Saturday, September 29, 2007

Cold(er) showers

In theory, water usage in the shower should be proportional to shower length times pressure. Energy usage is proportional to shower length times pressure times temperature. I'd like to decrease both.

Back when I was in Grassroots at University of Rochester, people were talking about taking colder showers. As someone who likes warm-to-hot showers, this seemed difficult-to-insane. Indeed, I still can't take a cold shower. However, what I have been trying over the last month or so is to take colder showers. This has the nice secondary effect of making me take shorter showers (since the colder water reminds me not to stay there forever), thus using less water and energy.

My trick has been to gradually decrease the temperature during the course of the shower. Over time, I've been able to lower the starting point. Note that the water is actually still somewhat warm, so if I start feeling cold, I can move out of the water and then back in.

We'll see if it changes my apartment's gas bill (though there are other factors, so it's hard to measure). We'll also see if I can maintain this through colder room temperatures.

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