A home’s shower is an area that offers peace, luxury, and the chance to clean up and enjoy the hygienic benefits of a well-running showerhead. However, when a shower valve malfunctions, the dream of the perfect shower is shattered when either the water turns to a trickle or the temperature becomes extremely unpredictable.
When it comes time to replace your valve, it’s recommended to go with a single-handled over dual-handled option. Here are some facts about the preferred pressure-balancing valve and why it’s the best choice for your next bathroom remodel.
Signs You Should Replace Your Shower Valve
Your valve won’t last forever, and you should definitely know the signs before a malfunctioning shower valve becomes a Class-A plumbing emergency.
If you notice your shower is leaking after you’ve finished your routine, then this is a sign that it’s time to replace your shower valve. Even the smallest drip could result in unseen damage behind your bathroom walls.
Also, if you find that your shower is slow to react to temperature changes and unexpectedly fluctuates from hot to cold, you need to look into a new valve for your own safety. Extreme hot temperatures from this type of malfunction can reach the same temperature as the height of your water heater’s setting.
Single-Handle Means Shower Temperature is Well-Maintained
With one handle controlling your valve, the shower temperature is maintained and ensures your hot-to-cold water ratio remains balanced. This is done through a piston that reacts to the pressure of your bathroom plumbing connected to the valve.
One of the biggest issues with dual-handled valves is that when someone flushes the toilet or uses the sink while you’re in the shower, you could be facing some serious hot or cold water coming out of your shower head.
With single-handled valves, this issue is balanced and when the pressure does change, the overall pressure of your shower will be lowered for a second or two, but the water temperature remains.
Issues We’ve Found WIth Dual-Handled Valves
We recently installed a double-handled shower valve during a plumbing call, but the most updated ones you see today are single-handled.
According to licensed plumber, Chad Hebert, the dual-handled options are more maintenance unfriendly because there are two separate stems that could wear out and go bad, versus a single-handle with a single cartridge you can replace when you need to.
“When we extracted the old valve, some of the grout was missing and it was found that some of the bathroom’s tile had been cracked from the previous install. Sometimes that issue is hard to avoid, but it’s not uncommon,” Hebert said.
“If you have a single handle, you are fortunate. If you have a dual-handle, keep an eye on it and we’ll be happy to come out and replace it with a new two-handle. Or, if you’re having your bathroom remodeled we can go back in with a single-handle shower valve.”
Need a Replacement Valve? Can Help!
Whether you are in the middle of a bathroom remodel or just notice that your water isn’t flowing from your shower head as it should be, replacement valves are a common plumbing need. The experts at Plumbing Dynamics have the experience required to ensure that your replacement isn’t a job that results in damage to your bathroom’s structure.
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