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Bungalow Shower Advice

Discussion in 'Plumbing and Central Heating' started by bmouthboyo, 21 Mar 2021.

  1. bmouthboyo

    bmouthboyo

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    I was wondering if I could pick the brains of you knowledgeable people.

    I live in a 1970's bungalow that currently has a small Mira Go shower that is simply fed from a mains pipe via the attic.

    I am looking to renovate the entire bathroom this summer and so looking into what is the best way to approach this. Specifically regarding fitting a modern digital shower.

    The water is heated via immersion tank and no option for a combi boiler as the heating is heated air system. Mains pressure seems to be 50psi.

    I am a little confused by the fact you can buy water pumps such as by salamander but also seems that the Mira Platinum has an integrated pump / controller. Would you get as good a shower experience via one of these integrated pump / controllers compared to a full on shower pump like a salamander?

    Are there any considerations such as pipe diameter? immersion tank capacity etc that I need to look into?

    I basically want a large, powerful shower.

    Thanks
     
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  3. muggles

    muggles

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    Yes the integrated pump versions are excellent. Cylinder capacity isn't usually an issue with showers, best way to test is see how you go and upgrade if necessary rather than upgrading for the sake of it
     
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  4. oldbuffer

    oldbuffer

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    1. You currently have an electric shower. This will run at mains pressure, but, like all electric showers, won't be top in terms of flow.
    2. You have two main options:
    2a. Retain the existing immersion heated hot water cylinder (HWC) and fit a shower pump to power a mixer shower.
    2b. Replace the hot water cylinder with an unvented hot water cylinder, electrically heated.
    3. The pumped approach will require you to have adequately sized cold water storage cistern (CWSC) and adequately sized hot water cylinder. Cold at 240 litres, hot at around 200 litres +- 50. The pump will require dedicated feeds from the CWSC and HWC respectively, the latter via a special flange. You may need a negative head pump depending on layout / relative heights. If you can, go for a Stuart Turner Monsoon twin pump.
    4. The unvented approach requires that you have a cold water mains pressure of around 2 bar dynamic, that is with a mains cold tap running, and a flow rate of at least 20 litres per minute. Such a cylinder must be installed by someone with a "G3" qualification, and he / she should notify its installation to your local building control. You'd get mains pressure hot and cold throughout the property, not just to the mixer shower.
     
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  5. bmouthboyo

    bmouthboyo

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    That's encouraging. I guess when I see the size of the salamander style pumps they look so much more 'beefy' than the integrated pump / controllers that I imagine you are making a sacrifice on shower pressure / experience.
     
  6. flameport

    flameport

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    Any pumped shower will be a vast improvement over an instant electric effort.
     
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  7. bmouthboyo

    bmouthboyo

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    Thank you for such a detailed reply, super useful!

    Can I ask, if we went with 2a and kept the existing vented HWC and installed a pump, does that all hold true for the digital style pump/controller combos?

    Like this: Mira Platinum Dual Valve & Controller

    [​IMG]
    Or would I be better off going with a more traditional pump like the Monsoon you recommended?

    My CWSC is 50 Gal (227 Litre) but I am not sure of the capacity of the HWC as it has no labels etc. Can you tell from this pic?

    [​IMG]

    At the time I was curious what these 2 outlets could be used for:

    [​IMG]

    It is only my wife and I so not an excessive amount of water being used and the only other thing using hot water is the kitchen sink, so not a lot overall.
     
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  9. flameport

    flameport

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    100-120 litres most likely.
    Easily big enough for a shower.
     
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  10. oldbuffer

    oldbuffer

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    1. You can't use the Mira with a pumped supply. I think it either has its own pump or you can get one with it as an option, check with Mira. I'd suggest you also check how many litres / minute it can supply at 38 degrees (the standard showering temperature).
    2. The CWSC you have is perfectly adequate.
    3. The HWC looks a little on the small side. I note you want a "large, powerful, shower". You'd drain that one fairly quickly. If you had a 20 litre per minute shower (pretty high flow), then using a 60% hot figure, if that cylinder is 150 litres, you'd get about 12 1/2 minutes before it went cold. 15 litres / minute would give you around 17 minutes.
    4. If you measure the width of the cylinder without its jacket, and the height from base to start of domed top, then (((width/2)^2*22/7)*height) will give you an approximate capacity.
    5. Don't know for certain but I'd guess the two pipes are from a coil within the cylinder, designed for use with boiler heating but not used in your case.
     
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  11. bmouthboyo

    bmouthboyo

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    Apologies if this is lazy asking here but makes it easier being able to fire questions. The Mira Platinum data sheet says 16l/min :Link, what tank size would suit a couple do you think?
     
  12. oldbuffer

    oldbuffer

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    1. The data sheet says "up to 16 lpm" - I'm always wary of "up to's".
    2. HWC size depends on usage. If you both want 16 lpm showers, you'd empty a 150 litre cylinder in 15 1/2 minutes. That's 5 minutes for you and 10 1/2 for your better half.
    3. The cylinder appears quite old and without a factory fitted insulation jacket. If you had it replaced you could go for a more modern, larger one. You could opt for 2 immersion heaters, one fitted near the bottom to heat the whole cylinder for a "normal" days needs, with another nearer the top to "top up" if needed. You might even be able to get an economy tariff for the lower heater to reduce the overall cost. There would be a cost for the necessary wiring and controls.
    4. You only need a vented direct cylinder, but if you had thoughts of going solar or photovoltaic at some point in the future, you could get one with a heating coil (indirect cylinder) and just blank the coil off as per your current one.
     
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  13. Nige F

    Nige F

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    As oldbuffer says - a 2 immersion economy 7 cylinder - bigger, but standing on the floor the top might not be higher than your existing one
     
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