This smart device allows you to conserve water, save money and detect leaks by monitoring usage in real-time.
Did you know that each person uses about 80-100 gallons of water per day? Flush a toilet? That’s three gallons. Wash a load of laundry? That’s another 25 gallons. Brush your teeth? One more gallon. And this statistic doesn’t include outdoor water use by sprinkler systems either. With a vast majority of the U.S. west coast experiencing drought conditions, H2O consumption has never been so paramount.
Luckily, one Minneapolis-based startup has developed what they’re calling the world’s first learning water meter that will help you to become more mindful. The aptly name FLUID has been designed for easy installation — simply snap the device around the main pipeline coming into your home, plug it in and connect it to your Wi-Fi network.
FLUID will help you better understand exactly when, where and how much water you’re consuming on a regular basis by providing real-time reports on its accompanying mobile app. By employing ultrasonic pulses, the jig is able to measure the velocity, flow and transit time of the water without ever having to cut into the pipe. This can all then be visualized on your phone.
Whats’s even more impressive is that it can even identify and track usage by appliance or fixture. In other words, it knows exactly where the water is coming from and enables you to learn the flow pattern associated with that appliance or fixture’s run cycle. The end result? Quantifiable data that lets you to see just how much H2O you’re using in the shower, doing the laundry, flushing the toilet, irrigating the lawn and so forth.
“Amazing things can happen once you become more connected to the water you use. You’ll become more aware of how many loads of laundry you are doing weekly, the length of your showers and other habits and behaviors,” the FLUID team writes.
And that’s not all, it only takes one small would-have-been occurrence for FLUID to pay for itself! When it detects constant or erratic water use, a notification will be sent to your phone indicating that there may be a possible leak or water that has been left running.
“It could be as simple as a garden hose that was left on, a running toilet, or in a worst case scenario a pipe bursts when you are away from your home on a trip or an errand. FLUID gives you the peace of mind that you won’t return home to huge water bills or thousands of dollars in water damages,” its creators explain.
Beyond making recommendations, FLUID empowers you to set monthly water consumption goals and keep tabs on your progress. In the future, the team hopes to integrate the tool with existing smart home hubs, such as Nest, WeMo and SmartThings, and provide a REST API so developers can design their own integrations.
Ready to become more mindful of water in and around your house? Check out FLUID’s Kickstarter campaign, where it is currently seeking $95,000. Pending all goes to plan, the first batch of units is expected to ship out sometime in May 2016.