Q: I read your recent column about hot water recirculating systems for saving water and getting faster hot water to the shower. I’m looking into that, and I also want to install overhead-style showerheads. Do they make water-efficient “rain heads”?

A: Saving water in the shower is a hot topic, not only for water conservation but for saving energy, as well. That means it can be a two-for-one deal if you install new high-efficiency showerheads.

In the past, it was feared that using less water would compromise a rainlike shower experience. But in recent years, I’ve worked with two new technologies that can provide a feeling of overhead rain along with water efficiency.

The first is a gravity-fed system that features a flush shower panel fixture installed in the ceiling of the stall. Water drizzles out of multiple nozzles while a built-in reservoir fills with water. Once the reservoir is full, the user can push a button and enjoy a burst of rain.

The second type looks like a traditional rain head, but on the inside, air is mixed into the water flow. The final result can give you larger and softer-feeling raindrops without pouring away extra water.

Ed Del Grande is a master plumber, contractor and author. Send questions to eadelg@cs.com.