ES4 low water use toilet helps gain EcoHomes credits
Mytholm Close in Hebden Bridge is a development of 29 new homes built by housing association Pennine Housing 2000. Completed in 2005, the homes were built by Lovell and comprise a mix of 1 and 2 bedroom flats and 2, 3 and 4 bedroom houses.
Water efficiency was a priority from the beginning of the project as Pennine Housing 2000 sought to enhance their EcoHomes rating. EcoHomes was an independent rating system which was the precursor to the Code for Sustainable Homes. For a number of years Housing Corporation funded schemes were obliged to have an EcoHomes assessment. Initially rainwater harvesting was investigated as an option but was rejected due to cost factors and also questions regarding overall environmental benefits. In the end, the contractors opted for Green Building Store’s ES4 ultra-efficient WCs.
While there is a general trend towards dual flush WCs as a water-efficient option, it is interesting that Lovell chose in this instance to opt for the ES4 single siphon flush of 4.5 litres (since improved to 4 litres per flush). Having previously specified ES4 WCs for other projects they knew that they were effective and could be relied upon to deliver guaranteed water savings. Dual flush mechanisms can sometimes lead to user confusion resulting in over-flushing, as well as having the potential to leak when valve mechanisms wear out.
Lovell has been pleased with the ES4 WCs and would specify them again on other EcoHomes sites. “Specifying ultra-efficient WCs like the ES4 is an easy way for housing associations to achieve EcoHomes credits. The ES4 looks and works like a ‘normal’ toilet, and tenants are mostly unaware that it is especially water-efficient. Tap and shower flow restrictors are sometimes less popular with tenants because they can feel noticeably different. The advantage of the ES4 is that it makes saving water easy and effortless.”
Case study: 2005
Client: Pennine Housing 2000, www.ph2k.org.uk
Architect: Watson Batty, Tel: 01943 876665, www.watsonbatty.com
Contractor: Lovell, Tel: 0113 202 2200, www.lovell.co.uk