Installing Smart Showers

As climate change destroys the natural environment in our world, humankind has started to get worried about their future. Sensing the fear of not having enough resources for survival in the coming future, many environmentally-friendly innovations and inventions have been made. One of the most common and applicable of these inventions is smart showers. Standard showers in our houses waste extensive amounts of water in each use due to the fact that we mostly keep it open even if we do not necessarily need water and even while we are using it much of the water is spilled all over. By installing smart showers, reduced energy and water consumption could mitigate the problem.

According to the Community Research and Development Information Service of the European Union, showering accounts for over a third of water loss and around a quarter of heat used. About 30 to 80 litres of water along with approximately 90% of the heat used is lost without being useful. Having a system that is easy to install and promises to save water and energy by huge percents, the numbers above would decrease significantly. Apparently, a few companies have already started working on this problem.

One of the most famous projects on smart showers is prepared by Flow Loop in Denmark. It is named Eco Loop and it has the ability to recycle the water and energy used. The main reason for Eco Loop’s widespread use is because it can be retrofitted in existing shower spaces. The proposed system does not require any complex mechanism to be set, but instead, it is based on a smart drain cover that enables the recycling process. It promises to save around 75 to 85% of both the water and energy while also providing the best shower experience.

Let’s briefly talk about the mechanism behind Eco Loop to connect the structure to its function. When you set the smart shower into your bathroom, the panel will be the main part of your interest. You can either use your panel in normal mode where water will flow from the main water supply as it is in standard showers. However, the merit of the panel is in the recycling mode. When activated, the set-up of this mode pulls the water from the floor of the shower and passes it through a series of filters. Then, the filtered water is purified with UV light to be rinsed off of bacteria and pathogens. The produced water is clean and ready to be used again, but first, it is mixed with fresh hot water for the maintenance of a temperature. After this step, the water is completely ready for use. A rinse cycle runs before and after each shower where the previously used up water is flushed back through filters to ensure no water is shared between different users for hygiene reasons. As you can see, the mechanism behind the system is not even close to being complex. This indicates that the path towards a better future could be as simple as placing a filtering mechanism into the drains.

According to the plans of Flow Loop, in just 5 years they can save 4.2 billion litres of water as well as 109 million kWh of energy. Their indirect goal is to reduce CO2 emission by around 24 thousand tonnes. If enough households have the chance to change their shower systems into an environmentally-friendly one such as Eco Loop, then a huge change in the world’s resources can be seen even in near future. Since most of these mechanisms are expensive and many families wouldn’t be able to afford them, governments could run some funding for the creator companies so that they would be able to lower their prices. This way, we can all work together around the same purpose and have an already determined way of where to start.

CITATIONS

[1] “Smart Shower Aims to Get Europe Cleaner in a Greener Way …” CORDIS, 2020, https://cordis.europa.eu/article/id/422217-smart-shower-aims-to-get-europe-cleaner-in-a-greener-way. 

[2] image only https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0BSuDxFCuXI

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