Causes of Water Temperature Fluctuation
The Wrong Water Heater
It is possible to have the wrong water heater for your home. If you are using more hot water than your water heater can produce, it can cause water temperature fluctuation. Taking a shower with high volume showerheads can use up much of your water heater’s stored hot water in a short amount of time. The average tank water heater holds about 50 gallons. That may not be enough if you consider all the plumbing in your home that will use that hot water and how many people there are in your home.
Something is Wrong with the Water Heater
Water temperature fluctuation could also happen when something is wrong with your water heater. Check to make sure the pilot light is lit. If not, attempt to relight it yourself. The light will go out, usually because of moisture in the basement. If you have an electric water heater, check to make sure the power to the heater has not been affected. It might be an easy fix where all you have to do is flip the breaker back on.
Another piece of your water heater that can break and cause temperature fluctuations is the dip tube. There are typically two tubes, one to force water in that is long and delivers the cold water to the bottom, the other tube draws hot water from the top. If the long tube that delivers the cold water to the bottom is broken, cold water will leak into stored warm water.
Temperature Knobs and Pressure-Balancing Valve
Water temperature fluctuation could simply be that your knob is inverted, and hot water comes out when you move the knob to cold or cold when you set it to hot. Fix it by having a professional realign it for you. The cartridges are delicate and require more than a casual do-it-yourself job to handle them.
Another thing to watch out for is a broken pressure-balancing valve. These are what keep you from getting scalded in the shower if someone flushes the toilet or runs the dishwasher. A broken valve can be the cause of fluctuating water temperatures.
If you cannot deal with your water temperature fluctuation anymore, call Valley Fire Protection & Plumbing. You do not have to put up with annoying hot or cold spots anymore. Let us take care of your plumbing problems!