Saving Water in the Shower

Saving Water in the Shower

Saving Water without Sacrificing your Shower Experience

The homeowner's solution to smart showering that feels great and helps save water usage.

With record levels of drought across Australia, a decrease in consistent rainfall, and ongoing water restrictions throughout many parts of the country, the ability to be water-wise in our homes is crucial to a sustainable future. One of the easiest ways to be more water efficient in your home is to have taps and showerheads that reduce water consumption.

With studies estimating that Australians could save approximately 185 billion litres by 2026 by using water efficient products, and save more than $2 billion by 2030 – an average saving of $175 per household each year, it is no wonder why three in five consumers are looking for water saving bathroom products. What's more, over half of the nation now state that it is a key factor when deciding what shower to purchase. With this in mind, the Water Efficiency Labelling and Standards (WELS) scheme, Australia's urban water saving system, was developed to help Australians in choosing their products wisely.

For a WELs rating to be assigned, all showers, sink and basin fittings sold within Australia must have a Flow Restrictor Device/Disc (FRD) fitted which, in turn, restricts the flow to an acceptable level. For showers, this flow restriction comes from a disc installed within the base of the shower head, whilst with tapware this device is within the aerator/nozzle of the tap.

"If renovating or modifying your bathroom, ensuring your taps and showerheads have a high WELS rating will contribute to what you can do to save money and reduce water consumption," says Rob Bolus, Methven Standards and Technology Manager, who invest heavily in design and technology innovations to create amazing water experiences that don't cost the earth.

"Technology can help consumers be more efficient with water without compromising on experience. Saving water is largely guaranteed with the mandated inclusion of FRD's in all products, so therefore our opportunity is to deliver a wide range of showering options and experiences to suit a variety of needs with the water we have available. We do this by introducing technology into the showerheads (VJet®, Aurajet®, Satinjet® & Airstream™). If you still have old non-restricted fittings, it's highly recommended that you swap them out to new efficient fittings if you're looking for quick ways to save water."

To help users identify which products are more efficient than others, the WELS scheme works using a star rating measure.

In tapware, the star ratings are assigned as a direct result of how efficient a product is. The lower the flow rate, the more stars. In showers it's slightly different. There is still a direct correlation between how efficient a shower is and the number of stars awarded to the product, however it's recognised that a shower is also an experience, and less water can quickly result in a poor shower. Currently with showers, the most stars a product can achieve is four. The first three stars are assigned based on efficiency. However, to obtain the fourth star, a shower must pass two additional tests, Force and Coverage, whilst also remaining at 7.5 litres a minute or less. Essentially demonstrating that not only is this shower efficient but also provides a good shower experience. The inclusion of the fourth star is a reassurance to the consumer that not only does this shower utilise our most precious resource respectfully and efficiently, but it also feels good.

Methven, believes it is vital that consumers should still be receiving the ultimate shower experience whilst also contributing to water efficiency. The brand has developed several showering technologies that achieve this and is able to offer the widest range of four-star showers on the market. "We have seen a rising interest in consumers requesting more efficient showerheads since the introduction of the fourth star to the WELS rating system. The WELS registry shows that Methven tops the rankings and continues to lead the market by providing the largest array of four-star rated products in market," says Rob.

Rob continues, "Two of our most popular showering products are Aurajet® and Airstream™. Aurajet is our most acclaimed showering technology yet. Invisible nozzles generate individual jets of water that collide against precisely angled surfaces hidden within the contours of the unique halo-shaped showerhead." The result is an array of stunning fans of luxuriously dense droplets that delivers a highly efficient shower with 20 per cent more spray force and twice the amount of coverage than a Methven conventional shower at the same flow rate.

Airstream is a showering technology which mixes water with air. Each air infused droplet emerges from the showerhead as a larger, softer rain-like drop. A voluminous and refreshing experience which makes it feel like you're using more water than you are.

Upgrading a shower is relatively easy & most shower upgrades are simple DIY jobs. Shower installs typically involve screwing off the old & screwing on the new fitting as all shower outlet plumbing and fittings are largely universal. Upgrading a shower also doesn't require you to turn off home water supply as this is controlled by the shower tapware. Unlike elsewhere in the home where you either need to isolate the tap or turn off water to the entire house before working on swapping the fitting out which is typically something a plumber would be recommended for.

Methven products are available through Bunnings Warehouse, Reece and plumbing stores and showrooms nation-wide.

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