You've had the freak weather warnings, the water's rising, your house is about to be flooded – what to do? Wrap yourself in cling film, reach for the flood survival kit and let the rest of this week's products wash over you
Artistic loo seats
Toilet seat maker Bemis has launched its Gallery Collection of moulded wooden toilet seats featuring designs by American artists Leslie Trewyn and Kathleen Savage. Nine designs are available, including the Chet, which features a cat on a black background, and the Bathtime Fun, which has a duckling in the middle of the toilet lid.
Bemis 301

Water heaters
Water-heating products maker Heatstore has launched two unvented water heaters. The company says the 30- and 50-litre capacity units work directly from the water main, which means they do not need a separate cistern, and are suitable for supplying two or more outlets. The water heater is supplied with a pressure and temperature relief valve and comes with an expansion vessel.
Heatstore 302

Water drainage
Alumasc has added a surface water drainage solution called Slotdrain into its Harmer range. It is a single hollow metal channel with a narrow slot at the top for collecting water run-off in a range of environments. The company says it is suitable for sites with very little or no fall, can be used with all types of exterior surfacing materials and is supplied in continuous lengths for quick installation.
Alumasc 303

Pourable grout
Tecroc Products has introduced a high strength, pourable grout. The product is called 100 Newton grout after its claimed compressive strength of 100 N/mm2, and is said to be easily applied and non-shrinking. The company says it is suitable for supporting or grouting applications including crane rail tracks, stanchion bases, ground anchors and bridge-bearing seats.
Tecroc Products 304

Movers and makers

  • Modular buildings maker Yorkon has doubled production capacity at its York factory. The company can now make up to 600 apartments a year on a dedicated production line. The firm said the decision to increase capacity was a response to the success of its Murray Grove scheme for housing association Peabody Trust in London.
  • The DTI has announced a £10m initiative to encourage homeowners and not-for-profit organisations such as housing associations and local authorities to install renewable energy technologies. Called Blue Skies, the initiative hands out grants for schemes including solar hot water, hydroelectricity and wind power. BRE has been awarded the contract to administer the two-and-a-half-year programme.
  • Roofing and cladding maker Haironville UK has acquired West Midlands company Vulcan, which hand-makes metal architectural detailing. The company will be known as Vulcan Fabrications, and Haironville said the acquisition would enable it offer bespoke items to complement its existing product range.
  • Acoustics specialist IAC has acquired rival Boet Stopson. IAC said the deal made sense on geographical grounds: Boet has facilities in France, Italy and Spain and IAC has operations in the UK, Germany and Denmark. The company now has a 70% larger presence in Europe. The company said there was a good fit in the type of product the two firms produce: it operates on the building structures whereas Boet Stopson is strong in the industrial and power generation sector.
  • Systems building specialist Terrapin has granted steel maker Corus a five-year renewable licence to make its Prospex volumetric modules. Corus hopes that this will provide it with an opportunity to develop the market for off-site manufacturing, and that its manufacturing capacity will allow it to supply larger projects.
  • Ordnance Survey is now allowing companies to reproduce its maps for an annual fee, starting at £47.50. The copyright licensing agreement will allow surveyors, architects and contractors to reproduce site plans for colleagues and clients, and OS maps in brochures, leaflets and fliers, providing they do not make a profit from reproducing the maps.

Product innovation: Barrier methods

Sealant manufacturer Adshead Ratcliffe has diversified into the flood protection market with the launch of its Floodseal home protection kit. Homeowners who have been hit by the double blow of huge insurance premium rises and devastated property can now stem the rising floodwaters with the contents of a cardboard box. The flood preparation pack contains everything the homeowner needs to prepare for floods in advance and all the kit necessary for when the evil day arrives. The first job is to apply Floodseal perimeter sealant, which permanently fills any gaps between the door and window frames and the wall. The kit even contains a tooling stick to finish the sealant bead neatly. A water repellent is also included which the owner brushes or sprays onto porous brickwork or concrete. The company says the homeowner can now sit back and enjoy the flood warnings on the television. In the event of rising waters, the next step is to get the emergency gel out of the box. This is quickly inserted into the supplied cartridge gun and a bead of gel squeezed out around airbricks, doors and windows. A supplied piece of plastic is then placed over the airbrick and stuck to the gel to stop water permeating the airbrick. A layer of Floodwrap, similar to cling film, is used to cover doors and windows. The company also supplies the emergency pack on its own for those who didn’t buy the preparation pack. It doesn’t contain the perimeter seal, but the emergency gel can be used to temporarily seal gaps between door and window frames and the wall. The company is planning to launch a doorboard and plastic for sealing off the lower half of a door so homeowners can get out of the house if the floods are severe.
Adshead Ratcliffe 305