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Master Plumbers' technical expert Aaron Bridger warns installing plumbers to check Watermark certification, as recent changes could leave them exposed.
An enduring issue faced by many plumbers is the final connection of the bath waste to the drain. With often limited space and needing to incorporate an overflow from the bath, there are a number of so-called solutions on the market.
The Plumbing Code of Australia (NCC Volume 3) requires that all fitting and fixtures used must have a Watermark certification, additionally they must comply with AS/NZS3500.2 installation standards.
Many of these “flexible connections” were at one stage “certified” under Watermark but now no longer meet the new specifications so it’s imperative that installing plumbers understand the importance of ensuring that any watermark certification is current. Many that are on the market have been unable to meet these new specifications and due to there not being a “point of sale” requirement on the retailers (it is not illegal to sell these items), the responsibility rests with the installing plumber.
This situation can leave the plumber high and dry if there are issues with the wastes down the track. There could even be situations where you will not have access to insurance cover.
Another issue that arises particularly with bath wastes is ensuring that the waste outlet has a removable grate for maintenance purposes. AS/NZS3500.2 13.3.7 Fixture grates, “Where a fixture trap is not accessible, the grate shall be removable.”
What to do?
- Be involved early in the construction process to ensure that you have space and time to connect the fixture up along more traditional lines (ie: fixture trap and waste).
- If using a flexible connector ensure that it has the appropriate Watermark approval.
- Make sure any bath fixture outlet has a removable grate in situations where the trap is not accessible.