How Often Do You Need to Replace a Showerhead?

by Hannah Stephens
rain shower head

If the sound of a dripping shower makes you miserable or you're plagued by low water pressure, a new showerhead could be in order.

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However, an old or broken showerhead isn't the only potential culprit when it comes to shower issues.

How Long Does a Showerhead Typically Last?

Some experts recommend changing your showerhead at least once per year. However, like most fixtures, how long a showerhead lasts depends on several factors, including its quality, how well you maintain it and how often you use it. You can avoid wasting money on unnecessary replacements by knowing the signs of a worn or faulty showerhead.

What Are Some Signs of Showerhead Wear and Tear?

Worn showerheads can sometimes develop leaks. However, a faulty showerhead isn't the only potential cause of a leaky shower. If your shower keeps dripping when you turn the water off, or you notice water leaking from other parts of the shower while you wash, it's worth calling an experienced plumber to inspect the fixture. Your plumber can diagnose the cause of your leaky shower and advise whether to replace the showerhead.

You may also notice a decrease in water pressure as your showerhead ages. The pressure may fluctuate or slowly become weaker. You can sometimes fix the issue yourself by tightening the connection between the hose and the showerhead. Otherwise, consider hiring a plumber to check for other causes of low water pressure.

Black mold can grow on showerheads because they provide a moist environment, and this issue is more common with plastic units. You can try removing black mold yourself, but replacing the showerhead is often easier. You may also notice a white, rock-like buildup on your showerhead caused by sediment in the water supply. Over time, the residue can block the showerhead's nozzles and stop it from working correctly.

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How Can You Tell When to Replace a Showerhead?

Consider replacing your showerhead if you see black mold or sediment accumulation. It could also be time for a new showerhead if your existing unit no longer functions properly. Consider replacing older plastic models with metal showerheads to reduce the risk of black mold.

You can extend your showerhead's lifespan by maintaining it correctly. Removing the showerhead and submerging it in vinegar kills mold and removes sediment. If you can't remove the showerhead, try placing a waterproof plastic bag over it, filling the bag with cleaning vinegar and securing it with a rubber band.