Shower or Bath

The things we do when we have time on our hands.

It’s often quoted that taking a shower uses less water than taking a bath.

I’ve always wondered about this. I can take quite a time in the shower and I like it on full blast if it stays hot (which mine does). A shower is pouring water down the drain all the time whereas with a bath you only empty it after you use it. So the question that came into my mind was “How much time can I spend in the shower and the above statement still be true” (well I didn’t think “The above statement” but you know what I mean..)

Fortunately, when I first moved into the flat I was a bit obsessive about keeping water bills down so I had already worked out how time it took for the shower head to give out 1 litre of water. If you want to do this at home just get a stopwatch and a 1 litre jug. You can work the rest out for yourself. Handy hint: If you want your stopwatch to still work either get someone else to operate it or at least don’t use the same hand as the one holding the jug.

It takes 3 seconds for my shower head to give out 1 litre of water.

So how much water is in a bath?

Well I looked at a plumbing site (I don’t have a bath of my own and it would be embarrassing to ask one of the neighbors) and found a pretty average looking bath. Its capacity was 36 gallons. After looking up some online equations to get a rough idea of my body mass by an equation using my weight (which was last recorded at 10 1/2 stone – but that was before I lost all this weight – still, it’ll serve my purposes as I’m shorter than the average man) I worked out that I’d displace about 14 Gallons of water.

So you end up with about 22 gallons.

22 Gallons is about 100 litres.

So to use the equivalent of a bathful of water I’d have to shower for 5 minutes. For people who don’t have their baths as full as mine this time would be even shorter.

I’m sorry but, apart from when I’m in a hurry I usually take about, well, 5 to 7 minutes in the shower. That means that when I spend a little longer I’m wasting an extra 2/5 of a bath. I’m sure some people would think that you could easily spend ten minutes in the shower and make savings. So despite what the government and the water company tell you I reckon that if you want to save water, have a bath.

Leave a comment