There are different ways to get a high-pressured showering experience. If you have low pressure in your property, the main reason will be due to having a gravity / vented hot water system installed. This is a very common system to have installed in the UK however slowly but surely homeowners are converting to the more efficient high-pressure unvented systems.
What causes low water pressure
The main reason behind having a low-pressure flow when showering is if you were to have a low-pressure gravity system which is one of the most common of all water systems. It includes a hot water tank (or cylinder) which is normally found in an airing cupboard and it also includes a cold water tank in the loft. This system is called a low pressure gravity system because the water pressure is determined by how much distance there is between the shower unit and the tank in the loft. The minimum height for this is 1 metre for showers, the greater the height of the cold-water tank the more pressure is created. Every metre gives you 0.1 bar of pressure and that doesn’t consider factors such as the resistance caused by bends etc. For a 1.0 bar shower you would need the cold-water storage tank at least 10 metres higher than the outlet. All is not lost if you’re on a gravity system we have a few ideas to give you the hotel shower you remember from your holiday to the Algarve in 2006.
Unvented System / High Pressure System
The quick fix is to upgrade your boiler or hot water system. You could change your boiler to a combi boiler that heats the water as you use it and runs off mains pressure to give you a high-pressure shower although you will find with most that if someone switches a tap on somewhere else in the house the pressure will drop. The other alternative is installing an unvented cylinder however this may need a new boiler, or it may be able to be installed using the existing boiler you have. This is always the best option to give you a fantastic shower however it is the most expensive option.
If you currently have an electric shower, the solution would be that you would have to replace the shower with a mixer shower which you could then pump to create more pressure. This is because you wouldn’t be able to pump an electric shower as it runs off mains water and doing so would blow the seals on the shower. It may be that you prefer an electric shower as you have a back up option if your hot water ever breaks down. If you’re adamant that you want to stick with an electric shower, but the pressure is poor, firstly, speak to your local water provider to check that your property is getting the minimum required pressure of 0.7 bar. If you are not, you can then look at getting the mains pipe from the road into your house upgraded to make sure your house is getting at least 0.7 bar. If both of the above aren’t an option, install a pump on the mains water coming into the property. We would always advise getting a specialist plumber to do this as if it is done wrong, you can cause yourself all sorts of problems. In turn with this you could also increase your electric shower to a higher KW rating so that the water is heated up faster.
Digital Smart Shower
Install a digital smart shower with an integrated pump. This is the quickest and most cost-effective option. We offer a wide variety of digital smart showers that can be viewed in our showroom. The showers consist of a central CPU that can be located next to your hot water cylinder where it is supplied by your hot and cold tank supplied. A single feed is then run to the bathroom either through the ceiling or wall to supply the outlet. A remote control is then installed on the wall to control the shower temperature.
Installing a shower pump can give you the maximum amount of pressure. It will require a thermostatic mixer shower to be installed that is supplied from the shower pump. Shower pumps do need to be installed at the bottom of the hot water cylinder with individual supplies taken from the hot water cylinder and cold-water tank to supply the pump. They are however quite noisy and expensive if you must buy a separate shower and pump. If you are only supplying one shower, we would always recommend a digital shower, however if you want to supply a full bathroom, or more than one shower, a shower pump is most definitely the route to take.