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Shower Faucet Issues

We have a single lever shower and tub faucet. Recently when we turn the water on it has been taking much longer for the water to heat up coming out of the tub spout even with the lever turned to the hottest setting (water heater is located in basement almost directly below shower). When you pull the diverter to make the water come out of the shower head it has been taking much longer than normal for it to switch and with less pressure. There was also water dripping out of the lever. We replaced the cartridge inside the lever/valve which resolved that issue, but the other issues are still happening. We aren't sure what else to look at or try hoping there is a simple fix before calling a plumber. No other plumbing in the house or that specific faucet was changed or worked on prior to this starting. Anyone have any ideas?

Re: Shower Faucet Issues

From what I understand, you solved the leaky lever by changing the stem, but your other problems remained.

Do you have good hot water pressure in the other faucets around the house? If your answer is yes, then I suspect that you have a partial blockage in your hot water pipe near the bath faucet. If you answer is no, then you may have a stoppage in your water heater. And in this case you will have to check the hot supply from the water heater.

Do you know what type of pipes you have? You may need to replace sections of them, and that is a job for a plumber.

A. Spruce
Re: Shower Faucet Issues

It could be the anti-scald device, which is little more than a stop that prevents the hot side from being turned on too far. Readjusting the stop make take care of the lack of hot/long warm up problem.

As dj suggests, there could also be a partial blockage in the lines supplying the valve. Turn off the water main and disassemble the valve again. Now, turn on the water for a second and back off. If there was anything stuck in behind the cartridge or valve, it should have blown itself out with this maneuver. You'll probably want to have a help, one person to work the water main, the other to monitor the valve and keep water from splashing and making a mess.

As for the shower head, you might try removing it once everything else has been done. Turn on the water to blow that line clear as well as check the shower head itself for obstructions or deposits.

Re: Shower Faucet Issues

Also flush the HWH while you are at it.

Re: Shower Faucet Issues

All the water pipes in the house are copper. We don't have any other issues at any faucet or other shower with pressure or with the hot water warming up slowly. The lever and tub spout are quite old and the shower head has been replaced with a newer more "efficient" model within the past 5 or so years.

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