No Hot Water in Shower But Sinks Are Fine? Do This

No Hot Water in Shower But Sinks Are Fine

You may have experienced an issue with your shower not having hot water yet your sink does have hot water. If you do not know how plumbing works, this situation is very confusing. Since the sink has hot water, shouldn’t the shower be as well?

Unfortunately, this scenario is not so cut and dry, as this problem could be brought on by several possible reasons.

Why Is There No Hot Water in Shower But Sinks Are Fine?

As previously stated, the are a few possible reasons why this issue is occurring. When you have hot water everywhere else in your house except for the shower, it is important to narrow down possible reasons, which will save you from wasting time running in circles.

Now, when you are having hot water problems, typically the first thing that comes to mind is the hot water heater since this is the most common cause of lack of hot water; however, if the hot water heater was to blame, you would not have hot water in the rest of your home such as your sink.

Since you do have hot water functioning for your sink, the hot water heater is probably not the root of the problem.

The last thing you will want to do is complicate this issue any further, which is why it is good to figure out what is the origin of the problem at hand.

Luckily, you have found this guide and below, you will find not just possible sources of this problem but you will also find simple solutions to remedy this frustrating issue.

1. Defective Anti-Scald (Pressure Balancer) Device

It is not only important to understand what an anti-scald device does but it is an equally important part of a shower system.

The anti-scald device or also known as a thermostatic valve is what is responsible for managing the temperature of the water in most showers.

This handy device is what ensures that you do not have to fiddle with the hot and cold water and potentially feel the surprising water temperature changes.

This is an integral part of a shower that is used by kids since as the name suggests, it is what protects folks from scalding hot water.

Also, considering that the average setting of a water heater is a surprising 140 degrees Fahrenheit, you can understand why an anti-scald device is an important thing to have functioning correctly, so as to avoid potential burns.

Fix – Repair / Adjust Anti-Scald Pressure Balancer

The anti-scald pressure balancer Device for a shower is an important part of a shower to have functioned properly.

So, if you believe that this part is to blame, you will want to repair or adjust the anti-scald pressure balancer for your shower. Luckily, this can be done even if you are not familiar with plumbing or DIY projects.

This repair should only take about an hour to complete and you will need a screwdriver and a pair of needle nose pliers. Follow the steps provided below to repair the anti-scald pressure balancer device for your shower.

How to Repair / Adjust Shower Anti-Scald Pressure Balancer

Step 1. The first thing you will want to do is to turn off the water for your bathroom. Once you have done that, you can unscrew and remove the handle and finish trim from the shower valve.

Step 2. Next, you will want to unscrew and remove the single-lever cartridge from the shower valve.

Step 3. Now, you can use the needle-nose pliers to reach into the valve so that you can pull out the secondary cartridge.

Step 4. Now you will need to separate the control head from the pressure balancer by pulling apart the secondary cartridge.

Step 5. Unscrew the pressure balancer and check the interior diaphragm. If it is damaged, you will want to replace the old pressure balancer (anti-scalding device) with a new one, which you can find on Amazon.

Step 6. Now, you can reassemble the shower valve by reinstalling the cartridges.

Step 7. Finally, you can turn the water back on for the bathroom and test the functionality of the shower valve. Reattach the finish trim and handle to the valve.

Step 8. Now is a good opportunity to test the water at a nearby sink to make sure the hot and cold water are operating properly as well.

2. Defective Shower Mixing Valve

The shower mixing valve, which is also known as a mixer shower, is the part of your shower that is responsible for mixing your cold and hot water. This is what allows you to adjust the hot and cold water until you get that near-perfect temperature that you seek.

With this in mind, you can understand why it is an important part of your shower and you can also see why your shower may not provide hot water when you have a defective shower mixing valve.

Since this part ensures that the hot and cold water is mixed together before the water even reaches the showerhead, it allows you to find that comfortable showering temp without exposing yourself to extremes of either temp of the water.

Water is tricky when it comes to temperature, which is what makes the shower mixing valve such an integral part of your shower.

Since not only does the shower mixing valve ensure that both the cold and hot water is mixed before reaching the showerhead, but it is also important to note that both of the different temps of water must be joined at the same pressure.

In the scenario that the external water supply is shared between different appliances within your house, such as the toilet or sink, this can disrupt the stream of hot water and very well could impact the ability of the shower mixing valve.

Now, it should also be acknowledged that most modern thermostatic mixing valves do not have much of an issue in such a scenario, since they are capable of automatically adjusting the parameters, which will allow a consistent water temperature balance.

With that said, whether the shower mixing valve on your shower is a newer or older model is irrelevant, as both models can experience faulty operation.

This is a very possible and likely cause for you to have hot water for your sinks but no hot water in your shower.

Fix – Replace Shower Mixing Valve

Before we start on how you can replace the shower mixing valve on your shower, it should be stated that this task is not something as simple as replacing a faucet handle or something similar to that effect.

You should consider hiring an experienced plumber to do this for you. However, if you know enough about plumbing and like doing things yourself, you can replace the shower mixing valve on your own.

Keep in mind that the parts of the shower you can see are the handle and trim; however, the shower mixing valve itself is located behind the wall, which means if you want to replace the valve but do not have a preexisting access panel, you may have to cut a hole in the wall to access the valve.

This is why we have warned you that you should be familiar with plumbing to replace the shower mixing valve.

Tools You Will Need:

  • Screwdriver
  • Adjustable pliers
  • Pry bar
  • Drywall saw
  • Pipe cutter
  • Wrench
  • Three ½-inch Copper Couplers
  • Flux
  • Plumbing tape
  • Three brass sweat adapters
  • ½-inch copper pipe and fittings
  • Propane torch
  • Lead-free solder

How to Replace Shower Mixing Valve

Step 1. The first thing you will want to do is to turn off the water supply for the bathroom, which may also require you to turn off the main water valve for your home to proceed.

Step 2. Now, you can start by using a screwdriver to unscrew and remove the handle from the shower faucet, then you can pull the escutcheon plate away from the wall.

If the new valve also includes a new showerhead, you can unscrew the old shower arm by using adjustable pliers to grip it and then turn it counterclockwise.

Step 3. Next, you will want to remove the access panel so that you can reach the shower valve. If there is no access panel, you can check the closet in any adjoining room.

If you still cannot locate an access panel, you can use a drywall knife to cut out one. You should cut an in the back of the shower wall about 18 by 18 inches centered at the height of the shower faucet.

Step 4. Now, you can use a pipe cutter to cut the pipes attached to the old valve. You should make these cuts about 6 inches from the points where they connect to the faucet.

The pipes may rise from the floor and bend 90 degrees, then connect horizontally to the valve, in such a scenario, you should cut the pipes about 6 inches below the elbows. Be sure to also cut the pipe which leads to the showerhead.

Step 5. Next, you can either use a screwdriver or pry bar to remove the nails or screws that hold the old valve to the framing.

Step 6. Now, solder a ½-inch copper coupler onto each of the pipes which you cut in preparation for the new valve.

Step 7. Prep the valve by screwing a brass sweat adapter into each water port and into the outlet for the showerhead. Next, wrap plumbing tape around each of the adapters before you screw it in, then use a wrench to tighten it.

Step 8. Next, secure the valve to the framing with the appropriate screws. Make sure to install it a suitable distance from the front of the shower or the trim will not fit.

You can check the instruction manual to find this appropriate distance. Now that you have the valve secured, you should test the trim to be sure that it does fit properly.

Make sure to remove the cartridge from the valve to not damage it while you are soldering the connections.

Step 9. Now, cut a ½-inch copper pipe and join it with the appropriate fittings to connect the valve to the couplings you have installed on the pipes.

Next, dry-fit all of the fittings and pipe, and once you are certain that everything fits, spread flux on each joint and turn it, then solder it with a propane torch and lead-free solder.

Step 10. Finally, you can reinstall the cartridge and turn the water back on to check for any leaks. Once you have made sure there are no leaks, you can close up the wall and install the shower escutcheon, showerhead, and handle.

Dealing with shower issues and plumbing problems can be frustrating all around, but with any luck, the issue will be relatively simple and ideally, easy to fix.

However, this is not always the case, which is why it is good to know exactly what the problem is, and by using this guide you should be able to come to a decision.

Plumbing and anything to do with water directing, temperature or appliances can become very complicated quite quickly, which is why you should always consider hiring an experienced plumber to handle the work.


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