The 5-Minute Shower

There are many ways for households to conserve resources. Reduced-flow toilets, faucets, or showerheads can all help consumers save water. However, the most cost-effective way to reduce water consumption is by changing consumption habits. One way to do this is for municipalities to encourage customers to reduce the amount of time spent in the shower to 5 minutes.

The average American showers for 8 minutes and consumes 20 gallons of water for every shower. Assuming the average American’s 8-minute shower uses hot water, the water consumption is accompanied by using another valuable resource: energy.  A shower of this length uses about as much energy as running a 60W light bulb for 22 hours straight. If consumers are accustomed to 8-minute showers, then adjusting habits by 3 minutes is an attainable task. Switching to the 5-minute shower can cut water use by almost half. Not only that, but by reducing the amount of hot water used in the shower, users can conserve water as well as the energy used to heat the water. Although limiting shower time to 5 minutes takes willpower, users will still leave the shower feeling clean and the long-term savings will be worth the effort.

A simple way to track the time spent in the shower is to use a water resistant timer. Keeping the timer near the shower can help users get into the habit of limiting shower length, and ensure that they do not unknowingly stay in the shower for too long. Other ideas to get your customers to limit shower time include counting backwards from 300, or listening to a favorite 5-minute song.

AM Conservation Group offers several products to complement home water conservation programs, including high-efficiency showerheads, showerhead accessories, shower flow meter bags, and the STOP In TimeÒ Shower Timer. Our WaterSense labeled showerheads reduce water use by up to 2 gallons per minute when replacing an average showerhead. Our flow meter bags can be used on existing showerheads to determine the potential water savings of using a high-efficiency showerhead. AMCG also offers a Pause Valve that can be installed on the showerhead to allow users to stop the flow of water when it’s not needed. And finally, the STOP In TimeÒ Shower Timer can be installed inside the shower and is used to set a 5-minute shower time limit.

As the recent drought in California has demonstrated, water is quickly becoming a scarce resource. Efforts to reduce water consumption will become increasingly important as freshwater reserves dry up and water costs rise. Getting your customers to reduce the amount of water consumed in the bathroom is an important step in the right direction.


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