Some of you may be aware of the governments limit on showerhead flow, currently at 2.5 gallons per minute, or GPM. What some of you may not be aware of however is that the government has never really defined the term ‘showerhead’.
To this day, the term ‘showerhead’ has been understood as a device that directs water onto a bather. Sounds good to me, what else would a showerhead be? If you had multiple nozzles in your shower, let’s say for example an overhead sprayer and a body sprayer; they were all considered to be separate showerheads. Simple enough.
Now however, there’s been a redefinition of the term showerhead to include not just one sprayer, but all the sprayers in your shower as a whole. Suddenly the plural of the word showerhead no longer exists; all your showerheads are now one.
What this means to you, is that if you’re remodeling your bathroom, and decide to incorporate say a rain sprayer, a handheld sprayer, and two body sprayers, they must all together add up to 2.5 GPM. That would leave just .625 GPM allocated to each sprayer. Doesn’t sound like much, does it?
Don’t get me wrong, I’m all for saving water. Water is right up there with air as one of the most important resources we as human beings need to survive. Saving water saves energy, and that savings creates a positive ripple all the way up the supply chain.
What I don’t understand however is how the government plans to regulate such things. According to sources, regulation of this new interpretation of the law will happen at the manufacturer level, not at the consumer level. So does this mean that manufacturers will have to start creating 1/2 GPM shower devices so that I can have more than one sprayer in my shower? Obviously they’ll still be manufacturing standard 2.5 GPM showerheads, so what’s to stop me as a consumer from purchasing all 2.5 GPM devices for my shower?
Is there a consideration for showerheads that don’t operate at the same time? Say for example, when your turn the body sprayers on, the overhead sprayer turns off? Who knows?
The bottom line from my point of view, is to try to understand what this means for consumers. I’ve got to be honest with you, I don’t get it.
When I first found out about this, I honestly wondered if there isn’t something more pressing or more impactful that the government could be handling right now besides my shower. There are a lot of things I can think of that would create a bigger impact globally than trying to get into the showers of the estimate 1% to 4% of homes that actually have multi-head systems. Instead of focusing on such a small spec of the eco problems, why not step it up on the 99% of households in the US that use electricity and find ways to cut back that usage. (Mandating CFL’s, subsidizing solar panel cost, wind turbines, etc.)
As much as I like to hear that the government is stepping it up on eco policy, I’d like it even more if they stepped it up in areas that could make a big impact. Not in the showers of the few homes that are lucky enough to have showers with more than one showerhead.
Where do you stand? No, not stand in the shower, where do you stand on this?