Alarm.com has taken advantage of the arrival of CES 2020 to unveil a brand new smart home and business device aimed at managing the flow of water. Branded as the Alarm.com Smart Water Valve+Meter, the device's primary purpose is, as its name suggests, to monitor water usage. Developed by Alarm.com's Building36, it also monitors and reacts to leaks.
Smart Water Valve+Meter accomplishes that by integrating directly with the rest of the Alarm.com platform. Home or business owners install the gadget directly over the valve on the main water supply using high-quality plumbing hardware.
The device can then provide in-depth metrics via the Alarm.com mobile app. That's the same app used for the company's other security, access control, automation, and energy management systems. The goal is to make full integration into the smart home easier.
Alarm.com Smart Water Valve+Meter isn't just for conservation
The ability to monitor water usage via an IoT can undoubtedly save either a home or business a substantial amount of money. But even bigger savings may be possible thanks to one other above-mentioned feature. Namely, that's leak monitoring and prevention.
Because Alarm.com Smart Water Valve+Meter integrates directly into a home or business's main valve, it's able to accomplish that task quite well. That's in addition to automated saving on overall water usage.
Alarm.com says for example, that the system can detect a burst pipe and automatically shut off the water valve to prevent excess flooding. For situations that are less dramatic, the results are too. For a comparatively less-impactful leak in the laundry room, the system would instead send a notification. It can, under those circumstances, keep the water running. That way homeowners know the leak is there but laundry day isn't interrupted.
On the water-saving front, Smart Water Valve+Meter can detect a toilet that's continually running. That might be due to some problem with the internal hardware or something else but isn't relevant. The system can then close off flow to prevent that from stacking up on the bill. That and similar features are also useful during periods where water conservation is important.
Integrated with an HVAC system and smart thermostat, more complex scenarios come to light too. For instance, the system can use the temperature sensors in the device itself and the HVAC system in conjunction. That way, if the pipes are at risk of freezing, it can alert users to the potential threat.
Alarm.com hasn't provided specifics regarding just how small a leak can be detected. But it does indicate that the average family spends around $1,000 every year on water alone. So the savings could add up fairly quickly.
Pricing and availability
Following its CES 2020 announcement, Alarm.com says the Smart Water Valve+Meter will become available direct from Alarm.com in the second quarter of 2020. In that same timeframe, it will also be available from Building36 service providers. One detail the company has not provided, however, is just how much the gadget will cost or whether there will be subscription costs associated with monitoring.
So any prospective buyers for this intelligent monitoring and leak stopping system will want to keep an ear to the ground for more news coming through before launch.