15 November 2023
Reading time: 4 minutes
The problems with wall mounted taps in commercial washrooms are mainly associated with the conventional approach to installing them with an access panel and the negative ripple effect that comes with this installation option.
Various installation challenges occur including, unexpected costs, extra labour time, tap maintenance after project handover, and their impact on the washroom design and user experience.
As a commercial washroom company offering a range of wall mounted and counter mounted taps, including touch free and manual options, we have created this article to emphasise the drawbacks of the traditional installation method, specifically focusing on the problems with wall mounted taps that have access panels.
We will also share a solution that ensures you won’t encounter these challenges in your commercial washroom.
Click on one of the problems with wall mounted taps to jump to the section:
1. Wall mounted tap installation
Traditionally, taps are mounted on an access panel or have one installed nearby, allowing access to their working parts within the wall cavity. These parts include the solenoid, water feed, electricity feed (in a wall mounted sensor tap), copper pipework, tap mounting tail, nuts, and other components. Hence, the washroom design must include ample space within the wall cavity to accommodate these components and provide a designated access point for both installation and future maintenance.
However, hiring a plumber to install the copper pipes for hot and cold water and an electrician to navigate the complex power connections around the water supply for wall mounted sensor taps is laborious and time consuming.
This is one of the problems with wall mounted taps installed in this way because it can result in increased costs in labour time and materials, extended project timelines, and potential complications in coordinating the work of two different professionals.
2. Wall mounted tap installation costs
Plumbers and electricians typically charge hourly rates, and this is the phase of the project where installation costs begin to escalate, particularly when considering the number of superloo cubicles and public washrooms in the building.
The more time it takes to install and connect everything, the higher the bill gets.
Installing copper pipes for water feeds can be relatively expensive as well because copper itself is not a cheap material. The installation cost problems with wall mounted taps and counter mounted taps that are connected with copper piping often result from the skilled labour required for cutting, shaping, and soldering the pipes correctly to ensure proper functionality and prevent leaks.
3. Wall mounted tap maintenance
One might not always think about it, but what happens after the project handover is just as important as the design phase and installation process.
It is crucial to consider how easy washroom maintenance will be for facilities teams, as labour intensive upkeep can turn a visually appealing masterpiece into a constant hassle and financial burden for tenants.
The problems with wall mounted taps, when installed conventionally either on an access panel or with the access panel located over the nearby working parts, is that they add complexity and inconvenience to the maintenance process.
When a tap needs servicing or repairs, it means that every time maintenance is required, the panel (and potentially the tap) needs to be removed and reinstalled, which can be time consuming.
This process can be particularly problematic in public or commercial buildings with multiple taps installed, as each one would need individual access, resulting in extended downtimes and disruption to washroom operations.
Plus, the constant removal and reinstallation of access panels can lead to wear and tear on the panels themselves or even the taps, making them more prone to damage or deterioration over time.
4. Commercial washroom design
While it might seem unusual that one of the problems with wall mounted taps with access panels extends to this extent, from a washroom design perspective, access panels can sometimes detract from the aesthetics of a well designed washstation.
If they are not placed in a discreet location or if they have been fixed poorly, it can negatively impact the overall look and feel of the space.
Washrooms are designed to be clean, pleasant, and visually appealing spaces. An unsightly access panel can disrupt the design, making the washroom appear less attractive or less well maintained. This can be a particular concern in settings where visual appeal and cleanliness are important, such as hotels, restaurants, commercial buildings, or upscale public facilities, where a poor visual impression can affect the user’s experience.
Yes, they are a fantastic and reliable investment when installed with a wall plate kit. However, in our experience, the problems with wall mounted taps that feature access panels often arise due to the traditional installation method, rising installation costs, labour intensive maintenance, and a negatively impacted commercial washroom design.
Fortunately, there is a solution to this problem: a tap mounting plate.
Also known as a wall plate kit, a tap mounting plate is an innovative solution that eliminates the need for access panels, saving time and money on installation and labour costs, reducing washroom downtime, simplifying maintenance, promoting sustainability, and safeguarding the washstation against potential damage during servicing intervals.
If you would like to learn more about the benefits of a tap mounting plate and avoid the problems with wall mounted taps and access panels, please reach out to one of Dolphin’s washroom consultants. They will be happy to demonstrate how this device can add value to your washroom design and save you money.
Are you still considering an access panel installation in your washroom? Read our blog on the ideal locations for commercial access panels in commercial washrooms.