Explore how CPVC changed the face of the Indian plumbing industry by learning what some of the major consultants across India experienced across their career
Piping Market | on December 20th, 2020
Plumbing has been brought to the forefront as a significant element of the building ecosystem due to water scarcity and the enhanced awareness of water conservation. Plumbing systems, methods and solutions have evolved over time, like the other components of the construction industry in India. The legal use of water sources is a by-product of having a good plumbing system in place.
With regard to the position of plumbing consultants in India, an interesting analogy exists. The house piping system is to a house that a circulatory system is to a body. Water inlet, outlet, water delivery in a building, sanitation, etc., all of which determine a building's health.
At FlowGuard Plus®, we always strive to understand the market and the pandemic sure has been a catalyst to many changes. To understand the current trend better, the FlowGuard Plus® team interviewed some of the top MEP consultants in India, to get their views on the Plumbing Industry since the introduction of CPVC in the market and the current state of it. While we covered the industry as a whole, we also explored their role in Projects and how the challenges they face from project to project, improvising along the way to reach the most efficient and effective solution.
Let’s dig into their thoughts...
What are the prominent changes that have happened in the Plumbing ecosystem in India since the introduction of CPVC?
In India, technology in terms of materials & design has changed drastically over the past 25 years. Over the last 74 years, the use of GI and CI pipes has been prevalent, but there have been at least 10 new materials in the last 10 years that come with various innovations and advantages.
CPVC was introduced in the late ’90s in India but it took some time before the developers and Plumbing consultants started using CPVC plastic pipes in their projects extensively.
Some of the reasons being:
- Contrary to positioning by all CPVC Pipe & Fitting brands, there was apprehension amongst developers, even medium to large firms that CPVC Pipes might have cracked due to heat.
- CPVC was avoided or minimally used in luxury/high-end projects mainly due to the perception that it has lower heat resistivity and it is not safe for potable water.
- A misconception among consultants that joints in Pipe PPR are more homogeneous compared to CPVC pipes.
Why did this shift towards CPVC come into place?
One of the reasons why CPVC became a preferred choice for developers was education by developers who adopted CPVC early on in their projects. They cleared most of the misconceptions that prevailed in the industry.
CPVC has better hot water sustenance due to the chlorine content which doesn’t get impacted by external chlorine in potable water (used as a disinfectant in our country)
Another major factor was faster turnaround time and less wastage of material in the case of CPVC.
Ease of Installation surfaced as the most critical reason that drove the adoption of CPVC Pipes and Fittings given the limited availability of a skilled plumbing workforce.
What is the state of the Indian Piping Market since the Pandemic?
Due to issues such as demonetization, RERA, GST, and the NBFC funding crisis, the building material industry has already suffered over the past 4 years. At an already tense time in the sector, COVID-19 struck.
Although prolonged lockdowns in several states affected the entire plumbing ecosystem early in the year, the organized plumbing pipe segment was relatively less affected.
- The ongoing consolidation in the PVC/CPVC pipe segments (larger and larger)
- Strong growth in affordable and mid-income housing projects
- Sustained replacement (need-based) to conventional housing projects
However, the government’s relief measures for the real estate sector announced between April 2020 to August 2020, helped to achieve high liquidity in the system, including compliance under RERA and IBC, and also reduction in taxes to boost housing demands. This boost has resulted in a surge in demand for piping materials.
What are some of the common problems which a plumbing consultant faces in Projects?
Working on projects, there are multiple challenges that the consultants must face. Some are common, some are unanticipated and sometimes even unheard of.
Some of the common ones are:
- Rework on-site for plumbing
- Selection of the cp/ sanitary-ware at the concept stage but not sticking to the same
- Supplier Delays - Product related late responses from the supplier that impacts the overall timelines of the projects.
- Uncertified products
- Finicky Clients - Some clients switch over continuously on the project. The timelines get compromised because of their unanticipated demands.
In terms of common plumbing procedures, what are some of the best practices that project managers can stick to?
There are many practices that project managers should follow over the course of their projects. Some of them being:
- Researching the drawing of the plumbing designer carefully.
- For greater clarification & guidance, review the product catalogue.
- Always go for a licensed installer for plumbing with an established track record.
- Do a job mock-up and have it accepted, so there are no flaws in repetitive work at different places.
- Keep track of on-site changes/modifications made for the concealed work as a plumbing contractor renders the same designed drawing after work is finished.
- Have a stronger on-site material inventory system to eliminate on-site shortcomings and pilferages. The work is often stopped for small sections of the product, and toilets can not be completed on time.
Of course, these are just basics. One must always strive for perfection by finding opportunities to better each and every process involved in the entire project.
What are the key factors that influence a consultant’s decision to choose FlowGuard® Plus over other CPVC brands?
Multiple factors are involved in decision making. What makes FlowGuard® Plus stand out from the rest is the brand backing it. Lubrizol is the inventor of CPVC technology. Over the years, they have built that trust amongst consultants of being the best with every product they provide. The on-ground support provided by the FlowGuard® team is exceptional and it stands out.
Some of the other benefits are:
- FlowGuard® has a successful track record of over 50 years – across the globe
- FlowGuard® has been used in the highest number of projects in India over the last 20 years
- TempRite® CPVC Raw material is NSF certified
- Widest range of pipes and fittings from 1⁄2” to 6” and assemblies
- Consistent lab testing in Europe, USA, and India
- Tested and proven for over 20 years in Indian conditions
- Factory warranty on all products by Manufacturers against any manufacturing defect.
In India, Ashirvad Pipes Pvt Limited and Prince CPVC Pipes & fittings Limited manufacture and sell it through their vast retail channel all over the country.
If you want to know more about FlowGuard Plus CPVC, or want to find a local authorized licensee, our team of support specialists is available.
Do check out our blog focusing on the importance of having a holistic view point while purchasing CPVC and not just considering CPVC Pipe Price as the sole factor.
Binay Agrawal, a highly experienced and accomplished professional, currently holds the position of Business Head of the TempRite South Asia division at Lubrizol India.