Okay, what the heck is WCP? Will you come to my house and fix my plumbing? What can be the problem? When can you plumb? No, not even close. It stands for Water Conserving Plumbing fixtures. It is a new law that requires homeowners to install Water Conserving Plumbing fixtures in their homes.
What are WCP fixtures? The law calls for installation of WCP fixtures when the existing plumbing fixtures use more than the following amounts of water:
- Any toilet manufactured to use more than 1.6 GPF (Gallons per Flush).
- Any urinal manufactured to use more than 1 GPF.
- Any showerhead manufactured to have a flow capacity of more than 2.5 GPM (Gallons per Minute).
- Any interior faucet that emits more than 2.2 GPM.
When do homeowners have to install WCP? On January 1, 2017 homeowners are required to make these plumbing fixture changes if the property was build prior to 1994.
Who has to pay for these plumbing fixture changes? The homeowner pays of course, although there may be some financing arrangements made for certain groups of people. That is still being sorted out by the various cities and California state government.
Real estate sellers are going to have some duty to disclose whether or not they have installed WCP in their home at the time of sale, however, this is not a point of sale requirement. The requirement is that homeowners make the changes as needed regardless of whether they plan to sell or continue living in the home.
Cities throughout California are free to add their own ordinances that additionally restrict water usage.
Owners of apartment buildings have until January 1, 2019 to retrofit their plumbing fixtures with WCP. Regarding tenant responsibilities on or after January 1, 2019, the law states, “A tenant shall be responsible for notifying the owner or owner’s agent if the tenant becomes aware that a water-conserving plumbing fixture within his or her unit is not operating at the manufacturer’s rated water consumption.”
The law contains various requirements regarding new construction and remodels. For example, when construction work is done in a room that contains non-compliant plumbing fixtures, i.e. a bathroom or kitchen, then all fixtures in that room have to changed out to WCP.
Section 1101.7 exempts building owners under certain conditions, one of which is, “Real property for which a licensed plumber certifies that, due to the age or configuration of the property or its plumbing, installation of water-conserving plumbing fixtures is not technically feasible.”
If you would like to read the code for yourself, you can check it out by Googling California Civil Code Section 1101.1 – 1101.8.
Sunset Plumbing is here for you; to help with these required retrofits and certifications. Please feel free to call us with your questions.