the Flo-Guard system compares to other systems
the world of leak prevention (or mitigation system) there
are basically two general types of systems – point
of use and ‘whole house’.
Point of use systems are small, battery activated, electronic
devices that sense the presence of water and make an alarm.
These are similar to smoke detectors but for water. These
devices are typically placed near locations where water
is used so if a leak occurs, someone can be alerted to
address the issue. Obviously someone must be in the area
to do this and the sensors must be functioning properly.
Whole house systems protect the entire dwelling. Within
this category there are two types, those with sensors which
rely on the presence or flow of water to detect a leak,
and then shut off the main water supply to the dwelling.
there’s the Flo-Guard approach which shuts
off the water when you are away from the dwelling to prevent
water damage from occurring. Why take this approach? If
the system is sensor based, it only activates after it
detects water and the damage is already done. So the Flo-Guard
system shuts off the water so a leak CAN’T occur.
With the Flo-Guard approach, the system can be turned
off immediately or after a preset delay. This feature is
helpful if you want to leave your home just after starting
a load of laundry or dishes for example. After the delay,
the system shuts off the water and the dwelling is protected.
Flo-Guard also allows for the use of water by systems
in the dwelling that need it. For example irrigation, humidification,
and water-powered sump pump systems. All of these systems
can be connected to the Flo-Guard system so that if they
need water while the water is off (dwelling protected),
the system will temporarily open the water control valve
to supply water for the system. After one of these systems
is done doing its job the Flo-Guard system turns off the
water again to protect the dwelling.
The Flo-Guard system has been designed for connection
to any system that requires water, whether currently used
or not. For example fire suppression systems, which are
slowly being designed into residential applications. In
fact, the system has a lot of additional built in capabilities
that even allow it to control multiple valves with either
the same or reverse function for commercial and industrial
Flo-Guard system also separates the system controller
(Building Systems Interface) and the valve, so the system
can be used with any size or type of valve. All other
systems either have the valve integrated into the controller
so there’s a limit to how big the valve can be (for
example, if your home is considered a ‘big’ home
you likely cannot use any of the other systems because
the largest valve they offer is 1”.) The Flo-Guard
system allows for the valve to be placed anywhere, even
outside the dwelling since the electrical connection is
sealed to the elements.
How the system works
The system can be activated to turn off the water by a
manual wall switch, an alarm system, or a smart home system.
manual wall switch is much like a standard wall switch
for turning on and off a light in your home, but with
some unique features like a small light to indicate whether
the water control valve is on or off. There’s
also a special wall plate that goes with the switch.
The switch should be placed near the main entry/exit
of the dwelling so the water can conveniently be turned
on or off.
Each kit includes one wall switch assembly.
system can be connected to a security system and or smart
home system so that it works behind the scenes. It can
be connected so that as the security system ‘away’ mode
is activated, the Flo-Guard system will turn off the water
either instantly or after a delay. Since most people who
have an alarm system have developed the habit of using
it, this provides a convenient way to protect the dwelling
from plumbing leaks as well as intruders. Also, based on
one’s preference, the alarm system can tell the Flo-Guard
system to turn off the water just when the dwelling is
unoccupied or in a ‘stay’ mode when the dwelling
is still occupied mainly for sleeping.
With a smart home system, the system can be controlled
remotely as well.
Delay Water Off
The Flo-Guard system can be wired so this switch turns
off the water either instantly or after a preset delay
from 30 minutes to 16 hours. The switch can be use exclusively
or with an alarm or smart home system. If used with a security
or smart home system, the switch can be wired to turn off
the water instantly while the other system(s) turns off
the water after a delay. This can be helpful if someone
needs to turn off the water quickly due to a leak (broken
washing machine hose), or if the kids are getting out of
hand with the watering hose outside.
Bypass – Temporary
The Flo-Guard system can be connected to any water using
system including but not limited to: irrigation system,
humidification system, water softener system, siphon/water
powered back up sump pump system, hydronic (closed loop
heated water) system, etc. so that if the Flo-Guard system
has turned off the water to protect the dwelling, any one
or more of these system can tell the Flo-Guard system to
temporarily turn the water back on while one of these systems
is operating. When the system is done doing its job, the
Flo-Guard system turns the water back off.
The Flo-Guard system includes a battery backup and is
designed so that if the main power is lost, the water valve
closes and the dwelling is protected.
Communication TO an alarm system
The Flo-Guard system can also be connected to an alarm
system so that use of the Flo-Guard system can be monitored
if desired. That could be helpful if someone would like
to know if one of the other water using system required
water while the dwelling was unoccupied.
Included also is a detailed installation manual for connecting
the Flo-guard system to any of the systems above.
The system is comprised of four basic parts including:
The transformer can plug into any available 110VAC outlet
within 50 feet of the building systems interface. The transformer
is similar to other transformers used for electronic devices
like printers or computers. It provides a safe, low voltage
(24VAC) power source for the system.
Building Systems Interface (the system controller)
The building systems interface (controller) can be mounted
anywhere desired, but should likely be mounted in an out-of-the-way
but accessible place for installation convenience and possible
time delay adjustment if so desired. The BSI is similar
to the size and shape of an irrigation system controller.
If needed for wet or extreme locations, a weatherproof
enclosure is also available as an option.
Water control valve
The water control valve should be mounted as close to
and down-stream of the water meter for the dwelling. This
will provide maximum protection against water leaks. The
water control valve is an industrial device designed for
use on domestic water systems with consumable water. The
valve includes a manual bypass feature so that if main
power is lost for an extended period, the system can be
bypassed to provide water for use.
The valve should be installed by a licensed professional
plumber and according to local building codes.
Wiring and Activation/Deactivation connections
transformer, BSI, and valve are connected by a 4-conductor
cable provided with the system. The cable is also used
to connect the system to other systems, based on the
needs of the application, including the manual wall switch.
Included with the Flo-Guard system is 150 feet of cable.
Included also for the wall switch is the switch itself,
a wall switch plate, a retrofit or ‘old work’ mounting
bracket, and stickers for both the switch and alarm system.