Fix Slow Hot Water in the Tub
LESLIE: Michael in Illinois has got a water pressure situation. Tell us what’s going on.
MICHAEL: Right. Something – when I’ve got it on cold water or medium – or medium water – in the tub, it comes out real good. Then when I put it on hot it comes out very slow.
TOM: OK. How old are the pipes, Mike?
MICHAEL: The pipes have to be about – guess the house would be about 40 years old.
TOM: Hmm. Do you – do you know if the – you said – is the house about 40? So do you know if they’re copper pipes or are they steel?
MICHAEL: I believe they’re copper pipes.
TOM: Well, I suspect what’s happening is you have a partially closed valve somewhere and that it’s not letting all the water out. Does the hot water slow on the bath faucet over the sink as well …
LESLIE: Over the sinks?
TOM: … or is it just on the tub?
MICHAEL: It’s the tub only.
TOM: And is it the shower and the tub faucet or is it just the tub faucet?
MICHAEL: Shower and the tub combined.
TOM: Together? Hmm. OK. Well, I think that you’ve got a problem with the valve there. And it should be a fairly easy thing to fix. You may just need to replace the valve that’s supplying the hot water to that tub area. Because you shouldn’t be getting any restriction there.
MICHAEL: OK, so that’s all behind the wall so I guess I have to really have a plumber come in.
TOM: Yes, it would …
LESLIE: Well, is there no access panel? Sometimes there’s a closet behind the bath wall where the plumbing is and …
MICHAEL: It is. I’m looking at it now.
LESLIE: There could be an access panel hiding somewhere.
TOM: Yeah and that means you won’t have to do any major surgery to fix that. But if you’ve – if you’ve got a good hot water – a good cold water flow and you’ve got a good hot water flow at the bathroom sink, just not at the tub, there’s a problem with the valve. It might just mean that you need a new valve for that bathtub.
MICHAEL: OK, well I’m going to try that.
LESLIE: And if for some reason, Michael, there’s no access panel and you do have to break through some drywall, make sure that when you’re repairing it, that you put in an access panel just in case something happens in the future.
TOM: Michael, thanks so much for calling us at 888-MONEY-PIT.