Homeowners and businesses can waste 25 gallons of water every day waiting for it to get hot, but you can shorten the wait and reduce the unnecessary consumption with a circulating pump. Circulating pumps temper the water by periodically mixing hot water into the system. Systems like the Plumb and Plug Cartridge Circulators from Taco use a digital timer to cycle the pump on and off as many as ten times a day to coincide with periods of peak water usage. Taco also makes a version with an analog timer with similar capabilities. The analog version has a list price of $275; the digital version has a list price of $295. Taco, 401/942-2360, www.taco-havc.com.

Broken water pipes or leaks can ruin a home in a hurry. Stopping leaks before that happens is the rationale behind Liquid Breaker. Similar to a conventional breaker panel, the monitoring system uses small sensors connected to shut-off valves that cut the supply of water to the offending pipe or fixture before it's a problem. Competitive products...

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