Faucet and fitting fabricators are racing to shed lead

Jul 01, 2009 | 08:20 AM |

At the demand of both eco-friendly customers and gavel-heavy legislators, faucet and fitting fabricators have begun to offer lead-free alternatives to traditional leaded products—a move that has proved challenging but fruitful.

"Consumers are interested in it. Municipalities are interested in it. They're more and more interested about what's in their water," said Charlie McTargett, vice president of product development at Delta Faucet Co., Indianapolis. "I think you're going to find people adopt these products readily across the country."

Jeff Baldwin, engineering manager at T&S Brass & Bronze Works Inc., Travelers Rest, S.C., agreed. "Regardless of the science, lead is a hot political button. No-lead, or extremely low-lead, products are the PC (politically correct) answer, no doubt about it."

Although new standards for lead-free fittings in California and Vermont don't go into effect until January 2010, fabricators are already starting to see an uptick in demand from within those states and beyond, and they're quickly adapting their product lines in an effort to stay ahead of the curve.....

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