Benefits of Electric Showers: Explore Why You Need One

neil hughes

Neil Huges

Last Updated: 20/04/2024

Are you considering upgrading your home with an electric shower but need clarification on the benefits? 

Deciding on new home installations can be daunting, especially when choosing fixtures that impact your daily comfort. 

Electric showers offer distinct advantages that make your decision easier.

In this article, we will explore the key benefits of electric showers—highlighting how they can transform your showering experience, save on energy, and provide consistent hot water on demand. 

Whether you're renovating your bathroom or simply looking to make a smart upgrade, understanding these benefits can help you make an informed choice.

Key Takeaways

  • Instant Hot Water: Electric showers heat water on demand, providing immediate hot water without waiting, making it highly convenient for busy households.

  • Energy and Cost Efficiency: Electric showers can reduce energy bills and consumption by heating only your water, offering a more sustainable showering solution.

  • Simplicity in Installation and Maintenance: Electric showers are known for their ease of installation and minimal maintenance requirements, which make them a practical choice for many homes.

  • Versatile Design Options: Modern electric showers come in various designs and styles that complement any bathroom's aesthetics and enhance the overall decor.

  • Benefits for Homes without Gas: Electric showers provide a reliable and efficient alternative for homes that do not use gas heating, ensuring you always have hot water available.

  • Effective for Low Water Pressure: Electric showers can improve water pressure, offering a better showering experience even in homes with low water pressure systems.

  • Find out the top rated electric showers in 2024 from Best Electric Showers.

Free PDF: Ultimate Buyer's Guide to Electric Showers

What Exactly is an Electric Shower?

An electric shower uses electricity to instantly heat water as it passes through the unit directly from the cold water supply. 

This design distinguishes it from other shower types that typically require pre-heated water from a central heating system. 

The core appeal of an electric shower lies in its ability to provide hot water on demand without relying on the availability of stored hot water. 

This feature particularly benefits homes with limited or high-demand hot water supply. 

Electric showers are equipped with a heating element similar to that found in an electric kettle but engineered to operate safely and efficiently in a wet environment.

Revealing the Full Benefits of Electric Showers

Electric showers are widespread for convenience and a range of advantages, making them a preferred choice in many households. 

Here, we explore these benefits in depth to help you understand why an electric shower might be the right fit for your home.

Instant Heat: Never Wait for a Warm Shower Again

One of the standout features of electric showers is their ability to provide hot water instantaneously. 

This means no waiting for the water to warm up, which is ideal for busy families and anyone on the go. 

It's a perfect solution for ensuring that hot water is always available, even when your central heating is turned off.

Boost Your Savings with Energy Efficient Showers

Electric showers only heat your water, making them highly energy efficient. 

This can lead to significant savings on energy bills, as no energy is wasted heating a whole tank of water. 

Such efficiency saves money and reduces your carbon footprint, making electric showers a greener choice.

Installation Simplified: Setting Up Your Electric Shower

Installation of electric showers is straightforward because they do not require a connection to a hot water supply. 

They can be installed in almost any bathroom setting, reducing the installation's complexity and cost. 

Moreover, maintenance is typically more straightforward than other shower types, as fewer components can fail.

Perfect for Electric-Only Homes

Electric showers offer a practical and efficient alternative for homes without a gas supply. 

They do not rely on gas heating, which means they are still functional in electric-only homes or areas where gas is not readily available.

Sleek Designs to Complement Your Space

Today’s electric showers come in various styles and finishes, allowing them to fit seamlessly into any bathroom decor. 

Modern designs include sleek, minimalist options that can enhance the overall aesthetics of your bathroom.

Boosting Water Pressure Made Easy

Electric showers are particularly advantageous in areas with low water pressure. 

They are designed to operate independently of the house's water pressure system. Some models include integrated pumps to boost the water pressure, ensuring a consistent, satisfying shower experience.

Adapting to Any Bathroom Layout

Electric showers' compact size and requirement of only a cold water supply mean they can be fitted in various bathroom layouts. 

Whether you have a small en-suite or a large family bathroom, an electric shower can be accommodated without major renovations.

Maintenance Is a Breeze

The simplicity of the electric shower design also extends to its maintenance. 

Many models feature easy-clean shower heads that help prevent lime scale buildup, making them easier to maintain and prolong the unit's lifespan.

How Do Electric Showers Function?

Understanding the inner workings of an electric shower reveals why it is such a practical solution for instant hot water. 

Here’s a breakdown of the technical aspects that enable electric showers to provide a steady stream of hot water on demand.

Electric showers draw cold water directly from the main supply. 

This water passes through the shower unit, which is heated by a built-in heating element, similar to those found in electric kettles but optimised for safety and efficiency in a wet environment. 

The process is instantaneous, which means the water does not have time to accumulate or store, ensuring it remains fresh and hot as soon as you turn on the shower.

Heating Mechanism

The heart of an electric shower is its heating element. 

When you activate the shower, electricity flows through this element, rapidly heating the passing water to the desired temperature the user sets. 

The temperature control is user-adjustable, typically via a dial or digital controls, allowing for precise heat settings.

Water Flow and Temperature Control

The rate at which water flows through the shower head is controlled by another component within the unit. 

This ensures the water does not overheat or cool down too quickly, maintaining a consistent temperature throughout your shower. 

Some electric showers also feature thermostatic controls, which regulate the water temperature against sudden changes in water supply pressure. This means that your shower temperature remains constant even if someone else in the house uses water.

Built-in Pumps

Not all electric showers have built-in pumps. 

Those that do are often called 'power showers' and are particularly useful in homes with low water pressure. 

The pump boosts the water pressure, providing a more invigorating shower experience. 

However, most standard electric showers rely on the home's existing water pressure and are designed to operate efficiently within a range of pressures.

By heating water precisely when needed, without reliance on a hot water tank or boiler, electric showers offer an efficient and responsive solution to your daily bathing needs. 

This design maximises convenience and enhances energy efficiency, as no heat energy is wasted on water that isn’t used.

Electric Shower or Mixer Shower Which Wins?

When selecting a new shower, you may need to choose between an electric shower and a mixer shower, which can significantly affect your daily routine. 

Each type offers distinct advantages and is suited to different household setups. 

Here’s a comparative look at both to help you make an informed choice:

Comparing Water Sources and Usage

  • Electric Showers: Draw water directly from the cold water supply and heat it electrically on demand. This system is independent of the home's hot water system, making it ideal for homes with limited hot water supply.

  • Mixer Showers: Mix hot and cold water from your existing plumbing system to achieve the desired temperature. They rely on pre-heated water from a boiler or immersion heater, which can be a limitation if hot water runs out.

Assessing Water Pressure Needs

  • Electric Showers: Often have a built-in pump to boost low water pressure, making them suitable for homes with inadequate mains water pressure. They are designed to provide a consistent flow regardless of other water usage in the house.

  • Mixer Showers: Depend heavily on your home’s existing water pressure. This can be advantageous if you have a combi boiler system, as mixer showers typically excel under intense pressure.

Functionality Face-Off: Which Offers More?

  • Electric Showers: Offer instant heating and precise temperature control through internal thermostats, which can adjust to changes in water supply to prevent temperature fluctuations.

  • Mixer Showers: Provide a more manual control experience, often with the option for thermostatic control, which maintains stable water temperatures for added safety against scalding.

Installation Showdown: What’s Easier?

  • Electric Showers: They are easier and generally less expensive to install as they do not require connection to hot and cold water pipes. This makes them ideal for new additions like en-suite bathrooms.

  • Mixer Showers: Installation can be more complex and costly, particularly if your home still needs appropriate plumbing. However, they offer a more integrated look with exposed or concealed valve setup options.

Environmental Impacts: Which is Greener?

  • Electric Showers: Electric showers can be more energy-efficient because they heat water on demand. They reduce water wastage and heat only as much water as needed at any given time.

  • Mixer Showers: This may lead to more water and heat waste, especially if the boiler is not modern or efficient, as water must be pre-heated and maintained at a temperature which can consume more energy.

How to Choose the Ideal Shower for Your Home

The choice between an electric and a mixer shower largely depends on your household’s needs, existing systems, and preferences for convenience and efficiency. 

Electric showers offer independence from the home's heating system, making them excellent for homes where heating might not be reliable or for additional bathrooms that need an independent supply. 

In contrast, mixer showers are ideal for homes with robust boiler systems and high water pressure. They provide a more integrated and often luxurious shower experience.

Selecting the ideal shower for your home involves more than just preference; it's about understanding your home's specific needs and the practicality of each option available. 

Here's how you can determine which type of shower, electric or mixer, is best suited to your situation:

Assess Your Home's Water Heating System

  • Existing Setup: Consider the type of water heating system you have. Homes with a dependable and high-capacity boiler might be better suited for mixer showers, which efficiently utilise the hot water supply.

  • Electric Supply: Electric showers provide a practical solution for homes without a gas supply or an unreliable boiler. They do not rely on the boiler for hot water and are often more energy-efficient.

Understand Your Water Pressure

  • Pressure Requirements: Electric showers are generally more adaptable to varying water pressures, as many come with built-in pumps to boost low pressure. If your home has low water pressure, an electric shower could be the most suitable choice.

  • Stable Pressure: If your home has stable and high water pressure, a mixer shower can offer a more powerful and consistent shower experience, using direct feed from hot and cold water supplies.

Consider Installation Implications

  • Ease of Installation: Electric showers are easier and typically less expensive, requiring only a connection to the cold water supply and electrical system, making them ideal for new additions like en-suite bathrooms.

  • Complex Installations: Mixer showers might require more extensive plumbing work, especially if you integrate them into an existing system or upgrade from a fundamental setup.

Evaluate Environmental and Energy Considerations

  • Energy Efficiency: Electric showers heat water on demand, reducing energy consumption and water wastage, making them an environmentally friendly option.

  • Sustainability of Existing Systems: If your home already features an energy-efficient central heating system, utilising a mixer shower might make more sense to maximise this existing setup.

Factor in Future Flexibility

  • Home Resale Value: Consider the potential impact on your home's resale value. Depending on market preferences, a well-integrated and stylish mixer shower might appeal more to potential buyers than an electric shower.

  • Adaptability: Electric showers offer the flexibility to be installed in various settings without extensive plumbing modifications, which could be beneficial if you renovate or alter bathroom layouts.

Choosing the right shower involves balancing practicality, cost, energy efficiency, and personal lifestyle needs. 

By evaluating these aspects, you can enhance your daily comfort and align with your long-term home maintenance and efficiency goals.

Setting Up and Maintaining Your Shower: A Practical Guide

Proper installation and regular maintenance are key to maximising the performance and lifespan of your electric shower. 

Here are some steps and tips to ensure your electric shower functions effectively and remains in good condition over time.

Installation

  • Professional Installation: Always opt for a professional installation by a qualified electrician or plumber. Electric showers require precise electrical and plumbing connections to ensure safety and functionality.

  • Compliance with Regulations: Ensure the installation complies with local building regulations and electrical safety standards. This might involve adherence to Part P of the Building Regulations in the UK, which concerns domestic electrical safety.

  • Correct Placement: Position the electric shower unit in a suitable location within the bathroom. It should be accessible for use and maintenance and safely distanced from direct water spray other than the shower.

Maintenance

  • Regular Cleaning: Clean the shower head and hose regularly to prevent limescale buildup, which can affect water flow and temperature control. Many electric showers have easy-clean features to facilitate this process.

  • Check for Leaks: Periodically check the unit and connections for any signs of leaks or wear. Early detection can prevent more serious issues and potential damage to your bathroom.

  • Descale the Heating Element: In areas with hard water, descale the heating element according to the manufacturer’s instructions to ensure optimal performance and energy efficiency.

  • Annual Inspection: Consider having a professional inspect your shower annually to ensure all electrical components and plumbing are functioning correctly. This can help extend the life of your shower.

Troubleshooting Common Issues

  • Fluctuations in Temperature: If you experience sudden changes in water temperature, check for issues with the shower's thermostat or pressure fluctuations in your home’s water supply.

  • Low Water Pressure: Ensure the pump functions properly for electric showers with built-in pumps. A separate pump may be required if the shower does not have a pump and water pressure is an issue.

  • Electrical Problems: To avoid safety risks, a qualified professional should address any signs of electrical issues, such as the shower turning off unexpectedly or failing to heat water adequately.

Following these installation and maintenance guidelines ensures that your electric shower provides a reliable and enjoyable experience for many years. Proper care not only maintains performance but also safeguards your household's safety.

The Downsides of Electric Showers What to Consider

While electric showers offer numerous benefits, like any technology, they come with certain limitations that might affect their suitability for some households. 

Here are the potential drawbacks to consider before installing an electric shower:

Limited Water Flow

  • Flow Rate: Electric showers typically have a lower water flow rate than mixer showers powered by high-pressure systems. This can result in a less potent shower experience, particularly noticeable in models without built-in pumps.

Dependency on Electrical System

  • Power Outages: Electric showers rely entirely on your home's electrical system. In a power outage, they will not operate, unlike mixer showers, which can still function with cold water.

  • Electrical Safety: Installation and maintenance must adhere strictly to safety standards to prevent electrical hazards. This requires professional installation and periodic checks to ensure safety features function correctly.

Higher Initial Costs

  • Installation Expenses: While generally easier and less expensive to maintain, the initial installation cost of an electric shower can be higher than that of a mixer shower, especially when adjustments to home electrical systems are necessary.

Temperature Sensitivity

Consistency Issues: Electric showers may need help maintaining consistent water temperature when the incoming water temperature drops significantly during extreme cold weather. This can affect the heating efficiency and the comfort of the shower experience.

Aesthetic and Design Limitations

  • Size and Appearance: Electric showers tend to be bulkier than mixer showers due to the need to house electrical components. This can impact the overall aesthetics of the bathroom, particularly in smaller spaces where every inch counts.

Environmental Considerations

  • Energy Consumption: Although electric showers are praised for their energy efficiency in heating only the water used, the overall energy cost can still be higher than gas-heated water systems, especially in regions with higher electricity prices.

Understanding these potential drawbacks is crucial for making an informed decision that aligns with your needs and circumstances. 

While electric showers are an excellent choice for many, weighing these factors against the benefits will ensure you choose the best shower solution for your home.

Wrapping It Up: Should You Go Electric?

Electric showers offer a range of compelling benefits that can significantly enhance your daily routine, from instant hot water and improved energy efficiency to ease of installation and maintenance. 

Electric showers present a practical solution for many households because they can fit into various bathroom designs and offer the convenience of temperature and flow control.

However, like all choices, it's important to consider both sides. 

Potential drawbacks, such as dependence on your home's electrical system, lower water flow rates, and initial installation costs, must be weighed against the benefits. 

They may not be the perfect fit for every home, especially those with high water usage needs or where electricity costs are prohibitive.

In making your decision, consider your household's specific requirements, including water and energy needs, bathroom layout, and budget constraints. 

Electric showers stand out for their efficiency and suitability for homes with no gas supply or those looking to add a second shower without extensive plumbing renovations. 

Ultimately, the choice to install an electric shower should be informed by a clear understanding of its advantages and limitations, ensuring it aligns with your lifestyle needs and home infrastructure.  

Doing so lets you enjoy the numerous benefits of electric showers while mitigating potential inconveniences. 

Related

© Copyright 2024 Best Electric Shower LTD. All rights reserved. | Company Number: 15606794 | Registered in England and Wales with registered office in Linden Fields, Tunbridge Wells, England, TN2 5QX

Email Support: support@bestelectricshower.co.uk | Customer Support: 02081752283  

Privacy Policy | Cookie Policy | Terms of UseAffiliate Policy

© Copyright 2024 Best Electric Shower LTD All rights reserved | Company Number: 15606794 | Registered in England and Wales with registered office in Linden Fields, Tunbridge Wells, England, TN2 5QX

Email Support: support@bestelectricshower.co.uk | Customer Support: 02081752283  

Privacy Policy | Cookie Policy | Terms of UseAffiliate Policy

© Copyright 2024 Best Electric Shower LTD All rights reserved | Company Number: 15606794 | Registered in England and Wales with registered office in Linden Fields, Tunbridge Wells, England, TN2 5QX

Email Support: support@bestelectricshower.co.uk | Customer Support: 02081752283  

Privacy Policy | Cookie Policy | Terms of UseAffiliate Policy

logo

Free Guide: Ultimate Buyer's Guide to Electric Showers