How long should a shower last to save your budget (and the environment)?


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    “Don’t waste water!” , “Shut off the water, it’s too expensive.” In the face of the climate emergency, and the increasing cost of energy, these recalls are back in force… and with them the famous debate over the frequency and duration of showers. Not more than five minutes, say the experts, who encourage the public not to exceed this period in order to adjust their budget and preserve the planet without harming personal hygiene.

    Less than a year ago, the discussion centered on the time of day when it was best to take a shower, that is, in the morning to boost your creativity, or in the evening to release the tensions accumulated throughout the day. Two teams, two atmospheres. A few months later, the ever-rising energy costs, along with environmental issues, seem to have changed the game with a new question: How long should showers last to save money — or at least not spend so much? respect the environment? A notably re-launched controversy by The Guardian which was concerned with the pros and cons of the “four-minute shower” (the four-minute shower). Record time leaves little room for relaxation and personal hygiene, according to experts, who actually give one more minute to accomplish this daily gesture.

    Taking a long shower is equivalent to taking a shower

    It is better to take a shower than to take a bath. A concept that normal mortals acquire, but only make sense if you don’t exceed the required duration, which is five minutes. Continuing to take a shower means consuming as much water as taking a shower. Not very profitable, nor responsible for the environment. However, the majority of individuals will continue to shower longer than this length. in the United States of America, Environmental Protection Agency The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) estimates that the average duration of showers is about 8 minutes, while a survey conducted by BVA-Doméo in 2015 reported an average duration of 9 minutes for the French. In light of recommendations from a group of experts, including the Environmental Transformation Agency (Ademe), who recommend favoring showers of less than 5 minutes to reduce or not see your water and energy bill explode.

    It must be admitted that a simple arithmetic operation confirms this recommendation. If we consider that a conventional shower head consumes about 15 liters of water per minute, then a shower of 8 or 9 minutes will generate about 120 liters or 135 liters of water respectively, which is roughly equal to what can be carried. some tubs. While showering for 5 minutes max, without turning off the water – but we’ll come back to this, we’ll only consume 75 liters. The size difference, which is reduced to a week, should convince you to reduce the duration of what many consider a relaxing moment. And it’s just a matter of water consumption… Unless you only take cold showers, you have to add to that the costs associated with using hot water, which should continue to rise exponentially in the months ahead.

    Reduce your bill

    In the face of exploding energy costs, advice and recommendations are pouring in to reduce your bill in the most optimal way, while at the same time adopting more responsible behaviour. After your shower period, which is set at 5 minutes max, Ademe recommends cutting back on the water when soaping. A reaction that would again reduce the bill considerably, if it was estimated that about thirty liters of water could be wasted unnecessarily. But the Environmental Transformation Agency also advises investing in an economical shower head and mousse. The first reduces its consumption to 6 liters per minute, a 5-minute shower generates only 30 liters, while the second reduces the flow rate by up to 50% “without losing comfort”. It is enough to see your water and energy bills drop significantly.

    The final tip, but not the least, while totally logical, Ademe recommends not to neglect any waterproofing. It seems obvious, but a leak that is not detected or repaired can cause a loss of up to 600 liters of water per day depending on its source. “Read the numbers on the water meter right before bed. When you wake up, if those numbers don’t match and nobody used the water during the night, look for the leak!” , advises the Environment Agency.

    What about personal hygiene then?

    Is showering less than 5 minutes enough for impeccable personal hygiene? Yes, according to many health professionals, they are regularly questioned about this. In response to a question from US Healthline media in 2020, dermatologist Edidiong Kaminska estimated that a 5- to 10-minute shower was sufficient to optimally cleanse and moisturize the skin. More – or less – on the contrary can weaken it. People with skin problems, such as eczema, are also encouraged to reduce this time, as is a thermostat, to reduce the risk of inflammation.

    Far from a moment of relaxation appreciated by a crowd of consumers, a quick shower has the advantage of being economical and environmental, while also addressing the skin’s needs. There are many reasons to try and adopt it.


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