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Bath and Shower Diverters

Bath and shower diverters faucet

A bath and shower diverter is a device that diverts the flow of water either toward the tub spout (i.e., to the bathtub) or toward the showerhead. This product is commonly found in bathtubs equipped with a showerhead, such as in residential bathrooms and private commercial restrooms found in hotels.

Many bath and shower diverters currently installed leak a small amount of water from the tub spout while they are engaged and the water is being diverted to the showerhead. In fact, the current national plumbing standard - American Society of Mechanical Engineers (ASME) A112.18.1/Canadian Standards Association (CSA) B125.1 - sets an allowable leak rate of 0.1 gallons per minute (gpm) for a bath and shower diverter prior to life cycle testing (i.e., when new) and 0.2 gpm after life cycle testing (i.e., at the end of the product’s life). This is equivalent to a half gallon and a full gallon of water, respectively, wasted over the course of a typical shower. Many older bath and shower diverters installed in homes across the United States have much higher leak rates, resulting in considerable water waste with every shower. Field studies have shown bath and shower diverter leak rates averaging three to eight times the leak rate allowed by the current standard. In some cases, the studies identified leaks of up to 3.0 gpm, which is more than the flow rate from a typical showerhead.

In recent years, the California Energy Commission has led the charge in adopting efficiency requirements for bath and shower diverters that aim to significantly reduce leak rates over the current national standard. However, WaterSense has identified viable and readily available bath and shower diverter models that can eliminate leaks altogether.

To help increase water efficiency in the residential and commercial sectors, recognize the most efficient technology available, and eliminate unnecessary leaks and water waste, EPA has issued a Notice of Intent (NOI) (12 pg, 479 KB, About PDF) to develop a specification for bath and shower diverters. Replacing a leaking diverter with a more efficient model could result in considerable water and energy savings.

Interested parties are invited to provide written comments on WaterSense’s NOI (12 pg, 479 KB, About PDF) to label bath and shower diverters. Please send any comments or suggestions to watersense-products@erg.com.

Additionally, on February 8, 2017, from 1:00 p.m. to 3:00 p.m. Eastern, EPA will host a teleconference and webinar with stakeholders to discuss the NOI. Call-in and other meeting information will be emailed upon registering, and meeting materials will be sent to registered participants via email prior to the meeting date. Please register Exit EPA Disclaimer if you are interested in attending this meeting.

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Technical Information

Are you a manufacturer or retailer or distributor interested in partnering with WaterSense or finding out more about the development of a bath and shower diverter specification? Please review the bath and shower diverter NOI (12 pg, 479 KB, About PDF) for more information, or email us with questions or comments.

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