Technology and bathrooms; two words that you wouldn’t often associate with each other, aren’t they? After all, when you think of technology, you think of water, and as we all know, they do not go well together. Another reason why we don’t associate bathrooms with technology is because bathroom manufacturers and designers haven’t given us the chance to bring the latest technology into our bathrooms. It’s one of the few remaining industries where the old ways of doing things are still favoured by many, although they’re slowly coming round to new ideas, as we shall see.
So, without further ado, let us delve into the treasure trove that is the 10 must have pieces of bathroom technology for 2018.
The humble bathroom mirror might not be first place where you would expect to find the latest bathroom technology, but there are some modern bathroom mirrors that are so packed with technology that it’s a wonder they can still hang on the wall. The Harbour Glow mirror is one such mirror. If you haven’t bought a new bathroom mirrors for a few years, you may have missed three of the other big revelations in bathroom mirror design: LEDs, heated demister pads and shaver sockets. The Harbour Glow has these three, but its pièce de résistance is the built-in Bluetooth™ speakers.
How much more relaxing would your evening bath be if you could have some ambient music or your audiobook playing without the worry of your phone falling in the bath or getting damaged from the humidity in your bathroom? How much more energising would your morning shower be if you could be singing along to S Club 7? With the built-in Bluetooth™ speakers on the Harbour Glow, you can have your phone safely in another room whilst still getting crystal clear sound. Sometimes we find that practicality is gained, but at the loss of style. Fortunately, with the Harbour Glow this isn’t the case as its LED-lit frame makes it look effortlessly stylish. It will become an integral part of any modern bathroom.
Infrared taps aren’t an especially new technology; they’ve been around in airports and public restrooms for many years now, but they are finally making their way into residential homes as well. It’s a wonder they’ve not made the transition earlier, especially in the more eco-conscious world that we find ourselves in. Infrared bathroom taps can prevent water waste from your tap by up to 70% as it’s impossible to leave the tap on accidentally. Many of us may also leave the tap on whilst we’re brushing our teeth thinking that not much water is being wasted, but in those couple of minutes you could use the same amount of water as flushing the toilet 3 or 4 times! An infrared tap will go off and then come on only as and when you want to use it.
The Vado Ascent is not just designed for the eco-conscious though. It’s also perfect for those that may have trouble turning an ordinary tap on, and then fully off again. It’s great for children as well, and you can be sure that they’re not going to leave the tap running all night and you’re going to wake up to a flood in your house. The Vado Ascent infrared tap is beautifully stylish as well as very technologically advanced and even the ease of installation has been thought of in its design. The infrared sensor can be mains operated, or if you’d rather, it can be powered simply with some standard AA batteries. It also comes with full WRAS approval so is suitable for installation in new builds.
Technologically isn’t always about making our lives easier; sometimes it’s just about making it more enjoyable. The Crosswater Dynamo is designed to make your daily shower a more enriching experience. The beams of light housed in the Dynamo’s oversized dome cast a lovely glow in your shower and you’ll almost certainly find yourself losing track of time because you’re admiring all that’s around you.
The most amazing thing about the Crosswater Dynamo, however, is that your plumber can install it. As the name might give away, the lights in the Dynamo are powered by a dynamo, so it is the water flowing through it that powers the light. This means that there is no electrical connection so no extra expense of having to hire an electrician. The lack of an electrical connection also makes the Dynamo safer than other LED shower heads.
The smart toilet represents the latest in bathroom technology in the one place where you would least suspect it. It may be called the smart toilet, but it’s not the toilet itself that is smart, although it does have a water-saving WRAS approved dual flush cistern. It’s actually the seat that gives this toilet its name. The seat that comes with the smart toilet is a Japanese-style bidet seat. Whilst this technology has been around in Asia for years, again it’s something that bathroom designers have been slow to introduce to the UK market, unless you fancied spending upwards of £1,500 on a toilet seat.
If you’ve been to Japan in the last 10 years, you’ll know all about smart toilet seats already, but if you haven’t, you may be asking what makes a toilet seat smart? For one, it comes with its own remote control! And that remote controls a vast array of functions. The smart seat is heated; it has front and rear cleaning functions with adjustable pressure and temperature controls; it has a dryer, again with an adjustable temperature; it has a deodoriser to keep your bathroom smelling fresh; it’s got soft close hinges, of course, so it closes gently and silently every time; and it has auto and manual cleaning modes. You really have to see it - and use it - to believe it.
Much of modern bathroom technology is about being more environmentally friendly, and the smart toilet is no exception. We’ve already mentioned the dual flush cistern, but the seat itself can also claim to have environmentally friendly properties. Thanks to its cleaning functions, you won’t have to buy toilet paper again - money-saving as well as paper-saving. A toilet isn’t normally the most exciting part of your bathroom, but the Smart toilet certainly will be.
There are still millions of homes in the UK that still use standard full flush cisterns, and with water prices set to rise again this year, it’s time to make 2018 the year that you switch to dual flush. If you don’t have a dual flush cistern, you could be using as much as 15 litres of water every time you flush the toilet. Compare that to our Vellamo Universal concealed dual flush cistern which is WRAS approved and uses just 6 litres for a full flush and 4 litres for a ‘half’ flush. If you thought that was impressive, the dual flush cistern that comes with Imex close coupled toilets has an even more ecological 4 litre full flush and 2.6 litre ‘half’ flush. It’s estimated that the average family of four could save 15,000 litres of water a year just by switching to a dual flush cistern. They are so effective that they are compulsory in all new build homes in Australia.
Prices start from just £35 for a dual flush cistern, so you’ll start reaping the rewards in no time at all.
The popularity of rimless toilets skyrocketed in the last few months of 2017, and with more an more manufacturers moving exclusively to rimless designs, we’re confident that within a few years, every new toilet sold here at Tap Warehouse will be a rimless toilet. Rimless toilets are universally accepted to be cleaner, more hygienic and more environmentally friendly than ‘standard’ toilets, and you can read more in our blog, Rimless Toilets: What’s All the Flush About.
Is there anything more frustrating than starting a bath, leaving the water running for a few minutes whilst you go and get ready, and then coming back to a tub full of cold water? How do you avoid that, save staying and constantly checking and adjusting the hot and cold water? The answer is with a thermostatic bath tap. With a thermostatic bath tap, you set your temperature, turn your tap on, and enjoy your bath at exactly the right temperature.
Thermostatic bath taps and bath shower mixers are the safest way for you and your family to bathe and shower. When you’re bathing a child, you no longer have to worry about having the water too hot or too cold. Thermostatic bath taps keep the water at a constant temperature, even if elsewhere in the house someone is using another tap or flushes another toilet. The thermostatic cartridges in these taps also shut off the water in case of a failure, so if your cold water suddenly fails, you won’t be scalded by hot water.
Thermostatic bath taps are available from as little as £70 with bath and shower sets from just £75.
When we talk about technology in the bathroom, ceramic disc cartridges are probably the smallest and least technologically advanced piece of technology on this list, but having them in your bathroom is one of the best things that you can do. If you’re not too sure what ceramic disc cartridges are, our handy blog will explain all about them.
Most modern taps - both bathroom and kitchen - now come with ceramic disc cartridges. These tiny porcelain valves make turning your tap on and off much easier. There’s no more twisting and twisting to turn the tap off, worried that something’s going to snap; and once the tap has been turned off, that’s it, it’s off. You won’t be kept up at night by the constant dripping of your tap, and because taps with ceramic disc cartridges are so easy to turn off, you won’t have to worry about your children not being able to turn the taps off after they’ve used them.
Ceramic disc bathroom taps start from less than £20. On any bathroom taps page simply use the filter to select all the taps with ceramic disc cartridges.
Stepping onto a cold bathroom floor first thing in the morning is not the nicest feeling, and neither is stepping out of a cosy, warm shower onto that same cold floor. With underfloor heating, you can step out of your warm shower onto a warm floor. Underfloor heating systems can sit under almost any type of floor - stone, tile, wood and carpet - and comes in two main types, electric underfloor heating and water underfloor heating, sometimes referred to as wet and dry systems respectively.
Underfloor heating doesn’t have to be confined just to your bathroom, although that’s where it’s most popular. One of the best things about underfloor heating is that it doesn’t just heat the floor though; the heat also rises slowly and can heat a whole room, whereas a radiator often just heats a solitary area. Whilst underfloor heating can be retrofitted, although this is pricier to install than if you were to put it in a brand new room.
A digital shower is a must for any technology fan - or for anyone that hates the time between getting out of bed and waiting for the shower to warm up. The most modern digital showers don’t just have fancy touchscreens where you can set everything from the temperature to the colour of the mood lighting; they can also be controlled by an app on your phone so can turn your shower on and have it set to the perfect temperature before you even get out of bed. From the touchscreen control in the shower, you can also divert the water to any other outlets you might have connected to the shower. A digital shower makes for a seamless showering experience.
So, there we have it; a look into what you’ll be able to find in 2018’s trendiest bathrooms. Be sure to check out our page which features the latest in bathroom technology where you’ll find a larger range of Bluetooth™ mirrors, infrared taps, LED shower heads and more. If there’s anything that you think we’ve missed or anything that you’d like to see, let us know in the comments below so that we can share with the rest of the Tap Warehouse community.