Innovative Ideas from Aquatica

Isolator Filter Stops
Installing isolator filter stops to your taps is a great way of protecting ceramic mechanisms from small particles of dirt. These particles can scratch the ceramic cartridge which can then cause the tap to leak. (This applies to all tapware products, regardless of their origin). Isolator filter stops are an ideal solution to this problem because they:

  • Are easy to install
  • Provide good filtering on the line and excellent hot and cold flow
  • Are easy to access when the filter needs cleaning
  • Allow water to be turned off at the sink (rather than at the mains)
  • Come with a stainless steel backing flange for a really smart finish


Easy installation of Bath Spouts
After all plumbing has been installed, and any tiles fitted, these bath spouts can then be secured in place with an allen key.


Rotary Ceramic Cartridge
The new rotary ceramic cartridge in the Novecento shower mixers provide for easy mixing of hot and cold water. As the mixer is turned, the cold water gradually becomes warm, through to hot. The amount of water flow can also be adjusted during installation using flow control valves on the mixer.


Single Lever Mixers
Single lever sink mixers not only provide quick and easy adjustment of water flow, they are also much more hygienic than conventional kitchen taps. Imagine your hands have been contaminated with bacteria during the handling of, for instance, raw chicken. With a conventional tap, you would need to touch both taps to wash your hands, transferring bacteria onto them. You would then reinfect your hands once again when you turned the taps off. A single lever mixer can be controlled with the back of the hand, preventing the transfer of such bacteria.

Our Exposed Sink Mixer offers all the advantages of a single lever mixer, has the ability to operate on equal and unequal pressures and can be fitted without the need for expensive plumbing alterations. The virtually effortless operation makes it an ideal choice for anyone having difficulty operating a conventional tap set.


Sink Mixer with Pull-out Spray
The sink mixer with pull-out spray is a very versatile product for any kitchen or laundry. The pull-out spray head has two functions - standard aerated flow and spray - making it great for:

  • Cleaning and washing vegetables
  • Rinsing around the sink bowl
  • Rinsing large platters
  • Filling buckets
  • Washing the cat or dog

Furthermore, the unique feature of this mixer is its suitability for equal low, unequal pressure or mains pressure systems, due to an extra wide hose, unique low pressure ceramic cartridge and extra large ports through the body of the tap. This allows for a greater water flow through the tap (minimum water pressure 50kPa).


Ceramic Cartridge
Smarte, Sigmma and Forté shower mixers all feature our unique ceramic cartridge.
This cartridge has an innovative disc design which provides more water flow and a smoother shower mix, by giving greater control when moving the lever from hot to warm.

Built into the shower mixer body are these handy control valves. These valves allow adjustment of the mixer to either limit the flow of water on mains pressure or balance the flow on unequal pressure. This ensures that mixers can be altered to suit all types of installation.

  Flexible Connections
Both the Novecento and Berlino Basin Sets come with flexible connections for easy installation.

  New Forte and Xera Low Pressure Shower Mixers/Bath Fillers
The mixer incorporates a new 45mm ceramic cartridge for a better shower on low pressure and much quicker fill for your bath.


New Xera and Oblio Water Filter Mixers
The Xera and Oblio water filter mixers include a long life water filter cartridge, sourced from America. The KDF/GAC is a “two-media” cartridge consisting of KDF (high-purity copper-zinc alloy) and GAC (granular activated carbon), providing superior filtration qualities. Through the electrolytic and oxidation reactions of the KDF and the absorption and entrapment capabilities of the GAC, the KDF/GAC can remove or greatly reduce a wide range of contaminants through to 30,000 litres.

The KDF media also provides a bacteriostatic effect which is hostile to algae, fungi and bacteria. The OKDF30/1 is also Cyst safe.


Eco-Smarte Handshower
In August 2010, Aquatica was very proud to have been voted by Consumer Magazine as having the Number 1 Slide Shower for water saving and shower comfort.

Our Eco Smarte and Eco Stream Multi spray slide showers topped the list over six other slide showers that were independently tested.


Ezimix Shower Mixer Divertor
Aquatica shower mixers are unique in their design and offer features that really perform in low/unequal and mains pressure systems.

The Ezimix Shower Mixer with Divertor has a 45mm cartridge manufactured in Europe and is assembled and tested in New Zealand. It is suitable for equal low, unequal and mains pressure systems (35-600kPa). The unique disc design provides more water flow and a smoother temperature mix by giving greater control when moving the lever from hot to warm. We have also added control valves to the inlets of the hot and cold. These valves allow adjustment of the flow to either limit the flow on mains pressure or balance the flow on unequal pressures.


WELS in a Nutshell
Since 1 April 2011, New Zealand has had a Water Efficiency Labelling Scheme (WELS) to provide information to consumers buying products that use water. The scheme provides for a star rating for most tapware and shower heads. Exempt products are bath fillers and taps to washing machines. Shower mixers are not rated either, because the shower head is rated. The more stars a product has, the more water efficient it is. However, in low pressure situations, you might prefer more flow, in which case you would look for fewer stars.

0 Stars [Warning] >16 (More than 16 litres/minute or failing performance requirements)
1 Star >12 to 16 (More than 12 l/m, but not more than 16 l/m)
2 Stars >9 to 12 (More than 9 l/m, but not more than 12 l/m)
3 Stars >7.5 to 9 (More than 7.5 l/m, but not more than 9 l/m)
4 Stars >6 to 7.5 (More than 6 l/m, but not more than 7.5 l/m)
5 Stars >4.5 to 6 (More than 4.5 l/m, but not more than 6 l/m)
6 Stars 4.5 or less (4.5 l/m or less)
NB: For shower heads, the WELS scheme currently allows for up to 3 stars on low pressure and up to 4 stars on mains pressure only.


Generally speaking, the Aquatica star rating on Mains Pressure has been achieved by installing a flow regulator. This could be a pressure compensating aerator (in a spout) or a pressure compensating washer (in the inlet of a tap hose tail, a shower rose or a shower hose). Aquatica has chosen to make most sink mixers 3 star, and most basin mixers 4 star, in the belief that people prefer a higher flow to fill the jug than for washing hands in the bathroom.

NB: If you do not desire water efficiency, you can leave out the regulator installed to comply with WELS. However, you should check the instructions first, because in some cases, flow regulation is not for WELS but has been installed in order to make the product function properly (and prevent back-feeding of cold water into the hot water cylinder).

In most cases, the Aquatica star rating on Low Pressure has been achieved with no restriction, but for tapware, you will find a water director in the spout of the tap in order to maximise flow.

If your product was labeled “Mains Pressure Only” then it is supplied with the appropriate WELS-compliant flow regulation already installed and will have one WELS label on the box.

If your product is suitable for a variety of pressures, then it is ready for equal low pressure, with appropriate additional flow regulation and instructions in a bag, which will enable you to quickly make it suitable for mains (or unequal) pressure. It will have two WELS labels, one for low and one for mains pressure. [A 3-pack might have multiple labels. However, the product label should indicate star ratings for each item in the pack.]

Our star ratings have been confirmed by independent laboratory testing and, in terms of efficiency, Aquatica has printed the worst case scenario for each star rating, (ie. 4 stars allows for a range of 6 to 7.5 litres per minute, so we have printed 7.5 litres per minute.) As well as other tests, a flow test is done on mains pressure at 150, 250 and 350kPa and an average taken. For low pressure, the test is at 35kPa.

For more information go to

© Aquatica


DR Brass in a Nutshell

Myth:  DR Brass is lead free

Brass is made by combining primarily copper and zinc.  Copper has little tendency to react chemically, is very malleable and can be easily damaged.  Zinc is reactive and vulnerable to corrosion but strong.  By combining the two, at about 58% copper and 40% zinc, we have a product that is unreactive and strong, which is good for plumbing fittings in most circumstances.

DR Brass and DZR Brass are the same thing.  They stand for “dezincification resistant brass”.  Dezincification is where, under certain circumstances, some of the zinc is removed from the brass allowing water to seep through the brass causing a leak.  DR Brass reduces dezincification from the fitting.  It is achieved by increasing the copper content slightly and reducing the zinc.  At the same time, lead is slightly reduced and a little arsenic and tin are typically added.

There are several factors which predispose brass to dezincify.  These include exposure to highly acidic or highly alkaline water, concentrations of chlorides, high temperature, low water usage, polluted atmosphere, hard water, sea water and corrosive soils such as salty soil or acid peat.

Producing a fitting made in DR brass usually adds about 15% to the cost.  DR Brass will make a product more suitable in corrosive environments. It is usually mandatory that fittings which go underground are made from DR brass. 

Are tapware fittings in New Zealand required to be made of DR Brass?
No.  But it is a requirement in Australia as part of their Watermark Certification process.  However, it has long been argued that this requirement is more about protection from overseas imports than it is about addressing a genuine health risk.

So where does lead fit in?
Lead is a small component of brass.  Lead-leaching can occur when:
1.         the water is at least moderately corrosive to brass,
2.         brass with a high lead content is present, and
3.         plumbing lines have relatively low water demand.

Why aren’t taps lead free?
Lead is a tiny but necessary component of brass, which improves machinability.  You would find about 2-2.5% in DR brass and about 3-4% in standard brass.  Be assured, lead is expensive.  No right-minded manufacturer would choose to put more lead than necessary into their brass.  In California, they are required to use what is called “Lead Free Brass”. However, that still has a content of 0.25% lead, of the total product weight, including handles, cartridge, tails etc.  Once these non-brass components are removed from the calculation, the lead content is actually higher than the 0.25%.  So, even lead-free is not free of lead, because lead makes the brass machinable.

How can I make sure my family are safe from lead-leaching into the water?
The World Health Organisation recommends that every morning, you run about a cup of water first before drinking from the tap. 

Amongst other things, the filter on the Aquatica water filter mixers reduces any Lead in the water by 85%, Aluminium by 97% and Arsenic by 96%. 
Good for 2 years or 30,000 litres, the filter reduces a host of contaminants and is hostile to algae, fungi and bacteria.  It is also Cryptosporidium, Giardia and Cyst safe.  As well as filtered tap water, these taps also deliver hot and cold water as normal.

Does Aquatica produce products in DR Brass?
Aquatica produces a number of products made in DR Brass for the Australian market, but also available in New Zealand.  These products are registered in Australia for Watermark.  There are two levels of watermark certification – Grade 1 and Grade 2.  Aquatica is certified to Grade 1, the highest level.  Certification lasts 5 years.

Certification involves more than just testing for DR Brass.  There are cartridge tests, water taste tests, tests for microbiological growth and endurance.  The volume of water in the tap cavity is measured and the lead level is calculated in parts per billion of the water in that cavity.  The tap is assessed for being “fit for purpose” and the purchasing process within the company is also examined.

The DR Brass requirement for Watermark covers all parts up to the shut-off valve (or cartridge).  Thereafter, the parts can be standard brass.  So, spouts are not DR Brass.              

As at 2019, the following Aquatica products are certified for Watermark:

Saluto Basin Mixer
Oblio Vessel Mixer
Oblio Basin Mixer
Oblio 2Basin
Oblio Sink Mixer
Oblio Sink Mixer Coil
Oblio Sink Mixer Water Filter
Mia Sink Mixer Gooseneck
Cascata Basin Mixer

There are also a number of additional products in DR Brass made solely for the Australian market.