A good shower borrows an aspect of the Goldilocks fairy tale. If the water is too cold, you’re in misery, but too hot, and you can suffer potentially dangerous burns. Instead, you have to aim to find the perfect balance, the middle ground shower that is warm enough to be comfortable without risking a scalding. One way to ensure a safer shower is to install an anti-scald valve to prevent a sudden leap in temperature. Read on to learn more.
Plumbing Installations that Protect Your Safety
No matter how careful you are to adjust the water temperature to get it just right, your shower can still be affected by forces outside your control. For example, if someone else in the house flushes the toilet or turns on the dishwasher, the abrupt change in water pressure could cause the water to turn icy cold or fiery hot in an instant. Fortunately, plumbing installations known as anti-scald valves can protect you from unexpected temperature changes.
To install an anti-scald valve, you need to disassemble the handle on your shower. Once you can access the water supply line behind the old faucet valve, cut the line at the spot you want to install the new valve. Following the manufacturer's instructions, solder the new valve into place. Before you put the plumbing installation back together, turn the gear on the valve to set maximum water temperature.
Keeping the Most Vulnerable Out of Danger
Young children and the elderly are at particular risk for burns, and there is a secondary danger to hot flashes in the water as well -- the drastic change in temperature could cause the person in the shower to startle or jump, creating the possibility of a slip-and-fall accident in addition to potential burns.
One more tip for reducing your risk of burns in the shower is to keep the temperature of your hot water heater set to 120 degrees. Most heaters go up to 140 degrees, but that is hotter than many people can stand and ends up being a waste of heating energy as well as a burn danger. An anti-scald valve will still come in handy even at maximum temperatures of 120 degrees, and the overall risk of catastrophe will be lower.