thermostatic-shower-valve

Thermostatic Shower Valve: Eco Tech to Save Water & Energy

Water used in the shower can account for up to 20% of your home’s total usage. So, when you’re shaving or washing your hair, those little droplets are really adding up! Most people may not be aware that today there are shower faucets with technology to help you save water. How? By having a thermostatic shower valve that shuts off the water once it reaches a certain temperature. If you are worried about safety, these provide you peace of mind because they ensure the temperature doesn’t get too high, which is key to avoiding burns.

How a Thermostatic Shower Valve Works

A thermostatic shower valve is a specialized type of valve that is designed to regulate the temperature of water in a shower. This type of valve is becoming increasingly popular as an eco-friendly way to save water. Here’s how it works: 

It has two main components – a mixing chamber and a temperature sensor. The mixing chamber is where the cold and hot water meet before going into the shower head. The temperature sensor is located in the mixing chamber and monitors the water temperature. 

When you turn on the shower, the cold and hot water flow into the mixing chamber and are mixed together. The temperature sensor then kicks in and adjusts the flow of cold and hot water accordingly to maintain a consistent water temperature. This prevents wasted water from running too hot or too cold, which can save significant amounts of water over time.

Lots of Energy in Hot Water

Water heating accounts for about 18% of the average home’s energy use. By using these valves, you’ll be using less hot water, less energy overall, and that will lower your utility bills. In fact, some estimates show that you can save up to $100 per year on your energy bills by making this switch! 

Ideally, it would be best if you were taking short showers of five to ten minutes at a time. Using one of our shower valve choices will enable you to efficiently heat the perfect amount of water for that sort of length of time. Less water means less energy and no more waiting around for the water to get hot or to cool down!

Benefits of a Thermostatic Shower Valve

1. Savings. It is designed to automatically shut the water off when it reaches the desired temperature. This means that you won’t have any water wasted by leaving the shower running too long. These shower valves also help you save energy because they maintain a consistent water temperature. This means that you won’t have to waste energy by constantly adjusting the temperature of your shower.

2. You can stay comfortable. The consistent water temperature provided by a thermostatic shower valve will help ensure that you don’t experience any sudden temperature changes that could ruin your relaxation time.

3. You can avoid scalding yourself. One of the most dangerous things about showers is the risk of scalding yourself with too-hot water. With a temperature regulating valve, you can avoid this danger.

Safety Protection

The temperature regulation of your shower leads to safety and energy efficiency. This means that you won’t have to worry about scalding yourself or wasting water by accidentally letting the water run too hot or cold.

These showerhead valves often come with a safety stop feature. This means that if the water gets too hot, the valve will automatically shut off, helping to prevent accidents or injuries.

As the world becomes more and more aware of its impact on the environment, eco-friendly technology is becoming a hot commodity. Thermostatic shower valves are one such product that is not only good for the environment but also saves you money on your water bill and has the additional benefit of safety precautions. If you are looking to save water and help the planet, these shower valves are definitely worth checking out.

thermostatic-shower-valve

5 Simple Home Water Saving Devices

Home Water Saving Products
Home Water Saving Devices

Sometimes it’s the simplest changes that can have the biggest effect on water consumption in the home. Water saving products are low-cost but have a long-lasting effect on home energy usage and the utility bill. To make this easy change, here are 5 simple home water saving products you can install today.

Showerheads
If your showerhead can fill a bucket with 1-gallon of water in under 20 seconds, it’s time to change to an earth-friendly model.

Savings
For less than $10, you could purchase a Niagara Earth showerhead that saves up to 5,475 gallons of water annually. Low-flow showerheads also decrease energy usage, so showerheads that release 1.5 gpm (gallons per minute) save around $70 – $105 per year on the electric and gas bill.

Features
Niagara Earth Showerheads have many varying features:

  • Massage – settings range from a soft spray to an intense massage
  • “Pause” option – slows or stops the water from flowing and is especially handy when you don’t need the water to run, like while soaping up or shaving
  • Flow Control Technology – gives you consistent, even water pressure regardless of the pressure from your water system

Faucet Aerators
Faucet aerators are like caps on the tip of faucets. However, unlike caps, faucet aerators help water flow out evenly and consistently while cutting down on water and energy usage.

Savings
Faucet aerators are one of the cheapest water saving devices on the market. For an investment as low as $2, faucet aerators and earth showerheads can reduce hot water usage by up to 50%.

Kitchen
It’s recommended that kitchen faucets use aerators with a flow rate of no less than 1.5 gpm, since kitchen faucets usually need high flow rates.

Bathroom
Bathroom faucets don’t need a high flow rate and will still maintain water pressure with a .5 – 1 gpm aerator.

Toilet Tank Bank
Fill the toilet tank bank with water and hang it on the inside of the tank wall. With just that simple install you’ll save 0.8 gallons of water per flush. There is nothing to maintain, it never needs re-filling, and it even prevents odors. The product doesn’t change how your toilet functions in any way; it just saves water.

Shower Timer
As much as 25 gallons of water can be used on a 15-minute shower. Curtail the water waste with shower timers. These water saving devices are a fun, smart, and cheap way to keep everyone in the household in line with water usage.

Types
There are different types of shower timers, ranging in price from super cheap to super expensive.

  • Sand Timer – These timers can be attached to the shower wall. Some are like a hourglass and some are digital. They’re usually made to keep track of 5-10 minutes and cost as little as $3.
  • Digital Shower Timer – An digital timer measures shower time in five-minute intervals. It is installed either with a suction cup or adhesive backing. At the beginning of a shower, a blue LED light appears, and at the 4.5 minute mark, the LED light changes to red. For the last 30 seconds, the red light on the LED shower timer flashes red as a reminder. The cost of this timer is approximately $7.
  •  Digital Shower Timer with Water Consumption Calculator – Costing about $15, a digital shower timer and water calculator displays the amount of time spent as well as the amount of water consumed during the shower. It allows you to set the target amount of water to be used, and an alarm sounds once that target has been reached. This timer also can be installed with a suction cup, or hung with a lanyard.

Soil Moisture Meter
For aspiring and expert gardeners alike, the name is self-explanatory; the meters measure soil for adequate moisture. Soil moisture meters are analog-style, and read the moisture levels in the soil to prevent over-watering, a leading cause in plant death.

Most of these water saving products pay for themselves in under a year, but save you money and decrease energy usage for much longer.

thermostatic-shower-valve

Tackle Water Demand with Water Saving Devices

The average family is wasting nearly 200 gallons of water every week through leaks, water you never even know is leaving.

Currently, 40 out of the 50 states in the US are expecting statewide water shortages within the next decade. Needless to say, we’re looking at a water crisis. To put this on a more personal scale, the average family is spending more than $1,000 annually on water bills. This doesn’t even include the amount being spent on water heating, or energy used to run appliances like the dishwasher or laundry machine. The simplest way to reduce this usage (and associated costs), is by installing items found in a water conservation kit

Shower

Water saving devices help save, at the very least, 20 percent more water in a home. Additionally, they tend to perform better than their non-efficient counterparts. For example, the eco showerhead in a water conservation kit uses only 1.5 gallons of water per minute. At the same time, it comes with 9 different spray options, and is self-cleaning. Replacing the showerhead can save enough water to amount to 88 loads of laundry. 

Faucet

The faucet is one place in the house where usage and waste are unfortunately easy to overlook. Leaving the faucet running for just 5 minutes can result in enough energy wasted to power a 60-watt light bulb. This waste also leads to 10 gallons of water literally gone down the drain. Installing faucet aerators drastically cuts down on this kind of waste to the tune of $250 over the lifetime of the aerator.

Toilet

The toilet happens to be one of the largest consumers of water in the entire home. A water conservation kit contains a few items to help combat this. Toilet Tank Banks are great water saving devices. It is installed in the toilet tank to reduce the amount of water used per flush. It does this without interfering with the toilet’s mechanics, and it prevents odors.

Without even realizing it, the average family is wasting nearly 200 gallons of water every week through leaks, water you never even know is leaving. This equals over 9,000 gallons yearly, enough water for 300 loads of laundry! The first step to solving this problem is discovering it. The toilet leak tablets that come in the water kit do just that. They change the color of the water if a leak is present. Another great tool for combatting toilet water waste is the tank bank.

Saving water at home doesn’t have to mean a complete shift in your lifestyle. A water conservation kit comes with a variety of everyday products that are not only simple to install, but can save thousands of gallons and dollars over their lifetimes.

thermostatic-shower-valve

Conservation Kits Provide Instant Savings

As the climate crisis on our planet has become a climate emergency, a lot of us are looking for different ways to improve our carbon footprint. While this may initially seem like a daunting and expensive task, it truly isn’t. There are many small ways to start saving both energy and water around your home or building that won’t break the bank. Conservation kits are prepared with these types of savings in mind, and the items they contain provide instant savings once installed.

Improving Energy Efficiency

According to Time.com, “On average, remote workers have seen a $40-50 monthly increase in their energy costs—or as much as $600 a year.” With energy bills steadily on the rise, employing measures that can produce savings right away is even more pressing. Common items you’ll find in conservation kits include:

  • LED Light Bulbs, which use up to 80% less energy than their incandescent counterparts
  • Closed Cell Foam to limit drafts and heat from entering through doors
  • Outlet Gaskets that block air leaks from outlets
  • Rope caulk to seal air from entering through windows
tidy room filled with furnitures

Help Me Save Water

Each day, the average home in the United States uses approximately 80-100 gallons of water at home. A surprising number, right? When you consider the amount of times we wash our hands and dishes, flush the toilets, and even shower, this number really begins to take shape. Let’s take a step back, and see how we can bring this number down.

  • Low flow aerators reduce the amount (but not the pressure) of water coming from faucets. Their flow rates range from 0.5-2.0 gallons of water per minute.
  • Low flow shower heads follow this same concept, except with the shower. Many of these shower heads are also self-cleaning.
  • A toilet tank bank is placed in the toilet tank to limit the amount of water used per flush.
  • Outdoor water savers allow you to expand water savings outside of the home and into your gardens.

Saving energy and water at home, or in your building, can actually be quite simple. With a few quick installations of items found in conservation kits you can be well on your way to helping the climate and your wallet at the same time.

thermostatic-shower-valve

Using A Green Loan for Home Efficiency

brown wooden table and chairs

“Creating a green home is a great way to reduce your carbon footprint right where you live, while at the same time placing money right back into your pocket.”

Our homes are responsible for approximately 20 percent of all greenhouse gas emissions in the US. While some may want to add energy saving upgrades, many have held back because of the costs. Adding energy and water efficiency products to your home or building just got a little bit easier. Using a green loan, you can easily get started on completing those projects that will increase the overall efficiency and savings in your space.

How does a green loan work?

This type of loan can be used to complete major renovations, such as installing tankless water heaters, solar panels and energy efficient doors and windows. Additionally, the funds can also be used to make faster green improvements, including:

  • Low-flow showerheads
  • Low-flow aerators
  • Eco toilets
  • LED lights
  • Adding or updating insulation
  • Programmable thermostats

When searching for products that meet energy and water efficiency requirements, look for the Energy Star and WaterSense labels.

How much can I save?

The products installed and projects completed with a green loan can certainly help lower your utility bills. At the highest level, LEED-certified homes can save an average of 15% on the cost of energy annually. Taking into account that the average family in the United States spends between $2,000-$3,100 on energy and water bills every year, that can equal savings of roughly $300-$465.

Creating a green home is a great way to reduce your carbon footprint right where you live, while at the same time placing money right back into your pocket. Check with your local bank or credit union to find out more information on getting started with one of these loans.

thermostatic-shower-valve

Install a Faucet Regulator for Simple and Immediate Savings

On average, a newly installed faucet aerator is designed to use as much as 2.5 gallons of water each minute left running. While this may not sound like a whole lot initially, this can equal to thousands of gallons of water used and wasted by the end of the year. With wasted water comes wasted energy used to heat it, and rising costs for both. Installing a faucet regulator (also called an adapter) is a quick way to realize immediate savings on all three without losing pressure. Here are a few factors to consider when choosing the best one for you.

What kind of aerator does my faucet have?

Faucets are fitted with either male or female threading. A designated male aerator will have the threading on the outside of it. The standard thread size for a male aerator in the United States is 15/16”-27. The threading for a female aerator is placed on the inside of the aerator. Size is typically 55/64”-27. Once you know the type of aerator being adjusted, you can find the perfectly fitted faucet regulator. Additionally, adapters are available to convert the aerator from male to female, and vice versa.

Water Savings

Once you’ve looked over the kind of aerator to be retrofitted, the next subject to decide is the amount of water you’re hoping to save. As well as many threading options, a faucet regulator is available with many options for savings. The lowest amount of water that can be used through an adapter is 0.5 gallons per minute, and the largest flow rate is 2.2 gallons of water.

The regulators are designed with savings and pressure in mind to allow for the most savings without the loss of comfort. Simply twist in to your faucet or aerator, and you’re ready to start saving!

faucet regulator
thermostatic-shower-valve

How to Fit an Aerator into Your Faucet

The average household faucet consumes over 2 gallons of water each minute it is left on. This may sound small, until you consider this can equal up to 3,000 gallons of wasted water each year. High efficiency aerators can help you save water and deliver a steady and forceful stream of water, while saving at the same time. A high-quality faucet aerator adapter helps you connect a water saving aerator to almost any common faucet styles. Here’s what you need to know before you get started.

Sizing It Up

Nickel and dime is the phrase to keep in mind here. Start by removing the washer and insert from the inside of the aerator. Grab a nickel, and place it over the aerator. If the size is close to that of a nickel, you have a regular size aerator. An aerator that a dime can fit in is a junior-size aerator.

Male and Female Threading

Determining the threading is slightly easier than discovering the size. A female threaded aerator will be screwed onto the faucet with the threads on the inside of the aerator. A male aerator has the threading placed on the outside, top of the aerator. Pretty simple, right?

Different Streams

Another thing to consider when choosing a faucet aerator adapter is the type of water stream it produces:

Spray stream resembles the pattern distributed by a shower head. This type is ideal for bathrooms in commercial spaces.

Aerated/Bubble stream works by mixing the water with air. This pattern is softer than the other options, and produces no splashing. This type is found commonly in residential environments.

Laminar stream is great for spaces that require high flow, and no splashing, such as health-care establishments.

The smallest of changes can get you on the road to having a major impact on water consumption in your community. Doing a task as simple as fitting a faucet aerator adapter over your faucets can save up to 3,000 gallons of water each year. This can be done without much effort, and without sacrificing any water pressure.

Faucet Aerator Adapter
Faucet Aerator Adapter
thermostatic-shower-valve

Retrofit Your Toilet

In the average American home, 45% of the total water usage occurs in the bathroom, with about 27% of that being used by toilets.  Fortunately, your household can decrease its toilet water usage by checking and fixing leaks and retrofitting toilets.

In 1994, The Energy Policy Act became a law and mandated a maximum flush volume of 1.6 gallons for toilets manufactured and installed after this date. If your toilet is more than 23 years old, chances are that it is using between 3.5 – 7 gallons of water with every flush.

Over the last twenty years, there have continued to be efforts to decrease the amount of water used in toilets. There are high-efficiency toilets that use 1.28 gallons per flush or less. You may also be familiar with dual flush, grey water, or composting toilets.

However, if you are not ready to install new toilets, you can retrofit the ones you have. An easy option is to install a toilet tank displacement bag in your toilet tank. Once filled with water, the bag will displace about .5 gallons of water in your toilet tank so that it will use less water each time it is flushed.

Another option is to install a fill cycle diverter. The fill cycle diverter is a plastic device that directs more water to the tank and less to the bowl while they refill so that they finish filling at roughly the same time.  When a toilet is flushed, both the tank and the bowl need to be refilled, and in many cases the bowl will fill sooner than the tank. In this case, the water will continue to run into the bowl until the tank water level is high enough to shut off the fill valve. Once installed, a fill cycle diverter will save about .5 gallons of water with each toilet flush. It can be used in conjunction with the Toilet Tank Bank.

A third option is to install a new toilet fill valve. The Hydroclean toilet fill valve is the only valve that solves the two biggest reasons for water loss in toilets – miscalibration and leaks. The patented mini-valve allows pinpoint calibration typically saving 30-ounces of water per flush in high efficiency toilets and 60-ounces per flush in older, larger toilets. Its’ unique bowl filler adjustment also detects silent leaks and the patented Float Lock allows minor repairs in the tank as well as flapper leak detection without shutting off the water.

Simple, inexpensive retrofits for your toilets will allow you to save both water and money!

thermostatic-shower-valve

Practice What You Teach: Sustainability on College Campuses

Colleges and universities are ranked on a variety of criteria; from class size, retention and graduation rates to whether or not they are a top party school or have a successful athletic program.

In recent years, colleges and universities are also being judged by their “green” initiatives. Princeton Review’s Top List of Green Colleges and Sierra Club’s list of America’s Greenest Universities ranks campus sustainability practices. The categories that are examined are: Energy, Investments, Food, Innovation, Academics, Planning, Purchasing, Transport, Waste, and Water.

Sustainability measures often save a significant amount of money, and they also demonstrate that colleges are practicing what they teach.

Of the categories listed above, water and energy have an immediate financial payoff. By making the switch to energy efficient lighting and water saving devices colleges can save millions!

Boston College’s energy-efficiency efforts have resulted in annual energy savings of more than 4 million kWh, and cost savings of $650,000. The multiple conservation measures implemented on campus include more than 1.4 million square feet in lighting upgrades. Campus lighting upgrades include motion sensing, daylight harvesting, and ballast replacements. In addition, they distributed 7000 12.5 Watt LED bulbs to students.

Assumption College in Massachusetts installed toilet flush valves and water-saving shower heads in 22 buildings, which should save nearly three million gallons of water per year.

Students at American University measured the flow rate of water fixtures on campus and realized that AU could be more efficient with its water use. They shared their findings with Office of Sustainability staff members who then estimated that once all the aerators are replaced, the university will save 570,000 gallons of water, enough to fill AU’s swimming pools and almost $10,000 per year.

For other ideas on how to make your school more green and to connect with other sustainability departments you may want to visit the Association for the Advancement of Sustainability in Higher Education.

Conservation Mart has a wide selection of energy and water saving devices and would love to help your campus go green!

 

thermostatic-shower-valve

How is the WaterSense Label on Showerheads Useful?

WaterSense Labeled Showerheads
WaterSense Labeled Showerheads

WaterSense, a program by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, uses its labels and certifications to protect the future of our nation’s water supply by offering people a simple way to use less water with water-efficient products, new homes, and services. The goal of the program is to help consumers make smarter choices with the water they use that save money and maintain high environmental standards. WaterSense labeled products and/or services are certified to be at least 20 percent more efficient without sacrificing performance. These products have the potential to help our country save billions of gallons of water annually.

When it comes to showerheads, water efficiency usually has to do with features such as low-flow and restricted-flow. Showering accounts for approximately 17% of residential indoor water use, proving to be one of the leading ways we use water in the home. For the average family, that becomes nearly 40 gallons per day of water usage which is close to 1.2 trillion gallons of water used annually in the United States just for showering.

Standard showerheads use 2.5 gallons of water per minute (gpm). WaterSense labeled showerheads use no more than 2.0 gpm and ensures that these products still provide a satisfactory shower that is equal to or better than conventional showerheads on the market. The savings that come with simply switching to WaterSense labeled showerheads are absolutely worthwhile. An average family could save 2,900 gallons per year by installing WaterSense labeled showerheads. Because these savings simultaneously reduce demands on water heaters, they also save energy. An average family could save more than 370 kilowatt hours of electricity annually by using WaterSense products. To further put this into scale, if every home in the United States installed WaterSense labeled showerheads, we could save more than $2.2 billion in water utility bills and more than 260 billion gallons of water annually. Furthermore, we could avoid about $2.6 billion in energy costs for heating water.

Whether you are replacing an older, inefficient showerhead or looking for ways to reduce water use and utility bills in your home, look for WaterSense labeled showerheads along with faucets, faucet accessories, and toilets to help you identify models that save water and perform well.