Lead Free Law....Are You Ready?


Lead Free Law....Are You Ready?

Get The Lead Out Consortium Poised To Help You Prepare For the New National Lead Law

Posted by:    |    Thursday, February 21, 2013

The countdown is on: the federal “Reduction of Lead in Drinking Water Act” becomes effective January 4, 2014, and distributors, engineers, contractors, and code officials all need to start preparing now. To facilitate a smooth transition, the Get the Lead Out Plumbing Consortium is in place and ready to get you ready … offering widespread education about the manufacture, distribution, and installation of Lead Free* plumbing products.

The Consortium – a cross-section of the plumbing industry comprised of leading trade associations and manufacturers – has developed a variety of resources that will help you prepare for this new law, which will make it illegal to sell or install pipes, fittings and fixtures in applications that convey water for human consumption that have a weighted average lead content exceeding 0.25% (the previous national standard was 8.0% maximum). The new standard does not include water not intended for human consumption, including water used for manufacturing, industrial processing, irrigation, and outdoor watering. Also excluded from the new law are toilets, bidets, urinals, fill valves, flushometer valves, tub fillers, shower valves, service saddles, or water distribution main gate valves that are two inches in diameter or larger.

Get the Facts Realizing that awareness is the key to compliance of the new law, the Consortium has been working to build understanding of the new requirements. Visit www.GetTheLeadOutPlumbing.com to get all the facts: • Historical background of the legislative milestones leading up to the new federal law. • Interpretation and enforcement issues related to the new law. • What constitutes a Lead Free product. • Comparison between standard and Lead Free bronze/brass alloys. • Basis for Lead Free product selection and compliance. • Major material factors impacting the ability to solder Lead Free alloys effectively and solder-flux considerations. • How to identify Lead Free products by their packaging, body markings and handles, which vary by manufacturer. • Step-by-step action plans for distributors, engineers, contractors, and code officials on how to prepare for the federal Lead Free law.   “This is a game changer,” says Roger Peugeot, vice chairman of the PHCC Educational Foundation, which developed the concept of the Consortium. “There is a lot of stock out there in trucks and warehouses, which will need to be used by the end of [2013]. The product also takes a different technique for soldering, which will involve training.”

Get Trained With that, the Consortium has implemented a communications and training initiative to further your understanding and promote compliance with the Reduction of Lead in Drinking Water Act. It’s easy to get started:

• Visit www.GetTheLeadOutPlumbing.com for a list of upcoming training seminars, FAQs, and much more.

• Attend a training session at the Indiana PHCC Convention and interact with Consortium leaders at participating 2013 industry events and association meetings.

 • Log on to a live webinar.

The federal law – spearheaded by Plumbing Manufacturers International – is based on the template of a California law generally referred to as AB 1953. Prior to the federal legislation, Vermont, Maryland, and Louisiana also have adopted the lower lead mandate. The plumbing industry supports this new uniform national standard, which will harmonize requirements across the country.

While manufacturers already are working to bring Lead Free products into the marketplace, the Consortium is focused on providing specific information and training to contractors, engineers, distributors, and code officials (see sidebar).

*Lead Free refers to the wetted surface of pipe, fittings and fixtures in potable water systems that have a weighted average lead content <=0.25% per the Safe Drinking Water Act (Sec. 1417) amended 1-4-2011 and other equivalent state regulations.

 Contractors: Take Action!

The time is NOW to start planning for the federal Lead Free law. Specifically, contractors need to:

• Understand the federal law and any state laws that will affect you and know their effective dates.

• Know what product categories are included in and exempt from the applicable laws.

 • Learn to identify lead free* product markings and packaging.

• Confirm manufacturer listings with third-party agencies.

 • Be sure you stock products that meet the new standards.

 • Understand that you may be stuck with non-compliant (non-saleable) inventory on 1/4/2014.

 • Practice proper installation and soldering techniques for lead free* products.

 • Work with suppliers to obtain installation material recommendations and training.


*Lead Free refers to the wetted surface of pipe, fittings and fixtures in potable water systems that have a weighted average lead content <=0.25% per the Safe Drinking Water Act (Sec. 1417) amended 1-4-2011 and other equivalent state regulations.

 This article is provided by the Get The Lead Out Plumbing Consortium. Members of the consortium include: American Society of Plumbing Engineers (ASPE), American Supply Association (ASA), International Association of Plumbing and Mechanical Officials (IAPMO), International Code Council (ICC), Legend Valve, Milwaukee Valve, NIBCO INC.,Plumbing Heating Cooling Contractors - National Association (PHCC), PHCC Educational Foundation, Plumbing Manufacturers International (PMI), Reliance Worldwide, Viega, LLC,Watts Water Technologies.