E122 – Choosing Sustainable Tapwear – Sustainable Homes and Living Season E12

In this episode of the podcast Frances is joined by Tim Sellars from Faucet Strommen. They chat about what makes a sustainable tap different, and what to look for when choosing a tap made to last, along with the qualities of Australian Made tapwear.  


In this episode we discuss tapwear, and sustainability in the manufacturing of tapwear.  

Guest: Tim Sellars from Faucet Strommen, an Australian family business producing tapwear in Victoria. 

Tim has worked at Faucet Strommen since finishing his schooling and studies, from the grassroots up!  

He started in assembly of tapware and then moved into warehousing and despatch to round out his knowledge of how the product flow works.  

He did a stint in custom machining and the coating side of the business for 2 years, then moved into marketing and sales which gave him a well-rounded view of the business as a whole. He now assists Architects and designers with their specification requirements. 

I. What to look for when considering sustainable tapwear. 

  • the materials, the manufacturing process, and where it’s made – a combination of these factors 
    • Faucet Strommen uses lead-free UltraBrass for all their products, which is made from a high proportion of recycled materials, easier to recycle than stainless steel, and allows for a sustainable cycle. 
  • Difference to other manufacturers 
    • Performing all manufacturing stages in-house allows for quick waste management and a smaller environmental impact by reducing transportation, giving peace of mind that sustainable practices are being followed. 
  • Benefit to the environment 
    • Plating is a significant aspect of their work, providing 20 different finishes across the DMF, Organic, and Eco Chrome lines with minimal waste thanks to in-house technology. Some of these processes are innovative for Australia, such as the Eco chrome’s closed-loop system with a unique chemistry that produces a superior finish with an excellent environmental score. 

II. Most important component that makes the biggest impact 

  • a blend of the previously mentioned factors (materials, manufacturing processes, and location) and performing all the processes in a single factory to facilitate clear insight and implement sustainable changes as the business grows. 

III. What differentiates a sustainable tapwear option Vs one that is not 

  • Look for the Australian Made tag and often companies will have an environmental accreditation (such as Green Tag).. Additionally, local manufacturing ensures long-term after-sales service and spare parts availability, making tapware an investment instead of a disposable item. 

IV. Why choose Australian Made 

  • Quality and backup service with parts being available. 
  • Sustainability factor, not just environmentally, but also as a country – reinvesting back into Australian companies gives us all a better future.  
  • The lead time and local flavour – often imported product will not be exactly what specifiers or consumers are asking for in the local market. 

V. All of Faucet Strommen’s tapware is officially Australian Made. They don’t make the valves or ceramics. These are made in Italy and Germany. They are specialists in these components, so this is their focus. 

  • They chose not to make some of those components in Australia since they can get really great quality and transparency from their partners in these fields, at this stage it is not a viable option.   

VI. What makes Faucet Strommen different 

  • They produce all the coordinating accessories in different finishes (e.g. shower hinges, heated towel rails, etc) 
  • Offers “the complete Australian Made solution” 
  • Offers 40-year warranty which is industry leading.  

VII. What should you be looking for or asking about when choosing your tapwear  

  • Do your research and buy once and buy right. Buying Australian Made always win in the long run. 
  • Core buying criteria 
    • Touching and feeling the product can give you a good indication of the quality – Quality is King.  
    • Look at the investment in the tapware and think about over 10-20 years rather than what your initial outlay is going to be. It may be a bigger investment to start with but look at the life of the product or how long the warranty is over against what it’s going to cost you today.  
    • Asking experts 
    • Going to a showroom  

Where to find more about Faucet Strommen products and what they are doing for the environment and sustainability: 

Website: https://www.faucetstrommen.com.au/ 

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/faucetstrommen  

Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/faucetstrommen  

Find a Showroom: https://www.faucetstrommen.com.au/find-a-showroom/  

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