Australia is the driest continent in the world, and therefore water conservation is an essential issue. Although Australian standards require showers to deliver less than nine litres per minute, most people are now consciously choosing to use less water.
Here is a simple showerhead buying guide to help select affordable, high-quality shower heads.
Types of Shower Heads
There are different types of shower heads in the market to suit various budgets and purposes. Once you nail down the kind that works best for you, it's easier to compare features such as the strength of the water flow and pressure settings.
Regular Fixed Showerheads
Regular fixed showerheads have a simple design where the showerhead attaches to a dedicated water outlet. The showerhead and arm are one unit that may or may not have an adjustable height.
Rain showerheads have one showerhead like the fixed showerheads but with a different water delivery system and design. Rain showerheads have a wide round or square shower head. The shower arm will determine whether your shower will need ceiling or standard wall plumbing.
Handheld showerheads allow total control of the showering experience. The flexibility ensures you can direct the water flow in any direction at any angle, which is convenient for most people. The design is also compatible with standard wall plumbing.
Dual showerheads combine the convenience of fixed and handheld shower heads. The unit has a regular fixed showerhead and an extra extension arm with a handheld showerhead.
Dual showerheads are compatible with standard wall plumbing.
Before purchasing a new showerhead, it’s essential to consider your home’s plumbing configuration. Some designs only work with overhead plumbing, while others require wall plumbing.
Before purchasing your new showerhead, it's essential to consider the space in your bathroom. Check whether there's enough space for the plumbing style and size of the showerhead. The installation process is simple if your preferred showerhead is compatible with your plumbing.
Your water pressure is essential to consider since it determines the most appropriate type of showerhead. Handheld and fixed models have varying water pressure requirements. Some fixed showerheads require high pressure above 10 litres per minute. Others can work with low pressure, below 5 litres per minute.
The quality and functionalities of a showerhead vary by brand. Showerheads with more flexibility and features are generally more expensive. Before you buy, ensure to compare brands and their prices to ensure you get the best deal.
Australian Water Efficiency Labelling and Standards (WELS) require showerheads to have a water-efficiency rating. Every product indicates the water flow rate per minute and the rating.
The ratings are between one and six, so higher ratings indicate better water efficiency. The highest-rated shower heads have water usage of about six to nine litres per minute.
Smart showers are relatively new in the market but promise an exceptional experience. Imagine a Wi-Fi-enabled shower you can control through an app on your smartphone.
You can adjust the water-saving settings and temperature or set a time to avoid water wastage.
Multiple government agencies and water providers offer incentives to encourage switching to water-efficient showerheads.
For instance, the Retailer Energy Productivity Scheme (REPS) in South Australia offers financial support to promote water efficiency. Households looking to install water- and energy-efficient devices, including low-flow showerheads, get financial assistance.
Modern showerhead designs are highly efficient, which encourages cost savings. They can deliver less water while retaining the entire feel of water and often work with your current plumbing. If you're planning a bathroom makeover, be sure to include a new showerhead for a rejuvenating shower experience.