EPA Releases Draft WaterSense Standard for Showerheads
In September 2009 the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) released its long-awaited draft WaterSense standard for showerheads.The new standard will set a maximum flow rate for WaterSense-labeled showerheads of 2.0 gallons per minute (7.6 lpm) at 80 psi water pressure and require that the showerheads meet specific performance requirements: adequate flow rate across a range of pressures (delivering at least 60% of the maximum flow at 20 psi and 75% at 45 psi); a minimum spray force of 2.0 ounces (0.56 newtons) at 20 psi; and suitable spray coverage (using an apparatus that measures the distribution or spread of water from the showerhead). In addition, the showerhead must not be packaged with instructions that show a user how to modify its maximum flow rate.
The intent, according to EPA, is for WaterSense showerheads to “not only save water but also perform as well as or better than conventional models on the market.” Following a comment period, which ends November 9, 2009, WaterSense-labeled showerheads are expected to begin appearing in early 2010.
Published October 30, 2009