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electric shower and bath taps advice please!

(30 Posts)
MrsHooolie Sun 02-Aug-15 21:53:25

Hi,about to refit our bathroom.

Getting rid of separate shower and having a shower bath.
Electric shower will be at one end and I'd like to keep a shower head with the bath taps so I can clean the bath and rinse my hair when I have a bath. I'm planning to have wall mounted bath taps in the middle of the bath so I'm hoping it won't look like its full of hoses and taps....does this make sense?Will it be too much??Help!

wowfudge Sun 02-Aug-15 22:02:13

How big is your bath?! Whenever I've had a shower over the bath the hose has always reached to enable hair washing without taking a shower and also cleaning. I just can't see the additional shower spray is necessary.

What I have sometimes found is that shower riser bars come with stupid little plastic trays attached that the hose is meant to thread through - like the one in the picture - and this makes it really difficult to use the shower spray for hair washing and cleaning as it loops upwards and doesn't hang free. I have taken riser bars off to remove the trays before now. You don't have to have them. You can also buy longer hoses for the shower.

PigletJohn Sun 02-Aug-15 22:08:37

Bristan taps.

I am perturbed by your suggestion of an electric shower because the energy is three times the cost of energy from gas, and the flow of lukewarm water is not much more than a cat's bladder,

How do you heat your water? Have you got a cylinder? What colour is it?

MrsHooolie Sun 02-Aug-15 22:09:55

Hmm,maybe we should just get a longer hose for the electric shower.

I like having a separate one tho,and thought it would be ok if the taps are wall mounted in the middle.

I hate making decisions....dreading looking at tiles!

MrsHooolie Sun 02-Aug-15 22:12:55

We have an 18 month old combi boiler (Worcester).

Our shower is fine,it's not being moved,it'll be over the bath at one end (getting a shower bath).

wowfudge Sun 02-Aug-15 22:28:55

To echo PJ - I have to say I hate electric showers as they are pathetic compared to thermostatic mixer showers. I don't know if water pressure has a bearing on whether you can have a thermostatic mixer one instead?

MrsHooolie Sun 02-Aug-15 22:35:33

wowfudge I think I'll need to ask my builder. Our bath is quite slow to fill so I don't think our pressure is great.Having said that the shower head in our bath is fine.

I'm thinking now that we should get rid of the electric shower and get a thermostatic shower instead?

wowfudge Sun 02-Aug-15 22:39:10

I would choose a thermostatic mixer shower over an electric shower every time. PigletJohn will be able to advise what you need to have one in terms of pressure/flow, etc.

MrsHooolie Sun 02-Aug-15 23:00:03

Ok,thanks *wowfudge.
*Hopefully *pigletjohn *will come back to advise. smile

PigletJohn Mon 03-Aug-15 10:47:32

An Aqualisa shower. Round knob mixers are better than bar showers. Look at Plumbworld for prices. Fill a bucket at your hot bath tap, and afterwards your cold bath tap, time it, see how many litres per minute you get from each on its own. Then turn on both together and see how many lpm you get.

VulcanWoman Mon 03-Aug-15 10:58:08

I like to have a separate electric shower, comes in handy if the combi boiler starts playing up, always have hot water on tap then. My electric shower flows way faster than a cats bladder, not an expensive one either 60 quid Triton, was on sale.

wowfudge Mon 03-Aug-15 11:49:01

You must have the only decent electric one in the world then Vulcan wink

VulcanWoman Mon 03-Aug-15 12:46:17

Wowfudge, don't know if you've tried an electric shower in the past ten years but they've definitely improved, my Mum and Dad had one, must be 20 years ago and it wasn't very powerful at all. But the last 3 places I've lived the electric showers have been great, should imagine it has something to do with the water pressure but I'm not 100%.

Cassimin Mon 03-Aug-15 12:48:09

I would always have electric shower. If boiler breaks at least you can still keep clean

wowfudge Mon 03-Aug-15 13:26:10

If we had two bathrooms I'd consider an electric shower as back up should boiler go, but how often does that happen?

BIL fitted a new Aqualisa electric shower at their place (he's a plumber) and it's okay, but not a patch on a thermostatic one.

UsedToBeAPaxmanFan Mon 03-Aug-15 16:45:29

We've got both. We opted for an electric shower in one bathroom because with 4 people in the house we quite often end up running out of hot water in the mornings because the power shower uses gallons of water and we have teens who take hours in the shower.

Whilst the electric shower isn't as powerful, it's really not bad and I'm quite happy with it. If we only had one shower I think I'd stick with the electric one if there were more than 2 of is in the house. We did buy a special head for it which claimed it would make it feel more powerful. I was a bithmm but it actually works.

wowfudge Mon 03-Aug-15 17:27:19

The OP has a combi boiler though so running out of hot water is not going to be an issue.

PigletJohn Mon 03-Aug-15 17:28:42

I agree with Cassimin that if you have a combi boiler, it is useful to have an electric shower somewhere in the house for when the boiler is out of action.

If you have a cylinder, less worthwhile, because you should be able to heat it either by boiler or by immersion heater.

trickyex Mon 03-Aug-15 18:06:15

I am wondering about this too as the power shower in my bathroom really is powerful and can drain the cylinder so having enough hot water for three people in the morning is an issue.
WOndering about putting an electric shower in the family bathroom for the DCs to use.
Or is there another way round this?
Are there Aqualisa showers with flow reducers for example?
Or does having the cylinder on 24 hours a day help?

PigletJohn Mon 03-Aug-15 18:15:39

a modern boiler can heat a modern cylinder in about 20 minutes. You can set the timer to heat it around shower times.

You say you have power showers, perhaps you could get a less powerful pump or a smaller showerhead. What colour is your cylinder?

trickyex Mon 03-Aug-15 18:22:01

Thanks PigletJohn, the cylinder is white, think around 200 litres - it was chosen to be compatible with our solar panels but am not at all sure they work. The boiler is a condensing model and 5 years old.
The issue is when the DSs want to shower in the morning as well as me as that doesn't leave time for the cylinder to heat up again.
So unsure what to do and fitters seem unwilling to make suggestions...

trickyex Mon 03-Aug-15 18:23:05

Hope I am not gate crashing MrsH but that this info may be helpful for you too.

gingan Mon 03-Aug-15 22:57:48

Hi Mrs H, be careful - if your bath is taking ages to fill from the combi, then the combi is slowing down the flow of water in order to heat it. So you will just have the exact same issue with a thermostatic shower, which also runs off the combi. Maybe your electric shower is a high kW-rated one which can cope with heating the mains water at a faster flow rate than your combi can? The way to check this is to measure the litres/minute from both outlets and compare. You don't want to end up with a worse shower than the one you already have! Also as others have said, it's a real pain if your combi breaks down and you can't have a shower till it's fixed! Just some thoughts for you to mull over...Julie (plumber) x

gingan Mon 03-Aug-15 23:14:26

Hi trickyex, sounds like you have an unvented cylinder which runs off mains pressure, rather than a pump. If so then you could be using over 20 litres a minute, which will soon drain your cylinder. You could restrict the flow at the main stopcock but you will need a plumber to do this as it is important to balance all the safety devices on the cylinder. Alternatively I would go for the electric shower option, then you've got a backup. Make sure the plumber who installs it is either Part P qualified or gets an electrician to do the wiring as it needs its own breaker in the consumer unit. Julie (plumber)

PigletJohn Tue 04-Aug-15 00:41:15

A white cylinder is pretty sure to be an unvented one, which does not need a pump, and is unlikely to be used with a combi boiler. An unvented cylinder can deliver unsurpassed hot water. You need to do the bucket test for your shower outlets as well.

If you have 200 litres of HW and the family is using it all up, you need to start charging them by the minute, or get smaller shower heads to reduce the flow.

An electric shower will usually be about a third the power of a combi boiler, so is very much third best (with the unvented cylinder top of the league).

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