Tuesday, November 3, 2009

Waterpik 1.5 gallon per minute EcoFlow hand held shower head saves water and delivers a satisfying shower

A marketer for Waterpik sent me an EcoFlow 1.5 gallon per minute 5 mode hand held shower head to review.  After using it a few days I can report that their design delivers a very nice shower.  I think my wife and I are every bit as clean as we are when we use our 2.5 gallon per minute shower head.

The exterior of the shower head is largely chrome colored plastic rather than metal.  If it were metal  the head would weigh much more than the twelve ounces that it does.  In my experience such plastic stands up much better than chrome or stainless steel especially since bleach is commonly used to clean showers, and bleach does nasty things to stainless.  In addition the plastic doesn't transfer heat like metal would so the handle stays comfortable to the touch.

On this model a specially designed water restricting and pipe debris filtering pivot ball is installed between the shower arm and the shower hose.  Without it in place the unit won't work.   I think that means it is harder for contractors and plumbers to turn it from a water sipper to a water hog.

This unit comes with a "pause control" but it doesn't stop the flow of water. The pause control reduces water flow.  This prevents the changes in water temperature that happen in my house where we use a shower head that completely shuts of the water.  Many people wouldn't put up with the momentary temperature changes so the Waterpik design works better for them than a full stop pause control would.

The five foot hose which is included is short enough so that the shower head won't hit the floor if it is dropped.

The model I tested has  five water settings, ten if you count that water continues to flow when the pause control is used.  One of the settings concentrates water in a small area which allowed me to clean my multi-blade razor reasonably well.  There is also a setting that atomizes the water completely into a gentle cloud of water.  Of course, the kinetic settings where water goes on and off like the fountains at Bellagio in Las Vegas fascinate many people.  The designers were pretty clever in figuring out configurations for such a reduced flow of water.  

The unit can be hung from a hook and used as a stationary shower head, though my wife who is only 5 feet tall reminded me that she can't reach the shower arm from the floor of the shower.  To remove it from the hook she had to stand on the shower ledge.

I would feel much better about the EcoFlow if every component could be disassembled completely to allow removal of the pipe debris, but to my knowledge no hand held massaging shower head can be taken apart completely and reassembled.

Only time will tell if it is easily clogged and easy to clean.  I suspect that because the outlets on the head are tiny that they may lime up and that debris from the corroding 85 year old plumbing in our house will clog things up. If it does then the filtering, water restricting pivot ball will have to be removed and cleaned in addition to detaching the head from the hose.  Removing the pivot ball requires the use of a special plastic wrench which is included with the shower head. 

For more information you can view a pdf of the instruction manual online and be sure to look at their website at http://www.waterpikecoflow.com/.


  1. You should try the 1.5 gpm "Jet-Stream" Showerhead which has several patented advantages: (1) Constant water volume and high pressure showers (+/- 5%) from 15 psi to 120 psi; (2) Self-cleaning, maintenance free (no moving parts) and carries a 20-year replacement warranty and (3) 96% user acceptance. Go to: www.Jet-StreamShowerhead.net

  2. I still prefer the cheap version of using a cheap low flow on a pipe. It is easier to clean and very inexpensive. It also sends a stronger stream of water in a smaller area for more effective cleaning.