What are tap aerators and how do they work?

Written by

Tim Greenhalgh

Posted on

November 15, 2019

Tap aerators are a brilliantly simple, effective and low-cost way to cut water and energy bills.

These mini-marvels are small units that fit onto the end of your taps and spouts – and the way they cut the amount of water you use by up to 60% is magically easy.

Aerators, also called flow regulators, work by simply mixing air into the flow and this reduces the amount of water passing through the tap. And because the best tap aerators are beautifully engineered, you will notice no difference in flow pressure.

The aerator is a bit like a fine sieve that separates the single flow of water into many tiny streams and surrounds these with air. That means there is less space for the water to pass through but the introduction of air into the mix ensures that there is no perceivable reduction in water pressure.

Easy fitting

Fitting a tap aerator is a bit like replacing a light bulb. After choosing the perfect size for your tap, you simply screw in the aerator and start saving right away!

If you are on a water meter, you will see impressive savings on your measured bills. And you will save on energy costs, with reduced costs on heating the water, whether metered or not.

This much improved efficiency – cutting water usage by more than half on average – will have a big impact on your annual utility bills, with more savings with every aerator you fit.

According to the European University Institute, aerators can save you up to 1,274 litres of water a month – and the only minor adjustment is that filling a basin will take a bit longer.

But it’s a sad fact of life that not every tap can be fitted with an aerator, particularly much older and vintage-style models.

Range of flow rates

You can choose an aerator with a flow rate to suit your purposes, so for the bathroom sink where you are mainly washing just hands and teeth, you can select a very low flow rate of 3.5 litres per minute (lpm). Alternatively, you could go for a 5lpm model for a bigger flow – and this is our most popular type.

On the other hand, you would probably be happier with a higher flow rate for your kitchen taps and 7lpm would have minimal impact on the way you work, how fast you can fill a kettle or pan and so on.

It’s also really easy to find out what the flow rate of your taps is currently and we advise you to do this so that you can measure the savings after fitting your aerators. Our flow bag is a very effective and accurate way of doing this.

Once you have measured the flow rate, you can find out how much you can save with the handy calculators on our tap aerator product pages.

We can help

When choosing your tap aerator, you will need to select the correct thread type or the it will not fit your tap. If you aren’t sure, no problem – we can help you!

Another point to bear in mind is whether or not to go for a model with smart limescale cleaning, or SLC. If you live in the southern part of the country, particularly London and East Anglia where there is hard water, then an SLC aerator would be a good choice. It will be much easier to clean as the silicon head allows you to rub away limescale build-up.

It does not matter so much if you live in a region with soft water but many customers choose SLC models anyway.

You will need to clean your tap aerator around once a month to remove limescale and make sure that the small holes in the aerator don’t get clogged. Look after your tap aerator and you will very rarely have to replace it.

You can also select an aerator that swivels if your tap is fixed and does not have a moving spout. With a swivel model, you can adjust the angle of the water flow, reducing bothersome splash.

Quality choice

You might also think that all tap aerators are created equal – not so! We spent a long while researching the market and many options before deciding to work with NEOPERL. Its tap aerators are the product of exhaustive R&D and continual testing.

The company is fully committed to maintaining the highest standards, which is why companies like Bosch and Toto use NEOPERL in their ranges of plumbing, heating, filtration and other appliances.

We also are impressed by the fact that NEOPERL makes a big contribution to climate and environmental protection by helping consumers conserve water and energy. That’s just one more reason why we chose the company as a supplier partner.

It’s a false economy to buy very cheap, low-grade tap aerators that have not been developed with the engineering and scientific knowledge that NEOPERL deploys.

Whatever the setting, whether an office, hotel, school, university or home, tap aerators are designed to deliver impressive savings at minimal cost with very rapid payback on the purchase price.

Explore more about our range of NEOPERL tap aerators here.

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