More showers forecast!

Far from the ‘kettle on the wall’ of yesteryear, a new wave of design-led electric showers is changing the game. Lisa Ward, Product Group Manager at Bristan, explains how electric showers have changed in line with the needs of consumers and why wholesalers need to take stock.

Alongside new innovations, wholesalers will find that more traditional products are changing too – and this is none more prevalent than in the electric shower category.

Previously, the electric shower was widely viewed as an undesirable necessity; unsightly, clinical and typically bought as a distress purchase for a quick replacement product.

Today, however, the situation couldn’t be more different. Electric showers have evolved to become much more design-led and aspirational, along with hosting a number of functional benefits, making them an increasingly popular choice with the consumer. In fact, it is estimated that around 50 per cent of British homes now have an electric shower installed – a number which only looks set to grow.

A huge part of this attraction can be explained by the high level of installation flexibility. Electric showers can be installed just about anywhere, as they only require a mains cold water supply and an electrical connection.

Instantaneous hot water

Also, a big pull is that electric showers provide instantaneous hot water. This is because water is heated up as it passes through the shower unit, rather than coming from a hot water storage facility or combi boiler. This ensures there is always enough hot water to go around and at any time of the day, making it the ideal choice for busy family households where lots of people use the shower.

This way of working enables another big benefit; improved efficiency. As an electric shower only heats the water required, it can help householders reduce their energy bills as it doesn’t heat or store water that isn’t used.

For the consumer, however, design naturally remains priority – particularly with the bathroom considered one of the most important rooms in the home, second only to the kitchen. With this in mind, today’s electric showers combine ultra-clean lines and minimalistic styling, creating a cool, contemporary look. Added to the equation is a range of finishes, such as crisp white, modern black gloss and even metallic silver, ensuring broad aesthetic appeal.

Better still, making cold starts a thing of the past, many options include a digital display so users can choose their ideal temperature or setting, coupled with a warm-up mode to make sure it’s reached before getting in the shower. Some also include a thermostatic control to avoid temperature changes when water is used elsewhere in home – helping to ensure hot water safety; a big priority where children are present.

Meanwhile, consumers can benefit from a range of other clever features such as touch controls, multimode handsets and even an anti-limescale device to ensure an extended product life.

While the KBB market continues to see an influx of new, highly technical innovations, it is important not to overlook the improvements which are being made to traditional products which, in turn, offer wide-reaching appeal. When it comes to the reinvented electric shower, wholesalers would be best placed to take stock and reap the rewards.