How to Choose the Perfect Shower
The domestic shower is used almost every day which is why it is important to choose one that compliments your bathroom and the demands expected from it. Selecting the highest performing shower for your bathroom requires knowledge of what plumbing system your home has. Whether you have a gravity fed, un-vented or pressurised combi boiler system there is a shower to suit any need.
Know your water system
The water supply uses gravity to produce the power needed for use. Hot water is stored in a cylinder and cold water in a tank normally in the loft space. Gravity fed systems feature a lower water pressure than other systems. Therefore, low pressure water systems require a water pump with a mixer shower or power shower to produce an ideal showering pressure.
High pressure vented system (Combi boiler)
These water systems use a combi boiler. Water is heated as it flows through the boiler, which is ideal for showers that require on demand quantities of hot water. High pressure water systems such as combi boilers offer great flexibility in shower choices. However, they are not compatible with a shower pump as the pressure of the water is determined by the mains water pressure.
High pressure unvented system
Hot water is stored in a high pressure un-vented water cylinder heated by the boiler, unlike a low pressure system there is no cold water tank. High pressure un-vented water systems provide compatibility with most shower types giving you the most flexibility.
Once you know what water system you have you can then select the appropriate shower from the following shower types:
Highly economical and simple to install, the electric shower is a firm favourite with homeowners. Electric showers only heat the water used whilst showering, so there is no wastage of excess hot water. As they only require a cold water supply to function, electric showers are compatible with all water pressure systems. Using a similar mechanism to a kettle, electric showers heat water when the shower is turned on. Cold water is passed over a heating element inside the shower, instantly heating the water.
Installing an electric shower means there is minimal waiting time for hot water. High powered electric showers are likely to perform more efficiently by changing temperatures and flow rates more effectively.
The electric shower is ideal for homes that have a limited hot water supply as they don’t require stored hot water.
A mixer shower combines water from both the hot and cold water supplies, mixing them to create an optimal showering temperature. The flow rates of mixer showers can be much faster than alternatives such as electric showers as they can be installed with a pump. The addition of a shower pump means the water pressure is given a significant increase to improve the showering experience.
These showers are controlled with a thermostatic valve meaning the temperature will remain constant when in use. The technology of thermostatically controlled mixer showers gives users more control over temperature and flow rate. There is also the eradication of unexpected changes in temperature from people using other water outlets in the home.
Mixer showers are an ideal solution for homes with high pressure water systems.
Digital Mixer Showers
Digital showers have been gaining popularity in recent years as they offer unrivalled control over your showering needs. The digital mechanism allows easier regulation over temperature through the multiple settings available. These are programmable devices so the shower can be set to warm up before use.
A number of installation types are available depending on the model, such as ceiling fed showers or the traditional adjustable head and riser rail. Digital showers like the Mira Platinum offer users more control options, but also provides simple installation. Compatible with all types of heated water systems, there is little hassle in upgrading to a digital shower. The pipework and pump can be installed into the loft space which means no visible unsightly plumbing.
Minimalist in design and a luxurious addition to the bathroom, digital showers offer design freedom and a high-tech showering experience.
Ideal for use with a gravity fed system as they significantly increase the flowrate of low pressure systems. Power showers use an electric pump to provide a powerful showering experience. The power shower does not heat water itself like electric showers, it requires heated water from stored hot water systems.
Power showers combine hot and cold water like mixer showers to produce an optimal temperature, creating greater control over flow rate and temperature. However, power showers can be expensive to power as they require higher levels of electricity to work.
These showers combine luxury and convenience as the built-in pump delivers a superior showering experience.