Homeowners across Montana are calling us about the Moen Flo: a smart water shutoff valve and leak detection system that you can monitor through an app on your phone. The Flo can be a home-saver. If there’s a leak in your house, the Flo will detect it and shut off your water before any costly damage is done. Because many insurance providers are giving rebates to homeowners who install this device in their homes, our service technicians have become experts in Flo installation.
For those of you who want to install the Moen Flo yourselves — or are curious about the steps it takes for a professional to do it — here’s a detailed guide that will explain how to install the Moen Flo in your home.
Step 1: Get the proper tools
Before you begin, you will need the proper tools for the job:
- Close quarters tubing cutter
- Tongue-and-groove pliers
- Tools for transition fitting: press tools, soldering tools, or PEX tools
- Teflon tape
- Pipe dope
Step 2: Shut off the water & relieve water pressure
Before you begin any work, you must locate the water main and shut off the water. Next, relieve the pressure in your plumbing by opening faucets in your bathroom and kitchen.
Step 3: Install the Flo downstream
Make sure to install the Flo downstream of the water meter, the backflow, and (if your home has it) the pressure relief valve.
Step 4: Cut the pipe
The best tool for this job is a close quarters tubing cutter. This tool is often able to cut pipe as small as 1/4-inch to as large as 1-1/8-inch in diameter.
Step 5: Install transition union
This can be done as a ProPress fitting, a soldered fitting, or PEX transition fitting.
Step 6: Apply sealant
Apply Teflon tape to the threaded connection of the transition union — this will help prevent water leakage. For extra insurance, apply pipe dope on top of the tape.
Step 7: Install Flo joining nut
Remove the joining nut from the Flo and thread it onto the transition union. It’s important to install the joining nut separately from the device, or else you won’t be able to fit it onto the transition union. Using a pair of tongue-and-groove pliers, tighten the transition union until it’s snug — this way, the threaded connections won’t leak.
Step 8: Install Flo device
It’s now time to add the Flo device to the transition fitting. Two things to remember:
- The O-ring is crucial to preventing leaks. Make sure that you’ve added it to the threaded connection on the bottom of the Flo device before screwing it onto the transition union.
- Note the direction of flow on the device. The arrow on the side of the Flo device should be pointed in the direction of water flow. (This means that if you’ve correctly installed the Flo downstream from your water meter, the arrow should be pointing away from the meter, not toward it.)
After seating the Flo device on the transition union, hand-tighten the joining nut to hold the device in place. You will further tighten the nut with a wrench, but not yet — follow the next few steps first.
Step 9: Mark and cut the other side of the pipe
Now that the Flo device is seated on one side of the pipe, you will need to mark and cut the other side of the pipe to make sure it’s a perfect fit.
There is a quick way to ensure the pipe is cut in at precise length. Simply dry-fit the second transition fitting on top of Flo device — along with the other joining nut — and mark the spot on the pipe where the transition stops.
Remove the transition fitting and cut the pipe using the close quarters tubing cutter.
Step 10: Repeat steps 5 through 7
With the pipe now cut to the proper length, you are ready to install the other side of the Flo device. Repeat the steps 5–7 to install the transition union, sealant, and joining nut.
Step 11: Connect both sides of the Flo device
After moving the device into position, hand-tighten the joining nut to the Flo. Be careful not to over-crank it, especially if you haven’t yet rotated the device to the position you want it in yet. Over-cranking the nuts can pinch the O-ring inside, which could result in water leakage.
Once the Flo device is positioned where you want it, it’s time to tighten the joining nuts with a wrench. Once again, be careful: these are plastic fittings, so cranking too hard with the wrench could cause them to break.
Now the device is installed! But don’t plug in the Flo just yet — you will need to install the app first.
Step 12: Download and log into the Flo app
- Download the Flo app from the Apple store or Google Play store
- Create a new account:
- Email and password
- Contact information
- Verify your email address
Step 13: Add your home’s basic information
You will start by adding your home to the device, then filling out basic information about its use and size. Below are the questions, prompts, and available answers to this section of the app.
- Why type of location is this?
- Single-family house
- How do you use this location?
- Primary residence
- Vacation home
- I rent it out
- Give your location a nickname
- Enter your location’s address
- How big is this location?
- Less than 700 sq feet
- 700 – 1000 sq feet
- 1001 – 2000 sq feet
- 2001 – 4000 sq feet
- More than 4000 sq feet
- How many floors are there?
- How many bathrooms are there?
Step 14: Add your home’s plumbing information
Next is the plumbing information. Note: you can only select one type of plumbing in your home, so choose the most common material if your home has multiple types of plumbing.
- What type of plumbing do you have?
- Not sure
- Do you know from where to shut off the water to your home?
- Not sure
- What is the source of your water?
- City Water
Step 15: Add your home’s appliances and amenities
Next, the app asks about the appliances in your home. This is intended to help you set water goals, which the app will set as recommendations for water conservation. While not essential, these goals can give you a clearer view of your water consumption, and how it compares to the industry average.
- Hot Tub
- Refrigerator with Ice Maker
- Swimming Pool
- Swimming Pool with auto pool filter
- Hot Tub
- Plumbing Appliances
- Tankless Water Heater
- Expansion Tank
- Whole Home Filtration System
- Whole Home Humidifier
- Recirculation Pump
- Reverse Osmosis
- Water Softener
Step 14: Set water consumption goal
Answer the following questions to help set your water consumption goal for your home.
- How many people live in this location?
Set water consumption goal (the daily average is 80-100 gallons per person per day):
- Per person gallons per day
- or Total gallons per day
Step 15: Add homeowners insurance information
The app then asks for your homeowners insurance information, claim history, and water utility provider. Many homeowners are receiving a rebate on their homeowners insurance for installing the Flo by Moen in their homes, so this section of the app may be required by your insurance provider to get the discount.
- Have you experienced water damaged in the past?
- Yes, I have
- No, I haven’t
- How much was the claim?
- $0 – $10,000
- $10,001 – $50,000
- $50,001 – $100,000
- Water Utility Provider
Step 16: Add the device
Now that you’ve set up the app, you’re ready to add the device.
- First, you’ll choose the size fo your device:
- 3/4″ Smart Water Shutoff
- 1″ Smart Water Shutoff
- 1 1/4″ Smart Water Shutoff
- Give your Smart Water Shutoff a nickname
Step 17: Plug in the Flo device
You’re ready to plug in the Flo. Use the following steps outlined in the next steps of the app.
- Pair Home: mark the steps finished below to continue paring your device
- I’ve firmly pushed the power cord into the Smart Water Shutoff
- I’ve plugged the power supply into an outlet
Step 18: Pair the Flo to your phone
- Turn on Wi-Fi on the Flo. Press and hold the reset button the Flo device to connect to Wi-Fi. There are two lights on either side of the button — when they flicker, the device is ready to be paired.
- Scan the QR code. Next, the app will prompt you to scan the QR code — located next to the reset button — with your phone. This code will ensure the app automatically pairs the Flo to your phone.
- Connect the Flo to your home’s Wi-Fi network. The app will prompt you to choose your home’s Wi-Fi network and log in using your password. After a few minutes, your Flo will be connected to the network.
And . . . you’re all done! Your home’s water system will surely thank you for it. And enjoy that rebate for your home insurance.
Have more questions? Don’t hesitate to give us a call.