US plans changes to shower rules after Trump complains about washing his hair

The government proposal would allow shower heads to boost water pressure

US president Donald Trump speaks during a news conference at the White House on Wednesday. Photograph: Chris Kleponis/Polaris/Bloomberg

US president Donald Trump speaks during a news conference at the White House on Wednesday. Photograph: Chris Kleponis/Polaris/Bloomberg

 

The US government proposed rule changes on Wednesday that would allow shower heads to boost water pressure, after president Donald Trump repeatedly complained that bathroom fixtures do not work to his liking.

The department of energy plan followed comments from Mr Trump on water pressure last month. He said he believed water does not come out fast enough from fixtures.

“So what do you do? You just stand there longer or you take a shower longer? Because my hair – I don’t know about you, but it has to be perfect,” Mr Trump said.

The plan involves the loosening of a 28-year-old energy law that includes appliance standards.

Last December, Mr Trump said environmental regulators were looking at revising rules for sinks, faucets and toilets meant to conserve water and fuel that heats it.

“People are [currently] flushing toilets 10 times, 15 times, as opposed to once,” Mr Trump had told a meeting of small-business leaders at the White House.

Consumer groups say the current rules save consumers money by conserving water and fuel.

The energy department proposal would effectively allow shower fixtures to include multiple shower heads that would get around the 2.5 gallon (9.4 litre) per minute standard Congress set in 1992, when Mr Trump’s fellow Republican George HW Bush was president.

The energy department has also proposed easing standards on clothes washers.

Cost of rollbacks

The Trump administration says its regulatory rollbacks save the average American household $3,100 a year. But conservationists say easing bathroom fixture standards could boost energy and water costs.

It was uncertain whether the plan would be finalised. Mr Trump is campaigning for re-election and trails in opinion polls ahead of the presidential vote on November 3rd. If he wins and the proposal advances it could also face court battles.

David Friedman, vice-president of advocacy at the organisation Consumer Reports and a former energy department official, said there was no need to change the rules because tests show today’s shower heads “achieve high levels of customer satisfaction” while saving money. – Reuters/PA