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My Shower is Taking Forever to Heat Up, What’s The Cause?

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There is nothing worse than waiting for your water to heat up when having a shower. It is an issue that most people experience, especially in the colder months of the year.

My Shower is Taking Forever to Heat Up, What’s The Cause? Photo

It can be a frustrating start to your day and whilst you may think it is just how your plumbing is, there are reasons behind your colder than usual showers.

We can look into why this problem is occurring and what you can do to get hot water working faster for you.

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Why does it take a long time for water to heat up?

There are 4 main reasons as to why your hot water take so long to get working.

  • Water pipes are too wide
  • Hot water heater is a long way from your bathroom
  • Pipes pulling heat from the water
  • Showerhead pressure is too low

Water pipes are too wide

The size and diameter of your pipes will affect the water flow and impact the for water to get to your shower. Wider pipes have more space for the hot water to flow through.

Making the travel time to your fixtures take longer. A general rule of thumb, water moves faster with a pipe that has a small diameter.

Check the size of your pipes under your sink to determine the diameter. Residential pipes are typically sized between 1/4 to 2 inches. You can use the string method to measure the diameter.

Hot water heater is a long way from your bathroom

The further away your water heater is to your bathroom, the longer it will take for the heated water to get you your fixtures. With only one tank in your property delivering hot water in your home, you may struggle to receive efficient heat, particularly if you have a larger property.

Water heaters that are on the opposite end of the washroom, tend to take longer to deliver hot water.

And with the piping that is installed, they are rarely connected in a straight line. The flow rate will decrease from the position of the water pipes and how they are laid out for

The closer your bathroom is to the heater, the quicker hot water will be delivered.

Pipes pulling heat from the water

When your pipes leading to your shower are not being used, they become cooler. The colder the pipes, the more heat they absorb from the water as it passes through them.

If you have copper pipes, more heat is retained compared to PVC piping. The material that your water pipes are made of and the temperature of the area can all affect the time it takes for your shower to get hot.

Showerhead pressure is too low

You can check your showerhead for the measure of gallons per minute (GPM). This refers to the flow rate of water going through your shower head. If the flow rate is low, the longer it takes for cold water left behind from your previous shower to be pushed out.

Cold water can stay stagnant in your pipes after a shower has been used.

Most standard shower heads have 2.5 GPM as the mandated flow rate. That's 25 gallons for your average 10 minute shower. This has been in effect since 1992.

How can I get my shower to heat up faster?

You understand the cause of a cold shower and know we can give you some suggested to solve this problem. Here are some solutions to the main contributors of a shower that takes a long time to heat up.

High flow showerhead

You can ask your licenced plumbing professional to suggest a high flow showerhead. This upgrade will increase the water flow and cut down the time it takes for the hot water to reach the fixtures. You may rick increasing your water bill and heating bill so keep that in mind.

Insulation of your shower supply lines

Insulating your pipes can protect them from the cold air that is in the atmosphere. Particularly long pipes that are located in your exterior wall. Keep your pipes warm and they won't take in so much heat from the travelling water.

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Install a demand hot water recirculating system

This system connects to your water plumbing and ensures a constant flow of hot water is going through your pipes and to your fixtures.

A recirculating system reroutes the cold water that's been sitting in your pipes. It takes the 'run off' water back your water heater so you when you turn your hot water tap on, you dont get the left over cold water that has been sitting there from the last shower.

To find the cause and solve this frustrating problem, it is best to call a licenced plumbing team. Your local and trusted plumber will have the experience and the equipment to keep your water temperature just as you like it.

Fixed Today can diagnose your shower issue and give your permanent solutions for your shower problem.

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