389 of 393 people found the following review helpful
on June 8, 2010
My son recently returned from his second tour of Afghanistan. His outpost spent 4 months with no running water. I sent him this solar shower so he could have hot water, instead of bathing in a cold mountain stream. 5 stars is not enough for what this shower gave to him! A hot shower!!! A++++ I bought 5 more to send to him so that he could share with the other guys in his unit! It was like Christmas to those guys! Something as simple as a hot shower. I totally recommend this product. If it can survive the conditions in the mountains of Afghanistan, it will hold up for your summer camping trips!
Cindy, Proud Army Mom of Chris, 10th Mountain
96 of 99 people found the following review helpful
on December 21, 2008
This shower does what it promises... it gets hot in the sun and it cleans you up! It is stable and durable. We got five showers out of this, not washing our hair. I would think you could get two very nice hair-washing showers out it though.
134 of 142 people found the following review helpful
on July 15, 2009
This is the third and best sun shower I've owned. It heats water well, as advertised. I use it camping to wash dishes, to shower and to wash my hands.
The details make this shower stand out from the others I've owned...
* The filling hole has a screw-on cap which easy to put on with one hand.
* There is a mesh pocket on the front. I use it to hold eye glasses or soap.
* You can hang the shower nozzle on either corner of the bag with handy velcro tabs. Very useful because sometimes the nozzle drips if you leave it dangling.
* The carry handle is comfortable
There are two pockets. One for the mirror, so it does't get scratched. Over that pocket, is the mesh pocket for soap, etc. The mirror is about as reflective as tinfoil, btw.
I have one complaint... one seam burst open after it fell off its hanger. Other sun showers I've owned fell many many many times over many years before bursting open at the seam. Despite this, I highly recommend this shower.
6/10/13 eta My replacement shower has fallen many times over the last three years and the seams have held. Two of my friends have since bought this shower and are very happy with it.
40 of 43 people found the following review helpful
on February 23, 2013
I've been using this bag a lot over the last few years, and just recently it sprung a leak where the hose exits the bag. I've attempted a repair, but am waiting for 24 hours before testing to see if it was successful. If it is not successful, I will still buy another one of these and transfer my upgrades detailed below to the new unit.
The Nozzle drips and gets worse with time and use. I need to keep it elevated above the bag. Not a huge deal but would certainly be better if it would not drip. After many years the nozzle loosened up enough that it will also open itself if hanging, just from water pressure, but not always.
The black plastic hollow tube for the hanging function bent into a deep U permanently, the first time I hung it in strong sunlight. This stretched the edges of the bag itself and started the tearing at the edges. I replaced this plastic tube with a 7/8" diameter wooden dowel and attached ropes to that. It took several years for this rip to progress across the remainder. When it had 1 inch left, I cut the remainder. The Silver portion is dual layered, and I cut small slits in the edges and stuck the dowel through here. After 2 months these edges began to tear as well, and I re enforced the whole area with Nashua FlexFix tape. But shortly after, I tweaked the bag by the nozzle exit so much it started leaking there so I am not sure how effective the Nashua Tape re enforcement will be with time and sunlight.
I would recommend this dowel upgrade occur before first use. I've owned 3 different Sun Showers and they all tear at the same spots. I believe had the black plastic tube not bent and allowed all the pressure to be carried by the edges of the seam, it would never have begun tearing. This bag is better built than the other brands I have used and the screw cap is order of magnitudes better.
This bag has fallen from 4.5 feet(Spare tire height), when filled to the brim, more than once without bursting or puncturing. It might be able to hold 5 gallons, 4.25 seems more likely, but I can get 2 showers out of this easily.
The soap holder feature is great, but it can also trap water when filling if not careful, and make a soapy mess when laid on a surface for heating. There are two pockets, the netted one on the outside. The inner one traps water.
The thermometer is a worthless bell or whistle, your choice. It quit working early in its life and I couldn't care less.
I slammed the shower nozzle in my car door early in its life. I found I preferred the solid stream rather than the diffused droplets, and if/when I need to acquire a new one, I will modify the nozzle for a more directed flow.
I also extended the hose with brass barbed couplings and hose easily available at home stores. As noted in other reviews the original comes creased in the container and restricts flow.
The little velcro tabs for holding the hose can be frustrating, especially since the nozzle leaks. Using two hands is also sometimes necessary to unfasten them, as well as for the shower nozzle itself, which is annoying with soapy hands. I would love a one handed flow cut off.
After many years in the sun, the clear plastic has become slightly cloudy, which no doubt makes it less efficient in heating up the water. Attempts to reduce the cloudiness have been only slightly successful.
The screw cap is well designed and seals very well, but obviously do not get sand or dirt on it. The rubber seal in the cap can come out sometimes and get lost, in which case the whole bag becomes nearly completely useless. It is not just an o ring and easily replaced. Make sure it does not fall out of the cap when you unscrew it. I put a little silicone grease (Syl-Glide, available at Napa) on mine, and less torque is required to form a good seal and to later unscrew it. Less chance of the rubber seal sticking to the rim and getting lost as well. Vaseline or similar will degrade this rubber seal over time. Silicone grease will not.
I had total confidence in the leak proof capability of the bag itself. All that was required was to keep the nozzle higher than the bag itself and I added a little S hook to facilitate this. I lay it on my black dashboard and the water heats much faster, and I did not fear it leaking onto the electronics below. It has seen a lot of use and only recently did develop a leak so I will be more cautious before trusting my repair job to dashboard duty.
I do occasionally resort to heating a pot of water and using a funnel to refill the bag and using the bag to refill the pot until it reaches ~105f. From 65f to 105f takes about 12 minutes with my one burner propane stove on high and using a coffee cup to scoop heated, not boiling water from the 1 quart aluminum pot and dump into the funnel. More work than I'd like but better than a cold shower.
Edit: My repair of the leak around the nozzle did work, however the Nashua Flexfix tape across the ripping handle area did not hold, not surprisingly.
I ordered a new one and transferred my dowel to the new one. The Shower Nozzle does not leak on the new one and I hope it does not begin to tear along the dowel as every other shower bag has failed me.
My original one is not dead yet. I glued the remaining plastic around a smaller hardwood dowel and hope it holds. I'm waiting for a full cure before I hang it and stress the repair.
32 of 34 people found the following review helpful
on September 25, 2010
THIS THING ROCKS!! This solar shower has SAVED OUR BUTTS!!! (Literally, we don't have hot water right now as we are remodeling a house and living in a tent trailer!) It doesn't work if it's overcast and cloudy all day, and it doesn't work if it's tooooo cold...(well below 50*), but if you have a clear shot of the sun, and at least 3 hours, sometimes within 2, you've got minimum 90* water... and it CAN get HOT, up to 130* (my boyfriend adds cold water...) and there's plenty of water for 3 of us if we fill it all the way up... me--and I have pretty long hair, my boyfriend, and my son, all suds off. awesome. Buy it now! WAYYYY better than the $6 Coleman camp shower... which we also have as a backup but it takes at least 6 hours to get warm, and the nozzle leaks all over the place and the hose came kinked... no signs of un-kinking, plus the temp gauge on this one is nice (it's gotta be touching the water, NOT the air bubble, and you've gotta shade it from direct sunlight for at least 30 seconds to get an accurate reading.) There's a little pocket in the front and a mirror that does a good enough job. All in all, a great buy.
55 of 62 people found the following review helpful
on December 26, 2011
For some reason my review (along with 30 + others) don't show up on this page. So I thought I would post the link to the other reviews (http://www.amazon.com/Advanced-Elements-Gallon-Summer-Shower/product-reviews/B000J2Q0T4/ref=cm_cr_pr_btm_link_next_3?ie=UTF8&showViewpoints=0&pageNumber=3) along with my original review.
Utilized this shower for 4+ months shared between 5-6 men. It is small enough that it dosen't present any sort of physical challenge when carrying it around, the nozzle sprays in a decent pattern and it is durable (survived temperatures in excess of 100 degrees on a daily basis, thrown around etc..). After 4+ months of constant use it was turned over in a serviceable condition to the next group who took our place. I would recommend this product to anyone looking for a simple, compact field shower.
22 of 23 people found the following review helpful
on July 31, 2011
In the outside chance running water becomes scarce (or non-existent) somewhere down the road, I bought this outdoor shower (to use with stored rainwater). Today, it was put to the test.
First observations, the material seems pretty substantial. I wouldn't want to poke it with a stick, but there's little chance of that here. It was easy to fill and the cap sealed it tight. I laid it down in direct sunlight (on a wooden deck) at 1:30pm, and when I got home at 4:30pm, the temp reading said between 98-104 degrees. I quickly assembled a 1/2 inch galvanized steel stand (see user pics) from pieces I bought at one of the big box home improvement stores, and voila, I had a functional outdoor shower.
I put it thru the full test, including washing my (short) hair. The pressure was adequate, and all of the shampoo rinsed out. I'm not sure Brooke Shields could wash her hair with this shower, but short-to-mid-length hair should be fine. I was conscious of using more water than I needed, so I was frequently starting/stopping the water, which was easy to do. The nozzle closed tight, and it didn't drip. Next came body wash with a wash cloth. The cloth saturated quickly, and again, the pressure was adequate to rinse the soap. Even with an extra minute of enjoying the warm water and a warm summer breeze outdoors, I still only used about half of the water. In an emergency situation, especially if I didn't need to wash my hair, I could easily see 2-3 people showering with this amount of water.
If I could have given 4 1/2*, I would have, because even with a 7ft stand (I'm 5'10"), I was practically doubled-over rinsing my hair. I can think of a couple things that would have minimized the height necessary to hang this bag, but alas, if the SHTF, it would definitely serve its purpose!
21 of 22 people found the following review helpful
on February 10, 2010
I've used many bag showers over the years in an industrial setting, and camping. This unit,and the 3 gallon model, are the most durable. The competitors are subject to pinholes and valves tend to pull off the hose easily.
35 of 40 people found the following review helpful
on October 25, 2011
We bought the Summer Shower 5 to take to the Las Vegas Ragnar Relay Race so we could rinse off a bit while on the road. We did't fill it up all the way as we were strapping it to the roof of a Chevy Suburban and were afraid it may start leaking. But, as I said, we strapped it to the roof with a few bungee cords and a carabiner on the handle. When it was time to shower, we attached the shower to the roof rack of the Suburban and hung it over the side. We used a tarp attached to the Suburban for privacy. The shower was nice and warm for two people after being in the October sun of Lake Meade/Las Vegas for about 8 hours. I would highly recommend this shower for anyone looking to car camp or have a hot shower during a Ragnar!
35 of 40 people found the following review helpful
on November 12, 2011
I use my solar showers every weekend when I am diving. most last 3 months at best. I bought this one in 2009, and It's still in perfect shape. best there is.