Page 130 - WaterSense at Work

WaterSense at Work: Best Management Practices for Commercial and Institutional Facilities
Commercial pre-rinse spray valves are spray nozzles that use water under pressure to
remove food residue from plates, pots, pans, and other kitchen utensils prior to sani-
tation in a dishwasher. Pre-rinse spray valves designed for commercial dishwashing
are different from spray valves used for filling glasses, pots, or kettles and for washing
down countertops, floors, and other kitchen areas, all of which typically have very dif-
ferent usage patterns and higher flow rates. These other types of spray valves are not
the focus of this section. Sink faucets for commercial kitchen use are covered under
Section 3.4: Faucets
Pre-rinse spray valves designed for commer-
cial dishwashing are connected to a hose,
which is connected to the water supply.
These handheld devices consist of a spray
nozzle, a squeeze lever that controls the
water flow, and a dish guard bumper. They
often include a spray handle clip, allowing
the user to lock the lever at full spray for
continual use, which can reduce hand irrita-
tion. They can be installed at the end of a
flexible stainless steel hose and can include
a foot-operated, on-off lever. Pre-rinse spray
valves are usually located at the entrance to
a dishwasher or over a sink and are used in
conjunction with a faucet fixture.
The Energy Policy Act (EPAct) of 2005 established the maximum allowable flow rate
for all commercial pre-rinse spray valves sold in the United States at 1.6 gallons per
minute (gpm). Older models can use between 3.0 and 4.5 gpm. Since EPAct 2005
established maximum flow rate requirements, more efficient products have been
developed with flow rates as low as 0.65 gpm.
The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA’s) WaterSense® program is con-
sidering a label for high-efficiency pre-rinse spray valves, with plans to set a water-
efficiency level at least 20 percent below the federal standard and address product
performance. Replacing a pre-rinse spray valve that flows at 1.6 gpm or higher with
one that is at least 20 percent more water-efficient will result in significant water and
energy savings and a simple payback period of less than one year for most facilities.
Operation, Maintenance, and User Education
For optimal pre-rinse spray valve efficiency, system pressure should be tested to
ensure that it is between 20 and 80 pounds per square inch (psi). This will ensure that
the pre-rinse spray valve will deliver the expected flow and performance. In addition,
consider the following:
Pre-Rinse Spray Valves
Pre-rinse spray valve