Wednesday, April 02, 2008

Saving Moolah and the Earth's Resources

It's quite possible that you all are sick of all the posts of me hearting the earth and eating healthier, blah, blah, blah. It's not that I want to be all preachy, I am really just trying to do better myself one thing at a time.

Right now, I am trying really hard to be a better steward of the earth by being a better consumer. I am not just talking about spending money, but using Earth's resources. I am trying to think about how much and how many resources are being used to make the things I buy, or to run things in my house.

Somewhat recently, I read an article in my ladies magazine about a couple near to my age that started changing one little thing at a time in their house to make it greener, one of which was this showerhead by Delta that uses 26% less water than the average showerhead on the market, but which provides as much or more water pressure. I needed to check it out for myself, so I went to my local home improvement store yesterday in search of this wondrous showerhead that had promises of heavy rain showers, rainbows, and soap bubbles with cartoon smiles (okay, I made that last part up).

I must admit, that the showerhead section was mighty overwhelming. There were at least 60 different kinds of showerheads ranging from $10 all the way up to $110, promising to clean me in pristine and stylish luxury, however none of them promised to save my water usage. Luckily an employee walked by and helped me locate my happy little showerhead buried in the bottom of the stack with no frills advertising.

This showerhead isn't fancy at all. There's no massager, no hand extension hose, and no fancy dials of spray settings. It's plain and simple with a mechanism inside that creates all sorts of pressure using less water. I took it home to try it out, and here's what I thought.

Pros:
  • It took less than 30 seconds to install
  • The pressure was indeed better than my original showerhead
  • It uses 1.8 gallons of water per minute vs. the 2.5 on all the newer showerheads
  • By using 26% less water, it is also using 26% less natural gas and electricity to heat the water in our water heater tank
  • It is going to save us $$ on energy costs in our monthly bills
  • We will consume less resources (which I am far more concerned about now that we are just coming out of a rather scary drought)
  • Delta used way less packaging for this showerhead then any of the others in the store
Cons:
  • The water spray was less controlled, the individual droplets were large and a little less streamlined
  • It's initially a little cost prohibitive at about $30 each in the store (it's cheaper on-line), but I know we'll make up the cost within a few months time on our water, gas, and electric bill so it's okay
  • It was harder to find in the store, and I had to turn the box on it's side to read the tiny print that told me it was going to use less water
  • I lost my extension water hose, which makes cleaning the tub harder
Overall, I liked the product and decided to keep the showerheads. I expect to see savings within two billing cycles and I will be comparing costs to last year when I get my bills.

6 comments:

K&B Brown said...

I want new shower heads but I think we have to go with one that has the hose simply for the fact that our shower is for midgets and it is almost painful to wash my hair. Good to know you approve of this shower head- I will have to keep it in mind when we start shopping.

Ali-kat said...

I think half the reason I don't care about the hose is that I'm a wicked shorty. I only use it to wash my tub and my cat.

EMama said...

Yay! Nice product review. Way to be energy & money efficient, too.

Heather said...

Cool! We'll have to check that out. We never had a hose, or the best water pressure so it will probably be an improvement :)

David & Lisa said...

I am looking for one that conserves water and also has a filter on it...to filter out the impurities in the water. Let me know if there is such a thing! We'e doing our best to recyle (even when it's not convenient), use our towels twice, even flush the toilet less...I totally "get" what you're doing. love it!

Shawn Macomber said...

Nice work, Ali!

Davisa: Towels twice? I shower MAYBE twice a week. I'm an effing hero!