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No hot H20 in the shower

Hi all,
I just recently purchased a home with my soon to be wife and we're having some issues with getting hot water in the shower. We have a summer winter hookup that supplies our hot water. The kitchen and bathroom sinks get plenty hot, but the shower (right next to the kitchen) the water only gets luke warm for a brief period (generally after a few minutes) then goes to cold. however if you check the either sink at the time the shower goes cold, they are still plenty hot. talked to a plumber at the local hardware store and he said to check if there was a "hot water limiter" is what i'll call it on the pipes (not sure of the technical name) to see if there was one that may have went bad or not set correctly. opened the access panel and didn't see any of thing that looked like a temp control knob/fitting etc. we're at a loss and having cold showers for 3 weeks is getting old fast!

some other background....plumbing in the house is old galvanized steel that is starting to rust through (fixing that as soon as a friend that used to be a plumber can get over). also there is a thermistat on the furnace for the hot water system that has an upper limit, a lower limit and a differential setting....lower limit was at 120, upper limit at 170, with a 10 differential allowed. i know the 170 is too hot, but no sure where all these settings should be.....

any help would be apreciated!

Re: No hot H20 in the shower

Call a Plumber

Re: No hot H20 in the shower

I am not a plumber. I can not remember exactly how I fixed mine as it has been a few years. What I do remember is there is an anti scalding device within the shower diverter. To access the adjustment you have to remove the knob and turn the water off. Remove the trim plate. That is where anti-scalding adjustment is located. I would suggest once you find what model number and brand go to a home center and read the directions on how to adjust it. I think it was as easy as a screw

Re: No hot H20 in the shower

My guess would be a temperature balancing valve inside the shower valve assembly.

The "piston" inside that valve is hung up, probably from surface oxidation/corrosion.

Usually these can be disassembled, the piston cleaned up/polished and the valve assembly reinstalled. If not...or you don't care to do that..... you can replace just the temp balancing portion of the valve.

Re: No hot H20 in the shower

I am not a plumber either but I remember an episode of Ask This Old House fairly well.You can probably find the video from that episode on this website but here is what I remember. Richard Trethewy went to a persons house where they had the same problem. Instead of going to a local hardware though you really need to go to a plumbing supply house where all of the plumbers go. This is definitely a very easy fix that the average homeowner can do. First though an important tip find the name of the manufacturer on the control and wright that down. Next try to find a model number which may or may not be easy. If you can't find one don't worry too much about it. You will probably find something close anyway on the manufacturers website. Once you determine the model then look on the website for a diagram. When you have the diagram then you can determine exactly what you need. If you can't find anything on the manufactures website try this website www.faucetdirect.com . Faucet direct has about any part you need and great diagrams they were really helpful when I needed to fix my Delta faucet.
I agree that what you have is probably a pressure balancing type of shower valve and based upon what I saw it probably is the piston. Richard said that sometimes you can clean the piston using vinegar and warm water but the easiest way is to just replace the piston.Those faucets are great at preventing scalds but can be a real pain when they need repairing. Sometimes they are mandated by law though and that is all you can buy as a replacement.
Glad to hear you are replacing the old pipes. My grandmother years ago had the same problem in her old house and if they hadn't replaced the pipes there would have been water everywhere. Another tip that a plumber friend of mine told me when you replace your pipes if you are going to use copper use type M copper pipe. Type M copper pipe is thicker and will last much longer. Also don't take any short cuts make sure you replace all of your pipes otherwise you will just end up with a problem down the road. Good luck with your plumbing!

Re: No hot H20 in the shower

Thanks for all of the advice guys! Sorry I've been out of reach of the computer or I would have responded back sooner. Well all of the plumbing has been replaced with type m copper and the shower was tied in on sunday. I'm still waiting on the grout to cure on the tiles we had to replace when we removed the old wall and diverter assembly (wall was crumbling due to water damage). Preliminary results appear good, with hot water coming out of the shower...should know more tomorrow when i can hopefully take the first shower with the new set up.....my new question is, do I need to caulk around the face plate at the shower handle and the tub spigot? i know the face plate has a thin rubber gasket and drain hole at the bottom, but i just don't think it'll keep water out from running down the grout and getting behind it. same thing but the spigot has no rubber gasket. not sure if they need to be caulked or not...maybe i'm just being paranoid after seeing the water damage from the old set up and want to avoid having to replace the wall again....thanks!!!!

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