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CenterShock 12-07-2009 02:31 PM

Hot water starts hot but gets cold quickly.
Hello all. This is my first post here. Recently the hot water in our shower started getting cooler and cooler. When we start out we have to mix the hot water with cold to get a nice temp but during the shower we have to reduce the cold water until it is completely off and the water still gets cooler.

What we have in the house is an old Columbia Co. Boiler that heats our house using a 3 stage baseboard system and it also heats our tap water. Heating the house seems fine but for some reason recently the tap water has not been staying hot.

Looking at the gauge in it's idle state (not using any hot water for a while and the furnace not firing up recently), the gauge reads 10PSI and the temp is at 160.

Last season we had our pump go out and had to replace it but from what I see, that is a totally different system. It looks like the tap water goes into the boiler cold and comes out hot. Looks like only 2 pipes for that system where there are a lot of pipes going in and out and splitting for the baseboard heating system and the pump is connected to those pipes and not the tap water system.

Any help would be great. If you need more info to help answer this question let me know and I will try to respond as good as I can.

beenthere 12-07-2009 02:44 PM

Sounds like the tankless coil is insulated with mineral build up.

It can be replaced. Or cleaned out. But cleaning it out involves a acid that could eat through the copper of the tankless coil.

Now would be a good time to consider either getting an electric water heater. Or an indirect hooked up to your boiler.

CenterShock 12-07-2009 02:57 PM


Originally Posted by beenthere (Post 362878)
Now would be a good time to consider either getting an electric water heater. Or an indirect hooked up to your boiler.

My dad has been saying that for a while. Kinda broke right now but sounds like a good idea for tax return. Any suggestions to get me by for a couple of months?

Thanks for the reply neighbor! I just added info to my bio so you probably didn't know but I am in Ephrata, just a few miles from Lancaster.

Yoyizit 12-07-2009 03:26 PM

Measure your incoming water temp. A good shower temp is 90F to 110F, and 10 min @ 2.5 GPM is 25 gals.

beenthere 12-07-2009 03:28 PM

No I didn't know that.

Not really anything you can do. other then having the coil cleaned. And cross your fingers it doesn't harm the coil.
Plus. Cleaning a coil like that is a time consuming job, so it can be expensive.

typo 12-07-2009 09:38 PM

This sounds alot like the problem i am having and and when i moved into my house back in october the local oil company came out and cleaned the furnace i wonder if this could have casued this ? also i have a service agreement with my local oil company i wonder if this service is covered for the cleaning of the coils? i also mentioned my problem to them afterwards and they told me that it was my faucet is there any way i can push this back on them to prove that it is in faact my faucet?

beenthere 12-07-2009 10:08 PM

Go to your kitchen faucet. Run hot only(for how ever long it would last in your shower). if it runs out, then its not your shower. If it doesn' then its your shower.

Most service contracts don't cover cleaning the coil. Its often refered to as "cooking out the coil".
Since the action of the acid causes it to heat up. as it eats the mineral build up.

typo 12-08-2009 07:32 AM

then it must be my shower, i get 10 + minutes of boiling water coming from my kitchen faucet and bath room faucet. But the odd thing is it seems to be a problem with both of my shower faucets.

to add another note this morning the water was hot for half as long as normal and wasn't nearly as hot as previous days. the temp has droped here alot to the teens thru the night thou not sure if that has an effect on it.

typo 12-08-2009 10:02 AM

Could it be this valve this looks the same as what i have installed.

beenthere 12-08-2009 10:59 AM

Yes, its possible.

Run the shower. Open your access panel. Keep touching(lightly) the hot water line. If it stays hot while the shower water gets cooler and cooler. then its the valve(o-ring or seal bleeding through).

If it gets cold. Then your shower uses a lot more hot water then your kitchen sink and vanity do. And thats why they stayed hot the whole time.

typo 12-08-2009 11:23 AM

I'll have to test that tonight and that should help me narrow it down..

Thanks for all your help.:thumbsup:

typo 12-08-2009 07:56 PM

The pipes aren't cooper pipes they are color coded and seem pvc like but a little softer. the pipes must be insulated they are really hard to get a temp by feeling them, well at least the hot even as it is steaming coming out of the faucet isnít heating the pipe enough to burn my hand. But i took out the balance valve and didnít see anything but I attempted to blow air thru the valves and the one side passed air thru freely and the other side had a ton of resistance. Does that mean the balance valve could be bad? The balance valve had air resistance on the hot side so i put it in the opposite way to see if it made a difference but it didnít. Should i go track down a local supplier of parts and attempt to replace that piece? i'd hate to put out 100 bucks for piece that wont resolve my issue.

beenthere 12-08-2009 10:36 PM

When you ran your kitchen and bath faucets. Did you run them both at the same time.
if not, do so.
If you still have good hot water for 10 minutes like you were taking a shower(cheaper test then rebuilding a valve that isn't bad).
Then you probably need to rebuild your shower faucet.

kennzz05 12-08-2009 10:38 PM

just a thought if you read the warranty listed on the page you posted a link for it says lifetime warranty but it looks like its limited to leaks so call them and say both of your faucets are leaking and they will provide you with new cartriges. you may also try posting this in plumbing section if you havent already

typo 12-10-2009 07:27 AM

i was unable to find the pressure valve locally so i called Kohler who is sending me the part and i should have it in 5 -7 days. so until then I'll keep my fingers crossed.

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