Automated faucets, like in Myrtle Beach Airport

Discussion in 'Plumbing Forum, Professional & DIY Advice' started by edwardh1, Dec 28, 2013.

  1. edwardh1

    edwardh1 Member

    Jul 21, 2006
    South Carolina
    went to the mens rooms in myrtle beach airport in MB south carolina. A modern clean airport. Had just eaten and needed to wash my mouth, but since it is a public place needed to also wash hands first. the automated faucets seemed set up wrong and seemed to only allow 3 uses then they stop completely. Also very short duration water flow2 seconds then decreasing time on the 2nd and 3rd uses. I have been to 20 countries, and many airports.
    Are these faucets adjusted wrong by the plumber or is there a CPA somewhere says no water for you???

    faucets had two sensor "eyes" on the spout (never seen two before is that a brand / type?

    stupid ! (And I am allfor water conservation.
    wonder why they dont have composting toilets out in the parking lot - that would save water, right?
  2. Caduceus

    Caduceus Master Plumber

    Oct 16, 2013
    Just a Plumber
    Pittsburgh, PA
    The sensors were not calibrated properly and timers for flow set. Writing a letter to the airport maintenance may get them adjusted, but chances are it will be ignored. Improper adjustment of these type of faucets is very common. Most installers hook them up and walk away. I find these things everywhere, nowadays, and as a plumber it makes me nuts.
    The timing usually doesn't change for second and third uses on the water flow. What naturally happens when the flow runs a short cycle is a person will move their hands up, down, away and towards the faucet from the sensor. When moving in and out of the sensor range the faucet has a few seconds to reset and a moment delay before opening the solenoid and in that moment your hands have moved, so when the water comes on your hands are now not where they were and you get caught in a loop of 'tag' with the sensor until you walk away frustrated.
    If a sensor faucet cycles for only a few seconds and shuts off, remove your hands completely from the sensor range. Count to three and put your hands back in the same place and wait for it to come back on. It takes a few seconds to reset once your hands are removed and placed back under. If it seems to stay off, the sensor is still picking up and object (hands) and will take a few seconds longer to reset. This is also a design to prevent vandalism by those who would clog a sink with paper towels or toilet paper and covering the sensor to flood the room.
    Last edited: Dec 28, 2013
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  4. hj

    hj Moderator & Master Plumber Staff Member

    Aug 31, 2004
    Cave Creek, Arizona
    IT is very possible they are set to "deactivate" after 3 uses in order to keep kids from playing with them continually to see the water flow. Toilet and urinal valves are set the same way to prevent frequent flushing by a single user.
  5. jadnashua

    jadnashua Retired Defense Industry Engineer xxx

    Sep 2, 2004
    Retired Systems engineer for defense industry.
    New England
    I find some of them, even when you have your hands are carefully positioned, shut off too soon. The health recommendation is to wash your hands under running water at least 20-seconds with soap...and, some of them shut off before that! It should run for at least that time IMHO.
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