Enter Email Address to Receive Member Only Deals, Product Updates and Health Info
There are primarily three types of showerhead designs. Some products include a combination of the different spray types in a single showerhead. Showerheads are rated by flow rates in Gallons Per Minute (gpm) at specific Pounds per Square Inch (psi) water pressure. Higher water pressure will produce a higher flow rate than lower water pressure.
Water Use Standards
The US Energy Policy and Conservation Act of 1992 requires minimum standards for the manufacture of certain major household appliances, commercial equipment and plumbing products such as toilets, faucets and showerheads. Examples of household plumbing fixture water use standards:
Benefits of Water Conservation
Water is a finite resource and although the average daily rainfall in the US exceeds 4.2 trillion gallons, water is not always available where it is needed. The demand for water has grown more quickly than our ability to find new water sources. Water shortages can range from being inconvenient to having tragic results for individuals, communities and industry. Water Conservation is a good defense against shortages and is everyone's responsibility.
The typical individual uses about 50 - 75 gallons of water per day. If your household plumbing fixtures do not meet the Energy Policy and Conservation Act standards, there is an opportunity to develop a water conservation plan in your home that is good for you and the environment and can save you about 30% on water use. Water conservation helps keep our supply of fresh drinking water up and the amount of wastewater down. When you conserve water, you benefit in many ways:
With average water costs of $0.0021 per gallon and wastewater costs of $0.00235 per gallon, this would be a cost savings of over $140 per year not including heating, electricity and other associated costs. Your water and cost savings may be significantly greater depending on your costs for water, wastewater, electricity, heating fuel and your daily water required activities.
The US Energy Policy and Conservation Act of 1992 requires minimum standards for the manufacture of showerheads. Showerheads must not exceed 2.5 gallons per minute (gpm) at a water pressure of 80 pounds per square inch (psi). Showerheads control the water flow through it, not the water pressure. The higher the water pressure, the greater the flow of water through the plumbing system.
Water pressure is determined by the plumbing system and the delivery of water from the municipal water distribution network or household pumping system. In most municipal systems, water is pumped into towers and the difference in height of the water tower and your home creates water pressure through gravity. If you live in a high rise apartment building, most likely there is a booster pump to deliver water to the upper levels and keep plumbing pressures constant. Homes with well water have storage tanks with air filled bladders that exert force on the stored water to create water pressure for the household plumbing system. Most household plumbing systems have water pressures of 40 to 60 psi. If water pressure is too high, it can cause damage to the plumbing and fixtures. If water pressure is too low, there may not be a desirable flow rate.
There are several causes for reduced flow from showerheads. Minerals from the water supply can collect in the spray openings, and dirt and debris from the water supply can clog the screens and flow restrictors. If the showerhead has developed a reduced flow over time, there is a chance of mineral deposit build-up or sediment blockage. To return the showerhead to like new performance, remove and clean the sediment screen located where the showerhead attaches to the shower arm. To remove mineral build-up, soak the showerhead in a 50/50 solution of vinegar and water overnight. This will dissolve the mineral deposits. For showerheads with rubber spray tips called "Self Cleaning", you can run your fingers against the rubber tips while the showerhead is in use. Flexing the tips will break up calcium deposits and maintain peak flow.