One of the major features in cove.tool's growing capabilities library is the Indoor Water Use Tool. This feature allows users to calculate their building design's Interior WUI (Water Use Intensity), Water Use Reduction %, Water Efficiency LEED Points, and Indoor WUI Breakdown. Design of processed water systems is important to know because buildings' potable water usage constitute a large portion of the world's freshwater consumption, and can be a sizable hit on operation costs if your fixture value are meeting efficiency targets.
What is Indoor Water Use?
Indoor Water Use is the amount of water [expressed in gallons] that will be required for a typical year of operation. Also expressed as WUI, or Water Use Intensity (gal/ft²/yr), this calculation is done by using flow rate values of 5 standard indoor water fixtures and occupation density of your building to determine your water usage needs. Assumptions for this calculation follow the LEED’s Indoor Water Use calculation method (LEED v4.0 - WE p2), default gender ratio (50:50), and baseline fixture values (LEED v4.0 - WE p2, Table 1: Baseline water consumption of fixture and fittings).
Strategies to reduce potable water use in buildings entail the selection of efficient plumbing fittings, fixtures, and equipment. Building using cove.tool's water use page can test high-efficient fixtures by testing optimal fixture flow rates.
How to use?
Locate the flow rates for the 5 Fixture Categories and input them it into manual input box. To find a fixtures flow rate, users can locate these values in any of the following options:
- Plumbing Fixture Schedule - locate a drawing set of a similarly sized/equipped project to determine applicable flow rates.
- WaterSense Label - search for high-efficiency products on the WaterSense Website. Each eligible fixture will list it's flow rate.
- Fixture Cutsheets - Manufacturers will list fixture data for all fixtures and appliances. Search manufactures near you for values
Determining Indoor Water Usage
Cove.tool uses user-defined Occupation Density, Schedules, and LEED v4 Reference Guide data to determine the water use calculations. See below to learn more about each water use assumptions.
- Number of fixtures: Determined by Occupation Density
- Days of Operation: User-defined Schedules
- Duration of Use and Uses per Day: Taken from "LEED v4.0 - WE p2, Table 8 &9: Nonresidential and Residential default fixture uses"
- Baseline Fixture flow rate: Taken from "LEED v4.0 - WE p2, Table 1: Baseline water consumption of fixture and fittings"
- Flow Rates: User-defined values