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Isolating electric shower

Keith Jackson

Dec 6, 2016
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Hiya every time I get in my shower you can guarantee someone will flush the toilet or turn the tap on at the kitchen sink and due to low pressure the shower runs cold . I was thinking if I connect a tail to the normally closed solenoid valve inside the shower box and run it to a normally open solenoid valve in the toilet supply and then one to the sink that would sort it out nice hot shower . Ie when the shower is switched on no one can run the water win win ??. Any feedback would be welcome thanks Keith .
 

Tha fios agaibh

Aug 11, 2014
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I think you should talk to a plumber or pipe fitter.

PS; If it was my kids, they'd just leave the toilet in a raw state for the next person if they couldn't flush.
 

K9WG

Mar 8, 2018
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How about a thermostat and a control valve to keep the shower at a constant temperature?
 

Keith Jackson

Dec 6, 2016
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How about a thermostat and a control valve to keep the shower at a constant temperature?
Hiya well the shower is fairly new a thermosticaly controlled one but as I have said as soon as someone draws water away ie flush the toilet when the cistern is filling it takes water away from the shower so that is why I thought switch shower on that in turn operates these other solonoid valves . I don't think a plumber could sort it without major upheaval and of course a whole lot of money .thanks Keith.
 

Keith Jackson

Dec 6, 2016
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Get in a plumber and fit some new pipes perhaps.

Hiya I was thinking of a more simple solution and less costly because it would have to be a major refit and unless there was a isolating valve I think I would still get this problem. even to a lesser degree . I just thought it would be a lot easier if I got in the shower switched it on then in turn that would isolate the water supply to the shower .
 

Alec_t

Jul 7, 2015
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Your proposed solenoid valve system sounds doable, provided it complied with local water and electrical regulations. Have you checked?
 

Keith Jackson

Dec 6, 2016
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Your proposed solenoid valve system sounds doable, provided it complied with local water and electrical regulations. Have you checked?
Hiya no I haven't I wouldn't have thought I needed to on the water side as there is already one solenoid in the shower and it is In the house not interfering with anybody else's property or water supply . Also there is plenty of solenoid 's about like in washing machines dishwasher's etc .
 

Alec_t

Jul 7, 2015
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Yebbut, if the solenoid valves are mains-voltage operated the setup ought to comply with IEE regs (as you are UK based). At a minimum that means a safety enclosure for the solenoid, and earth bonding of pipework. Since the electrical installation would presumably be in a kitchen or bathroom I think you might require a 'Part P' registered person to do the work for compliance with UK Building Regulations.
 

hevans1944

Hop - AC8NS
Jun 21, 2012
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It would be an expensive solution, but consider installing an "on demand" in-line hot water heater that services only the shower.

We live in Florida with our own water well supplying a water softener with aerator tank and a 40 gallon electric water heater. This arrangement services two people living here. There is no problem with lack of pressure when someone flushes a toilet, starts the dishwasher or the clothes washer, or runs water elsewhere in the house while I am taking a shower. My problem is I like to take extended "Hollywood" type hot showers that last at least a half hour. The shower temperature is controlled by rotating a handle from off through cold to hot positions with no control of the volume of water. With a 40 gallon hot water heater, I run out of hot water within thirty minutes. I plan to install a flow-control at the shower head, but do anticipate that I need either more than 40 gallons of hot water storage or storage at a higher temperature. High temperature storage of hot water is terribly inefficient and wasteful of energy, but that is what we did in Dayton, OH with a natural gas-fired 55 gallon water heater. That puppy NEVER ran out of hot water, but you had to be careful not to scald yourself washing your hands at the sink!

I have read that with an in-line hot-water on-demand water heater, this cannot happen. Water is delivered at just the right temperature and hot water never runs out. I know for sure that our well and water softener aerator tank can "keep up" with a continuous flow of several gallons per minute, so I may try this solution when it is almost time to replace the existing water heater... which is fast approaching the end of its projected life time.
 

Keith Jackson

Dec 6, 2016
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Yebbut, if the solenoid valves are mains-voltage operated the setup ought to comply with IEE regs (as you are UK based). At a minimum that means a safety enclosure for the solenoid, and earth bonding of pipework. Since the electrical installation would presumably be in a kitchen or bathroom I think you might require a 'Part P' registered person to do the work for compliance with UK Building Regulations.[/
 

Alec_t

Jul 7, 2015
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an "on demand" in-line hot water heater that services only the shower.
That's basically what the TS already has, if it's a typical 'electric shower'. The problem is this type of shower includes a water-pressure sensor which cuts off the electrical supply to the shower's internal heating element (for safety, to prevent scalding) when the water pressure drops below about 1 bar.
 

Keith Jackson

Dec 6, 2016
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Hiya what I was planning the mains water comes into the house into the kitchen from there it is teed off to the kitchen sink washer and dishwasher on this branch is where I was going to put the first solenoid ( the solenoid is a 15 mm straight inline plumbing joint very simple ) the main pipe Carrie's on up the kitchen wall and passes under the toilet floor where it is teed off to fill the toilet cistern ( just below the toilet cistern is where I planned to put the second solenoid) then the mains pipe goes into the bathroom and feeds the shower .so like I said I would tap into the solenoid connection in the shower run the cable from inside the bathroom down inside the trunking that the main supply cable is in to the toilet which is in the next room then under the floor to the kitchen one . So the idea being if someone ideas the toilet it will flush but won't fill the cistern until I have switched the shower off and likewise no one can run the kitchen tap until the shower is switched off .
 

Keith Jackson

Dec 6, 2016
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That's basically what the TS already has, if it's a typical 'electric shower'. The problem is this type of shower includes a water-pressure sensor which cuts off the electrical supply to the shower's internal heating element (for safety, to prevent scalding) when the water pressure drops below about 1 bar.
Hiya exactly what does happen . If I can fit these solenoids there should be no drop in pressure job sorted Keith
 

Keith Jackson

Dec 6, 2016
16
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It would be an expensive solution, but consider installing an "on demand" in-line hot water heater that services only the shower.

We live in Florida with our own water well supplying a water softener with aerator tank and a 40 gallon electric water heater. This arrangement services two people living here. There is no problem with lack of pressure when someone flushes a toilet, starts the dishwasher or the clothes washer, or runs water elsewhere in the house while I am taking a shower. My problem is I like to take extended "Hollywood" type hot showers that last at least a half hour. The shower temperature is controlled by rotating a handle from off through cold to hot positions with no control of the volume of water. With a 40 gallon hot water heater, I run out of hot water within thirty minutes. I plan to install a flow-control at the shower head, but do anticipate that I need either more than 40 gallons of hot water storage or storage at a higher temperature. High temperature storage of hot water is terribly inefficient and wasteful of energy, but that is what we did in Dayton, OH with a natural gas-fired 55 gallon water heater. That puppy NEVER ran out of hot water, but you had to be careful not to scald yourself washing your hands at the sink!

I have read that with an in-line hot-water on-demand water heater, this cannot happen. Water is delivered at just the right temperature and hot water never runs out. I know for sure that our well and water softener aerator tank can "keep up" with a continuous flow of several gallons per minute, so I may try this solution when it is almost time to replace the existing water heater... which is fast approaching the end of its projected life time.
 

Keith Jackson

Dec 6, 2016
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Hiya my house is supplied with water by the water company at a pressure choosen by them there is only one pipe entering my house the only way to get an independent water supply to the shower is to ask the water company to put in another supply pipe which as they are a monopoly they make up their own prices it would cost thousands Keith
 

duke37

Jan 9, 2011
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How about putting in a shower water pump which will suck all the available water. Use the solenoid supply to turn it on.
 

Keith Jackson

Dec 6, 2016
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How about putting in a shower water pump which will suck all the available water. Use the solenoid supply to turn it on.
Hiya well I am not a fan of them pumps . I'll tell you why I have low pressure water supply don't know if I'm being daft maybe cos where on a hill . Anyway I bought a pump to increase the water flow in the garden for using a water sprinkler system . Guess what it was a waste of time the water flow is exactly the same pump on or off . Keith
 

Alec_t

Jul 7, 2015
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the water flow is exactly the same pump on or off
Exactly what I would expect from the physics of the system. A single 15mm feed to the house at a given pressure can only sustain a certain flow rate.
I too live near the top of a hill and have the same problem of water pressure dropping when other members of the household or the neighbours draw off a lot of water. The neighbourhood water supply could benefit from an increased mains pressure or a fatter supply pipe to the housing estate, but I can't see the water authority being in any hurry to provide that :).
Last week I had to replace my electric shower. The old one had corroded through after only 30 years of use. They don't make'em like they used to :D. Don't tell the Elf 'n Safety mob, but some years ago I modified the pressure sensor so that it cut off at a lower pressure than originally.
Too early yet to know how sensitive the new shower will be to inlet water pressure. I won't consider any mods until the warranty has expired.
 
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