Showers are an area where the average homeowner can save a lot of water and energy for a relatively low cost. Showers use approximately 16.8% of you total indoor water usage. With the average shower consuming 17.2 gallons of water and lasting over 8 minutes at a flow rate of 2.2 gallons per minute, there is a big opportunity to save water and money when showering.

The most obvious way to save water is by replacing older showerheads with a low-flow showerhead. Older showerheads can use as much as 6.5 gallons per minute (gpm) compared to the 2.5 gpm or less of low-flow showerheads. Installing a low-flow showerhead could save as much as 70% on your water bill. This is especially important if you have multiple people living in your home. Perhaps the best part is that low-flow showerheads still provide a variety of features we have become accustomed to - adjustable spray, self-cleaning, pressure-balancing valves to keep temperature constant when water is being used elsewhere, etc. Some showerheads are even equipped with an on/off button or switch that can stop the flow of water entirely while applying soap and shampoo or shaving.

It is estimated that 73% of water used in the average shower is hot water. Reducing the amount of hot water you use can save on hot water heating. If you were to reduce the mixture of hot and cold water to 50:50, you would save approximately 3 gallons of hot water per minute. If you can’t picture yourself reducing the heat level of your shower, you can still save some money on hot water by reducing the time you spend showering. For the standard 2.5 gpm low-flow showerhead, you can save approximately 1.8 gallons of hot water for each minute you shave off your shower time.

While your showerhead won’t save you as much water as a high-efficiency toilet, the upgrade to a low-flow showerhead is relatively inexpensive in comparison and as one of the easiest energy saving measures for a homeowner to perform.

For more ways to save on showers, see our shower tips below.

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 Shower/Showerhead Tips
Take shorter showers
Energy Water
A typical shower lasts 8 minutes and uses 17 gallons of water. Reducing shower times to the 3-4 minutes range would save nearly 10 gallons of water, not to mention energy used to heat the water. To help, purchase a shower timer to install in your shower.
Turn off water when lathering
Energy Water
When showering, turn the water off when applying soap or shampoo. This saves both water and energy used to heat the water. Some showerheads are equipped with an "off" or "pause" button to do this for you without having to turn the taps off.
Collect excess water in a bucket
EcoFriendly Water
Keep a bucket or large container in the shower with you to collect any excess water. This water can be used at a later date to water plants and flowers.
Shower less frequently
Energy Water
Although some people may think this to be a touch on the dirty side, skipping a day here and there isn't so bad. Water and energy savings can add up over time if you skip just one shower a week.
Have a cold shower
Most of us enjoy hot showers. This increases hot water usage. Try taking a cold shower. Not only will it save on hot water spending, it will refresh you, wake you up and likely get you out of the shower a little quicker. If you can't get through an entire shower in cold water, try smaller bursts of cold water, like 10 or 20 seconds.
Share a bath or a shower
Energy Water
Sharing a shower or bath with a loved one can not only be romantic, but it can save on water and energy. If you have small children, bathing them at the same time can have a similar effect on savings.
Install a low-flow showerhead
Energy Water
Similarly to the way a low-flow faucet or aerator will save on water and water heating, so too will a low-flow showerhead. They come in a variety of styles and are equipped with all of the features that we have grown accustomed to.
Replace tub diverter valve
Energy Water
The tub diverter valve routes the water from the faucet to the shower. Leaky valves waste water. If you notice leakage from around the fixture when you shower, your diverter valve may be leaking.