How Energy Efficient Showerheads and Sink Faucets Work
“It’s a magic trick!” you exclaim as you see that your new energy efficient showerheads and sink faucets work just like your old ones did.
It really is a bit of a mystery. The stream of water feels just as powerful, and you feel just as clean afterward. But somehow you’re saving money and conserving water at the same time? How is that possible?
The Basic Science Behind How Energy Efficient Showerheads and Sink Faucets Work for You
Simply stated, the energy-saving equipment works in one of two ways.
- The showerheads are made with smaller holes, but the water shoots through just as powerfully, or in some cases more powerfully, resulting in an equally soothing shower.
- Air is added to the mix, allowing for a fuller volume of water but not as much water use. That’s why the water from energy efficient showerheads and sink faucets tends to feel smoother on your skin. It’s basically bubblier, similar to the feeling of sitting in a bathtub with jets.
According to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, bathroom sink faucets that have the WaterSense label use a maximum of 1.5 gallons of water per minute. This reduces the flow of water by at least 30 percent from the traditional flow of 2.2 gallons a minute.
Sponsored by the EPA, WaterSense is a partnership program with a variety of industries involved in manufacturing or selling related products. In addition to showerheads and sink faucets, toilets, spray valves, and sprinkler bodies are available with the WaterSense label as well.
The Bottom Line
So how much are we saving by using energy efficient showerheads and sink faucets?
- Replacing an older toilet that uses 6 gallons of water per flush with a WaterSense toilet can save the average household $100 per year.
- A water-conserving showerhead could save the average household 2,900 gallons of water per year. Mesa, Arizona homeowners pay about $44 per month for 9,000 gallons of water.
- Energy efficient sink faucets could help us save billions of gallons of water per year nationwide.
In addition to saving money, energy efficient appliances also help to protect the environment in a number of different ways. Conserving water means less water is taken from our waterways, which keeps them cleaner. As a result, wastewater treatment plants use less energy, helping to reduce air pollution.