As heating hot water represents about 17% of total typical household energy use, it makes sense to consider whether water efficient, sometimes called optimised, showerheads can help reduce the volume of hot water we use.
Our Showerhead category contains products that regulate the flow of hot water.
Simply reducing the flowrate of the showerhead would help to reduce the volume of water we use, but would likely result in an unsatisfactory shower experience. To overcome this problem, regulated showerheads aerate (i.e. mix air into) the water. The result is a similar shower experience to a higher flow rate shower, for less water used.
For a general overview of what these products are, see our Product Guide.
This page details the selection criteria applied to showerheads on toptenuk.org. Efficient showerheads provide savings by reducing the volume of water used and consequently reducing the hot water demand. The voluntary Unified Water Label provides the basis for Topten selection criteria.
The minimum criteria to be shown on toptenuk.org are shown below:
Top efficiency class (dark green arrow) according to the Unified Water Label
The following regulations were the basis for the above selection criteria for showerheads.
There are currently no regulations that cover showerheads.
Unified Water Label
The products on the Topten website all have to achieve the top rating (dark green arrow) based on the the European Water Label. This rating is purely based on the flow rate of the appliance with the bands given in Figure 1. The energy label is shown in Figure 2 presents the energy band, actual flow rate, annual energy usage and shows the product feature icons.
The energy consumption per year is based on fixed assumption on consumer behaviour and calculated with the Energy Calculator from the Unified Water Label. Calculations in the energy calculator are based on the following assumptions:
Showers: 1 use per day, 7 min each
Cold water inlet temperature: 15 °C
Hot water output temperature: 38°C (showers, basin taps)
The project will assess the option of calculating and adding the yearly water consumption and cost to the product data on Topten as well as energy and water cost savings compared to a similar model of a lower class.