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283 posts

Ultimate Geek
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Topic # 110476 10-Oct-2012 01:11 Send private message

I been looking at various gadgets to limit the cost of hot water and water flow  after our combined annual spend on power and water has doubled in our household during the last few years..

Having a conversation with the long shower culprits  about carbon footprint and need to be green does not seem to get through to my three teenage children.

So I am looking at various options that can help limit the power / water flow.

So far I looked at couple of cheap solutions (e.g. the flow limiter's like Eco-Stream Multispray ECO MSHSS cp
 from Mitre 10 at $175) to custom gadgets that need plumbing / wiring (e.g. Showersmart @$375 from factory in Auckland) 

Does anyone got any experience with any of the gadgets available in NZ?




Tim M, Auckland
Blog: http://paddler.co.nz





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835 posts

Ultimate Geek
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  Reply # 698826 10-Oct-2012 06:30 Send private message

I done something similar for a friend, he hosts home stay students and they are terrible for using all the hot water, any way he was upgrading his bathroom, so a programable timer was installed, turn your shower on, push the button, 8 mins of hot water, 8 mins of no hot water - even if you press the button again, still got to wait for the 8 mins.

It was quite pricy, it did mean having to knock a hole in the wall to access the pipework, but the bathroom was been re-done anyway. He is very happy with it

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Ultimate Geek
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  Reply # 698833 10-Oct-2012 06:56 Send private message

I have such a device at home, it usually comes free with the house...

The toilet, I love this one!

When I was young we had a device that stuck to the wall, when it felt the vibration of the water flowing it started to time, after 5 min it would buzz. It didn't stop the hot water but let you know that you had been in for 5 min.




I know a little more than nothing but not much...

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  Reply # 698840 10-Oct-2012 07:25 Send private message

No ideas around gadgets but I do remember once, my brother had been in the shower for far too long so dad went to the cylinder and turned the main valve off :P

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  Reply # 698843 10-Oct-2012 07:34

Behodar: No ideas around gadgets but I do remember once, my brother had been in the shower for far too long so dad went to the cylinder and turned the main valve off :P


Similar to my thoughts - make sure the shower is always cold. They would be very quick showers!




-----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Nothing is impossible for the man who doesn't have to do it it himself - A. H. Weiler

218 posts

Master Geek
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  Reply # 698844 10-Oct-2012 07:35 Send private message

I remember a friends dad when we were young had a sheep dip timer in the bathroom - it didn't stop the water flow, but was bloody loud so you got out of the shower quick to stop it!
Good low tech kiwi solution Laughing

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  Reply # 698848 10-Oct-2012 07:43 Send private message

The tried and true method of a clip-round-the-ears use to work wonders. It was cheap and very effective. Damn you Sue Bradford!





Artificial intelligence is no match, for natural stupidity



265 posts

Ultimate Geek


  Reply # 698856 10-Oct-2012 08:14 Send private message

The kids are well left home now but I was known to apply the bucket of cold water over the top of the shower door on occasions   The alternative if they had left their shower window open was a nearby hose which could be directed through the window.  Low-tech but satisfying!!!





"It is useless to attempt to reason a man out of what he was never reasoned into."
— most commonly attributed to Jonathan Swift, author/theologian

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  Reply # 698863 10-Oct-2012 08:41 Send private message

What is your hot water set up?

If it is a regular electric cylinder, then there is a valve on the cylinder outlet that you can turn off , it will turn off all the hot water in the house ( but you can turn it back on again once they are out of the shower)

If it is a gas powered continuous flow, then you can turn off the power to the unit at the switch( but you will have to go out side to do it), 

I think that you should firstly get a decent countdown timer and put it in the Room with the shower, Give everyone a week's warning that if they exceed the time limit, then you *will* turn off the hot water to the shower, 

It will require a bit of effort on your part, but like everything with kids they will get it eventually, 



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  Reply # 699337 10-Oct-2012 21:30 Send private message

wellygary:

If it is a gas powered continuous flow, then you can turn off the power to the unit at the switch( but you will have to go out side to do it), 



if its a gas powered continuous flow, you can have a controller that stops delivering water after X litres are delivered.

for example:
http://www.rinnai.co.nz/product_60_rinnai_continuous_flow_controller_-_bathroom_deluxe.html




Technical Evangelist
Microsoft NZ
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TechEd New Zealand 2014 Sep 7-9


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  Reply # 699346 10-Oct-2012 21:40 Send private message

During the water shortages in Australia they gave us egg timers with suction cups to stick to the shower wall.

Not every machine has to have a microprocessor :)

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Ultimate Geek
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  Reply # 699348 10-Oct-2012 21:46 Send private message

gehenna: During the water shortages in Australia they gave us egg timers with suction cups to stick to the shower wall.

Not every machine has to have a microprocessor :)


due to unforseen problems the organic microprocessor fails to take notice of the ding of the egg timer and keeps on enjoying the long hot shower

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  Reply # 699351 10-Oct-2012 21:50 Send private message

Well we have something called a "shower reducer", and it is a small little circle that goes in between the shower head and the shower hose. This limits the amount of water going out through the shower head.




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Master Geek
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  Reply # 699874 11-Oct-2012 18:45 Send private message

This will do it.


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  Reply # 699892 11-Oct-2012 19:32 Send private message

I would just smack an electronic solenoid in and then control it with an Arduino. have a button next to the light switch that starts the timer and open the solenoid and then shuts it off for x amount of minutes after the time is up so they can't just press the button again. Would be super simple. Hardest (and probably most expensive) part would be installing the solenoid.

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  Reply # 699894 11-Oct-2012 19:42 Send private message

Give them the option of short showers in your house or long showers in their own house :P

That said we have had a number of home stay students over time and while some were incredibly courteous there was a few that could not be re-programmed

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