Recently, I’ve undertaken the video documentation of many of my efforts for home improvement/home sustainability. One of the easiest, that I plan to share now is the replacement of a standard shower head (which was already low-flow by the standards of our grandparents) with a VERY efficient shower head replacement (1.5GPM).
Efficient Shower Head Replacement
To do this, you’ll need some pliers, some cloth, some teflon tape, and your new shower head (I purchased one like this one–the exact unit is shown above). The cloth is only for the purposes of not making a visual mess of the finish on your new and old shower heads. If you can do it and not scuff the finish, that’s fine.
Take your pliers and twist counter-clockwise (as if you’re looking into the shower head). The old shower head will come off. Most likely, you’ll get a little wet in this process.
Take your teflon tape and make just one or two rounds around the exposed thread of the shower neck that protrudes from the wall. The teflon tape only serves to make the threads watertight.
Now take your new shower head and thread it onto the neck protruding from the wall. Hand tighten at first and then use the pliers to tighten it slightly past hand tight.
The YouTube video is embedded below. It is a little wobbley (hand-held camera), but it gets the point across.
Did we notice a difference? I won’t lie: we did. But, we cut our contractor’s traditional shower head flow by half. Another interesting side effect is that it takes longer for one to feel the hot water in the shower. This makes sense because the overall flow through that pipe is about half, now.
A ten-minute shower was using about 30 gallons of hot water (about half of our tank). now it only uses 15 gallons. That’s a significant improvement.