• The Heritage Network
    • Resize:
    • A
    • A
    • A
  • Donate
  • Tales of the Red Tape #7: Energy Department Plumbing for More Regulatory Powers

    Not satisfied with just regulating the design of air conditioners, battery chargers, boilers, ceiling fans, dehumidifiers, dishwashers, dryers, freezers, furnaces, heat pumps, light bulbs, refrigerators, toilets, and washers, the U.S. Department of Energy is cracking down on shower heads. In the words of the federal plumbing police: “It has always been the Department’s view that when Congress used the term ‘any shower head’ it actually meant ‘any shower head.’”

    By this they mean that the statutory limit on the maximum flow of a shower head does not reflect the amount of water from each shower head in a plumbing apparatus, but the total from multiple shower heads in any one shower.

    For nearly two decades, the department has treated each shower head in a fixture as, um, a shower head. However, the DOE last month notified shower head manufacturers that the flow restriction now applies to an entire shower fixture, and not just individual shower heads.

    The low-flow mandate, prescribed in the Energy Policy Conservation Act of 1992, is a measly 2.5 gallons per minute (gpm) at 80 pounds per square inch of water pressure. (A dramatic reduction from the luxurious cascades of 5 gpm or even 10 gpm from shower fixtures that Americans once were permitted to enjoy.)

    To demonstrate the agency’s regulatory muscle, DOE General Counsel Scott Blake Harris recently fined four shower head makers $165,104 for failing to demonstrate compliance with the shower head diktat.

    Word of the crackdown has been conveyed via the department’s Showerhead Enforcement Guidance, which states, in part: “We cannot reconcile the view that a showerhead with multiple nozzles is actually multiple showerheads.”

    Want to read more terrifying Tales of Red Tape? Then check out the following:

    #1: We See Dead People

    #2: The EPA Is Fueling Nonsense

    #3: Don’t Touch That Dial!

    #4: The Unwitting Peddlers of Toxic Tomes

    #5: Calorie Counts Forced Down Our Throats

    #6: Equine Equality Under the ADA

    Posted in Economics [slideshow_deploy]

    8 Responses to Tales of the Red Tape #7: Energy Department Plumbing for More Regulatory Powers

    1. Pingback: The Obama Administration’s Regulatory Nightmare « American Elephants

    2. Chris in N.Va says:

      By imperially declaring their jurisdiction over our shower heads and then unsolicited shoving its decision up our collective rear ends, the EPA has positioned itself to be Public Enema #1.

      Where are all of the passionate "Stay out of my bedroom" folks? Why no comparable "Stay out of my bathroom" demands shouted in the streets?

      Speaking of The Enema of the People: First they came for my water-wasting toilet, but I remained silent. Then they came for my abundantly-spraying shower head but I said nothing. Then…do we dare ask what is next?

    3. Leon Lundquist, Dura says:

      Defund and Abolish the Department of Energy! The American People wanted and paid for a genuine Energy Policy! This kind of complicated baloney is the exact opposite. But take it from the TEA Party perspective! We pay Billions of Dollars every year for an Energy Policy and what Energy has given us is an criminally poor product! That should be bad enough, but we have Noblesse Oblige taking over our Government, these elite nobles think they can Regulate every crazy imaginable thing.

      Look! Homes are not the major source of water use in the first place! So for an Energy Department to be factually destroying our Energy Industry is bad enough! Treason actually, but then stopping me from buying a shower head that actually rinses my body? Hey! Some Americans might have low water pressure! This is Departments of Government exercising Totalitarian Powers. The Issue is bigger than Energy, or water use. The Issue is Liberty itself!

      In America we are Sovereign Citizens! We are spiritual beings who are at Liberty Under God! (And nobody else!) We are not cattle, we are not to be subject to Human Experimentation by the Progressive Socialists in the Government! It is morally repugnant for Government to assume these Unconstitutional Powers! Now! Horrifying! They are doing it simultaneously attacking our Liberty from all sides! Progressive Liberals have Minced Our Demographic by doing so many bad things that we, as Republicans cannot get together on which of a thousand atrocities to fight!

    4. Pingback: Must Know Headlines — ExposeTheMedia.com

    5. Pingback: Religious Faith Is Still Good News for America | The Foundry: Conservative Policy News.

    6. Ivan Terry Colonial says:

      OK First I would like to know were these people live that have 80 lbs of pressure on the water to their house. If I got 35lbs its because no one else is using water at the moment. Building water systems back in the 80's we had to put a regulator on any line that had over 60lbs of pressure to keep the house service at 60lbs. I remember that a bad regulator was installed at one house and it blew out all of the pipes in the house. I feel that any Engineer should have hands on work in the field for at least 5 years before they sit in a office. this would stop a lot of stupid. And I can say that because I spent a lot of time reengineering something so that it would work or even be built. My desk was the hood of the truck.

    7. Pingback: The Crucible – Part 2 – RECON – Military Videos | youtube

    8. Pingback: CARE Act Would Rob Wineries of Commerce Clause Protections | The Foundry

    Comments are subject to approval and moderation. We remind everyone that The Heritage Foundation promotes a civil society where ideas and debate flourish. Please be respectful of each other and the subjects of any criticism. While we may not always agree on policy, we should all agree that being appropriately informed is everyone's intention visiting this site. Profanity, lewdness, personal attacks, and other forms of incivility will not be tolerated. Please keep your thoughts brief and avoid ALL CAPS. While we respect your first amendment rights, we are obligated to our readers to maintain these standards. Thanks for joining the conversation.

    Big Government Is NOT the Answer

    Your tax dollars are being spent on programs that we really don't need.

    I Agree I Disagree ×

    Get Heritage In Your Inbox — FREE!

    Heritage Foundation e-mails keep you updated on the ongoing policy battles in Washington and around the country.

    ×