Plumbing and heating markets bolstered by building boost

Prospects look good for the plumbing materials sector with the increase in planning permissions experienced throughout 2015 boosting building activity. Latest figures show that the first four months of 2016 saw an increase of 22% in building commencement notices served in the country when compared to the same time period in 2015. Munster experienced a 35% increase, Connacht/Ulster 27%, the Greater Dublin Area 30% and the rest of Leinster was up 14%. An urban-rural divide remains, with activity in the regions highest in Cork, Galway and Meath counties.

Plumb7 sealant bridges the gaps

Contech Building Products launches Plumb7 sealant

Plumb7 is the latest solution from Contech Building Products aimed at dealing with the sealing of leaks in closed and open heating systems in both household and industrial applications. The new product offers an effective solution to leaks in radiators, convectors, circulation pumps, central heating pipes and underfloor heating systems.

“It provides a quick and permanent seal that does not impair flow. In line with the innovative 7 Series, Plumb7 is simple to use, prevents rust and corrosion and enhances the pump lubrication,” a spokesperson said.

According to Contech Building Products, it is perfect as either a fast and effective solution to stop a leak or as a preventative action to stop the occurrence of leakage. One can is sufficient for use in a system containing 75 litres of water or 10 to 12 radiators. As the exclusive distributor of Tec7 and the 7 series range of products, Contech offers a 24-hour technical and customer support service.

Eco Grate impresses Dragons

Joe Goodfellow and his daughter, Carmel, brought their product, the Eco Grate to RTÉ’s Dragon’s Den seeking €80,000 investment from the ‘Dragons’ for a 16% share in their company. Dragons Barry O’Sullivan and Eleanor McEvoy made a joint offer to the Goodfellows. The pair of entrepreneurs offered the desired financial amount, for a 25% share in the company between the two of them, and the Eco Grate team accepted.

The Eco Grate in use in fireplace, Maree Co Galway

The Claregalway-based company was set up in 2011 and after a number of years of research and development, the Eco Grate came on the market in November 2014. Eco Grate turns an ordinary inefficient open fire place into a massively efficient room and space heater, according to the Goodfellows. It achieves this by heating the actual air in the room and by preventing the majority of the heat from being lost up the chimney. By halving the amount of fuel normally needed, Eco Grate is hugely environmentally friendly, the Goodfellows say.

The Eco Grate was named a finalist in the 2013 Hearth and Home Exhibition and was also a finalist in this year’s Sustainable Energy Green Awards. Arigna Fuels have teamed up with the company and are offering Eco Grate customers a free 40kg bag of their Cosyglo coal with every Eco Grate purchased. Cosyglo is a long-lasting, smokeless coal that is low in ash. The ‘Eco Grate’ can be seen working Monday to Saturday in Office 7, Lakeview Point, Claregalway Corporate Park, Claregalway.

IITC showrooms

Irish International Trading Corporation (Cork) plc (IITC) recently announced the completion of an extensive upgrade and refit of its bathroom and heating showrooms at Tramore Road, Cork. IITC’s showroom is one of the largest and most extensively stocked in the country and it gives customers the opportunity to experience how products will actually look and feel in their own home, the company states.

IITC upgraded bathroom showrooms

IITC has been supplying plumbing, heating and bathroom products to the trade and public sector in Cork and Munster for over 95 years. “IITC understand that customers need to be reassured that they are buying the right products for their unique circumstances. IITC encourages all customers to visit their showrooms and engage with their professional staff. Following this consultation the customers’ needs and desires can be established,” a spokeperson commented.

Uppercross Enterprises expands

Uppercross Enterprises’ business has expanded over the last 12 months, driven by market share growth and increased consumer spend, according to Group Managing Director, Roy Moore. He explained: “We have seen a number of positives coming into the market and our gains have been fuelled by a combination of exciting new products and innovative promotional programmes. We target the regular promotion of high-volume lines such as our Irish compression category and our comprehensive range of standard, designer and bathroom radiators, supported by catalogues and point of sales to assist the merchant. We see that the Irish market is becoming more competitive and trade buyers now expect a consistent programme of promotional activity from Uppercross.

Uppercross NSAI licence for copper plumping fittings

“Our customers want an Irish supplier with products that they can trust. The market continues to demand the highest standards in terms of both quality and service levels and we continue to focus on these areas. For example, our range of Irish Compression Fittings, up to 28mm, is certified by the National Standards Authority of Ireland to conform to I.S. EN 1254-2.”

He concluded by noting that merchants appreciated the product knowledge demonstrated by staff at Uppercross Enterprises and enjoy visits to the company’s warehouse and showroom where they can see the effectiveness of the company’s investment in stocks to support its business.