Aerator for the mixer: what is it and why is it needed?
- Description and features
- What are the?
- Manufacturers Overview
- How to choose?
- Can I make it myself?
- Installation instructions
- Recommendations for use
A few years ago, when buying a faucet for the kitchen or bathroom, sometimes you could see sets with a removable or built-in aerator on the market. Many, considering them to be a regular filter, independently removed this modification from a crane, arguing that they already had an integrated filter installed.
Today, it is quite difficult to purchase any mixer without this additional element, which not only performs its direct function (filters and oxygenates water), but also contributes to a significant reduction in water consumption.
Description and features
Aerator for the mixer - this is a nozzle in the form of a small strainer mounted on the spout. This device allows you to saturate ordinary water with air particles, that is, to aerate it. Often an aerator is called a “diffuser” because it separates one large stream of fluid going through the spout into many small streams.
The main details of such a device are:
- housing (most often made of metal or plastic);
- filters for additional purification of water from small litter;
- a mixer of water and gas (with the help of holes around the perimeter, air is sucked into the body);
- outer mesh (to separate the main stream into many small streams);
- various bushings and seals (for tight connection).
Aerator allows you to create different types of water flow:
- aerated - volumetric soft jet without splashes;
- Laminar - intense crystal clear jet;
- spray - a lot of miniature streams.
The main function of an aerator for tap water is to saturate it with oxygen microparticles. This not only significantly changes its taste properties for the better, but also contributes to a more rapid weathering of chlorine, if the water in the region is chlorinated. In addition, the jet itself more gently falls on the bottom of the shell and on objects placed in it, which significantly reduces the splashing of liquid on the surrounding space. If a rotary aerator is installed in the kitchen, washing large kitchen utensils is simplified several times, the flow of water reduces its impact force and more gently washes away cleaning products from the soaped surface.
Another function of the mixer aerator is water saving. Although the device itself is not very reliable and often needs to be replaced (at least once a year), it reduces water consumption by two or more times.
At the same time, the convenience of washing dishes with such savings does not become lower, but even increases due to higher efficiency of use. The dishes are washed several times faster with a wide stream, which also saves time on homework. The second disadvantage, in addition to frequent replacement, is the slow rate of water intake into the tank, but this disadvantage is so insignificant that it can be safely ignored.
What are the?
The simplest aerator is a small round sprayer with a metal mesh, screwed into the spout of the faucet. Today, such a standard device comes bundled with any mixer purchased and, like the foot valve, will reduce water consumption by at least 30 percent. It will last about six months, after which a replacement with a similar or more complex device is necessary.
Rotary aerators are also called flexible, as they can be rotated in different directions. One of the variants of such a device is a special elongated hose tube, which is attached to the spout spout. Such a device allows you to collect liquid even in those containers that do not fit in the bowl of the sink.
The second option is an aerator in the form of a small watering can, similar to a shower head. Adjustable in length, it can be moved around the sink area and used in the “spray” and “spray” modes. By adjusting the inclination of the aerator head and the pressure of the water, you can achieve the ideal result in each specific situation.
A jet of liquid in an interesting device with backlight is highlighted depending on its temperature. Cold water (up to 29 degrees) is highlighted in green, warm (from 30 to 38 degrees) - in blue, and hot (above 40 degrees) is highlighted in red. This was realized due to internal thermal sensors that do not require connection to the power grid. The built-in turbine that feeds the LED lamps rotates due to the flow of water when the valve is opened, therefore this method of saturating water with oxygen is also called ejector.
Illuminated devices are especially convenient for families with small children, as they allow to know the temperature of the liquid immediately by opening by the color of the stream. In addition, bright colors will help to attract the attention of the child, and bathing will take place in a more relaxed atmosphere. Also, a backlit aerator is often installed on touch-free touch mixers to see at a glance how much water flows from it.
Vacuum aerator is considered the most economical, it allows to reduce the amount of water used by half. The price of such attachments significantly exceeds the usual, but quickly pays off. The vacuum system compresses water with a special valve, after which it forms a strong jet passing through the filter cells under a stronger pressure than the pressure in the central system.
In addition to the design of the device itself, aerators may differ in the type of nozzles. Disk devices are a nozzle with a round disk in which small holes for liquid are located. With their help, the main stream is divided into thin streams and dissected by a reflector (metal mesh). A slit aerator saturates the liquid with air due to breaking the water flow into separate drops through special slits in a deviating disk, after which the stream enriched with oxygen is cut through the metal mesh of the filter.
Since the device of any aerator includes various filtering and separating grids, the difference may be due to the type of material from which they are made:
- Made of metal. The simplest and cheapest elements that differ in the smallest service life.
- From polymers. Polymer dividers can be either simple disks, similar to metal, or complex "tunnel" systems. The plasticity of the material allows you to create not only round aerators, but also rectangular, hexagonal and devices of complex shape. They practically do not oxidize from contact with water and air, which significantly prolongs their lifespan, but at the same time increases their price. In addition, polymers are often quite fragile and can break from a slight pressure when washing plumbing.
- From non-ferrous metals. Brass, bronze aerators are costly to manufacture, and therefore have a relatively high price. However, the durability and reliability of the design perfectly compensate their cost.
- Grids of plastic and extruded aluminum. Both of these options have many drawbacks: brittle, short-lived, aluminum is strongly oxidized and tightly welded to the inner surface of the spout pipe, plastic can deform at high temperatures. Their only advantage is the low price, but the risks that the selection of such low-quality products carries are too high.
According to the method of installation, you can select the internal aerator (screwed into the inside of the spout) and external (screwed on the spout).
In addition to differences in design features and materials, aerators differ in the size of the thread. Since its size must correspond to the diameter of the spout pipe, it is very important to choose the right parameters (a valve with a 18 mm thread and vice versa will not be suitable for a valve with a spout diameter of 22 mm). The diameter of the aerator can vary from 12 to 1200 mm. The height of the device is 14-2000 mm, and the diameter of the air channel is from 20 to 2200 mm. The thread size is indicated by alphanumeric method (M20, M24, M28, etc.) and is indicated on the packaging by the manufacturer.
Most commonly, three standard thread diameters are used: 28/26, 24/22, and 18/16 mm. From this relationship, it follows that if an external thread of 28 mm is used, then an internal thread for the same tap will be 26 mm. Another important point is the purchase of a male threaded aerator for external spout, respectively. The same is true for spout with internal thread.
The more reliable the manufacturer, the less likely it is to buy a marriage or a fake, so when choosing a mixer nozzle it is best to choose the companies that are at the top of the list according to customer reviews.
Among the leading companies, several companies have proven themselves in the market.
- Grohe. Sanitary fittings manufactured in Germany are of high quality, wide operational modifications and original design.
- Jacob Delafon. French nozzles mainly from sanitary porcelain are considered elite equipment. The high price guarantees a long service life and excellent quality products.
- Timo Finnish Aerators created using modern technology from a variety of materials, including both complex polymers and bronze or brass. The products of various shapes, sizes and colors are provided with a five-year warranty card, which indicates a serious approach to the quality of the products.
- Oras. Aerators produced in Poland, Finland and Norway with an innovative approach not so long ago got into the domestic market, but they firmly occupied the leading positions in it. Plumbing accessories of this brand are equipped with automatic and easy to use, and the price can compete even with Chinese counterparts.
Depending on the design of the material and the manufacturer, the cost of aerators in the construction market ranges from 2 to 10 dollars.
How to choose?
In order to choose a suitable aerator, it is necessary to focus primarily on the quality of the product and its price. The cheapest but least reliable plastic and aluminum nozzles will last from a couple of months to six months. Slightly more reliable are considered more expensive metal and ceramic aerators. However, they are also highly susceptible to corrosion and their service life leaves much to be desired. The most durable and reliable nozzles are made of brass.
It is also important to pre-calculate the frequency of use of the crane. The kitchen is better to put a more expensive and reliable option, and in the bath or second bathroom you can buy a more budget model.
The second thing you should pay attention to is the mount on the tap spout. The device can be with external or internal thread and is selected depending on the thread of the mixer itself. Last but not least, there are additional functions. In the bathroom, a backlit aerator will look good, and in the kitchen any housewife will be delighted with a flexible device that allows you to comfortably wash even the largest saucepan in the sink.
Can I make it myself?
Knowing the principle of operation and the scheme of the device purchased aerator, in order to save, you can try to make it yourself. In order to make such a nozzle, you must have available an empty case from any nozzle on the crane and a solid plastic plate. Gaskets are cut from plastic, matching in size with the internal diameter of the nozzle.
With the help of a hot needle or sharp sewed in such a gasket, many holes are made so that it resembles a fine-meshed mesh. The finished nets are placed in an empty nozzle body instead of conventional filters, and the nozzle is attached to the spout. Such an aerator will perform all the functions assigned to it, however, its service life is significantly lower than purchased products, especially with brass nets.
Installation of the aerator is not particularly difficult even for a person who has never encountered this device. In order to install a new or replace the old aerator, it is necessary to adhere to a specific algorithm.
First you need to remove from the mixer all the nozzles installed on it earlier. Unscrew the case and remove the old rubber gasket, put on the spout spout. The junction must be thoroughly cleaned and washed, and then allowed to dry slightly.
In the package with the device, you need to find the seal in the form of a rubber gasket and put it on the tap spout. If there is no such seal in the set, you will have to buy it yourself. It must be of such a diameter that it goes to the mixer. If the diameters of the aerator and the mixer itself are different, then you need to additionally purchase a special adapter and additional gaskets. The adapter material must match the materials of the mixer and aerator. After the adapter, a rubber gasket is also placed on it.
The aerator is screwed to the mixer (or adapter) with a key or passive. In order not to damage the chrome-plated glossy surface, at the junction of the instrument with the body of the device, you can put a piece of cloth, rubber or purchase a special tool. The thread should be tightened tight enough, but the extra effort is not worth it, so as not to disrupt it.
After installation, it is imperative to carry out a leak test. If water seeps at the joints, then you need to either tighten the threads or fix the gasket.
The shower aerator is placed in a similar pattern, only the element is mounted not on the spout, but in the junction of the shower hose and the mixer.
Recommendations for use
Even the highest quality aerator needs to be cleaned over time, as tap water contains various impurities, salts and rust. All this is deposited on the filter grill and leads to contamination of the device. To understand at what point it is necessary to clean, you should pay attention to whether the water pressure has not decreased. Also, the reason for checking and cleaning the aerator should be the lack of a characteristic hiss of water flow, which must be constantly present during work. In order to clean the device, you will need pliers, a thin awl, a wrench and a clean cloth (you can replace it with wet wipes).
The process of dismantling and cleaning is as follows:
- The diffuser is unscrewed from the nozzle of the spout manually or with pliers or a key. If you look at the faucet from above, you need to rotate the body of the aerator clockwise.
- An old rubber gasket is removed from the junction and its condition is examined. If it has cracks and tears and the product has lost its original properties, this gasket must be replaced. They are bought in any hardware store (you can take along an old gum to buy a product of the required size).
- The case itself is disassembled and thoroughly rinsed with running water and wiped with a damp cloth. Small holes of the mesh are cleaned with a usual sewing needle or a fine awl, after which they are additionally washed with a strong pressure of water.
- The whole structure is assembled in the same order as it was dismantled. A cleaned or new gasket is placed on the spout spout, the housing is twisted counterclockwise. Spin the aerator right along with the rubber washer.
- After all the work is done, it is necessary, like when installing a new device, to conduct a test run. A well-cleaned filter should not interfere with the strong pressure of the water, and the rubber gasket should ensure full tightness.
In general, neither the installation of a new, nor the cleaning of the old aerator does not require certain knowledge or great effort. The main thing is to choose the right device from a reliable manufacturer and not to miscalculate with the selected diameter. Fresh and clean water enriched with oxygen will help not only to clean all the dishes, but also to quench the thirst of the most demanding residents.
To learn how to easily and easily replace the aerator on the mixer, see the following master class.