Pfister Faucets Review & Rating Updated: 01/19/22
A division of
Spectrum Brands, Inc.
19701 Da Vinci
Lake Forest, California 92610
This Company In Brief
Formerly Price-Pfister, the brand is now just Pfister and has been owned by Spectrum Brands since being purchased from Stanley Black & Decker in 2012.
Pfister designs its faucets in California but has them made in China and Korea by contract factories. They are stylish, of good quality, generally reliable, and protected by a limited lifetime warranty but post-sale customer service is understaffed, undertrained, and some of the worst in the North American faucet industry.
Faucets are priced to compete with other well-known mid-range faucet lines, such as
Founded in 1910 by Emil Price, Joseph Corcoran, and William Pfister as Price-Corcoran-Pfister, Inc. in Los Angeles, California to manufacture brass products, the company later changed its name to Price-Pfister Brass Mfg. Co. Its first product was a gasoline-powered generator for farmers who did not have electrical service. It was several years before the company moved into the manufacture of plumbing fittings that became the core of its business.
In the 1920s, the Price-Pfister expanded its plumbing lines to include more types of faucets, valves, and hose nozzles for indoor sinks and bathtubs. It added more new products in the 1930s, including its best-selling "Make-A-Shower" system used to convert an existing bathtub into a tub/shower.
The company prospered in the Post-WWII housing boom after its purchase by Isadore Familian in 1941. He redirected the company's focus to supplying the exploding post-war housing industry that completed as many as 5,000 new homes each and every day.
For more on Post-War Mid-Cntury kitchens and baths, see Post-war Housing Styles.
Under Familian the company introduced faucet styles in atomic-age design motifs with swooping curves and streamlined shapes that were very popular with the buying public. Its Crown Jewels faucet, which made its appearance in the early 1950s, was one of the best-selling faucet designs in U.S. history. The faucets were so popular and so durable that thousands are still in service. Replacement parts and rebuild kits are widely available.
The company grew throughout the 1960s on the strength of its popular plumbing products. In 1969 it was purchased by Norris Industries and broke ground on a state-of-the-art manufacturing plant in Pacoima, California. When finished, the plant was the largest foundry West of the Mississippi.
The 525,000 square foot vertically-integrated factory enabled the company to keep its production costs low and price its faucets aggressively. The plant was, for its time, one of the most automated faucet factories in the U.S., able to produce 5,000 finished faucets daily at peak production.
In 1983 Norris (by then NI Industries) sold the company to an investment group headed by Price-Pfister's then-president, Peter Gold. With the post-war new construction boom tapering off, Gold re-focused Price-Pfister on the growing market for stylish replacement faucets to compete with European imports, targeting the do-it-yourself homeowner with faucets that were simple to install.
The company introduced new technologies, often far ahead of its competition, including the Pforever Seal (originally the Flow-Matic) cartridge, one of the first faucet cartridges to use ceramic technology, and Pforever Pfinish with new, decorative hues such as antique bronze, polished brass, and black nickel. Both the cartridge and finish were guaranteed for the buyer's lifetime by the Pforever Warranty: North America's first-ever lifetime faucet warranty.
Pfister also began a well-remembered radio, television, and print ad campaign developed by Los Angeles ad agency, Eisaman, Johns, and Laws, with a tag line that played off of the company name:
"Price-Pfister, the pfabulous pfaucet with the pfunny name."
In 1987 the company reached its high-water mark with 1,600 employees and a 14% share of the U.S. faucet market.
The following year, Peter Gold sold the company to Emco Corp. which was, in turn, acquired by Black & Decker in 1990.
The acquisition was a disaster for Price--Pfister. Black & Decker was never able to find a home for a line of sink faucets in its power tool business. The brand was largely ignored for over 20 years as Black & Decker struggled to revive its lagging flagship power tool brands and reassert its dominance in the professional tool market with its Dewalt power tools.
In 2010, Black & Decker merged with Stanley Works, the world-famous hand-tool manufacturer, to form Stanley Black & Decker.
Price-Pfister became part of the new company's Hardware & Home Improvement (HHI) Group along with True Temper lawn and garden tools, three lines of locks and security devices (Kwikset, Weiser, and Baldwin), the Black & Decker line of small appliances, and National Hardware.
Stanley rebranded Price-Pfister to just Pfister "to best position the company for another century," according to a company press release. (Not a nice thing to do to a proud and famous faucet name.) But, HHI did not actually fit Stanley Black & Decker's core tool business, and the company almost immediately began shopping for a buyer to take HHI off its hands.
In 2012 it found one in Spectrum Brands (formerly Rayovac Corporation), a Fortune 500 company. Spectrum already owned a diverse portfolio of consumer products, including many familiar brands such as Remington shavers, Black Flag pesticides, Rayovac batteries, Toastmaster small appliances, and the George Foreman Grill.
The sale to Spectrum Brands was a boon to the Pfister brand. Under Spectrum ownership, the company has regained traction in the North American market. Both, the quality and design of Pfister faucets have steadily improved, leading to a rating bump from 5-7 (average to good) to 6-7 (above average to good). The company is pushing an overall rating of 6-8 (average to very good), held back only by its poor customer service. (More about that problem below.)
Price-Pfister's Abandonment of U.S. Manufacturing
Price-Pfister's abandonment of domestic manufacturing began in 1993 with a lawsuit by the State of California.
Price-Pfister, along with 20 other faucet companies, was accused of knowingly allowing lead in its faucets at levels that were up to 150 times the legal limit. Price-Pfister won the lawsuit, but settled a spin-off suit by two environmental groups for $2.4 million and agreed to much lower lead limits.
Lower legal lead limits, however, were difficult for the Pacoima plant to meet. The plant used sand casting to mold faucet components, a process that at the time required relatively large amounts of lead in the brass used for casting.
The company gradually shifted Pacoima production below the border to a new plant owned by Price Pfister De Mexico, S.A. DE C.V. in Mexicali until 1997 when the Pacoima plant closed for good. The plant closing sparked in a national boycott of Price-Pfister products, protests, and even a hunger strike by laid-off workers that made front-page news across the country.
Price-Pfister left behind 25 acres contaminated with toxic heavy metal residue located at 13500 Paxton Street, Pacoima, CA. The area became an active EPA Superfund cleanup site in 2004. The EPA found that the site posed a potential risk to human health and/or the environment due to contamination by one or more hazardous wastes.
The company no longer manufactures faucets in the U.S. or Canada, or even in Mexico. Its Mexicali maquiladora assembles some showers, but it has largely shifted to the manufacture of locksets and alarm systems for HHI's security brands. As of the date of this report, Pfister is out of the manufacture of sink faucets entirely. Pfister faucets are made by contract factories in China and Korea.
Although it has lost market share since its peak in 1987, Pfister is still the number five faucet company in the U.S., behind According to Dun & Bradstreet, it has about 9% of the U.S. market and approximately 2% of the world market.
Its headquarters is in the U.S. along with its research and development arm, product design, and marketing operations, but the company no longer manufactures faucets in the U.S. or Canada, or even in Mexico.
Its Mexicali maquiladora assembles some showers, but it has largely shifted to the manufacture of locksets and alarm systems for HHI's security brands. As of the date of this report, Pfister is out of the manufacture of sink faucets entirely. Pfister faucets are made by contract factories in China and Korea.
Over the past five years, the company's known faucet manufacturers have included:
- Seagull Kitchen and Bath Products Co., Ltd. a Chinese manufacturer that makes sink faucets for
- Kaiping Freendo Sanitary Ware Co., Ltd. part of the giant Guangdong Huayi Plumbing Fittings Industry, Co. Ltd.
- Freendo manufactures faucets for Compass Manufacturing International.
- Zhongyu Hardware Industry Co., Ltd. a Chinese faucet manufacturer located in Xiamen, manufactures faucets for
- Naidy Plumbing Fittings Co., Ltd of Kaiping, China which manufactures and sells the Delica faucet brand in Asia.
- Daelim Trading Co., Ltd of Seoul, Korea manufactures faucets in two factories, one in Incheon and the orther in the heavily industrialized Yeongdeungpo district of Seoul.
- Daelim supplies faucets to the Canadian faucet company
- It has received a number of awards for its creative sanitary products. None, however, for its faucets.
- Zhuhai Mingshi Ceramics Valve Co., Ltd. located in XiangZhou, China manufactures Pfister's proprietary Pforever Seal ceramic disk cartridges.
All of these manufacturers are which means they maintain a dynamic quality control program to help assure reasonable product quality.
At one time the Italian manufacturer, Paini S.p.A. Rubinetterie, supplied some of Pfister's faucets. These included faucets in the Aria, Lago, and Isola collections – now discontinued.
Paini still manufactures faucets for Spectrum Brands, just not faucets sold under the Pfister name. Spectrum sells Paini-made faucets under the Fortis is positioned as Spectrum's upscale European designer faucet line featuring "puro design Italiano."
Fortis faucets are sold exclusively through Ferguson showrooms. Ferguson, which distributes plumbing products throughout the U.S., is a subsidiary of the British company, Ferguson PLC. In Canada Ferguson PLC is known as Wolseley.
Paini also sells faucets in North America under its own La Toscana brand. For more information on Fortis and La Toscana faucets, see our review of
Pfister faucets are widely available, sold at decorative plumbing showrooms, plumbing supply houses, big box lumber stores (Home Depot, Lowes, Menards, and Sutherlands),local hardware stores (Ace, Do-It-Best, and True Value), and at Walmart. The products can also also be purchased at online plumbing suppliers such as Build.com and Faucetdirect.com as well as at general merchandise e-tailers (Amazon, Overstock, and Wayfair).
The company has cultivated special relationships with big-box lumber stores ever since there have been big-box lumber stores. It sold faucet models through the Home Depot that were available only at HD stores. This arrangement faltered for a while but appears to have been revived. Pfister also supplied some of Home Depot's early store brand faucets. It no longer does so.
The company also has a special relationship is with Home Depot's scrappy competitor, Lowes stores. Certain models of Pfister faucets and showers are offered to the public exclusively through Lowes and are not available elsewhere.
Pfister has not forgotten its historical emphasis on easy-to-install faucets designed for do-it-yourselfers. It introduced TwistPfit™ bathroom faucets in 1999. Unlike a typical faucet, it could be installed from above the sink using only an Allen wrench, rather than from below the sink using a belt-full of tools. The original TwistPfit faucet, the Georgetown was folloed by the Bedford, Parisa, and Carmel.
Pfister heavily promoted the technology. The company sponsored contests in which plumbers competed for the fastest installation of a TwistPfit faucet. Supply House Times reported that the winner of one contest with over 5,000 participants installed a TwistPfit faucet in 23 seconds flat.
Unfortunately, TwistPfit did not find widespread acceptance among plumbers or the buying public and was finally discontinued by 2008. None of the original TwistPfit faucets are still made, and the company has removed all mention of the technology from its website.
Undeterred, Pfister is once again promoting above-the-sink installation technology, this time with kitchen faucets. TopPfit™ offers the same convenient installation but requires a special tool (included with the faucet). Reprising its earlier marketing approach, Pfister is holding a contest for the fastest TopPfit installation time open to all residents of the U.S. and Canada.
At present only Miri and Ladera kitchen faucets are available with TopPfit installation, but more are to come according to the company.
To help ensure you don't lose the special tool (which will be needed to uninstall the faucet), it stores by clipping on one of the water supply lines under the sink where it is secure, easy to find, and always handy.
The above-the-sink installation has not been Pfister's only innovation since the introduction in the 1930s of the "Make-A-Shower", which converted an existing bathtub into a tub/shower without tearing up the walls. Some were successful and some less so. But, Pfister keeps trying new things.
Pfister innovations in addition to Pforever Seal and Pforever Warranty, include:
- The Pfilter Pfaucet (1997) integrated a filter in a kitchen faucet that provided hot, cold and filtered water, a successful technology that has been widely emulated, notably in Triflow faucets from
- The Catalina pullout lavatory faucet (2004), the first if its kind, could extend up to 55" for hair-washing at the sink. Sounds like a wonderful idea. But, with the widespread availablity of showers, this innovation did not find a robust market and has been discontinued.
- The idea has not been lost, however, and has been picked up by at least one Chinese faucet company represented in the U.S. by .
- The Anti-Splash Spray Volume Sprayhead™ (2006) was the first volume-controlled sprayhead. The technology has been adopted by a number of major faucet companies, including which has patented its own competing technology.
- The Ashfield™ lavatory faucet (2007) – the first-ever bathroom sink faucet to receive the EPA's WaterSense® label.
Pfister faucets have received more design awards at international design competitions than we can reasonably list. Just since 2012 it was awarded ADEX Platinum or Gold awards for the following faucet designs:
The ADEX award for design excellence, sponsored by the Design Journal, is the largest awards program for product and project design in the architecture and interior design industries.
Faucet Brand by Price Range
|$0 - $200
|$201 - $400
|$401 - $600
|$601 - $800
|$801 - $1,000
Pfister faucets are part of collections that may include showers, tub fillers, accessories (towel bars, soap dispensers, robe hooks, etc.), even cabinet drawer handles and console vanities. Selecting items from within a collection ensures stylistic coordination among the various elements of a bathroom and, to a lesser extent, the kitchen.
The faucets are still designed mostly in California by Pfister's design team that, according to the company, "includes artists and engineers and lots of smart folks who bring their own unique brand of passion and personality to work every day."
Most faucet designs are in traditional North American motifs with gentle, sweeping curves, in contrast to the angular, more industrial look of popular North-European designs. However, if angular and industrial is your preferred aesthetic, the Pfister lineup includes a few Euro-style faucets as appealing as any European brand, and usually a lot less expensive.
Custom Design Service: If the company's stock designs are not unique enough for your new hotel, golf resort, or casino, Pfister's Custom faucet Solutions team will craft a new design just for your project. Figure on a minimum purchase of 300 faucets, however, to make it cost-feasible.
Some Pfister kitchen faucets are stainless steel, but most of the Pfister line is good quality lead-free brass. Brass is the traditional faucet material. It is strong enough to resist damage from water pressure but fairly easy to mold and shape. It is also hygienic. Brass is an alloy of copper and zinc. Copper kills micro-organizms on contact even more than 100 years after being first installed and even if heavily tarnished.
The faucets contain materials other than brass, or stainless steel however.
Parts that do not need the strength of brass or steel are often zinc or a zinc alloy. The substitution is not a bad thing.
Stainless steel and bass, especially low-lead and no-lead brass, are expensive, so it makes sense to substitute a lower-cost material when it results in no sacrifice of quality.
Most faucet manufacturers now use a zinc-aluminum or zinc-aluminum alloy for parts that are not under pressure from water flowing through the faucet.
The other common substitute material is plastic. Plastic is even cheaper than zinc, but also a lot weaker and, if used under pressure in the water stream, invites problems.
Most if not all of Pfister's pulldown and pull-out kitchen faucets include plastic spray heads.
Plastic spray heads (the industry term is "wands") are fast becoming an industry standard. Homeowners like them because, unlike metal wands, plastic does not get uncomfortably hot in use. The industry likes them because they are inexpensive to produce. So, win-win.
But, there is still the problem of reliability. Plastic wands have fairly high failure rates, not just in Pfister faucets, but across the industry generally. The technology is getting better but has not approached the durability or reliability of metal wands.
For the moment, we recommend metal wands if you have the choice.
Spray too hot? The sure cure for too-hot brass wands is to turn the water temperature down. Who needs to rinse with scalding hot water?
Faucet Cartridges: Lead-free certification is the single most important factor to consider in making an informed faucet-buying decision followed very closely by the quality of the faucet's cartridge.
All Pfister faucets are certified lead-free and drinking water safe, and all Pforever Seal cartridges are robust. We don't know about the company's other faucet cartridges. The Pfister website identifies the faucets equipped with Pforever Seal cartridges. But, if you are not sure of the cartridge, don't buy the faucet.
To get a list of faucets that include the Pforever Seal cartridge, use the Pfister website's search function to search on "Pforever Seal." The result is, in part, a list of faucets containing the cartridge.
For more information on ceramic cartridges and the difference between robust cartridges that will give years of leak-free service and those that won't, see Faucet Valves & Cartridges.
Pfister offers ten faucet finishes in total. Except for some stainless steel faucets, all Pfister faucets are available finished in polished chrome. Some collections are chrome only. No other finish is available. But, most are also available in other finishes such as brushed nickel, Tuscan bronze, and matte black. Finish availability largely depends on what finishes the individual manufacturers of the faucets can provide. No faucet is offered in all ten finishes. Five finish options were the most we found on any one faucet.
Pfister's newest finish, Slate, a sort of dark chrome, is intended to coordinate with GE appliances made in the same color. It is so far a finish option in just one collection, Pasadena.
We don't know which process is used to produce which finish because the Pfister website does not say and the customer support agents we contacted did not have a clue.
We have asked the company for this information in the fall of 2020. So far, no response. If we ever do get it, will update this report.
For detailed information on the types of faucet finishes including how they are applied and the advantages and disadvantages of each, see Faucet Finishes.
Price-Pfister pioneered the lifetime limited warranty that has now become the North American standard, adopted by virtually all domestic and many foreigh companies that sell faucets in North America.
Its Pforever Warranty has changed little since its introduction. Its promise is very simple. Pfister will provide the parts required to repair a defective Pfister faucet. If the faucet cannot be repaired, Pfister will replace it. The warranty lasts as long as the original buyer resides the home in which the faucet is originally installed and covers all parts and finishes except electronic components.
The Pfister warranty on electronic parts is five years. This short duration is in line with the industry, which generally does not include electronic parts in lifetime warranties. In fact, Pfister's electronics warranty is generous. The typical electronics warranty is one to three years.
Our warranty panel found one issue with the Pfister warranty. Its definition of the duration of the warranty does not require the original purchaser to continue to own the faucet for the warranty to remain in force. It only requires that the original purchaser continue to reside in the home in which the faucet was originally installed. This definition can have some unexpected results, for example:
The original purchaser sells his Pfister faucet to cousin George. Two years later George calls complaining that the faucet leaks. Can the original purchaser make a claim under warranty for George's benefit? In most states the answer is yes. As long as the original purchaser resides in the house in which the faucet was originally installed, the warranty is in force and the original purchaser can make a claim on the warranty for the benefit of a subsequent owner of the faucet.
Post-sale customer support has historically been wanting, a problem that started under Black & Decker ownership. It has not improved under Spectrum, which has decided to save a few pennies by moving its call center to the Dominican Republic. Customer service agents speak fluent English, but sometimes with a pronounced accent. Combined with a scratchy, creaky telephone system, the accent can make each customer service contact more adventure than one would typically want.
Agents scored well in our customer service tests for courtesy and willingness to help, but dismally for product knowledge. They know little more about Pfister faucets than the information available on the company website.
Two out of the three agents asked the question did not know that faucets had aerators, and none knew the types of finishes (electroplated, PVD, or powder coatings) used on Pfister faucets. (We are still waiting for the promised e-mail identifying the types of Pfister finishes.
Not even supervisors could answer basic questions about the faucets that any customer service agent should know. One agent explained that his job was to provide parts, and that was all he knew how to do.
Hold times were unacceptable. The shortest wait time we encountered was over 30 minutes (with a basso radio announcer voice straight out of Central Casting informing us every 60 seconds that "one of our representatives will be with your shortly"). The longest was 45 minutes, our maximum. Testers are instructed to hang up after 45 minutes. Any hold time over 3 minutes is too long and over 5 minutes is unacceptable.
Contacting customer service by e-mail was even less successful. A series of e-mails asked for answers to various questions about Pfister faucets, questions a buyer might typically ask. In each instance, we received an automatic reply acknowledging receipt of the query, and that was it. We never did get an answer.
Once we actually got in contact with a service agent, we had to set up an account with Pister before even the simplest question would be answered, a process that took another seven or eight minutes.
We gave up trying to get help with our standard test set of (imaginary) installation problems. Pfister agents usually did not understand the questions, although our testers are careful to use industry-standard terminology.
However, our volunteer plumbers did not actually have any problems installing our test faucets. Installation instructions were clear and easy to follow. We rate installation "very easy" on a scale from
very easy to
Pfister has a good reputation for at least attempting to honor its warranty obligations. But, things do not always seem to go well during the process. We have received an unusual number of consumer complaints that suggest the problems are more than just occasional.
The most commonly reported complaints were about post-sale customer service. These include long wait times, up to 1-1/2 hours, to speak to an agent, and failure to answer the telephone entirely, followed by slow or non-delivery of replacement parts. One customer complained that her replacement faucet was supposedly shipped three times before she finally got it, after contacting Pfister no fewer than 12 times.
The Better Business Bureau grades the company an A- for its response to consumer complaints, two steps down from the Bureau's highest A+ rating on a scale of A+ to F. It is unusual for a major faucet company to score less than a perfect A+. Pfister is not accredited by the BBB and therefore is not pledged to conform to the BBB's high standards of business ethics.
These problems suggest that not only is Pfister's customer service understaffed, but also poorly staffed with agents that require much more training.
None of these problems is new. Customers consistently rate Pfister's customer service on the low side of low. Only two major companies have earned lower marks: which puts Pfister's customer service in some very bleak company.
We rate customer service a D+. Clearly, an area that needs considerable improvement and has needed improvement for several years. We have found no evidence that Spectrum has done or intends to do anything to improve the situation.
Other complaints about the company point to lapses in the company's quality assurance practices, including incorrect parts packed with a new Pfister faucet, no installation instructions, faucets that leaked right out of the box, and missing components, including, in one instance, a tube of lubricant that was completely devoid of lubricant.
Plumbers don't seem to like Pfister faucets very much and can get rather vocal about it. We are not sure of the origin of the animus but suspect it has more to do with feeling left out by Pfister's historical focus on do-it-yourself homeowners and with the fact that the faucets are made in Asia than with any organic problems with the faucets themselves.
These are American-designed, mainly Chinese-made faucets from well-respected manufacturers. The fact that they are made mostly in China does not give us pause. While many economy and discount faucets made in China are mostly junk – and sometimes dangerous junk at that – a great many good to excellent quality faucets are also made in China.
Pfister faucets are, in general, of good quality despite the occasional glitch involving faulty or missing parts and components. The Pforever Seal cartridge should give years of reliable service, and the Pforever Warranty ensures that if something bad does happen to the faucet, Pfister will do its part to fix the problem although it may take sever contacts, several days and more than one try for the company to get it right. The faucets are priced competitively with faucets of similar design and quality sold by other companies, although a few faucets reach the high end of the mid-price range.
Overall, despite some pesky problems, we judge the faucets to be a good value. Our survey of our volunteer respondents asking "Would you buy a faucet from this company?" resulted in a majority response of "Yes", but with reservations about the company's customer service. We judge the faucets as suitable for even the busiest kitchen or main bathroom. Just be aware that if your Pfister faucet does break, you may become embroiled in an epic marathon with Pfister's Dominican call center to get anything done about it.
We suggest in the event of a warranty claim, that you make one attempt to work through Pfister customer service. If it is not successful, file a complaint with the Better Business Bureau. The company seems to be more responsive to claims made through the BBB.
Made-in-Asia faucets roughly comparable to the quality of Pfister faucets with a lifetime warranty include
We are continuing to research the company. If you have experience with Pfister faucets, good, bad, or indifferent, we would like to hear about it, so please contact us or post a comment below.
- Pfister has always claimed to have been the first company to adopt ceramic faucet cartridge technology. However, our research shows that American Standard, the company that invented the ceramic cartridge, was the first to use it in a faucet. Pfister, however, was the first to adopt the technology for its entire line of faucets. The technology was key in allowing Pfister to guarantee its faucets against leaks for the lifetime of the faucet and the first faucet company to do so. (For more information, visit American Standard Faucets Review and Rating.)
Black & Decker purchased General Electric's line of small appliances for $300 million in 1984 hoping to create a profitable housewares division to offset the lackluster cash-flow from its power tools divisions. The sale removed the leading manufacturer of small appliances from the business, something GE's competition (Sunbeam, Rival, Hamilton Beach, Norelco, and several European brands) had been trying unsuccessfully to accomplish for decades. GE, longing to leave the appliance business behind and concentrate on its heavy industrial products, sold its remaining large appliance lines to the Chinese company Haier in 2016 for $5.6 billion along with the right to use the GE name and logo on the appliances until 2056.
General Electric, formed from the merger of Edison General Electric and the Thomson-Houston Co. in 1892, sold its first electric appliance, a table fan invented by GE engineer James Wood, in 1895 and introduced the first practical electric refrigerator in 1927. The sale to Haier marked the end of its appliance empire which at one time was the largest in North America.
- David Bacon, Price Pfister Workers Go Hungry to Save Jobs, November 30, 1996.
- Steven Mikulan, "Pacoima's Lot", L. A. Weekly, September 22, 2005.
- Common yellow or "alpha" brass is about 63% copper, the rest being zinc and small amounts of other metals such as aluminum (for added strength) and lead (for malleability, which makes it easier to shape and form). Lead content for brass used in drinking-water faucets is limited by law to not more than 0.25% (1/4 of 1 percent) by volume. Brass that meets this standard is considered "lead-free". To retain malleability, lead has been replaced with other materials such as silicon and bismuth. Bismuth is 300 times rarer than lead, even rarer than silver, and much more costly, which is the reason that lead-free brass alloys are considerably more expensive than leaded brass.
- Since antiquity, it has been well known that copper kills all forms of microbes (bacteria, viruses, and fungi) but not how. Scientists now know that a free electron in copper's outer shell spinning at 1,367 miles per second (New York to LA in two seconds) simply shreds them so quickly that under a microscope they seem to explode. (Jim Morrison, "Copper's Virus-Killing Powers Were Known Even to the Ancients", Smothsonian Magazine, April 14, 2020.)
- The type of finish usually cannot be determined by visual examination. To find out the technologies used to finish Pfister faucets, we contacted customer service several times by telephone and e-mail and were astounded to find that no one knew which technologies were used. We were, however, told that someone would be back in touch with us by e-mail with the requested information. We are still waiting.
- The exact language of the warranty is "as long as the original purchaser owns the home …" which could be a problem for the increasing number of purchasers in both Canada and the U.S. that rent their homes. Since they never "own the home", the warranty does not apply to them. Pfister's practice, however, is to honor its warranty to these buyers as long as they "occupy" the home. (In fact, Pfister rarely asks if the purchaser owns the home when honoring a warranty claim or even if the claimant is the original purchaser.) Still, better warranty language would be "as long as the original purchaser occupies or resides in the home …" to clear up any ambiguity in the warranty.