(206) 949-5683, Top Rated Plumber, Seattle
Results 1 to 9 of 9

Thread: Shower Cold/Lukewarm - Sink Hot?

  1. #1

    Default Shower Cold/Lukewarm - Sink Hot?

    Hi,

    Trying to get to the bottom of a problem that's been going on for years. I live in a 3 unit building, a house converted to apartments. As such, I don't have access to the hot water heater area which is down in the garage/basement area. Someone else lives down there, and from what I know, giving me access would give me access to their apartment.

    Anyway, it seems that whenever I take a shower, especially in the cold winter months, it barely ever gets above lukewarm and/or with low pressure. If I turn on the sink just a foot away from the shower, the water is hot enough to scald in seconds. This even after the shower. I'm not plumber, but to me that says it's not a water heater issue.

    On top of that, the landlady comes off to be a bit on the cheap side. I suspect she's mucking with some setting somehow, that or just being negligent about my lack of hot water complaints. As an aside, there's what sounds like water hammer going on in the walls when the neighbors upstairs flush, but she's had a plumber come and tell her she needs to replace things and she doesn't want to pay for it.

    Part of that is just par for the course in NYC (cheap landlords), but she wants to raise my rent because of "increasing gas prices". If I'm not getting the benefit, then I'm not paying an increase!

    Anyhow, is there a way to get to the bottom of the problem? I'm willing to entertain the option that she's not being cheap and there's just something awry, but don't have enough knowledge or info to narrow it down.

    What's the way to do so?

    Thank you very much in advance!
    Last edited by teemo; 12-14-2008 at 12:43 PM.

  2. #2

    Default

    Of course, just to make a liar out of me, it seems ok now after I went and tested it. It's mocking me! (heh)

    However, that just further confounds the situation. Why would it be lukewarm for the most part, once in a while normal/hot, and the sinks always hot?

    Also, I'm told that the tenant downstairs needs to clean "sludge" out of the heater every few days (this is her excuse when I tell her that the water is cold, "oh he probably hasn't cleaned/drained the heater"), which . . .sounds weird to me. I asked an independent plumber though, who'd seen the thing, and he says it's new and one of the best.

  3. #3

    Default

    I am not a plumber, and I don't know where you can go to to find one, I will look around the net, lol, but, to me...

    it doesn't sound right about the sludge thing. Are you sure the plumber you spoke with maybe, wasn't her son or something? Maybe, it is new, maybe it isn't.

    I know in the winter months here, it always takes longer for the water to warm up for me. Usually, whoever gets the first one in the morning, gets the cold one, so, I encourage my sons to, lol.

    Then, I get the next one, and the water is just right.

    Good luck to you.

  4. #4
    Retired Defense Industry Engineer jadnashua's Avatar
    Join Date
    Sep 2004
    Location
    New England
    Posts
    21,410

    Default

    All newer shower valves have a maximum adjustable limit control. You might just need to adjust that so you can turn the temp up higher in the shower.
    Jim DeBruycker
    Important note - I'm not a pro
    Retired Defense Industry Engineer; Schluter 2.5-day Workshop Completed 2013, 2014

  5. #5
    Master Plumber Redwood's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2007
    Location
    Connecticut
    Posts
    7,463

    Default

    But then if you mess up your landlords plumbing it may just get fixed on your dime!

  6. #6

    Default

    Redwood is right. You have to clear it with the slumlord before making any repairs, or you will get burned.

    It sounds to me that, when someone else is taking a shower at the same time you are, the pressure drops, as well as the water temp. You can fix the water temp problem by turning up the temp on the HW tank. You'll need to coordinate shower times to fix the pressure problem.

    It's also possible that the hw valve in the shower is partially plugged or your PRV is set too low, if there is one.

  7. #7
    Forum Admin, Expert Plumber Terry's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2004
    Location
    Bothell, Washington
    Posts
    14,202
    Blog Entries
    1

    Default

    If you have scalding water at the lav, then it's not the water heater.

    One thing you may want to check is:

    1) The temperature limit stop if it's a single handle valve. That prevents rotating the handle to the hottest position.

    2) That's right, Two. If someone in the building has a shutoff on the shower head, and that shower valve is left on, it can cross over into the hot into the cold side. It passes through the shower valve since the valve is open.

  8. #8
    Master Plumber and benevolent Master ExpertPlumberSVC's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2008
    Location
    Phoenix, Arizona
    Posts
    8

    Default

    If, as you say, the temperature is sometimes Colder than expected and sometimes Hotter, then I suspect that a "possible cause" is that a bit of debris may be inside of your valve body or someplace in between the hot & cold inlets and the shower valve's outlet and is then somtimes moving and causing a restriction of flow from the hot supply. After removing the entire valve contents or cartidge; then you should flush the valve momentarily to dislodge any foreign matter from inside the valve, then proceed to reassemble valve (replace any part or component that is damaged or worn badly at this time also).

    Hope this helps ..

    I strongly urge you to have an experienced, honest, dependable, expert Service Plumber assist you with ALL plumbing repairs

  9. #9
    Forum Admin, Expert Plumber Terry's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2004
    Location
    Bothell, Washington
    Posts
    14,202
    Blog Entries
    1

    Default

    One thing you may want to check is:

    1) The temperature limit stop if it's a single handle valve. That prevents rotating the handle to the hottest position.

    2) That's right, Two. If someone in the building has a shutoff on the shower head, and that shower valve is left on, it can cross over into the hot into the cold side. It passes through the shower valve since the valve is open.

    3) Okay now it's three things to check, thanks to ExpertPlumberSVC, check the cartridge or inner parts of the faucet for crud.

Bookmarks

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •