A Message from
Those of us over 40 know that at one time our world was full of products that contained lead – gasoline, paint, electronic components, solder, and of course plumbing products. Lead was pretty useful stuff. It was cheap, kept your car engine from knocking, improved the appearance and drying time of paint, and made soldering easy. But one-by-one beginning in the 1970s lead was banned from these products because of serious health risks associated with long-term exposure - especially in children.
The Safe Drinking Water Act (SDWA), originally passed by the US Congress in 1974 was amended in 1996 to limit lead content of end point plumbing devices, such as faucets and stops. More recently in January 2011, the SDWA was further amended to eliminate lead from in-line devices, such as backflow preventers and pressure
As of January 4, 2014, our sales representatives, distributors, and contractors will only be able to sell Zurn product defined as lead-free for potable applications in the US - and quite possibly North America. After that date, standard product in our inventory or in our customer’s inventories will become non-saleable and will need to be scrapped.
As the market leader, Zurn is taking a proactive approach to this positive change in federal law. And because we put the customer first, it is our plan to educate and assist distributors and contractors with the conversion to lead-free products. The inventory pipeline from our raw material suppliers to the contractor’s truck is long – over one year with some products. So even with 10%-20% higher cost of lead-free alloys, we cannot wait until 2013 to initiate the change.
Beginning this fall, all applicable manufacturing will be converted to lead-free products. All order processing will be converted to lead-free part numbers, and lead-free pricing will be applied. A special program is being developed for stocking distributors, that provides a window of opportunity to exchange qualifying products for lead-free when they commit to the program.
Removing lead from our products is not only the right thing to do, but it is also a great opportunity to add value to the Zurn package and strengthen our market leadership position. We are providing an opportunity for our customers to join us in leading the market.
Join us in taking action today!