So you’re having trouble getting hot water in the shower. Usually you’d blame this on the hot water heater. But then you notice that you’re getting plenty of hot water everywhere else (kitchen and bathroom sinks, dishwasher, etc.).
So what’s the deal?
Well, if you’re getting hot water everywhere else in the house but the shower, you most likely have one of these 2 issues:
- Your anti-scald device is set too high
- Your shower mixer valve went bad
Want to check for both of these problems before calling a professional plumber in to help?
Then you’re in the right place. We’ll show you how to determine which is your problem and what you should do to fix it.
Problem #1: Your anti-scald device might be set too high
If you’re getting hot water everywhere but your shower, it could be that your anti-scald device is set at too high a limit.
Anti-scald devices (also called a “hot limit stop” or “rotational limit stop”) are safety features that most faucets have. It’s basically a “stopper” that limits how far your shower handle can rotate in the hot water direction. This prevents you from being blasted with the hottest temperature your water heater provides.
So how do you know if your anti-scald device is preventing you from getting hot water in your shower?
Well, the only way to know if your anti-scald device is set too high is to adjust it and check for a change in water temperature.
Follow these steps to adjust your anti-scald device:
1. Take the handle or head off of your faucet. Depending on your faucet model, you may need a screwdriver or allen wrench to do this or you may just need to rotate the faucet head firmly.
2. Locate your anti-scald device. If your faucet has an anti-scald device installed, it will most likely be the plastic device sitting directly under the faucet head. See the image below for an idea of what this might look like.
Remember, though, that not all faucets have this device installed. So if you don’t see this plastic device, skip to the next section as this isn’t the reason you aren’t getting hot water.
3. Turn your anti-scald device to the right. Pull out the anti-scald device slightly to free it from the level it’s currently set to. Then, turn it slightly to the right and push it back in place.
4. Test the water temperature. If you notice that the water temperature gets slightly hotter than before, this was most likely your problem.
5. Repeat until the water temperature matches your needs. Continue making small right turns to the anti-scald device and testing the water after each adjustment. Once the water temperature is as hot as you’d like, replace the faucet head.
Problem #2: Your shower mixing valve might have gone bad
If your problem wasn’t the anti-scalding device, your shower mixing valve has most likely gone bad and is preventing hot water from mixing properly into your shower water.
Your shower mixing valve controls the water temperature of your shower by blending together cold and hot water. Sometimes, though these valves wear out, break, or are positioned incorrectly and that can cause uncomfortable shower temperatures.
Because accessing these valves require disassembling your shower fixtures, we suggest leaving a shower valve repair or replacement to a professional.
Need help from a Sarasota plumber?
If you’re ready to say goodbye to your cold showers forever, we’re here to help.