The building industry in India is growing at a fast pace. But how efficient is a building without effective plumbing? The ecosystem of building and construction consists of MEP or plumbing consultants, who design and assess the construction site and suggest the best possible plumbing solutions. Thus, their knowledge and expertise are what keep our city hygienic and stagnation free.One of India’s most experienced MEP consultants is Mr. Nilesh Gandhi from Ace Consultants, Pune. Ace consultants based in Pune help the client in making well-informed decisions regarding MEP consulting plumbing designs and equipment. From the beginning of the project’s design phase, they work closely with the architect to give cost-effective and optimized plumbing design. In this interaction with BuildingandInteriors, Mr. Nilesh Gandhi, CEO, Ace Consultants Pvt. Ltd. talks about the ever-evolving plumbing industry. He also discusses the prominent brands in the Indian market and trending sustainable plumbing products.
MEP Consultant in Pune, Mr. Nilesh Gandhi, CEO of Ace Consultants
Importance of sustainable product designs in plumbing
Sustainability is not only important in India but across the globe. We do not need Google to tell us the difference between required and available water. In India, sustainability and water-saving solutions are even more critical as we have a giant population, almost 1/3 of the world with limited water availability. So, we will have to be instrumental in optimizing the water use with low flow fixtures, reuse treated STP/ETP water, and use harvested rainwater. I can see a good development in seawater reverse osmosis from a cost point of view and it can be a silver lining for the grey area of water shortage.
Challenges for water optimizing and power-saving designs
In my opinion, one must prioritize hygiene while optimizing water and power consumption. As we have evolved as a society with so many modern gadgets, the supporting system design in drain and water supply also shall get optimized. For example, if I am reducing the flow of Public area WHB to 2 lpm, do I need a water supply pipe of 15mm diameter for the same? Also, with the reduced flow, are we getting the required carryover distance for the solids in the drain?
Also, we have to be careful about checking the compatibility of EWC the Flush tank of the other makes for low-flow fixtures below 3/6 lits flush.
Nilesh Gandhi, MEP consultants in Pune, Ace consultants project site
Association with SCHELL
We have used SCHELL products on our various commercial, residential, and hotel projects and we have very good experience with support during installation, the performance of SCHELL sustainable products & after-sales service. After all, it is German Engineering. SCHELL is more prominent in CP fittings in India. Yes, there are some unique products with SCHELL like angle valves with built-in filters and inline PRV 15mm dia for Health faucets, which can save space and enhance the product life. We found it most suitable for hotels and high-end bungalows. SCHELL also has very precise flow control in their 2/4 and 3/6 flush valves.
Evolving plumbing ecosystem in India
One thing that stands out the most to me as I reflect on the previous two decades is the incredible amount of attention that plumbing has begun to receive. In my opinion, this indicates more evolved growth. In India, technology is changing quickly in terms of materials and design. We have been utilizing GI and CI pipes for a long time now, but in the past fifteen years, a lot of new materials, and sustainable products have emerged with various technologies and benefits. Even we as plumbing consultants sometimes find it difficult to keep up with the pace of such quickly evolving technologies. One further significant development is the quick and simple availability of data and information, especially from the perspective of newcomer consultants to the MEP industry. All due to IT technology.
The fundamentals of plumbing will always be the same because it is an engineering-based subject. More so than the location, the plumbing design will vary depending on the application. India is a diverse nation in all respects, thus there will always be some local flavour depending on the conventions of the particular region’s society. For instance, the climate in Pune does not need MEP consultants to arrange for hot water for WHB as a necessity, however, in the North, we must provide it.
Plumbing and hygiene
The health aspect of plumbing is a very important topic. Chrome vs Brass is one of the topics in the whole discussion but it is not the only point. When you design a plumbing system, you have to take care of the health aspect of Plumbing in many ways. Here are a few points for ready reference:
- Avoid dead legs in the piping network
- Correct selection of flow rates and aerator in taps/ faucets for Hospital projects
- Control of chlorination in the system
- Air gap in water supply and drainage system for the applications like Dishwasher, Ice making machine, walking refrigerator for the food storages
- Legionella control in the central hot water system
- Drain carry for EWC solid waste in case of low flow fixtures.
MEP consultant’s essentials for a brand partnership
I believe that a plumbing product is a comprehensive system rather than a simple product. Therefore, I am seeking a comprehensive solution for my client when I select a brand. The product must be approved, tested, sustainable, simple to install, and the supplier must be able to provide any assistance needed during site execution. Also, the spare parts must be available for at least the next seven years. Additionally, if the company is not Indian, I will ensure that they have a technical representative on staff locally, especially if the product is connected to a water supply, rainfall collection, or sanitary drainage system.
Key factors for successful plumbing design for MEP consultants
If I have to prescribe in one line then,” Right design with appropriate material in skilled plumber’s hands will give you perfect system”. Some key factors are listed below:
- Good workmanship-do it right the first time helps in plumbing
- We must understand that plumbing is very closely integrated with civil work. One has to factor in the expansion/ contractor associated with piping and cut out closed with the right sealant.
- Correct selection of MOC of pipes suitable for the application
- Thorough checking for water tightness before concealing the work
- Proper supporting to pipes
- Do a mock-up of the work. Then get it approved so there are no mistakes in repeated work at various locations.
- Nowadays we have a technological tool like REVIT, and the project manager shall use the same which can give you clash detection and saves time in rework on site.
- Keep track of changes/modifications done on-site for the concealed work so correct as-built drawing of the same is made by the plumbing contractor after work is done.
Technology & sustainability is trending among customers: Mr. B.O. Prasanna Kumar (Engineering Consultants)
We can see a drastic change in the plumbing and construction industry today. The industries show accelerated growth and no signs of slowing down. But, with the advancing plumbing technologies and limited services, we see a widening gap between the expected and the delivered. This is where the role of a plumbing consultant becomes pertinent. MEP consulting engineers are well-versed in a variety of commercial building issues. Engineering consulta