Thursday, December 8, 2011

How many showers will Aunt Edna take?!

With the holiday season fast approaching, or if your family is anything like mine...a steady stream of weekend get together s starting on or around Thanksgiving day, you may be planning for some extra inhabitants at your home soon. If you have ever had a house full of guests stay an extended period of time at your place you may have had to be creative with your own personal grooming habits and time(s).

Often the biggest headache in your home when housing additional bodies is the increased downtime waiting for the water heater to catch up when everyone decides they stink just enough and need to freshen up. Most home's water heaters are not equipped to handle much more than the daily load put upon them. Add age and increased use and you have a holiday recipe for shrieks aplenty as you or your guest are suddenly finding themselves jumping frantically from unpleasant cold water in the shower. This, of course, can be avoided or even eliminated altogether with some planning and minor upgrades to your current shower hardware.

Long showers or increased amounts of trips through the bath due to guests in the home will drain your standard tank type heater in short order. Most [standard] shower heads (the part where the water is spraying out, not the control valve in the wall) allow around 2.5 gallons per minute of water through them. Some allow as much as 3-3.5 gallons per minute, that's a lot of hot water! New, high efficiency shower heads are engineered to use operate south of the 2 gallon per minute rate; presenting a 20% water savings that can significantly extend the number of showers you might be able to fit in to your daily routine.
Changing shower heads is rather simple. All local big box, and most local hardware stores have an excellent variety to choose from. Many of these new shower heads offer a great showering experience yet use a fractional amount of water when compared to what you may be using now. Sizing for shower heads are standard, making for a shot list of tools and materials required. If you're not the do-it-yourself type,  Aune Plumbing can help you get on track to a less stressful time spent with family.

This may also be a great time to consider the age and performance of your existing water heater.  As I have written here in the past, there are many options that may be a better fit for you and your family's lifestyle.  Check out all the information I have posted about water heaters, the different types and what may work best for you.  If you have any questions or want to schedule an appointment to assess your current situation please email or call 763-238-2385.

The bottom line is this, staggering tasks such as washing dishes and clothes from taking showers when house guests are staying with you during the holidays will up your chances at keeping sane.  Upgrading your shower heads will make a big impact that will benefit you even after your big hairy brother leaves town through water savings and lower fuel consumption annually.  Have a happy holiday season!

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