For many of us, electric showers are a part of our everyday lives. They may be the first thing we use in the morning, or perhaps the last thing at night. But although your electric shower may be an important part of your daily routine, do you actually know how it works? Knowing the basics about electric showers can help you know what to do should anything ever going wrong.
The first point to note about electric showers is that they work independently of your hot water system and boiler. This means that should your boiler ever fail you’ll still be able to have a hot shower. This is because electric showers connect directly to the mains cold water supply and heat this water instantly on demand. Electric showers are therefore good for busy households as there is no chance that the hot water will run out. They are also good for households that have low hot water pressure, providing the mains pressure is adequate.
Almost any household can have an electric shower fitted, regardless of the hot water system. The cold mains water that is fed into the unit passes over a heating element and is heated up before being delivered through the shower head. An easy way to understand it is to think of the shower working in a similar way to a kettle, if a little bit more sophisticated!
The temperature of water selected by the user will affect the flow of water that is delivered. For example, the colder the water selected is, the more powerful the flow will be. This is because the water will need to spend less time passing over the heating element therefore resulting in a more powerful flow. Conversely, the hotter the temperature selected, the longer time the water will take to be heated by the element, and therefore the resulting flow of water will be lower. This is why the flow of water will always be lower when a high temperature is selected.
To combat lower flow rates, electric showers are available with different engine sizes. The engines are measured by kilowatt ratings, and the most commonly available sizes are 8.5kW, 9.5kW and 10.5kW. The higher the kilowatt rating, the more powerful the flow of the water will be as the engine has more power to heat it. Higher kilowatt showers will use more energy, however, resulting in higher running costs.
When installing an electric shower, a Part P registered electrician may be required to assess and carry out any electrical work. This is particularly important when replacing an old shower and upgrading or downgrading the kilowatt rating as it may be necessary to change the electrical cabling.
So, now you’ve found out how they work, why not browse our great range of electric showers to find the perfect one for you?