Outdoor showers could be the next best thing after a swimming pool

Outdoor showers work well if you have a proper pool in the garden, but they make just as much sense for people who don’t have a pool. Photos: Fantini/dpa

On a hot day, there’s nothing better than diving into a pool of water. If you don’t have room for a pool in your back garden, you can still cool down with an outdoor shower.

“Having a shower in the garden reminds you of being on holiday, and makes you feel free,” says Thilo Dreyer, a member of the German Bathroom Manufacturers’ Association.

But it’s not just about cooling off – they’re also practical.

“If you’ve been working or playing in the garden, you can rinse off the dirt outside,” says Dreyer. It also provides refreshment in cooler months, for example after a sauna session.

Having an outdoor shower reminds people of being on a holiday. Photo: Garpa/dpa

Dreyer recommends stainless steel for outdoors.

"Chrome-plated fittings and shower heads are not well suited for outdoor use, as they are not as resistant to environmental influences such as acid rain,” he explains.

It’s important to take a close look at the technology before making a purchase. Some showers have a fixed water connection, some have a hose.

The latter don’t always offer the option of mixing hot and cold water to the desired temperature.

“If you have children, an easy-to-use thermostatic regulator is recommended to prevent them from scalding themselves,” says Michael Pommer from the DIY Academy.

There are even fancy outdoor showers you can easily install in your garden - like this designer model from Agape. Photo: Agape/dpa

The do-it-yourself professor advises installing the shower away from electrical wiring and appliances, somewhere where the water can drain off easily.

Alternatively, tiles can be placed under the shower to conceal the drain.

The shower water can then be fed into the sewer system via a pipe or collected in a container and used for watering plants.

“You can also let it seep directly into the ground via a gravel flowerbed or a slatted frame,” says Pommer. “If watering plants with it, you’ll want to avoid using shower gel or shampoo.”

The outdoor shower is a great way to cool off, play or get cleaned up after gardening. Photo: Agape/dpa

A privacy screen is also essential. Alongside textile, plastic or wood screens, you can also put up walls made of stone or wood. Pommer’s tip for something more natural: some low-maintenance, fast-growing trees.

Setting up the shower and laying the pipes should be left to professionals. You can also install simple models yourself.

Pommer recommends following the manufacturer’s instructions and installing reflux and drainage valves.

“Showers should always be connected with a hose line and never firmly connected to the water mains.” – dpa

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