For many people, their shower faucet is a decorative component used solely to control the flow and temperature of the water. Shower faucets do more than this, and choosing a suitable faucet can actually save you money in the long run. There is a big market for shower faucets, and buyers may feel a little confused as to which is best for them.
However, once you are aware of the various factors that contribute to a faucet’s quality and performance the search will be straightforward and simple.
It’s a good idea to become familiar with your shower and work out what type of energy it uses, and how much water it consumes per showering session. Knowing this information will also assist in the search for a new faucet, and will help you keep your energy costs and water consumption as low as possible.
The shower faucet is responsible for the flow and temperature of the water and is generally wall mounted, but it can be tub mounted in bath/shower combinations. Shower faucets usually have two handles, with one handle controlling the flow while the other controls the heat.
Faucets found in bath/shower combinations may have a third handle which acts as a diverter for the shower. It is also possible to buy single handle faucets that utilise a small lever for temperature control. However, it’s advised to search for a replacement model with the same features as the one currently in use.
Shower Faucet Materials
It’s important to consider the material the faucet is coated with. The majority of faucets sold today are made from brass, and this metal is long lasting and durable. One of the most popular faucet coatings is chrome, and this can come in a polished, matte or brushed finish. Chrome is tough and easy to clean, and works well in bathrooms with a modern decor.
Nickel coated faucets tend to have a satin or brushed look, and those with a titanium finish are highly resistant to scratching. Nickel faucets work well in both multi colour and monochrome bathrooms. Bronze is another popular coating, and it is highly resistant to scratching and corrosion. Bronze faucets greatly complement rustic or more old fashioned bathrooms.
Shower Faucet Accessories
The first thing you should look to buy for your new faucets are aerators. An aerator is a small device that is inserted into the faucet and helps reduce water consumption whilst maintaining normal water flow. Aerators can save you a lot of money in energy bills, and companies like Agua Flux sell well designed aerators at very low prices.
If you’re unsure if the faucet will connect to your shower then buy a Universal Valve Assembly. UVA’s accommodate a wide range of faucet shapes and sizes, and eliminate the need to hire a plumber to readjust the valve settings. An Anti-Scald Unit is a handy device to have if young children use the shower, and will automatically stop the temperature of the water from becoming too hot.
Things to Remember
Although it’s possible to buy a Universal Valve Assembly, it is recommended that you search for faucets that are compatible with your current shower set up.
Spend some time considering the material used to coat the faucet, as some materials are more resistant to corrosion and scratching but will be more costly. Buy and install a pair of faucet aerators as these will greatly reduce water consumption and energy fees.
Terance Nichols is a leading expert on household energy who specialises in water consumption. His advice and knowledge is sought by homeowners and business alike.