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Review Summary

21075W Glacier (white and gray)
Revolution Massaging
Handheld Shower
Suggested Retail $78
Reviewed by Leon A. Frechette

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Moen - Revolution massaging handheld shower

After reviewing Moen's Revolution Massaging Fixed Showerhead, I couldn't wait to test their handheld shower for a couple of reasons. First, I tested many bathroom products for possible inclusion in Accessible Housing and this would have been a great addition if it had been available at the time of writing. Now that I have tested it, I hope this review will help get the word out to individuals with special needs who could use a well-designed handheld shower.

My second reason for testing this product is purely personal. Earlier in 2006 I spent a week in Hiawassee, GA, redoing plumbing at my parents' home. I spent a fair amount of time between a home center that was 50 miles away and in the shower reworking their handheld unit. My dad is in the last stage of emphysema, so he showers on a seat in the tub while by mom bathes him. Showering is not comfortable for him and finding a user-friendly handheld shower was nearly impossible.

Unfortunately, even though Moen's Revolution Handshower was on the market at that time, it was not available anywhere in the area. The unit that was sent here for review will be forwarded on to them so my mom can replace the showerhead I installed.

The beauty of this showerhead is that it uses the same technology as Moen's Revolution Massaging Fixed Showerhead I reviewed in 2006. It actually spins each water droplet while simultaneously twisting the whole shower stream into a figure-eight design.

The showerhead's one-handed FreedomDial, designed into a contoured handle featuring a non-slip soft-touch grip, allows the user to adjust water flow from a rain-like shower to a deep therapeutic massage and anything in between. It's great for directing water flow to any part of the body.

A handheld shower is really convenient for bathing individuals with special needs, children, and pets. It's is also great for rinsing the shower or tub after cleaning.

My parents get the best of both worlds with this system because it functions as both a sleek and ergonomically designed handheld shower that's easy to use with one hand and it's a fixed showerhead when seated into its specially designed cradle.

Moen offers two units in white ($78) or chrome ($86) with a choice of three accent colors: blue, green, and pebble (gray) to help match any bathroom design scheme.

One of the easiest handheld showers I've installed, the entire unit took less than five minutes to install with a minimum of tools. The sleek design of its main bracket/cradle helps and the instructions feature simple visuals.

While I recommend this product, there are still a few things that I believe could be improved:

Moen - Revolution massaging handheld showerFirst, the five-foot white nylon reinforced hose is not as flexible as it should be for use as a handheld shower, nor does it lay as flat against the wall as it could. Even when the hose has softened from the hot water, it still has a curl to it. An accessory hose clip attached to the wall would be helpful. From experience, I believe a stainless hose is a better choice for a handheld application. Perhaps Moen will offer a stainless hose on future versions of their showerhead and cradle.

The cradle, designed to hold the showerhead securely in place to prevent rotation when used as a fixed showerhead, does not work as designed. The lower portion of the cradle doesn't flair out enough to accommodate the diameter of the smooth tapered nut that attaches the hose to the end of the showerhead. Because the entire unit does not drop completely into the cradle, the engineered non-rotating design is unable to function correctly. If you push hard enough, you can spread the cradle a bit to allow the showerhead to drop, but it takes both hands. Individuals who have arthritis in their hands would have a hard time seating the showerhead properly into the cradle so it doesn't rotate. This design makes the unit not as user-friendly as it should be.

Until Moen has the opportunity to research this oversight and offer a replacement cradle at no charge, I recommend the following quick fix: line the interior of the cradle with 3M's Safety Walk Indoor/Outdoor Tread. Only 50.8 mm thick, this non-slip rubber material is self-adhesive—just peel the backing and press firmly into place. This will hold the handheld showerhead unit in place so it cannot rotate. If you go this route, take care not to cover the notch (groove) located lengthwise on the back inside of the cradle. Alternatively, cut two pieces and attach one on each side of the notch. This will allow the small knob on the back of the handle to slide down into the groove.

Even with these slight deficiencies, this is still a great product. This biggest problem you may encounter is locating one either online or in stores. It's worth the hunt, because once you get it installed, you'll enjoy the sensations this showerhead delivers over any other ordinary handheld showerhead on the market.

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Moen 21070W Glacier (white and gray) Revolution Massaging Showerhead

Copyright © 01/04/06 LAF/C.R.S., Inc. All rights reserved.

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