects were predicated on the removal of an unpopular government and may only be temporary. Of course, these are also interrelated – regardless of levels of confidence, if business conditions do not improve then employment numbers are at risk. At the same time consumers will keep their wallets closed if there are concerns about job security.

Short term indications In order to move from the general to the particular, we can draw on the leading monthly indicators of construction contract values hitting the market which the BCI Economics Department provides as rolling three months forecasts. For the last quarter of 2013, our view is that, overall, the market would remain fairly flat, see graph 1. We do expect that civil construction will continue to decline probably of the order of 10% over the preceding 3 months, see graph 2. Significant shortfalls are expected in WA and also, but to a lesser extent, in NSW and Victoria. On the other hand, the immediate prospects for Queensland are comparatively healthy, recovering from a bit of a slump mid year. However we are expecting modest growth of the order of 6% in building work to compensate, see graph 3. As BCI researches “commercial scale� construction activity, we do not compile statistics on the housing market although we do report on multi-density projects such as blocks of apartments and townhouse complexes. With that important qualification, our figures still confirm that it is the residential sector, including aged care, that is contributing in large part to the improvement in the building market. There are other indicators, including a pick up in 36 | Australian Plumbing Industry Magazine | December 2013


4000 3000

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So all in all, conditions in 2014 hold some promise but will continue to be tough. Nevertheless, as Damian Eastman, Chief Operating Officer of BCI Media Group, observes “despite conditions remaining tough, there is business available for those firms prepared to make the effort to pursue upcoming project opportunities and develop productive relationships”. Please talk to us to see how we can be of help.

SEP 12

Furthermore, Mr Abbott has stated on more than one occasion that he wants to be known as the “Infrastructure Prime Minister” and within a week of being installed in Government, Federal funding of $1.5 billion was confirmed to get the Westconnex project in Sydney started in 2015. Hopefully, the commitments will follow shortly on the other election pledges which included $6.7 billion to fix Queensland’s Bruce Highway, $5.6 billion to complete the duplication of the Pacific Highway from Newcastle to the Queensland border and $1.5 billion to commence construction for the East West Link in Melbourne.

The commercial and industrial sector is proving the most intractable for prediction as there are many forces in play. In short, we see overall growth of the order of 3-5% for 2014 across most of the states although the market in NSW is expected to remain fairly soft.

5000

OCT 12

We do expect a continued decline in the levels of activity in the Civil Engineering sector attributable to the mining industry. However, the Federal and State Budgets for 2013/14 are at least maintaining their levels of spending on infrastructure. In Queensland this includes an allowance of $4 billion for roads and local government assets as part of their 2013/14 reconstruction expenditure following the natural disasters in recent years.

Construction activity in the Retail and Hospitality markets tends to be more volatile. With consumer spending languishing the expenditure pattern may shift towards refurbishment rather than new development. But then some of the projects can be of the ‘big ticket’ variety hence the Barangaroo hotel/casino could create a major spike in the statistics by the end of 2014. Overall, our expectation is that the shortfall over 2013 could be as much as 6-8%.

6000

AUG 12

The economic landscape for 2014 should be slightly more hospitable than previous years. The global context should become less challenged and business and consumer sentiment within Australia are moving towards positive territory although they remain rather fragile. According to NAB’s business survey, business conditions are sliding – contributed largely by the mining sector where conditions weakened to a 14½ year low – and thereby impacting on business investment intentions, nevertheless modest investment growth is still expected over the year ahead.

Government expenditure is the main driver for the Health and Education sectors. The states are claiming to have made record allocations but as a lot of the funding is planned over a 4 year period the issue becomes at what rate will the funds be released. Nevertheless, we are fairly optimistic of growth in both sectors in the order of 4-6%.

1 Total construction starts in Australia (Million $) 7000

JUL 12

The construction commencement statistics generated by the BCI Economics Department also provide guidance as to longer term trends as well. But the raw data needs to be considered in a wider context – we need to evaluate for each particular market segment if and when a turning point in the trend may be or have already been reached and whether for better or worse.

AUG 12

Prospects for 2014

The best way to describe our views on the building market is that we anticipate mixed fortunes although, overall, we are looking for growth around 6-8%. The residential market should continue to gather momentum and we believe the levels would be around 10-15% better than during 2013. NSW is expected to lead the way with Victoria and Queensland not far behind, but there is a bit of a question mark over WA.

The economic landscape for 2014 should be slightly more hospitable than previous years

JUL 12

Another bright spot is the education market, although this is not consistent across all states, with NSW, WA and SA looking promising in the final quarter of 2013. In contrast, Queensland prospects for school, college and university projects look very subdued and Victoria is merely ‘treading water’.

Therefore, next year the level of Civil Engineering is only expected to decline in the order of 5-8% over the previous 12 months. We expect Queensland to be the best performer rebounding to a level perhaps 15-20% above that of 2013 with Victoria and SA about line ball. However NSW and WA are expected to fall short by percentages of the order of 15% and 20%

AUG 12

subdivision activity, to suggest that the housing market is at the early stages of an extended cyclical upswing.

BCI Australia provides crucial construction information, project leads and a powerful online CRM solution to building product suppliers, contractors and related organisations within the Australian construction industry. To find out more visit bciaustralia.com

www.plumber.com.au | 37


Six simple tips for better

website performance Is your website letting you down? Michael Bird from Social Garden shares his key tips for making the most of your online presence. 1 An obvious call to action

3 Install Google Analytics

5 Install live chat

In order to have a successful online presence your website needs to have a clear objective or ‘conversion’ in its sites. This does not need to be complicated, and can take the form of a simple function or service. In most cases for a plumbing website, that conversion is going to be a ‘request a quote’ or ‘request a call back’ form submission.

Google Analytics is a free program that shows you how many visitors are coming to your site, how long they stay for, and what percentage of them are enquiring about your services.

Having a live chat function on your website is like having a full time sales person ready to help your website convert visitors into customers.

The most valuable real estate on your website is on the right hand side above the fold (the area people see as soon as they get to your site), as most people view a website in a similar way they read a book.

To improve performance and website conversion it is crucial to know these helpful statistics. Driving more traffic to your site can be expensive if you’re not converting the traffic into jobs. It’s all about ROI (return on investment)!

Key Takeaway Key Takeaway Get analytics installed to start improving conversion rates.

Key Takeaway Have your ‘request a quote’ form on the right hand side so it is as simple as possible for people to enter their details.

2 Photo testimonials People buy products and services from people they trust, and nothing builds trust more than seeing the smiling face of a satisfied customer. Do not underestimate the power of good testimonials, so make sure you utilize existing customers who have experienced your work and are rapt with the result. Make sure the testimonial is in the client’s own words and doesn’t sound too staged, otherwise you run the risk of losing credibility and your conversion rate may drop as a result.

Key Takeaway While testimonials are great, testimonials with photos are even better!

38 | Australian Plumbing Industry Magazine | December 2013

There are solutions out there that connect to your mobile phone, or you can opt for a completely managed service. Either way, it’s a fantastic strategy to improve your websites performance and conversion rates.

4 Get your website hosted locally A large number of hosting providers have their servers located offshore; this can lead to slow loading websites and poor search engine rankings. You can find hosting providers for anywhere between $10-$50 per month who host your website in cities all around Australia. So it is always worth doublechecking that you’re keeping it local!

Key Takeaway Make sure your hosting provider is based in Australia to ensure your website loads quickly and has a fighting chance in search engines.

Live chat on websites work wonders!

6 Up-to-date contact information You wouldn’t believe how many websites have incorrect contact information; the cost of this small mistake can cause thousands of dollars of lost revenue each year.

Key Takeaway Double check you have the right email address, phone number and office location on your website. Michael Bird is Director of Social Garden, a Digital Marketing Agency specializing in Search Engine Optimisation, Managed Social Media and Website Development. Find out more at socialgarden.com.au


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Summer safety update. Safety under the sun

Stay hydrated!

According to WorkSafe, Australia has the highest incidence of skin cancer in the world with more than 380,000 people treated for the disease every year. At least one out of every two Australians will require treatment in their lifetime for various forms of skin cancer.

Dehydration occurs when your body does not have as much water and fluids as it should. It’s essential to stay hydrated throughout the hot summer months.

Construction workers have a higher risk of skin cancer than many other workers due to long periods exposed to ultraviolet (UV) radiation.

Skin cancer According to the Cancer Council, every year in Australia:

Symptoms of dehydration include:

The risk to plumbers increases the longer they spend working outside. In fact, a plumber working outdoors is 60 per cent more likely to develop a skin cancer than a plumber who works indoors.

Skin cancers account for around 80% of newly diagnosed cancers

• Fatigue and weakness

Between 95 and 99 per cent of skin cancers are caused by exposure to the sun

• Dizziness, headaches and muscle cramping

So working in the sun in a singlet or without a shirt this summer is unacceptable and it makes sense to have an appropriate UV radiation policy in your plumbing business.

The incidence of skin cancer is one of the highest in the world, three times the rates in Canada, the US and the UK

When working outdoors and under the sun, appropriate PPE should be worn, including a wide brim hat, loose fitting, long-sleeved collared (preferably cotton) shirt and long pants, sunglasses and sunscreen.

• Sweating • Dry mouth and increased thirst

• Poor mental and physical performance It is often better to drink small amounts of fluids often rather than large amounts of fluid at one time.

The facts on sunburn: Sunburn causes 95 per cent of melanomas, the most deadly form of skin cancer In Australia, almost 14 per cent of adults, 24 per cent of teenagers and 8 per cent of children are sunburnt on an average summer weekend Always remember to… Slip

on sun-protective clothing

Slop on SPF 30+ sunscreen Slap

on a hat

Seek

out some shade

Slide on some sunglasses

During hot weather, workers should be encouraged to drink a cup of water every 15 to 20 minutes


Working in the heat Working outdoors in hot weather or where heat is generated as part of work can result in heat illness. Heat illness occurs when the body cannot sufficiently cool itself and covers a range of medical conditions that can arise when the body is unable to properly cope with working in heat.

Signs and symptoms of heat illness include feeling sick, nauseous, dizzy or weak. Clumsiness, collapse and convulsions may also be experienced as a result of heat illness. Workers with these signs or symptoms need to seek immediate medical attention. Workplace health and safety laws require the working environment to be safe and without risks to health and safety, so far as is reasonably practicable. This applies to any risk to health and safety, including illness from working in heat.

Conditions include:

Identifying heat illness hazards

Heat stroke – a life threatening condition that requires immediate first aid and medical attention

Key risk factors that need to be taken into account are:

Fainting

• Humidity

Heat exhaustion and cramps

• Radiant heat (from the sun or other sources such as furnaces or ovens)

Rashes (also known as prickly heat)

• Air movement or wind speed

Heat fatigue

• Workload (nature of the work and duration)

Worsening of pre-existing illnesses and conditions

• Physical fitness of the worker (including any pre-existing conditions eg overweight, heart/circulatory diseases, skin diseases or use of certain medicines)

Preventing heat illness The risk of heat illness can be minimised by modifying workload and measures including: • Rescheduling work so hot tasks are performed during the cooler part of the day • Doing the work at a different location • Providing extra rest breaks in a cool area

• Air temperature

Drugs and alcohol The holiday period means warm summer weather and more parties, BBQs, celebrations and gatherings with friends and family. The festive season is a time for celebration but it is important to be mindful of safe alcohol consumption. According to Incolink, research has showing that during summer or the warmer months, there is a dramatic increase in the consumption of alcohol in the general community. This trend is also reflected in the construction industry. After a long, hot day at work, one of the worst things that you can do to quench your thirst is to drink alcohol.

Because your body is already dehydrated due to perspiration, and when this is combined with the rapid ingestion of alcohol, your blood alcohol level increases quickly. On average, a healthy liver can only process one standard drink of alcohol per hour. Drinking more than this means that alcohol builds up in the bloodstream and your ability to function normally will be affected. A stubby or can of full strength beer is actually more than one standard drink!

Incolink offers the following tips for being safe while consuming alcohol… Quench your thirst with water before you start to consume alcohol. Limit the amount of alcoholic drinks you consume per hour. Think of yourself as an individual an only drink as much as you decide is appropriate. Try to avoid getting involved in ‘shouts’. Do think about the possible consequences associated with your drinking. Plan ahead for your drinking session and try to eliminate as many risks as possible. www.plumber.com.au | 41


hear

me out. In this regular column we give industry insiders a chance to share their thoughts. In this issue, John Fennell, CEO of the International Copper Association Australia reflects on the changes to the National Construction Code.

The move to bring all building activities under a new National Construction Code (NCC) is well underway and the Plumbing Code of Australia, or PCA, will now be the NCC’s Volume Three. The hope is to bring more clarity and consistency to the different documents that plumbers and others have to deal with, while also creating a single body, the Australian Building Codes Board, or ABCB, to oversee it all. It’s just the same kind of process being planned for all the electric installations in building. The shake-up is a well-intentioned one I believe and should make our construction sector a lot more efficient, but like any major change it will create some discomfort in the short term. The other big plus is that making any further changes to the NCC in future will be a very complex process and any new proposals will need to demonstrate that a real case exists for overall benefit.

Playing by the rules Plumbers should make sure they always refer to the current edition of AS 3500 and in fact they should take that approach to any document they use that gets revised from time to time. This will be important going forward, because all kinds of documents and Australian Standards will be revised to reflect the new way doing things – and this will certainly include 3500. Any new products that require WaterMark Certification will still be done through the Certification bodies that many people are very familiar with, but the Approvals process will involve receiving the OK through the new process, which will again be under the ABCB. Of course, any new suppliers of existing products will need to go through this process to obtain their WaterMark Licence. There’s a lot of consultation going on involving groups the water authorities, major companies supplying the building trade and business associations, and plumbers are having their interests protected by the Master Plumbers Association. Of course Standards Australia is working with relevant committees to ensure that Australian Standards are State of the Art, including any revised editions of the various parts that make up AS3500. Plumbers should be assured that their long term interests are being looked after by some of the best professionals in the country, all working towards a great result for everyone involved in plumbing, or should we now say The National Construction Code.

42 | Australian Plumbing Industry Magazine | December 2013

2014 is the year when all the hard work will be reflected in revised versions of AS3500 to allow for the new way of doing things and the ABCB website, abcb.gov.au is a great place to start finding out about it all. To find out more about the International Copper Association Australia, visit copper.com.au

A new National Construction Code is big news for plumbers


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Self Managed Super Funds

right for you? Starting up a Self Managed Super Fund (SMSF) is a major financial decision but how do you know if a SMSF is right for you? Self Managed Super Funds (SMSF) have become pretty popular over the last few years. However, as the market has evolved it’s become clear that people should think carefully before taking the plunge. SMSFs don’t suit everyone’s circumstances or ongoing needs.

What is an SMSF? Regulated by the ATO, SMSFs offer an alternative to the super funds run by financial institutions, employers and industry funds like Cbus. SMSFs are typically family or one member funds. They are established under Trust Law and require an independent auditor to be appointed each year to examine your fund’s financial statements and check its compliance with super law.

Why use an SMSF? Generally people decide to setup their own SMSF because: 1 They want more control over their super savings 2 They’re unhappy with the performance or cost of their current super fund, or 3 They’re acting on the advice of their accountant or financial adviser. You can set-up an SMSF at any time, but you need to check if your employer can make contributions into it. SMSFs aren’t for everyone and you should think carefully before deciding to set one up.

44 | Australian Plumbing Industry Magazine | December 2013

The questions you need to ask Do you have the time?

Will you get a better result?

Depending on how much control you want to take, you’ll need to devote a couple of hours each week to running the fund. This includes deciding who’ll step in and keep everything running if you get sick or go on holidays.

One of the main advantages of SMSFs is that you get to pick your own investments. But there’s no point going to all the trouble of setting up an SMSF if you don’t make more money than you would if you’d invested your super with a regular fund. Do you have the skills and knowledge to beat the market? Or will you need to pay advisors and/or your accountant to help implement your investment strategy?

Who bears the risk? As the trustee, you will be legally responsible for every decision and every action your fund makes. Even if you get professional advice, the responsibility ultimately rests with you.

Do you have the knowledge and experience? You’ll need to be familiar with and act according to: the Superannuation Industry (Supervision) Act 1993 super tax laws and other relevant legislation

Do you meet the sole purpose test? Starting an SMSF doesn’t mean you can access your super benefits early or use the money to pay off your mortgage or go on a holiday.

Failure to meet your legal responsibilities may result in penalties.

Like all super funds, SMSFs must be maintained for the sole purpose of providing retirement or ancillary (death/ ill health) benefits. The ATO imposes harsh penalties for breaches and may also prosecute for compliance failure. Property in your SMSF can’t be used by yourself or related parties.

Do you have enough?

What are you giving up?

Generally, if you have less than $300,000 in super assets, the costs associated with running an SMSF may be higher than other alternatives. The more super you have, the more economically viable an SMSF becomes – but it still won’t be cheap.

Cbus offers access to low-cost death, disablement and income protection insurance cover because of our large membership numbers. With an SMSF, you may not be able to get the same cover and you may need to have medical tests.

your fund Trust Deed, and administrative requirements set by the government and financial services regulators.


Other important information

SMSF trustees don’t have access to the Superannuation Complaints Tribunal if problems arise. As many SMSFs are family structures, any disagreements about how the fund is managed could result in costly and time-consuming legal action. SMSFs are also not protected by APRA against investment manager fraud.

If you decide to close down your SMSF there are significant administration burdens you must fulfil. The ATO must be notified and you will also have to: • pay out or rollover member benefits in compliance with super and tax laws and our Trust deed • arrange a final audit and the final SMSF annual return • receive confirmation from the ATO that your SMSF has been wound up • close your SMSF bank account(s)

Get the right advice If your accountant or financial advisor has recommended you open an SMSF but you’re unsure whether it’s right for you, you may wish to consider getting a second opinion. It’s your money and how you invest it today can have a significant effect on your lifestyle in retirement.

ATO information The ATO provides a detailed overview of what you need to consider before setting up an SMSF, how to set up and run an SMSF, and how to wind up an SMSF. Visit www.ato.gov.au/smsf for details.

Get a second opinion Cbus Financial Planners can provide comprehensive advice on a range of matters. If you need personal advice, you will be charged on a fee-for-service basis. What you pay is agreed to in advance, so you’ll know up-front how much the service will cost. Call 1300 361 784 to arrange a meeting.

think carefully before deciding to set up a Self Managed Super Fund

Cbus’ Trustee is United Super Pty Ltd ABN 46 006 261 623 AFSL 233792 Cbus ABN 75 493 363 262 Cbus Financial Planners are representatives of Industry Fund Financial Planning, a division of Industry Fund Services Limited (IFS), Licensee for Advice, ABN 54 007 016 195, AFSL 232514. IFS’s Registered Business Office Casselden Place, Level 31, 2 Lonsdale Street, Melbourne Victoria 3000. This information is of a general nature. It doesn’t take into account your specific needs, so you should look at your own financial position, objectives and requirements before making any financial decisions. Read the Cbus Product Disclosure Statement to decide whether Cbus is right for you. Contact Cbus on 1300 361 784 or visit www.cbussuper.com.au for a copy.

When it comes to super, you can rely on

At Cbus, we make meeting your super obligations easy: We have a range of online contribution payment options, including the Cbus Clearing House which will allow you to pay your employees’ super into multiple funds using the one system. Access to financial advice for Cbus members. Regular communication with members and employers.

At Cbus we invest back into the building and construction industry as part of our investment strategy, thereby creating jobs.

Tony Randall, Cbus Member, VIC

Read the relevant Cbus Handbook (Product Disclosure Statement) to decide whether Cbus is right for you. For a copy: call Cbus on 1300 361 784 or visit www.cbussuper.com.au Cbus’ Trustee: United Super Pty Ltd ABN 46 006 261 623 AFSL 233792 Cbus ABN 75 493 363 262.

www.plumber.com.au | 45


mastering workplace relations

Recent developments in legislation and growing community awareness have made workplace bullying one of the most significant challenges for today’s employers. Master Plumbers’ Workplace Relations Consultant, Sharon Kraemer explains how proactive engagement with employees can ensure that your business does not become a target. What is workplace bullying?

Effects of workplace bullying

Health and Safety Legislation

Workplace bullying is defined as “repeated and unreasonable behaviour directed towards a worker or group of workers that creates a risk to health and safety”. Bullying may also be linked to unlawful discrimination or sexual harassment.

Workplace bullying can cause significant harm to both individuals and the business including:

Workplace health and safety laws place responsibilities on both the employer and employee to provide a duty of care towards themselves and others in the working environment.

• Illness including anxiety, depression, sleep disturbances, digestive problems

Employers

Examples may include:

• Loss of self-esteem

• abusive, insulting or offensive language

• Feeling of isolation

• unreasonable workload or an unfair allocation of unpleasant work

• Withdrawal from relationships with colleagues, family and friends

• setting unreasonable or variable performance targets

Employers must take reasonable and practicable action to maintain a workplace that is safe and without risks to health including, providing information, instruction and supervision to enable employees to perform their work without risk.

Workplace

• gossiping, spreading misinformation or rumours

Individuals

• Reduced work performance

• Absenteeism

• threatening behaviour (also regarded as workplace violence)

• Increased risk of workplace injury due to fatigue and lack of concentration

• inappropriate jokes, remarks or teasing (verbal or in writing)

• Reduced productivity

• limiting access to promotion, training and workplace entitlements

• Low morale and confidence

• practical jokes, sabotage of work, work area or work tools • exclusion or isolation from work or work-related social activities Bullying does not include lawful and reasonable directions given by the employer or supervisor to an employee including, but not limited to, performance management, the allocation of work duties relating to business requirements and standards for behaviour and conduct in the workplace.

46 | Australian Plumbing Industry Magazine | December 2013

• High staff turnover • Costly legal action and compensation claims

Employees Employees are required to cooperate with employer initiatives to provide a safe environment and must not intentionally or recklessly interfere with anything provided in the workplace intended to ensure health, safety and welfare.


Bullseye on bullying

Prevention and management Bullying can be prevented through early identification of unacceptable behaviour, implementation of effective management procedures and monitoring of the workplace.

Consultation Regular and open discussions with employees will: • raise awareness and establish a consistent approach to workplace behaviour • provide support and empower individuals to report unreasonable behaviour that they, or they believe others, have experienced • identify situations where bullying is occurring or could lead to bullying including leadership style, staffing and resources, workplace relationships and workers who may be at greater risk including apprentices, new employees and minority groups

Reporting and Investigation The employer should: • ensure that employees know how to report an incident of bullying • take timely and reasonable action to investigate the issue with the parties concerned

The Fair Work Act 2009 From 1 January 2014, the Fair Work Commission will begin to exercise new powers relating to workplace bullying. The new jurisdiction will allow a worker (not necessarily an employee) who is performing work in a constitutional corporation* to make an application if he or she believes that they have been bullied at work. Where the FWC establishes that the worker has been bullied and there is a risk that the bullying could continue, they may make appropriate orders to prevent the bullying. The FWC must take into account any procedures available to the worker to resolve grievances, what action was taken to investigate or resolve the grievance at the workplace level and, the outcome/finding of those investigations.

Workplace bullying is defined as “repeated and unreasonable behaviour directed towards a worker of group of workers that creates a risk to health and safety”

*Constitutional corporation includes trading corporations formed within Australia.

• (where bullying is occurring) take appropriate action to stop the bullying • support and assist the individuals affected to understand rights and obligations • provide all persons involved with the opportunity to discuss their concerns and suggestions for resolution • ensure confidentiality of the parties is maintained

Master Plumbers’ members have access information, advice and resources relating to workplace bullying. Our dedicated Workplace Relations Consultant can help clarify responsibilities, assist in the investigation of complaints, provide template policy & procedure documents and, where necessary represent members before tribunals and compliance agencies. Please contact Workplace Relations on 03 9329 9622 or 1800 133 871 or refer to our website for more details.

• maintain regular communication with persons involved • continue to monitor and review the situation following resolution  

www.plumber.com.au | 47


Workplace relations roundup

2013 has been another year full of change in employment-related legislation. Workplace Relations Consultant, Sharon Kraemer provides an overview of changes that will affect employers in the industry. Fair Work Act 2009

Workplace bullying

The Fair Work Amendment Bill 2013 (the Bill) passed parliament in June and included:

Workplace Relations has made a number of submissions to Safe Work Australia in relation to the management of workplace bullying. While Master Plumbers consistently supports the aims of prevention and elimination, we have not supported the implementation of a Code of Practice which would result in unrealistic and unachievable objectives for small-medium sized businesses.

• expanded family friendly arrangements, including: transfer to a safe job during pregnancy; further flexibility for concurrent unpaid parental leave; greater access to right to request flexible working arrangements; and consultation about the impact of changes to regular rosters or hours of work; • amendments to the modern awards objectives to include consideration of additional remuneration for employees working overtime; unsocial, irregular or unpredictable hours; working on weekends or public holidays; or working shifts; • expanded right of entry (RoE) entitlements and Fair Work Commission (FWC) powers to deal with RoE disputes; • clarify the FWC’s ability to conciliate, mediate and make recommendations when conducting conferences and enable the FWC to arbitrate general protections disputes, where the parties consent; • align the time limit for making an unlawful termination application to 21 days consistent with applications for general protections and unfair dismissal applications; and • allow a worker who has been bullied at work to apply to the FWC for an order to stop the bullying. Once again employers have been disappointed by the passage of the Bill from a policy and a political perspective.

We are pleased that Safe Work has reviewed their position and will adopt guidance materials (not a code) which have now been revised to ensure greater relevance to employers in our industry.

Code compliance National The Commonwealth Government introduced a new National Code of Practice specifically intended to override the effects of any state-based code (including the Victorian Code of Practice).

Victoria In May 2013, Justice Bromberg of the Federal Court of Australia handed down two decisions relating to the validity of the Victorian Code of Practice. In essence, the Court found that the actions of Respondents (including the State of Victoria and the employers) had contravened the general protections provisions of the Fair Work Act 2009 including: threatening/refusing to engage employees who were entitled to the benefit of and valid Enterprise Agreement; and attempting to coerce a company and its employees to pursue a new enterprise agreement.

Modern Award Review 2012 – Plumbing and Fire Sprinklers Award 2010 The Master Plumbers has invested significant effort into the 2012 Modern Award Review. As a consequence of the review, the Plumbing and Fire Sprinklers Award 2010, will be varied as follows: • capacity for employers to direct an employee to perform part of their ordinary 38 hour week on weekends and public holidays (subject to penalty loadings) in order to achieve flexibility and efficiency particularly in maintenance operations; • upheld the MPMSAA arguments not to increase travel allowances; Master Plumbers has expressed public disappointment on the FWC’s decision on apprentice terms and conditions, including: • significant pay increases for 1st and 2nd year apprentices employed after 1 January 2014 which will be spread over 3 increments; and • the requirement to reimburse the apprentice training costs, including text books within particular timeframes. The FWC declined to make changes to the redundancy provisions (exemptions for small business) and provisions for cashing-out and employers’ capacity to direct an employee to take annual leave.

Master Plumbers’ members receive regular communications on topical issues via Enews. Please contact Membership Services on 03 9329 9622 or 1800 133 871 or refer to our website for more details. 48 | Australian Plumbing Industry Magazine | December 2013


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Business disaster planning Some parts of New South Wales were recently devastated by bushfires. The government immediately allocated funds to remove debris, restore public facilities and repair infrastructure. The Insurance Council of Australia (ICA) has advised that more than 1,000 claims have been lodged to date, with an estimated loss value in excess of $145,000,000. Business owners must ensure that they are adequately prepared for a disaster. You need to ensure that your business can survive a significant interruption such as storm damage, flood, fire, earthquake, or other catastrophic events. It is recommended that every business develop a disaster plan. There are three main components of a disaster plan: 1 Preparation 2 Recovery

Recovery

Insurance protection

A very important component of recovery is access to your business records. The following are examples of steps you might take to reduce the impact of fire on your records:

The protection that insurance offers is only as good as the adequacy of the cover you have chosen.

• Convert paper records into electronic records; • Routinely backup electronic records; • Keep a copy of electronic records off-site;

Preparation

• Store original financial and insurance records in a fire-proof safe on the premises, and duplicate copies in another secure location off-site;

How well your business copes with a disaster often depends on your prior preparation. The following are examples of steps you might take to reduce the potential impact of fire:

• Be aware of the availability of local properties where you may be able to temporarily relocate your business in the event of a major loss (eg. fire, storm damage or flood).

3 Insurance Protection

• Locate your business in a fire-resistant building to slow the spread of the fire; • Install a fire alarm that will alert the local fire department in the case of a fire; • Install fire extinguishers and smoke alarms and ensure they are regularly serviced according to Australian standards; • Have your electrical wiring and switchboards checked by an electrician; • Store flammable and hazardous goods in a locked, fireproof storage cabinet.

50 | Australian Plumbing Industry Magazine | December 2013

Selecting a policy Small and medium sized businesses should consider purchasing a Business Pack insurance policy. A Business Pack is a “package” of policies that can combine protection against the risks of both damage to property and interruption to business on a single policy. A larger business should purchase separate property and business interruption policies, so that each policy can be tailored towards the specific risks of the individual business.

Property insurance Property insurance can cover the cost to repair or replace physical damage to a building and/or its contents. The policy will only respond where the loss was caused by an insured peril (for example fire, storm damage, flood etc). Some important optional covers are ‘removal of debris’ and ‘extra cost of reinstatement’ which can provide cover for costs incurred in demolishing a damaged building and reconstructing it to conform to new or revised building codes.


Business interruption insurance Business interruption insurance can compensate for loss of income if the business is shut down as a result of damage caused by an insured peril. It can also provide cover for additional costs that may be incurred in the event

you need to temporarily relocate your business or make other provisions to continue working after a loss has occurred. It is important to purchase the correct type and appropriate limits of business interruption insurance to sustain your business for the period following a loss.

This is a general overview of the policy. Please call us and ask for a copy of the insurer’s policy wording. We recommend you read the policy wording so you have an understanding of the policy terms, conditions and exclusions before you decide whether this policy suits your needs.

To find out more about obtaining business insurance, call Marsh today: Marsh Pty Ltd trading as Master Plumbers Insurance Brokers (Aust) can arrange insurance for all of the aforementioned risks, and a number of other products designed to cover you and your business, including:

• • • • • •

Income Protection Insurance Motor Vehicle Insurance Business Insurance Machinery Insurance Household Insurance Tools Insurance

Please contact a Marsh representative to discuss your individual needs: Call 1300 300 511 Email mpib.australia@marsh.com Visit www.marsh.com.au

This article contains a summary of insurance cover available. Master Plumbers Insurance Brokers (Aust). (MPIB) is a trading name of Marsh Pty Ltd (ABN 86 004 651 512/AFSL 238983) Marsh Pty Ltd arrange the Insurance and is not the insurer. The Master Plumbers and Mechanical Services Association of Australia receive a financial benefit when a policy is arranged by MPIB, enabling it to continue to provide further services to the plumbing industry. To find out more about MPIB visit www.marsh.com.au/plumbers.

marsh.com.au

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 mpib.australia@marsh.com

Marsh Pty Ltd (ABN 86 004 651512 AFSL 238983) trading as Master Plumbers Insurance Brokers (Aust) (“MPIB”) 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 www.marsh.com.au. 11/0204

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

www.plumber.com.au | 51


product news New Plumbspec range helps installers comply with directional flow requirements The Evolve Group welcomes to our plumbing product series the Plumbspec range of Overflow Relief Gullies and Bolted Trap Surrounds. Like all Evolve products, the Plumbspec ORG and BTS range have been produced with unique design characteristics. The Plumbspec ORG and BTS are the only market option designed specifically to help the installer comply with ASNZS3500 – “…must be installed with an overflow path, so that overflows will not cause damage to buildings (including contents) or danger to persons.” The design is smaller and more compact, making it a lighter option, easier to transport and carry. Available in 100mm PVC grey or Evo-Crete Max options, each comes complete with strong polypropylene grates with a dual sided dome or flat surface. Evo-Crete Max version is concrete reinforced with Evo-Fibre and contains a PVC inset. The BTS has been uniquely designed with the screws on the outside of the O-ring to create a genuine seal. A feature that has been previously missing from the market. Features: • Compact and lightweight • Dedicated overflow channel • Dual side flat and domed gate • Fibre reinforced concrete • Multiple options available For further information contact The Evolve Group 07 3283 1196 or sales@evolvegrp.com

Bosch launches new hot water heat pump

Sunscreens can damage Colorbond

Bosch have recently launched their Heat Pump Water Heater, the Bosch Compress 3000, into the Australian market.

Damage to Colorbond roofing material caused by sunscreen is an emerging problem and is costing the industry thousands of dollars in rectification work.

The new Bosch Compress 3000 is 60% more energy efficient than conventional electric storage systems by using free and unlimited energy from the air, which is then transferred to the water through a refrigeration circuit. But it does not only save you on running costs. It is also eligible for STCs, which also saves you money when first purchasing the Bosch Compress 3000. Using state of the art components, advanced production and the renowned Bosch quality control processes, it has been designed to deliver a new hot water heat pump that provides the answers to common problems. Providing a storage capacity of 270 ltr, which is big enough to supply hot water for 3-4 people, and ensuring hot water recovery even when it’s a little cooler with the 1.8 kW electric back-up element. However, amongst the highlights of this product differentiating it from other competitors is the highly innovative smart controls. It allows the installer or user to program the heat pump to suit the user’s habits and therefore optimise energy efficiency. In addition, it also enables ‘noise reduction’ mode selection, as well as choosing from the two heating modes “heat pump only” and “combi”. Another feature of the smart control is the error code function, which will in the case of a fault with the product, will help to identify the source of the problem and the type of service agent needed to fix it. This can save money as you get the right person to look after the problem straight away rather than guessing whether you have to call the plumber, electrician or air conditioning specialist. For more information, visit bosch-climate.com.au or call 1300 30 70 37.

52 | Australian Plumbing Industry Magazine | December 2013

BlueScope’s Technical Bulletin TB-13 warned of these dangers; “It has been found that sunscreens containing semi-conducting metal oxides such as titanium oxide (TiO2) and zinc oxide (ZnO) can accelerate the degradation of organic materials including paint systems.” With this in mind, Red Back Trade Consumables have developed a sunscreen specifically for tradesmen that is formulated without the presence of damaging chemicals. The product has been tested and shows no detrimental affect to roofing material. The formula is as effective as any other sunscreen, with a SPF30+ rating, 4 hours of water resistance and is fragrance free. It complies with AS/NZS 2604:1998 and is proudly Australian made. Industry experts recommend Red Back Sunblock to prevent roof damage and expensive callbacks to damaged roof installations. Tradies Red Back Sunblock is available at all good trade outlets. For wholesale enquiries contact Aquarius Distribution on 03 9763 0044 or visit aquariusdist.com.au


Better.

CLEAN LOOK AND FEEL PURPOSE BUILT DESIGN LIGHTWEIGHT

DUAL SIDE FLAT AND DOMED GRATE COMPACT MULTIPLE OPTIONS The Plumbspec ORG and BTS range have been produced with unique and innovative design characteristics and are the only market option designed specifically to help the installer comply with ASNZS3500. The compact design makes it a lighter option, easier to transport and carry. Available in 100mm PVC grey or Evo-Crete Max options, each comes complete with strong polypropylene grates with a dual sided dome or flat finish. The Evo-Crete Max version is uniquely fibre reinforced with a concrete blend and contains a PVC inset. The BTS has been uniquely designed with the screws on the outside of the O-ring for a genuine seal that has been previously missing from the market.

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www.plumber.com.au | 53


product news Getting ready for individual metering of units: what you need to know There’s a change coming for water metering in multi-level buiIding developments in Sydney Water’s area of operations in 2014. New multi-level building developments will need to make provision for individual unit metering. The new requirement will apply to any development application that receives a Sydney Water Notice of Requirement (NOR) after the start date to be announced in the new year. The current transition phase gives new multi-level building developments the option to prepare the building’s plumbing so that individual water meters can be fitted at a later date. This is being shown as optional in the Notice of Requirements. Three key things to remember when preparing a building for individual meters include: • you need to allow plumbing for a single water inlet to each unit • individual meters need to be located in the common area (ie, not inside units) • there may also need to be a space and power supply for data logger(s) Detailed specifications can be found in Sydney Water’s Guide for MultiLevel Individual Metering available at sydneywater.com.au Sydney Water will announce the accredited metering suppliers and a start date for these new requirements in 2014.

Vacuum toilets are coming your way soon

Rheem launches new stainless steel range

A building with 2,000 persons during office hours will consume 486 swimming pools of water for flushing using gravity pans in a year. The same building fitted with vacuum pans will consume a mere 86.

Rheem Australia has bolstered its popular Stellar® suite of products with the launch of a new range of stainless steel water heaters. The new Rheem Stellar Stainless Steel is available in models suitable for connection to either electricity or gas.

Installing vacuum pans in a building of 2000 persons will save 400 swimming pools of fresh water every year. That is just one building. Imagine how much water could be saved if we all converted to vacuum toilets.

“This is a logical extension of the established and popular Rheem Stellar brand – the introduction of superior stainless steel water heaters in both electric and gas versions,” says Gareth Jennings, Rheem’s general manager of marketing and corporate affairs.

Vacuum toilet technology uses ambient air pressure to transport waste through piping. Water is not used for flushing, it’s only used to rinse the bowl. That is why the Melbourne Water new headquarter is saving more than 24,000 litres of water per day. Sewers run freely despite the reduced water, because all waste is macerated as it passes through the vacuum pumps, so blocked sewers are a thing of the past. Waste in a vacuum sewer travels at 15 meters per second. Vacuum toilets are a whole new ball game; they represent an exciting and dynamic technology for plumbers to embrace. Want to know more than the next guy? Visit vacuumtoiletsaustralia.com.au

“There are a myriad of benefits to stainless steel water heaters, and we recognised the need to provide the trade and consumers with an option, depending on their individual requirements.” The new Rheem Stellar Stainless Steel water heaters have been designed with performance, high energy efficiency, features and aesthetics firmly in mind. Plus they are backed by a 10-year warranty on the cylinder . Rheem’s stainless steel water heaters are lighter compared to vitreous enamel (the electric models up to 40% lighter than comparable Rheemglas® electric water heater models), making them easier to handle, transport and install. They are also sleek, modern and durable. “As the electric models are significantly lighter, it’s great news for plumbers who often need to move these units up several flights of stairs in apartment blocks, or negotiate narrow side passageways of houses,” Jennings adds. “And compared to vitreous enamel, stainless steel cylinders are intrinsically more prone to resist corrosion.” For further information on these products visit rheem.com.au

54 | Australian Plumbing Industry Magazine | December 2013


www.plumber.com.au | 55


product news Wastewater Treatment Guide Australian Pump Industries have updated their free technical manual and selection guide on Tsurumi submersible aerators and bar screens. Tsurumi is the world’s largest manufacturer of submersible pumps with their Japanese Kyoto plant having the capacity to build up to one million pumps per year. Aussie Pumps’ revised selection manual includes an extensive comparison of aerator systems and extensive technical data on submersible aeration, submersible plus rotary blower and fine bubble aeration methods. Produced in conjunction with the Japanese Sewage Works Association, the guide provides a wide range of industry validated information on these cost effective aeration devices. Tsurumi submersible aerators are available in a wide range of configurations suitable for tanks of up to 6 metre depths and with air flow rates of up to 528 cubic metres per hour. The practical Selection Guide demonstrates how aerators can be used in a battery to cut costs on sewage aeration system designs, increase flexibility and ease of servicing while enhancing excellent aeration results. A free copy of the guide is available through the Aussie Pumps Tsurumi Product Manager on (02) 8865 3500.

Aussie Pumps Tsurumi Product Manager Craig Bridgement showcasing the latest in Tsurumi Aerator technology

56 | Australian Plumbing Industry Magazine | December 2013

Unico air conditioner Finally, an air-conditioner that comes with no outdoor unit. With the Olimpia Splendid Unico the outdoor compressor is completely eliminated, yes that’s 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 performance. 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 in fact you could call it perfectly noiseless. For more detailed information on the unique Unico contact Noirot Australia on (03) 9563 2778.

LENOX SPEED SLOT ® Bi-metal Hole Saws The innovative SPEED SLOT® Bi-metal hole saw from LENOX has been designed to offer builders and tradesmen superior performance in metal cutting, wood cutting and plug removal. ENOX has engineered an enhanced tooth form featuring revolutionary T2™ technology, an advanced nonbinding coating, and a thin kerf design to create a hole saw that makes cuts 2X faster through wood, and lasts 2X longer when cutting through metal compared to the prior model. Not only does it cut twice as fast and lasts twice as long, it also includes an innovative ‘speed slot’ to make plug removal quick and easy. The SPEED SLOT design features a wide staircase slot with multiple leverage points on a taller hole saw to provide quick and easy plug ejection with a standard screwdriver. LENOX SPEED SLOT hole saws are available in a variety of sizes from 14mm to 152mm. They are also available in multi-piece sets including general purpose, electrician and plumbing varieties.


Australian Hydronic Total Eclipse Two leading brands, one market product and services second to none. Australasia’s leading supplier of hydronic heating solutions secures an exclusive product development partnership with Italy’s number one designer and manufacturer of domestic gas boilers. Immergas currently serves over 4 million homes worldwide with a wide range of products all with a common denominator: innovation for continuous improvement in terms of reliability, durability and technology. Included amongst its latest products are complete systems which make use of solar energy.

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MightyLift – Australian Plumbing

Light

The MightyLift is a powerful lightweight lifting device designed to be versatile, portable, strong and most of all safe. The beauty of the MightyLift is that it is designed to lift plant and equipment in a safe and responsible manner. The MightyLift is an approved health and safety product which won 1st prize in the 2008 work safe awards.

STRONG AND LIGHT

Safe

The MightyLift is simple to erect, non-motorised and suitable for single or double story work. It can also lift up to 120kgs; considering it weighs only 95kgs this makes it perfect for Hvac and Solar applications.

SAFE

Versatile

New health and safety regulations make it mandatory that you provide a safe working environment for yourself and your employees. The MightyLift ensures both your employees are safe from harm and you are compliant.

MightyLift will help keep you and your staff safe, for more details go to

Strong

www.mightylift.com.au

MightyLift - Combining innovation health and safety


product news Electrolux in the hot water market Australia’s leading whitegoods company, Electrolux Home Products, is strengthening its presence in the hot water market this year through the new Kelvinator hot water systems. The comprehensive range comprises a total of 36 models spanning heat pumps, solar electric and gas boosted and gas continuous flow hot water systems. Matthew Spinks, National Sales Manager – Hot water Systems said that Electrolux had spent two years in the planning and development of the products and service offer before recently completing its extensive national distribution and operations network. “We’re now ready to fully engage with the industry across the states and in the different channels,” Mr Spinks said. “And the wide range and variety of models has been designed to cater for Australia’s diverse climatic conditions and availability of different energy sources. The hot water business represents the first time in many years that Electrolux has expanded into a new product category, to be called Watercare. The company chose the Kelvinator brand for the hot water range because of Kelvinator’s 90 year history and reputation in Australia. “The Most Trusted Brands poll rated Kelvinator highly while the Electrolux consumer insights research found the brand was synonymous with dependable refrigeration and heating and cooling appliances designed for the harsh and variable Australian climate,” Mr Spinks added. To find out more visit www.kelvinator.com.au or call 13 62 26.

MightyLift: combining innovation, health and safety

Viega Propress: your reputation, your piece of mind

The MightyLift is a powerful lightweight lifting device that is designed to be versatile, portable, strong and most of all safe. The beauty of the MightyLift is that it is designed to lift plant and equipment in a safe and responsible manner. The MightyLift is an approved health and safety product which won 1st prize in the 2008 work safe awards.

It can happen, despite every precaution being taken, a drinking water installation starts to leak a few days or weeks after commissioning, due to a fitting that was mistakenly left un-pressed. This is despite the use of fittings that according to the manufacturer’s details should demonstrate the quality “will leak when un-pressed”. Such “mishaps” are prevented by the patented Smart Connect feature with Viega fittings.

The MightyLift is simple to erect, non-motorised and suitable for single or double story work. It can also lift up to 120kgs; considering it weighs only 95kgs this makes it perfect for Hvac and Solar applications. New health and safety regulations make it mandatory that you provide a safe working environment for yourself and your employees. The MightyLift ensures both your employees are safe from harm and you are compliant. MightyLift will help keep you and your staff safe. To find out more visit www.mightylift.com.au

Normally when systems are tested, the pressure applied is static, so there are no pressure surges which occur during normal system operation when taps are turned on and off etc. To add to this there is usually a pressure differential between floors such that a five storey apartment may have a 130kPa pressure difference between the top and bottom floor. Leakage in an un-pressed state is achieved when using the Viega Smart Connect feature via a channel in the fitting. In the un-pressed state, water can flow into the channel through the sealing element and leak out (figure 1). In contrast, once the fitting is pressed in accordance with the specifications, the channel in the Smart Connect feature is permanently closed (figure 2). In non Viega Propress fittings the omission of pressing may go unnoticed during the leak test. Leakage with resulting damage may occur if there are pressure surges whilst the system is in operation.

Figure 1

Figure 2

Un-pressed Viega Propress fittings are guaranteed to leak over the widest possible pressure range; from 100 kPa – 650 kPa in a wet test and between 2.2 kPa – 300 kPa in a dry test. This allows for a central leakage test of the entire system rather than testing of individual sections. To find out more call 1800 484342 (1800 4VIEGA) or email ausupport@viega.com

www.plumber.com.au | 59


product news Bostik Bostik Australia has been manufacturing PVC Pipe cements and primers for over 40 years, and offers an extensive range of products specifically formulated for the plumbing market. Bostik is pleased to announce their new innovative one step applicator from Bostik. Now available in Bostik Plumb-Weld® Priming Fluid Red & Clear the Bostik one step applicator. With the Bostik applicator you won’t have to worry about messy application. The Bostik applicator makes application a breeze for small and large diameter pipes, and no need for messy rags. No more HR issues on site using the Bostik applicator as this is the safer alternative to rags. Bostik Plumb-Weld® is WaterMark certified and independently tested to Australian Standard AS/NZS 3879. It is also approved for potable water applications (AS/NZS 4020). Ask for Plumb-Weld® the trusted brand from your local plumbing retailer. To find out more visit www.bostik.com.au

A concealed cistern for every application Geberit has been engineering innovative and well designed products of the highest quality since 1874; with a heritage of expertise and innovation in concealed cisterns dating back to 1964. Today, Geberit is the market leader in Europe and an essential element in bathrooms throughout Australia, incorporating Swiss know-how into a range of cisterns, designed to suit Australian conditions. Introducing Geberit cisterns – including our new Sigma cistern at just 75 mm (fits 75mm wall cavity) – it is the thinnest. Geberit concealed cisterns are easy to install, require only a few tools during installation and can be easily serviced from the front through the flush/access plate. With a 10 year warranty on cistern tank –one piece blow moulded tank for absolute water tightness – and a 25 year guarantee for spare parts availability. Compatible with any approved manufacturer’s pan. Just match the WELS Star rating of the pan and cistern. Geberit is the cistern you’d install in your own home. For more information visit www.geberit.com.au or check out our installation and service videos on youtube: My Geberit Australia.

Hunt Heating says ‘Si’ to Italy’s leading domestic gas boiler producer Australasia’s leading supplier of hydronic central heating systems has begun exclusively selling output from Italy’s leading manufacturer of domestic gas boilers. Hunt Heating is now offering products specially developed for the Australian market by Immergas from its base in Keysborough, Victoria. The first boilers being sold under the partnership are the Condensing 96.5% efficient HE 35 System internal and external models. The Condensing HE combination boilers deliver a constant flow rate of 20 litres per minute. In addition SE 36 System Internal and External are now available. Both Condensing and Standard Efficiency models have an innovative steel case, which allows external installations with maximum safety, a requirement in Australian homes. The complete range of heating only boilers have built in accessory option that enable easy connection to existing domestic hot water storage tanks. Paul Linley, Hunt Heating general manager, said: “We’re very proud to bring the Immergas brand to Australia and are sure the outstanding technical characteristics, quality and price of the company’s output will see it become extremely popular here.” Hunt Heating has long-term partnerships with major suppliers, providing secure access to top-class products. It operates through a network of independent hydronic heating specialists, with a proven history of quality workmanship and customer satisfaction, who can provide obligation-free quotations from plan drawings or site visits. The organisation supplies throughout Australia. To find out more visit huntheat.com.au. Further details of Immergas can be found at immergas.com

60 | Australian Plumbing Industry Magazine | December 2013


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www.plumber.com.au | 61


Understanding the

WaterMark Certification Scheme What is WaterMark?

There is a requirement in the National Construction Code Volume Three – Plumbing Code of Australia (PCA) for certain plumbing and drainage materials to be certified and authorised for use in a plumbing or drainage installation. These materials and products are certified and authorised through the application of the WaterMark Certification Scheme (WMCS) licence. Licenced materials and products are identifiable by the WaterMark trademark, which must be marked on the product or material upon the granting of a WaterMark Certificate of Conformity.

How does WaterMark work? The Australian Building Codes Board (ABCB) manages and administers the (WMCS). The Joint Accreditation System of Australia and New Zealand (JASANZ) accredits WaterMark Conformity Assessment Bodies (WMCABs), who in turn evaluate and certify plumbing and drainage materials and products. As the PCA is called up in State and Territory legislation, responsibility for the compliance of plumbing and drainage installations with the PCA rests with the plumbing and drainage regulator in each State and Territory. The WMCABs evaluate new products for inclusion on to the WaterMark Product Database (WMPD) where there is a listed Standard or Technical Specification on the WaterMark Schedule of Specifications (WMSS). Where a new product can not be evaluated against an existing Standard or Technical Specification listed on the WMSS, the WMCAB prepares an application to the ABCB which administers the review and approval of the new WaterMark Technical Specification (WMTS) for inclusion onto the WMSS. Once approval of the new WMTS is obtained, the WMCAB can undertake an evaluation of the new product to be listed on the WMPD.

Which products and materials require WaterMark certification? It is important to note that not all plumbing and drainage materials and products require WaterMark Certification. All materials and products, including imports, proposed to be used in a plumbing and drainage system require a risk evaluation. Several materials and products have already been evaluated for compliance. A comprehensive listing – including product types and application, specifications and exemptions – of predetermined materials and product types is contained on the WaterMark Schedule of Specifications. The ABCB will keep the WaterMark Schedule of Specifications updated as new specifications are approved and old specifications removed. The current WaterMark Schedule of Specifications can be found on the ABCB website at www.abcb.gov.au Materials and products that have been pre-determined as not requiring WaterMark certification are listed on the WaterMark List of Exempt Products, which can be found at www.abcb.gov.au

How can I get products and materials WaterMark certified? Organisations seeking WaterMark certification for their product or material should apply directly to an approved WMCAB. The Register of WaterMark Conformity Assessment Bodies can be found at www.abcb.gov.au The WaterMark Certification Scheme is governed by a series of documents that outline the requirements for evaluation and certification, risk assessment and the drafting of a WMTS. Any organisation that can satisfy an approved WMCAB that its product meets these requirements can have its product WaterMark certified. Individual WMCABs may have a specific application and engagement process. Use of the WaterMark is governed by the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC) Trademark Rules, which can be found on the ABCB website at www.abcb.gov.au

How can I find out which products and materials are WaterMark approved? WaterMark licenced products and materials are listed on the WMPD. The database enables product searches by supplier/model detail, licence number, standard/technical specification (as per the WaterMark Schedule of Specifications) or WaterMark Conformity Assessment Body. The WMPD can be found at www.abcb.gov.au

Materials and products not listed on the WaterMark Schedule of Specifications or the WaterMark List of Exempt Products which are proposed to be used in plumbing and drainage installations will require an evaluation by a WMCAB to establish the certification requirements of that product or material.

To find out more about the WaterMark Certification Scheme Visit www.abcb.gov.au Email watermark@abcb.gov.au Call 1300 134631

62 | Australian Plumbing Industry Magazine | December 2013


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6264 API Magazine  
6264 API Magazine  

December 2013