There’s nothing like hitting the shower after a long day at work or a hard workout at the gym. Many homebuyers and people who are just fitting their new apartment or house underestimate the importance of shower accessories like the shower head and shower mixer taps. While picking a shower head is pretty straightforward, picking the right mixer taps, or valves, as they’re more commonly known, can oftentimes leave you scratching your head over making the best choice. That being said, here’s a list of the things you need to know before investing in one.

There are two basic types of shower mixer taps – manual and thermostatic. Manual mixer taps are controlled the same way you control sink taps – it just takes a while to find the comfortable temperature for you. Thermostatic models, on the other hand, allow you to control the temperature without having to control the flow rate. This means that the temperature will remain the same even if someone opens a tap elsewhere, which can reduce the flow rate to the shower.

Next, you have to consider the material the mixer tap is constructed from and its design. You want one that’s rust-, lea- and corrosion-proof, and durable. Typically, mixer taps are made of metal, ceramic or plastic. Plastic is cheap and resistant to corrosion and rust. ABS plastic is the most commonly used material as it’s safe and strong. Metallic shower mixer taps are usually made of brass, which is durable, they are corrosion- and rust-resistant, and also looks great. Ceramic mixer heads, according to plumbers, are the best ones as they combine great durability and performance.

Further, you have to consider the brand and the price. Famous brands have gained their status simply because they produce high-quality products, and when it comes to mixer taps, it’s difficult to market them through conventional advertising methods. That being said, some of the reputable brands include Eden, Pfister and Moen, as they offer great customer service and have a great warranty on their products.

In fact, the warranty is one of the most important things you need to be on the lookout for when buying anything, as it means the brand stands behind its products. However, of course, this doesn’t mean that you can’t find great products from less-known brands at more affordable prices, so it’s best that you shop around before you make your decision, because at the end of the day, the shower is something we use on a daily basis and it’s important that you get one that you like.