So, you are in eager search of a new shower mixer, but not sure where to start because of the array of different types and brands on offer? Not to worry….
In this guide we focus purely on the shower mixers, both regular and thermostatic models, so if you are looking for power showers, electric showers or digital showers then check out our other guides featured on the website.
We spent nearly 40 hours analysing over 60 popular UK models to find a mixer that suits all price ranges in different designs and configurations, such as concealed and surfaced mounted mixers:
Build quality, functionality and of course features.
Below you will see the shower mixers that ticked all the boxes, ultimately it was the Hansgrohe Exostat 1001 CL which earned our Editor’s Choice award as it scored highly in all the areas we look for when choosing the best shower mixer.
And if our editors and budget pick are not for you? Don’t worry, we’ve picked an assortment of shower mixers to suit all budgets and requirements.
- Our Best Shower Mixer Picks
- Editor’s Choice – A Great Allrounder with Eco-Friendliness
- Best Shower Mixer Bar with Anti Scalding
- Best Value for Money Surfaced Mounted Shower Mixer
- Best Easy Clean Single Lever Mixer with a 5 Year Warranty
- Best Concealed Thermostatic Mixer – Fits Most Recess Depths
- Best High End Concealed Shower Mixer From a Top Brand
- Best Budget Thermostatic Mixer Bar
- Best Thermostatic Mixer with Duel Outlets
- What to Look For In A Mixer Shower
Our Best Shower Mixer Picks
Editor’s Choice – A Great Allrounder with Eco-Friendliness
Hansgrohe Ecostat 1001 CL Thermostatic Shower Mixer
The first unit in the list is this Hansgrohe Ecostat unit (note: we have two other Hansgrohe units in the list). This is a thermostatic unit that promises to provide constant water temperature and volume throughout its lifetime.
Since this is a thermostatic unit, you can pre-set the temperature to ensure that you or your family won’t suffer unpleasant cold shocks or scalding. Even if someone is flushing the toilet elsewhere, you will constantly receive the temperature that you desire
The unit is designed for high-pressure systems only and is perfect to use if a combi boiler.
This Hansgrohe Ecostat scores the highest for environmental sensitivity and protection.
Best Shower Mixer Bar with Anti Scalding
Bristan H0920 FRENZY Contemporary Cool Touch Bar Mixer
The Bristan H0920 FRENZY (another Bristan unit is featured later) is the master of providing cool technology that ensures users are perfectly safe from getting burned. This is the unit we found to have the ultimate scalding-free protection.
There is a flexibility feature where, whatever pressure system you have, the unit can just perfectly blend in. Good for both low-pressure and high-pressure systems.
Easy installation is a strong point for this unit, though some customers reported a weird noise and loose thermostat fitting after a short period of use. This is the only reason this model doesn’t make top spot.
However, the manufacturer claims that they perform over 20,000 cycles of rigorous test on their products. Sad thing is, we have no way of confirming the claim.
Best Value for Money Surfaced Mounted Shower Mixer
Hansgrohe Focus Shower Mixer
Compared to its brother the Ecostat featured above, this Hansgrohe Focus unit comes with a flow rate of 22 litres per minute. In case you’re looking for a higher flow rate but still with high-pressure and from the same brand, this is it.
However, the Focus does not come with a thermostat unlike the Ecostat. So, this unit is a mechanical mixer. Despite that, the temperature control for this unit is good and it regulates the temperature easily.
On the side of functionality, this is a unit you can attach above your bathtub or on the wall in your shower. A simple no frills wall mounted shower mixer
This chrome-made unit comes with an affordable pricing, high flow rate, easy installation system and easy temperature control.
Best Easy Clean Single Lever Mixer with a 5 Year Warranty
GROHE BauEdge | Bathroom Faucet – Single Lever Shower Mixer
The GROHE BauEdge (we feature another Grohe unit below) is a German-manufactured single-lever shower mixer that also comes with a reasonable price tag, but it stands out the most in the aspect of ease of cleaning. Thanks to its Starlight feature.
The Starlight features a chrome coating, which provides a bright surface that resists scratches and stains while maintaining its original shine. This unit only needs wiping with a dry cloth for maintenance.
This Grohe unit also boasts of its SilkMove feature. With this feature, the unit allows for the smoothest and the most precise lever drive.
With its shiny finish and high resistance to stain and scratches, cleaning and maintaining the BauEdge definitely becomes the most time-efficient and easiest of tasks to do.
Best Concealed Thermostatic Mixer – Fits Most Recess Depths
Bristan AR3 SHCVO C Artisan Recessed Thermostatic Dual Control Shower Valve
At a little over twice the price of its brother Bristan FRENZY, the Bristan AR3 SHCVO thermostatic control shower valve is made for a range of cavity sizes (45 – 75 mm) and water supply temperature. The coldest that it can supply is 5 degrees Celsius and the hottest 80 degrees Celsius.
The unit comes with a flow rate of only 8 litres per minute at 0.2 bar. True enough, you can significantly lower your water bill with this unit, but just in case the need comes, you can switch to a higher-pressure rate of 5 bar for flexibility.
The look is modern and sophisticated. The slight downside is a lot of its inside is plastic and ceramic with chrome material on the plate.
Best attribute: Fits most mounting cavitiesThe wide range of cavity sizes that this unit fits makes it the best option to choose for people with different shower systems and sizes in their home or business.
Best High End Concealed Shower Mixer From a Top Brand
GROHE 34224000 | Avensys Modern Dual Control Shower Mixer
Coming in with a good build quality and top-notch performance is this Grohe unit. While it comes with a different fixing approach to the usual thermostatic units, this model is comparatively easier to mount in place, and when it is mounted, it will give your shower setup that stunning and crisp feel.
Reinforcing the easy fit installation is the presence of two outlets – one at the bottom and one at the top. You can use either of the two to connect to your shower outlet. One of them has a blanking screw cap. Just swap it over and you can use the other outlet that suits your configuration.
This Grohe unit works for both low and high pressure and can work for a combi boiler. This is also a unit that is easy to clean and is scratch-resistant.
Best Budget Thermostatic Mixer Bar
Solepearl Chrome Thermostatic Shower Mixer Modern Thermostatic Bar Shower Mixer
This is a unit that comes with superb thermostatic control balancing hot and cold temperature in no time. This is why many users say that any manual manipulation or adjustment is not necessary with this model.
Accommodating a range of hot- and cold-inlet distance of 140 mm to 170 mm, this unit is comparably easy to install. Just connect the left water inlet and the right.
For a budget model this ticks nearly all the boxes, but not to be compared the higher build quality brans featured above.Nonetheless, this mixer is easy to install and comes with an impressive design.
Best attribute: Apart from the Price – Intelligent temperature controlThe Solepearl comes with a technology that automatically balances temperature and maintains desirable temperature level in a quick time.
Best Thermostatic Mixer with Duel Outlets
Hansgrohe ShowerSelect Thermostatic Mixer for 2 Outlets
ShowerSelect is probably the most expensive unit from Hansgrohe and one of the priciest models available in the market, but for good reason. Designed for high-pressure shower systems, it comes with a great an awesome design, is easy to use, and cleans well with just cloth and water.
In addition, it controls temperature well and the 2 outlets which is ideal if you want an overhead monsoon shower and a hand shower. Simply select the push button and it will turn the 2 outlets on and off.
This is a wall-concealed system, so the base unit should be hidden in the wall behind the plaster. The appearance is tidy and produces a timeless ambience in the shower room.
Best attribute: Duel Output Premium Valve
What to Look For In A Mixer Shower
Before rushing into this purchase, take a couple of minutes to consider your options and all of the factors associated with each. Here is a breakdown of the most important factors.
- Price – While many consumers will have a preference regarding how much to spend, price should not be the only judging factor. Instead, you should also consider the factors below.
- Design – Although all of these showers serve the same purpose, their designs can be diverse. Do you want the valve surface mounted, or concealed behind a wall.
- Pressure Controls – When choosing a mixer valve, you should consider whether or not you want to be able to control the pressure of your water (for example to reduce water usage) Some of these offer a flow rate controller, but this isn’t available with all.
- Temperature Controls – Each of these valves will give you the ability to adjust the water’s temperature, but they’ll do so differently. Some will only come with a single temperature lever that you simply lift and turn to the desired temperature, whilst better quality and higher priced models will have a thermostatic cartridge fitted to control the temperature (ideal if you have kids and need to avoid accidental scalding)
- Installation Difficulty When choosing the best mixer valve for your shower, you’ll need to make sure to consider your skill level. Are you capable of installing a highly complex valve? If not, you might want to opt for one that is much easier to install or hire a professional.
- Low-pressure system If you have a gravity fed system, rather than the likes of a combi boiler, you will be limited to models that require a low flow rate. Most thermostatic mixer valves require higher levels of pressure and therefore will require a shower pump in line, more details on pumps next.
- Negative/Positive Head Pump – (You can skip this if you have a combi boiler/pressurised boiler) Check for suitability with the head pump. A negative head pump is used in the case where the pump is located, either at the level or below the cold water tank.
Otherwise, the pump is located above the cold water tank and the head pump is classified as negative.
In the products above, the Hansgrohe ShowerSelect requires a negative head pump to match and on the condition that you are running a water pump to supply water to your shower.
People have different priorities, but whatever you have in your head, still the most important factor to consider is safety especially if you have young kids using the shower. The mixer must offer protection to the family
On that note, we would pick the thermostatic units as the best shower mixer valves– Hansgrohe Ecostat, Hansgrohe SelectShower, and Bristan FRENZY. These are all thermostatic units that maintain water temperature, so scalding can be prevented.
In the end, as to functionality, we have chosen the Ecostat to be the ultimate winner here. It is environment-friendly despite its capacity to fit high-pressure systems. Its ability to modify water temperature gradually is also a big plus for us. If you have any questions or would maybe like to share your first hand experience with these or other mixer valves, please leave us a comment below.