As a society, our awareness of the environment has been increasing dramatically in recent years. With huge campaigns and changes to the way we do almost everything so that we (rightly) protect the world we live in, lots of consumers now buy with the world around them in mind.
“What impact will this have?” is often at the top of minds for the younger generation who seem more focused and ready to do something about this global issue.
Bringing it into our bathroom world, building regulations have changed over the years to help with this. Things like the cistern (water tank) on a new WC will now be smaller, but more efficient than in years gone by. Even taps are more efficient.
The big area we often get asked about is water. More specifically, the shower versus the bath. Is taking a shower better for the environment?
Is Having a Shower Rather than a Bath Better for the Environment?
Is having a shower better for the environment?
To answer this precisely, it really depends on the type of shower and bath you’re comparing. If you have a power shower and you like to take your time in the shower you could argue that there is no saving of water over a bath. Run the shower for long enough and you’ll use as much water and gas as a bath!
Combi boilers and pressurised systems are now considered to be the preferred systems to have in your home. But due to their pressurised engineering, they’ll actually use more water than an old gravity hot water system.
Modern hot water systems will heat water more efficiently than the older gravity-based systems, though.
Oh… and if you have a bath that is larger than a standard UK bath, then this could be less efficient for obvious reasons. So it’s not quite as simple.
What’s the best type of shower?
If you’re looking to consider the environment as best you can, then there are some eco-friendly options for you. You can choose showers that have more restrictive shower heads, which use less water.
This is great if you are using them on a pressurised system, but if you have a gravity system, they can restrict the flow too much, making them a poor choice. This is assuming you’re using a shower off your hot water system.
Electric showers are cheaper to run and will most likely use less water. These are more expensive to fit though, which often puts people off.
Should you remove the bath and replace with a shower?
It’s probably fair to say that if you remove the bath and replace it with a shower you’ll do more for the environment. And you’ll also benefit from a larger bathroom space, too. From an eco-point of view – and assuming you don’t have a huge shower pump for your shower – you could save on water use dramatically over the years.
But this does assume you don’t have people standing in the shower for longer than is required, as we mentioned above. So consider your household preferences before making any decisions.
Is a shower better for you than a bath?
There’s evidence that taking a bath can help your body to relax and even increase blood flow and oxygen around the body, helping to soothe sore muscles. I’m sure we can all agree that a bath is a good stress-reliever.
From a hygiene perspective, showers help more when you’re dirty from being outdoors or exercising. They’re also more convenient and quick.
If we’re honest, people don’t tend to pick a bath over a shower or vice-versa based on the environment or their health benefits. People generally pick what they prefer to have in their bathroom.
Shower or bath? It’s really your choice…
It’s a time-old question and one that’s a tricky one to answer. Most people assume that a bath uses more water but is better for you. It really depends how long you spend in the bath or shower though, as well as the type or shower and the way you heat the water.
Saving water is certainly something we can all do more of the time though, and there are plenty of bathroom products that aim to do this. There are some great examples of this in the new Vitra bathroom range here.
Would you like some more help deciding what to put in your dream bathroom?