In recent months we have been approached by several plumbers and homeowners who have fitted infrared taps and showers. Our range of ShowerPowerBoosters are designed to solve 99% of plumbing problems and they will increase the pressure to allow an infrared tap or wall spout to work but there are limitations to a solution.
Specifically I have spoken to Bristan to discuss the ‘Saracen Infrared Automatic Basin Tap’ and the ‘IRWS1-CP Infrared Basin Wall Spout’, but I am confident that the functionality of all infrared taps, showers, and wall spouts is the same.
How a Infrared Faucet Works
Upstream of an infrared faucet is a mixer valve which mixes hot and cold water to give a blended temperature
of say 42 degrees centigrade. The Thermostatic Mixer Valve can typically tolerate a differential pressure of 5 to 1 so it would be possible to boost the hot only.
The infrared faucet is controlled by a solenoid which operates a simple on off switch in response to the proximity of a warm object but it will only open the valve subject to a minimum pressure. This pressure will vary but for the Saracen infrared automatic basin tap the minimum pressure is one bar (10 metres head), for a IRCWSI-CP wall spout the minimum pressure is 0.5 bars (5 metres head). The Bristan data sheet has a typo in it as is states a minimum pressure of 0.2 bars and contradicts this by stating flow rate at 0.2 bars of zero.
Can I increase the pressure in a gravity system using an automatic Shower Power Booster.
Before a pump boost the pressure at the position of the solenoid is 0.3 bars upstairs and 0.6 bars downstairs. Your only option is a manual ShowerPowerBooster.
What Manual Pump(s) will solve my problem?
A double boost SP21S run in manual mode will add 1 bar to upstairs and downstairs taps which will allow the solenoid to activate and boost the pressure to an acceptable level. As the issue appears to be that we need to get the solenoid to open, once the solenoid is open then the taps should continue to operate at an acceptable flow rate. A single SP21S on the hot a pipe feeding up to 3 taps should give an acceptable solution.