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  • Collins Builders

Create the Perfect Shower Experience

There are so many options on the market for shower heads, shower valves, and shower systems, it can be hard to decide which one will create the shower experience you desire. Technology has found its way to the plumbing industry and the latest innovations in shower controls are truly state of the art. Exciting new designs elevate the master shower to a centerpiece of the bathroom. Whether you prefer simplicity or a full spa experience, understanding the components available will allow you to find the perfect fit for your shower in your new Collins Builders home.

The first thing to consider when planning out your shower faucets is the different types of shower heads. Standard shower heads are generally 3 to 4 inches in diameter and their smaller size can concentrates the water into a powerful jet. These are particularly good for people with thick hair as they make rinsing the shampoo out much easier. Rain heads are larger and range from 7 to 12 inches in diameter. The larger surface area of the head distributes the water, lessening the pressure into a gentle stream. The tiny nozzles in the shower head create the "rain" effect, which is a very pleasant shower experience. Rain heads can be installed in the place of a regular shower head or mounted on the ceiling of the shower. Kohler even has a WaterTile fixture that mimics a delicate rain shower. Rain heads are a wonderful addition to any bathroom and are a great way to add a relaxing element to your shower.

Hand showers can be used as a shower head, or in conjunction with one. The Moen Magnetix line has powerful magnets in the back of the hand shower that click it easily on or off of the shower arm. Hand showers are a particularly useful addition to your shower design as they make cleaning the shower a breeze. They also allow for bathing while using a shower bench, and they that have an adjustable slide bar allowing you to put the head at various heights. Most hand showers also feature several different sprays, which can soothe swollen joints or invigorate your morning shower. Body sprays are often used in tandem with hand showers or rain heads to provide all over massage for the ultimate spa shower.

Once you decide which shower head types you want to include in your shower, the next decision is how you want to be able to operate them. Each shower head needs a valve in the wall to send the water to it. If you want to be able to turn on each shower head at the same time, you would need a separate valve for each one. If there are units that you can turn off when the other is on, then you can combine those into one valve with a diverter. The diverter is a switch that turns off the water to one head and sends it to the other. The Moen Annex system allows you to combine a standard or rain head with a hand shower on a slide bar using only 1 valve. We work closely with our plumber to design the right valve configuration to meet our client's needs.

Valves come with several different functions and purposes just like the shower heads. The Posi-Temp valve is pressure balancing to keep you in control of the water temperature. This is the standard valve we use in our homes to give our clients great control and ease of use. The Moentrol valve adds the ability to control water volume as well as temperature, which can be crucial to showers with multiple faucets. The trim on the Moentrol valves is also upgraded to a sleek design. The ExactTemp valve provides the most precise temperature control, and has a larger water connection to allow for additional pressure. These allow for the temperature dial to remain on the ideal setting at all times, so when the valve is turned on, the water temperature goes right to where you like it. Installing a pair of his and hers ExactTemp valves in the master shower allows you to customize the shower heads to each of your favorite temperatures and always have the shower ready for you.

Our new homes at Collins Builders have a tremendous number of technology options, which not only make life easier, but allows us to have our homes work for us. The U by Moen is a digital control that works with your voice, your phone, or the controller. You can start, stop, or pause your shower with your voice, as well as program it into Alexa, Google, or Apple products. With the U by Moen you can set your ideal temperature and shower length, and the control notifies you when your shower is ready. You can even install the control up to 30 feet from the shower valves, giving you ultimate design flexibility.

As Americans, we spend about 60 hours a year in the shower on average, so the master shower layout is an important part of our design process with our clients. From beautiful fixtures to the perfect functionality, the right parts can make your shower one of your favorite places in your home. At Collins Builders we walk with our clients each step of the way to make sure that their new homes are a reflection of their needs and style. We'd love to help you create your own spa experience right at home!

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