The pipes feeding my shower have an odd arrangement. Hot and balanced cold plastic pipes come down from the loft into the shower space, go into the utility room next door, along the wall and into the garage. They then loop around, come back through the utility room, back into the same hole in the shower room and go to where the shower mixer bar is fitted.

The loop in the garage is two plastic elbows with a 50mm copper pipe between them. There are no isolation valves, check valves or any other form of fitting on the pipes - just a seemingly-unnecessary 5 meter long loop.

This has obviously been some effort by the original fitter - it would be far easier to feed the shower directly from the pipes coming from the loft. There is nothing functional in the pipework loop. So why have they done that?

Short lengths of copper pipe between two plastic elbows

1 Answer 1


Hard to know without having them to ask.

Possibly thinking of having a utility sink or clothes washer in the garage? My other thought was considering fitment of a pre-warming arrangement but that would only need the cold line (and a drain pump feeding the shower drain water to a heat exchanger on the cold line, for a shower not on an upper level. The pump energy being considerably less than is saved on water heating when this is done right.)

  • The weird thing is that the shower is driven from a hot water cylinder in the garage. I wondered if I was missing some clever balancing/pressure trick but I think I'll take the risk and just connect the shower directly. Unfortunately the original plumber is lost to the mists of time... Jan 1, 2020 at 13:15
  • 1
    Some sort of heat recovery system was what first came to my mind.+
    – JACK
    Jan 1, 2020 at 14:09

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