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Showers or Baths: Which Conserves More Water?


It's a popular debate - baths or showers? There are a number of factors to the bath vs. shower debate, from cleanliness to water conservation. Ultimately, which is best? We'll take a look at all the variables to help you decide.

Water Conservation

It's hard to decide whether a tub or shower is better for water conservation, as it depends on several factors, such as:

  • Size of the tub
  • Efficiency of the shower head
  • Length of shower

Let's assume you're using a shower head that uses 5 gallons of water per minute or bathing in a 36-gallon tub. These are both the national average numbers for showers and tubs.

With this data, taking a 7-minute shower or less will conserve more water than taking a full bath. Any longer, and the bath would be more worthwhile.

One way to improve your shower's efficiency is to switch to a water-saving shower head. This could drop your water consumption down to 2 gallons per minute, greatly increasing the length of shower you can take without wasting more water than a bath. In fact, the EPA estimates that Americans could save  a combined 250 billion gallons of water each year if everyone had a low-flow shower head installed.

Whether you have a low-flow shower head or not, the shower definitely beats out the tub in terms of efficiency. That being said, taking a bath gives you a unique option to reuse water that taking a shower doesn't. Instead of pulling the plug when you're all done soaking, consider reusing your bathwater in other parts of your home. You could use it to water plants, manually flush your toilets, or even wash your car.

Learn the benefits of upgrading to a smart bathroom.


Both tubs and showers get you equally clean, meaning there's no real winner in this category. Baths let you soak and remove any lingering mud and dirt off your skin, but you might not wash off all the soap when you get out. Showers, on the other hand, don't offer as pruney of an experience, but they do rinse off all the soap before you get out.

In this category, it's up to you to decide whichever method of bathing makes you feel cleaner.

Skin Care

Generally, scientists agree that showers are probably better for your skin. Because you probably lounge in the bath for longer than you would in the shower, it can dry out your skin. You can also develop hot tub folliculitis. Finally, taking a bath can trigger eczema in some people, causing a scaly rash to break out.

Overall, neither a shower or a bath is a bad option for your bathroom. Both have their advantages and disadvantages, so it's up to you to decide what would look best. When you're ready, give us a call at (904) 605-8190 to get help with your install.