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  • How do you determine number of shower heads?

    I'm installing a new shower and am wondering what's the best way to determine how many shower heads I can run at once... I've asked this on several forums thus far, and all I get is "you can't run that many with 1/2 inch supply" (4-5 at once). Ok, point taken. But HOW do you make an accurate determination? Here are the facts:

    1/2" supply with approx 85 psi
    1/2 thermostatic valve indicating it can output 19gpm at 80 psi
    I tested flow at the shower and filled up 2.5 gallons in 10 seconds (15 gpm)

    Please, instead of saying "it won't work" or "you can't do that and expect it to work right" - I'm begging someone to please give me a method to determine how many I CAN use. Much appreciated... you have no idea how much this information would be appreciated actually...

  • #2
    Re: How do you determine number of shower heads?

    was your test through the shower head?

    Comment


    • #3
      Re: How do you determine number of shower heads?

      Essentially, a shower head is is supposed to be 2.5 gallons per minute. If you get 19gpm then divide that by 2.5 and there is your answer. I don't think that you will be happy with the pressure if you go over two.

      On the systems I have installed the valves come in 3/4 " not half they included 1 shower head and 6 body sprayer heads and one hand held unit. But usually you would only use one function at a time.

      Comment


      • #4
        Re: How do you determine number of shower heads?

        Originally posted by EasyEman View Post
        was your test through the shower head?
        No sir, it wasn't through the shower head... if it was, wouldn't it give me an inaccurate reading?

        Also, if I divide my flow (15 gpm) by 2.5, I get 6... but you said I wouldn't be happy with 6, only 2... why such a large difference? This is why I'm looking for a way to determine this because of the large variances... my water says 6 but everyone else says 2? Where are you getting 2 if you just said I could do 6?

        I don't necessarily want to do 6, but I don't want to short-change my shower system either by putting in 2 if it can do more effectively.

        Comment


        • #5
          Re: How do you determine number of shower heads?

          have you thought about making up a test shower head tree with multiple heads?

          that way you can see the pressure/flow drop as each head is turned on.

          just a thought.

          Vince

          Comment


          • #6
            Re: How do you determine number of shower heads?

            First you will usually take a shower with the shower head on. They have water saving devices now that increase pressure so you can use less water.
            The problem is with half inch feeds. They wont allow a great volume of water. So when you turn on each head you will lose pressure and volume.
            My mother has a house built in 1927 it has half inch pipes. It is fine if you do one thing at a time like a shower or laundry or dishwasher or flush the toilet. But when you add two or more together the pressure drops quickly. The shower gets cold and people get aggravated.
            So two is experience. Go with more up the math says you can do more but you need to account fro friction loss for each foot of pipe and each additional fitting you put into the mix.

            Comment


            • #7
              Re: How do you determine number of shower heads?

              Originally posted by Vince the Plumber View Post
              have you thought about making up a test shower head tree with multiple heads?

              that way you can see the pressure/flow drop as each head is turned on.

              just a thought.

              Vince
              Yes sir, I have... I was hoping there was a standard way to make a determination... I guess I didn't want to have to buy 6 heads and build a tree and plumb everything in just to test it... if it doesn't work, then that's a ton of wasted material and heads I can no longer use...

              Comment


              • #8
                Re: How do you determine number of shower heads?

                Why 6 shower heads? Are you taking a shower or trying to drown yourself?

                The Army taught us to take a shower in 3 minutes flat. Get in \ get out, get to work.
                sigpic

                Comment


                • #9
                  Re: How do you determine number of shower heads?

                  You can pipe in as many heads as you want but I doubt your water heater will provide you with enough hot water for more than 2

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Re: How do you determine number of shower heads?

                    Originally posted by NHMaster3015 View Post
                    Why 6 shower heads? Are you taking a shower or trying to drown yourself?

                    The Army taught us to take a shower in 3 minutes flat. Get in \ get out, get to work.
                    I dont necessarily want 6... I guess I just want my shower to be different and have options. I'd like a rain shower from the ceiling, hand held, and some body sprays.... that doesnt seem too far out of the ordinary does it?

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Re: How do you determine number of shower heads?

                      I don't know. having the super shower is all the rage now I guess, but it all seems like a lot of money, time and effort just to take a shower. I think a hot tub is a far better option. At least you can set your beer on the side of the tub while you relax.
                      sigpic

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Re: How do you determine number of shower heads?

                        you would be much better off with a second thermostatic valve to run the extra heads. install a separate volume or diverter to control the accessory heads.

                        i doubt that a 1/2'' valve will supply 19gpm without adverse effects. have you heard what 19gpm going through 1/2'' copper sounds like. plus 85psi is above the 80# we are required to stay below.

                        remember as flow goes up, pressure will drop.

                        19gpm is not going to be a cheap install. your water heater will not keep up for long and don't even think about a tankless with 19 gpm unless you have a spare 6,000 to spend. figure a commercial 3'' shower drain or 2- 2'' shower drains. remember the strainer, soap and scum will not allow a full 2'' opening to drain.

                        nothing wrong with a rain head, handheld a a few body sprays, but 19gpm is not the norm.

                        go onto the "grohe" web site and they have a very good shower design page. they've worked out what you're asking.

                        get back and let us know if that helped

                        rick.
                        phoebe it is

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Re: How do you determine number of shower heads?

                          Originally posted by brian3b View Post
                          I'm installing a new shower and am wondering what's the best way to determine how many shower heads I can run at once... I've asked this on several forums thus far, and all I get is "you can't run that many with 1/2 inch supply" (4-5 at once). Ok, point taken. But HOW do you make an accurate determination? Here are the facts:

                          1/2" supply with approx 85 psi
                          1/2 thermostatic valve indicating it can output 19gpm at 80 psi
                          I tested flow at the shower and filled up 2.5 gallons in 10 seconds (15 gpm)

                          Please, instead of saying "it won't work" or "you can't do that and expect it to work right" - I'm begging someone to please give me a method to determine how many I CAN use. Much appreciated... you have no idea how much this information would be appreciated actually...
                          You tested the flow out of the thermostatic valve and are satisfied with volume and noise.
                          Good.

                          All your heads will have gpm listings.

                          Your going to have volume controls on rainhead,handheld,body sprays,maybe even the main shower head.I'd suggest you make sure they supply the neccessary gpm as well.Volume controls will let you do what you want.Including the drain Plumber Rick was so observant to address.

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Re: How do you determine number of shower heads?

                            Just plumbed thermo ,with 3 valves ,3 heads. Rain can on swivel arm, reg shower head ,
                            Hand held on an arm. I plumbed this all 3/4" from W.H.,and service. She spent Big bucks on fixtures!
                            I can build anything You want , if you draw a picture of it , on the back of a big enough check .

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Re: How do you determine number of shower heads?

                              Originally posted by toolaholic View Post
                              Just plumbed thermo ,with 3 valves ,3 heads. Rain can on swivel arm, reg shower head ,
                              Hand held on an arm. I plumbed this all 3/4" from W.H.,and service. She spent Big bucks on fixtures!
                              Nice.
                              She's gonna love ya.
                              Got any pictures Tool?

                              Comment

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