DIY Network

How to Install a Low-Flow Showerhead

Your showerhead may be using more water than you know. Use these instructions to measure how much water your showerhead uses and install a low-flow showerhead.

More in Plumbing

  • Time

    30 Minutes

  • Price Range

    $1 - $50

  • Difficulty



Step 1: Measure Water Usage

Having the right low-flow showerhead can reduce the amount of water you use while taking a shower by 30 percent. There are a number of options in showerheads and they range in price from $10-$30. How do you know if your showerhead uses too much water? Old showerheads deliver four to five gallons per minute; however, newer regulations set the maximum water flow rates at 2.5 gallons per minute. To see if your showerhead is using too much water you need a bucket (marked with lines showing one gallon, etc.), stopwatch and food coloring to help you see the water. Just place a few drips of food coloring into the bucket. Take your showerhead and set the stopwatch when you turn the water on. If, after 20 seconds, you have more than 1 gallon of water in the bucket, you need to replace your showerhead.

measure amount of water per minute

Step 2: Install a New Showerhead

Remove the old showerhead and apply Teflon sealing tape before installing a new showerhead. Expert Tip: When you put the new showerhead on, wrap a cloth around the fitting so that you don't damage the chrome with the pliers.

remove old showerhead