Do you ever wish you could get clean after working or swimming outside without tracking mud and dirt all over the inside of your house? Whether you've been gardening, exercising, at the beach or swimming in a pond, an outdoor shower gives you a great location to wash off all your grime without opening the front door. If you think an outdoor shower would be useful for your lifestyle, here's a guide to the different types of outdoor showers you can install.
DIY Outdoor Showers Using a Garden Hose
The simplest way to install an outdoor shower in your yard is to purchase an outdoor shower kit that connects to a garden hose. Some kits are freestanding and others require you to mount the shower head on a wall. Installing an outdoor shower like this is as simple as running your garden hose to the shower head and turning the hose on.
These DIY outdoor showers are inexpensive, but they do carry one major downside. Namely, you can only get cold water out of your garden hose. This makes it impossible to comfortably shower in colder weather. However, garden hose showers are perfectly suitable for cleaning up after a day at the beach or a day spent gardening during the summer.
Wall-Mounted Outdoor Showers
When you need hot water from your outdoor shower, you need to connect it to your home's plumbing. The easiest and least expensive way to do this is with a wall-mounted outdoor shower. The shower head is placed on the outside of your home — typically, you want to choose a location near to where both hot and cold water hookups are, such as your bathroom, kitchen or laundry room.
You'll need to hire a plumber in order to connect the wall-mounted shower to the existing plumbing in your home. You'll also need to connect the shower drain to your sewer or septic line — shower water is considered gray water, and many cities do not allow for gray water to drain into the ground. You also need a drainage system to prevent standing water from accumulating near your home's foundation. However, since all the pipes necessary for your outdoor shower are in close proximity to the shower head, having a wall-mounted shower installed by a professional plumber is inexpensive compared to running pipes through your yard.
Freestanding Outdoor Showers
If you need to locate your outdoor shower away from your home, such as by your pool or by your pond, you'll need to install a freestanding outdoor shower. Installing a freestanding outdoor shower is more expensive than installing a wall-mounted shower due to the fact that you'll have to run both hot and cold water pipes along with a drain pipe to your shower. You'll also need to remember to drain the water from all of these pipes before ground temperature dips below freezing. Otherwise, water can freeze in the pipes and cause them to burst.
Despite the downsides, freestanding showers give you and your family a perfect place to clean up before taking a dip in the pool or after swimming in a pond. You can also turn a freestanding outdoor shower into a beautiful yard fixture by landscaping the area around it, creating your own private spring.
When hot water is a necessity for your outdoor shower, call an experienced plumber to connect your outdoor shower to your home's existing plumbing. Installing a wall-mounted outdoor shower is less expensive than you may think, and even a freestanding outdoor shower may be inexpensive to install depending on your current home plumbing setup