Open Collections

UBC Undergraduate Research

An investigation into high performance low­‐flow showerheads for use on university campuses Do, Sung Won; Manzoor, Faizul; Nguyen, Mary; Saxena, Utkarsh 2014-04-10

Your browser doesn't seem to have a PDF viewer, please download the PDF to view this item.

Notice for Google Chrome users:
If you are having trouble viewing or searching the PDF with Google Chrome, please download it here instead.

Item Metadata

Download

Media
18861-Do_Sung_et_al_SEEDS_2013 .pdf [ 1.63MB ]
Metadata
JSON: 18861-1.0108777.json
JSON-LD: 18861-1.0108777-ld.json
RDF/XML (Pretty): 18861-1.0108777-rdf.xml
RDF/JSON: 18861-1.0108777-rdf.json
Turtle: 18861-1.0108777-turtle.txt
N-Triples: 18861-1.0108777-rdf-ntriples.txt
Original Record: 18861-1.0108777-source.json
Full Text
18861-1.0108777-fulltext.txt
Citation
18861-1.0108777.ris

Full Text

 UBC Social Ecological Economic Development Studies (SEEDS) Student ReportFaizul Manzoor, Mary Nguyen, Sung Won Do, Utkarsh SaxenaAn Investigation into High Performance Low-Flow Showerheads for use on University CampusesAPSC 262April 10, 2014University of British Columbia Disclaimer: “UBC SEEDS provides students with the opportunity to share the findings of their studies, as well as their opinions, conclusions and recommendations with the UBC community. The reader should bear in mind that this is a student project/report and is not an official document of UBC. Furthermore readers should bear in mind that these reports may not reflect the current status of activities at UBC. We urge you to contact the research persons mentioned in a report or the SEEDS Coordinator about the current status of the subject matter of a project/report”.  An Investigation into High Performance Low-­‐Flow Showerheads for use on UniversityCampusesFINAL SUSTAINABILITY REPORT FOR:APPLIED SCIENCE 262: TECHNOLOGY AND SOCIETY IITHE UNIVERSITY OF BRITISH COLUMBIAAPRIL 10TH, 2014Submitted To:Dr. Naoko EllisSubmitted By:Do, Sung WonManzoor, FaizulNguyen, MarySaxena, UtkarshiiABSTRACT  The following report provides recommendations to the Student Housing and Hospitality Services (SHHS) at UBC’s Vancouver campus regarding which low-flow showerhead models to install in existing and new campus residences. This showerhead replacement program aims to reduce water consumption by replacing inefficient older showerhead models with newer models. Many other institutions have already successfully implemented a similar program. To determine which low-flow showerhead model should be installed in student residences a Triple Bottom Line (TBL) assessment and showerhead performance survey were conducted.  The TBL assessment consists of assessments regarding the social, environmental and economic impact of the showerhead replacement program. The research for these assessments was gathered through surveying UBC students, academic papers and websites. Social impact was measured by student satisfaction ratings on four low-flow showerhead models in an anonymous survey. The showerheads included in the survey were Waterpik Aquascape, Jetstream Atlas II, Bricor Eco-Bravo PC and High Sierra Classic. The environmental assessment consisted of estimating student water consumption for each showerhead model in the survey as well as conventional showerheads. To assess the economic impact of the showerhead replacement program, a life cycle cost analysis was conducted to determine the life cycle cost of each low-flow showerhead model.  Based on the results of the low-flow showerhead performance survey and TBL assessment, it is advantageous for SHHS to replace conventional showerheads with either the Waterpik Aquascape or Jetstream Atlas II showerhead models. Analysis of the survey data showed a positive relationship between user satisfaction ratings and market price of the showerhead.   iiiTABLE OF CONTENTS ABSTRACT........................................................................................................................................... iiLIST OF ILLUSTRATIONS .......................................................................................................... ivGLOSSARY ...........................................................................................................................................vLIST OF ABBREVIATIONS......................................................................................................... vi1.0 INTRODUCTION ........................................................................................................................ 12.0 METHODOLOGY....................................................................................................................... 23.0 SHOWERHEAD TECHNICAL SPECIFICATIONS...................................................... 34.0 SURVEY RESULTS ................................................................................................................... 85.0 TRIPLE BOTTOM LINE ANALYSIS...............................................................................125.1 SOCIAL ASSESSMENT	  ................................................................................................................... 135.2 ENVIRONMENTAL ASSESSMENT .......................................................................................... 145.3 ECONOMIC ASSESSMENT .......................................................................................................... 156.0 CONCLUSION AND RECOMMENDATIONS.............................................................18REFERENCES ...................................................................................................................................19APPENDICES ....................................................................................................................................20APPENDIX A: SURVEY QUESTIONS............................................................................................. 21ivLIST OF ILLUSTRATIONS Figure 1. Jetstream Atlas II Spray Pattern.................................................................. 4 Figure 2. Waterpik Aquascape Spray Pattern............................................................. 5 Figure 3. High Sierra Classic Spray Pattern............................................................... 6 Figure 4. Bricor Eco-Bravo PC Spray Pattern............................................................ 7 Figure 5. Showerhead User Satisfaction Survey Results............................................ 9 Figure 6. Average Rating of Low-Flow Showerheads............................................... 10 Figure 7. Height of User and Showerhead Rating Relationship................................. 11 Figure 8. The Effect of Market Price on Performance Rating.................................... 12 Figure 9. Water Usage at UBC................................................................................... 14 Table 1. Showerhead Models Tested.......................................................................... 2 Table 2. Jetstream Atlas II Technical Specifications.................................................. 4 Table 3. Waterpik Aquascape Technical Specifications............................................ 5 Table 4. High Sierra Classic Technical Specifications............................................... 6 Table 5. Bricor Eco-Bravo PC Technical Specifications........................................... 7 Table 6. Ranking Scale............................................................................................... 8 Table 7. Ranking of Showerhead Models from Survey Results................................. 10 Table 8. Summary of User Satisfaction Results......................................................... 13 Table 9. Expected Water Consumption with each Showerhead Model..................... 15 Table 10. Life Cycle Cost Analysis............................................................................ 16 Table 11. Calculation of Expected Replacement Cost............................................... 17               vGLOSSARY Life Cycle Cost Analysis: A method for determining the most cost-effective option among different alternatives for a project, when each option can be implemented on technical grounds.   Low-flow Showerhead: Showerhead that conserves water, it typically has a flow rating of 2.5 gallons per minute or less.   Optio-Flow: A technology, which maintains normal water force even at low water pressure by channeling the water through the showerhead in an efficient manner.   Optio-Spray: A technology, which allows water channeling through the sleeve of the showerhead to the nozzle such that the spray diameter becomes wider.  Watersense: A program developed by the United States Environmental Protection Agency aimed at water conservation through the use of water efficient products. The Watersense label aims to guide consumers towards water efficient products.                       viLIST OF ABBREVIATIONS   GPM Gallons Per Minute LCCA Life Cycle Cost Analysis SEEDS Social Ecological Economic Development Studies SHHS Student Housing and Hospitality Services TBL Triple Bottom Line UBC University of British Columbia USEPA United States Environmental Protection Agency                               11.0 INTRODUCTION  With the recent global focus on resource sustainability, many North American Universities have began investing time and money into researching methods of implementing sustainable practices around their campuses. These sustainable practices include the installation of low-flow showerheads to conserve water. Currently, showers account for 13% of the water consumption on UBC’s Vancouver campus (UBC Sustainability, 2011). Replacing the inefficient showerhead models currently installed in some campus residences with low-flow models would result in significant reductions in water consumption. This report focuses on determining which low-flow showerhead models are best suited to students living in residences at UBC.  With the numerous showerhead options available in the market our report compares four low-flow models, which have been installed at other university campuses. The showerhead models included in the report are the Waterpik Aquascape, Jetstream Atlas II, Bricor Eco-Bravo PC and High Sierra Classic. Students at the UBC Vancouver campus tested the showerheads and then completed a survey. The survey was completed to assess the performance of the showerheads. Showerhead recommendations are presented in the report to provide guidance to the Student Housing and Hospitality Services (SHHS) at UBC so that they can decide on an appropriate low-flow showerhead model for students living in residences. Recommendations were made based on the results of the showerhead survey and a TBL analysis. A TBL assessment is used globally in corporations, municipalities and other universities to understand the impact of their project or policy on social, economic and environmental factors (Slaper & Hall, 2011). The TBL method of accounting was used in this report to assess the social, environmental and economic impact of replacing showerheads in UBC residences. User satisfaction ratings, water consumption and life cycle costs were used to assess the social, environmental and economic impact of each low-flow showerhead model tested.    22.0 METHODOLOGY  With numerous low-flow showerhead models on the market we did not have enough time or money to test all of them all. To determine which showerheads would perform best for our demographic and setting we researched case studies from other North American universities. We looked at universities that have already successfully installed low-flow showerheads on their campuses. Based on this research we narrowed down the list of showerhead models we would test on UBC students. The showerhead models with the flow rating in gallons per minute (GPM) that we tested on UBC students are shown below in Table 1.  Table 1. Showerhead Models Tested Showerhead Model Flow Rating (GPM) Waterpik Aquascape 2.5 Jetstream Atlas II 1.5 Bricor Eco-Bravo PC 1.5 High Sierra Classic 1.5  Each showerhead model was tested for one day at a fraternity house located on the University of British Columbia Vancouver campus.  The fraternity house is home to approximately 32 male students ranging in age from 18 to 24 years old. The fraternity house was an ideal location to test the showerhead models because the residents are very active and take frequent showers. This meant that data collection could be completed in a shorter time span because each resident would have had the opportunity to test the showerhead model before we replaced it with a different showerhead model.  To evaluate the performance of each showerhead model a survey was conducted after the residents used the showerhead model for one day. A copy of the survey can be found in Appendix A. The survey was anonymous and asked six simple questions. The questions asked the user to rank the showerhead on its hair rinsing ability, face and body rinsing abilities, spray coverage and strength of spray. These factors were included on our survey because they were deemed the most important showerhead qualities based on a survey conducted on University of Waterloo students (Gauley et al., 2010).  33.0 SHOWERHEAD TECHNICAL SPECIFICATIONS  Brief descriptions of the technical specifications of each low-flow showerhead model surveyed are presented in the following paragraphs. The technical specifications include patented features such as the Watersense label, flow rate, water pressure and spray settings. Other specifications such as the showerhead material, ease of maintenance and energy consumption are also described. Watersense is a program developed by the United States Environmental Protection Agency (USEPA) aimed at water conservation through the use of water efficient products (2013). Under this program products that meet specifications set up by USEPA are given a Watersense label thereby differentiating them from the other products in the market in terms of water use efficiency. In order for a product to receive a Watersense label the manufacturer must apply for and pay for the Watersense label, therefore some showerheads may be energy efficient and conserve water but are not necessarily Watersense labeled.  3.1 JETSTREAM ATLAS II  Figure 1 shows the spray pattern of the Jetstream Atlas II. This showerhead model is Watersense labeled and “self-cleaning” according to the manufacturer. The Jetstream Atlas II also has a unique flow reduction option where the user can reduce the water flow while they are soaping. The specifications for the Jetstream Atlas II are summarized in Table 2. All the information provided in the table was obtained from the manufacturer website.  84.0 SURVEY RESULTS  The students were asked to rank each showerhead on its hair rinsing ability, face and body rinsing abilities, spray coverage, strength of spray and the overall performance of the showerhead. The students ranked each of these showerhead qualities on a scale of 1 to 5. The ranking scale is shown below in Table 6.  Table 6. Ranking Scale Rank Meaning 1 Very Poor 2 Poor 3 Moderate 4 Good 5 Very Good  Studies by Gauley et al. found that students generally preferred showerheads with a higher GPM rating (2010). As shown from our results in Figure 5, Waterpik Aquascape had the highest user satisfaction and also had the highest flow rating.  13models. Water consumption for showering was estimated in order to assess the environmental impact of the showerhead replacement project. A life cycle cost analysis was conducted to measure the economical impact of the project. The following paragraphs provide the results of our social, environmental and economic assessment of the showerhead replacement project.  5.1 SOCIAL ASSESSMENT  To analyze the social impact of replacing conventional showerheads with low-flow showerheads we measured user satisfaction of low-flow showerheads. User satisfaction was measured from surveys. Detailed results of the survey were previously shown in section 4.0. A summary of the results is presented below in Table 8.   Table 8. Summary of User Satisfaction Results Showerhead Model Flow Rating (GPM) Average Overall Performance Rating Waterpik Aquascape 2.5 3.875 Jetstream Atlas II 1.5 3.2625 Bricor Eco-Bravo PC 1.5 3.0875 High Sierra Classic 1.5 2.025  The average overall performance rating of the showerhead can ranges from 2.025- 3.875, on a scale of 1-5. Table 8 shows that students were satisfied with the performance of the Waterpik Aquascape and Jetstream Atlas II.  We also tried to establish a relationship between the flow rating of the showerhead and user satisfaction. We were not able to establish a statistically significant relationship between flow rating and user satisfaction because of our small sample size and the small deviation between flow ratings of the showerheads tested. However, studies conducted by Gauley et al. show that user satisfaction ratings from university students are positively related to the flow rating of the showerhead (2010). This could explain why students preferred the Waterpik Aquascape to the other showerhead models tested.  15 Table 9. Expected Water Consumption with each Showerhead Model Showerhead Model Flow Rate (gpm) Water Consumption per Student (gallons per week) Waterpik Aquascape 2.5 195 High Sierra Classic  1.5 117 Bricor Eco-Bravo PC 1.5 117 Jetstream Atlas II 1.5 117 Conventional Models 5 390  The estimated values of water consumption presented in table 9 were calculated using an average shower time of 13 minutes for each student and assuming each student showered six times a week. Shower duration was assumed to be the same for each showerhead models. The assumptions were based on results from a survey conducted by Cannon Design found that College and University students showered on average six times a week (2013). They also found that the average shower duration for a student was 13 minutes, on average female students had the longest shower duration at 14 minutes while male students had the shortest showers at 11 minutes (Cuevas, 2013).  5.3 ECONOMIC ASSESSMENT  To assess the economic impact of replacing showerheads on UBC residences we conducted a life cycle cost analysis (LCCA). LCCA allowed us to compare the cost of project alternatives. To replace all the showerheads in a UBC residence it requires a large initial capital investment to purchase the showerheads. However, the total project cost includes factors other than just the initial capital investment. LCCA presents a more realistic view of the expected project costs because it takes into consideration the expected useful life of the showerhead, duration of the warranty, maintenance costs and installation costs. Table 10 presents the results of our LCCA.   16 Table 10. Life Cycle Cost Analysis Showerhead Model Cost ($) Cost of Installation ($) Cost of Replacement ($) Cost of Maintenance ($) Life Cycle Cost ($) Jetstream Atlas II 55 13.33 0 40 108.33 Waterpik Aquascape 100 13.33 0 40 153.33 High Sierra Classic 35 13.33 96.66 40 184.99 Bricor Eco-Bravo PC 50 13.33 379.98 40 483.31   The second column of the table shows the advertised market price of the showerhead model, this price was obtained from the company website. The third column presents the cost of installation for one showerhead. The cost of installation was estimated by assuming a wage of $40 per hour for UBC Building Operations and assuming it only takes one person to install a showerhead. To be conservative, we assumed it took 20 minutes to install a showerhead, and that each model required the same length of time to install. The method used to calculate replacement costs is shown in Table 11. Cost of maintenance is based on the fact that each showerhead must be cleaned annually to ensure optimal performance. Maintenance includes removal of mineral deposits that build-up on the interior of the showerhead as well as cleaning the showerhead filter. To be conservative, we assumed each showerhead requires one hour of maintenance a year.  Adding up the values in columns two, three, four and five give you the life cycle cost of each showerhead.        17Table 11. Calculation of Expected Replacement Cost Showerhead Model Cost ($) Expected Useful Life Expected Replacement Cost ($) Jetstream Atlas II 55 20 Years 0 Waterpik Aquascape 100 Lifetime Warranty 0 High Sierra Classic 35 5 Years 96.66 Bricor Eco-Bravo PC 50 2 Years 379.98  In order to calculate the expected replacement cost for each showerhead we had to determine the expected useful life of each showerhead. The expected useful life of each showerhead was assumed to be the same as the warranty. We assumed the showerheads would be used for 15 years in student residences, based on this assumption we calculated the expected replacement cost. The replacement cost is calculated for one shower and includes the cost of installation to replace the showerhead. The Jetstream Atlas II and the Waterpik Aquascape have an expected replacement cost of $0 because both those showerheads have a warranty greater than 15 years. Therefore, during the 15 year period the Jetstream or Waterpik showerhead will be used for they are not expected to breakdown. Life cycle costs were conservatively estimated. The cost of each showerhead model was obtained from the company’s official website. However, most manufacturers offer quantity discounts therefore the true life-cycle cost is most likely lower than the value presented in the table.  Based on the life cycle cost analysis presented above, the Jetstream Atlas II is the most economic showerhead option. The Bricor Eco Bravo PC is the most expensive showerhead option due to the high replacement cost. It is important to note that the two showerheads with the largest initial capital investment – Waterpik Aquascape and Jetstream Atlas II – actually have the lowest life cycle costs.    186.0 CONCLUSION AND RECOMMENDATIONS  The results of our survey indicate that the Waterpik Aquascape and Jetstream Atlas II are the top performing low-flow showerheads out of the showerhead models we tested. These showerheads were also the most expensive showerheads, in terms of purchase price. We were able to establish a relationship between user satisfaction and market price of the showerhead. Our study suggests that user satisfaction ratings are positively related to market price of the showerhead. No relationship was found between user height and showerhead performance rating.  Since we were only able to obtain the opinion of male students, we would recommend conducting the same survey on female students. The results could then be compared with the results of our study to determine which showerhead model residents living on campus prefer to use.  If additional surveying cannot be conducted then we would recommend installing the Waterpik Aquascape in residence showers because it had the highest performance ratings. Additionally, showerhead performance studies conducted by Gauley et al. found that the most important showerhead quality for female users was the hair rinsing ability of the showerhead (2010). Since the Waterpik Aquascape had the highest hair rinsing ability ratings, it is reasonable to infer that female students would also enjoy this showerhead model. Some residences on campus have male specific bathrooms; we would recommend replacing the showerheads in the male specific showers with the Waterpik Aquascape, since it had the highest performance reviews from male students.  The Waterpik Aquascape has the highest flow rating and requires the largest initial capital investment. If SHHS wants to maximize savings and water conservation, then we would recommend installing the Jetstream Atlas II because it has the lowest life cycle cost and has a lower flow rating than the Waterpik Aquascape.    REFERENCES Amazon.(2007, January 7). Waterpik AST 233CC/20008439 AquaScape Dual Mode Oval Showerhead, Chrome. Retrieved from http://www.amazon.com/Waterpik-AST-233CC-20008439-Showerhead/dp/B000GLRRCW  Amazon.(2009, March 16). High Sierra 1.5 GPM High Efficiency Low Flow Showerhead,                                  Polished Chrome. Retrieved from http://www.amazon.com/High-Sierra-Efficiency-Shower-Polished/dp/B001W2CEYA  Bader, K. ,& Bigner, K. (2009, August). Triple Bottom Line Analysis. City of Fort Collins. Retrieved March 19, 2014 from  http://www.fcgov.com/events/file.php?id=161&date=1255118908  Bricor. (2013). Eco-Bravo PC. Retrieved from http://www.bricor.com/products/eco-bravo-pc/  Cuevas, E. (2013, May 10). College and University Student Shower Time Duration Survey Results. Cannon Design Blog. Retrieved from http://www.cannondesign.com/ideas/news/firm-news/ Jet-Stream Showerhead.(2012).  Product Description/Specifications. Retrieved from https://jet-streamshowerhead.net/info_e222.html   Slaper, T. F., & Hall, T. J. (2011). The triple bottom line: What is it and how does it work? Indiana Business Review,86(1), 4-8. Retrieved from http://search.proquest.com.ezproxy.library.ubc.ca/docview/861497991?accountid=14656  United States Environmental Protection Agency (2013). What is WaterSense?.  Retrieved from http://www.epa.gov/watersense/about_us/what_is_ws.html University of British Columbia.(2011). Water Conservation. Retrieved from            http://sustain.ubc.ca/campus-initiatives/water/water-conservation     Veritec Consulting Inc. (2010). High-Efficiency Showerhead Performance Study. Waterloo, Ontario: Gauley, B., Robinson, J.E., & Elton, K.   APPENDICES APPENDIX A: SURVEY QUESTIONS  Height =    Q1) How was the hair rinsing ability of the showerhead?  1 (very poor)  2 (poor)  3 (moderate)  4 (good)  5 (very good) Q2) How was the face and body rinsing ability of the showerhead? ☐ 1 (very poor)  2 (poor)  3 (moderate)  4 (good)  5 (very good) Q3) How was the spray coverage of the showerhead?   1 (very poor)  2 (poor)  3 (moderate)  4 (good)  5 (very good) Q4) How was the strength of the spray?  1 (very poor)  2 (poor)  3 (moderate)  4 (good)  5 (very good) Q5) Please rank the overall performance of this showerhead.  1 (very poor)  2 (poor)  3 (moderate)  4 (good)  5 (very good) 

Cite

Citation Scheme:

        

Citations by CSL (citeproc-js)

Usage Statistics

Share

Embed

Customize your widget with the following options, then copy and paste the code below into the HTML of your page to embed this item in your website.
                        
                            <div id="ubcOpenCollectionsWidgetDisplay">
                            <script id="ubcOpenCollectionsWidget"
                            src="{[{embed.src}]}"
                            data-item="{[{embed.item}]}"
                            data-collection="{[{embed.collection}]}"
                            data-metadata="{[{embed.showMetadata}]}"
                            data-width="{[{embed.width}]}"
                            data-media="{[{embed.selectedMedia}]}"
                            async >
                            </script>
                            </div>
                        
                    
IIIF logo Our image viewer uses the IIIF 2.0 standard. To load this item in other compatible viewers, use this url:
https://iiif.library.ubc.ca/presentation/dsp.18861.1-0108777/manifest

Comment

Related Items