I currently have a plumbing leak which has caused me to close the gate valve above my water heater unless we need hot water. By doing this, we are still able to use the sinks, toilets, etc.

One of the showers works with the valve closed, cold only, but one does not. I find it strange that a tub/shower combo closest to the water heater only has a light trickle of cold water coming out if I turn it on. Now if I open the gate valve, it's back to normal, functioning properly.

Why would one tub/shower work (cold water) and the other not when the gate valve is closed? Shouldn't I have cold water flowing in all my tub/showers when the gate valve is closed?

  • 3
    Most showers have mixing valves . Depending how the mechanism works, it could easily put out some cold water. when the hot is off. Apr 19 at 0:29
  • 1
    Does the one that does not have water with the hot off respond as labeled, or backwards, adjusting the temperature? I've run into a huge number of showers plumbed backwards, and after years of thinking it was just stupidity and carelessness, I finally gathered that it was a different flavor of stupidity, to defeat the anti-scald valve - which won't supply hot without cold pressure, but only knows which is which by the labels on the valve body, not by their temperature. So rather than adjust the valve to produce the hot you want, just defeat the thing and scald grandma & the baby...
    – Ecnerwal
    Apr 19 at 0:49
  • Just waiting on the plumber to come out and do the repair . It's a slow slab leak that was just discovered.
    – K Colt
    Apr 19 at 3:30
  • It does respond as labeled.
    – K Colt
    Apr 19 at 3:34
  • 2
    @blacksmith37, that was my in initial thought as well. It's an answer.
    – isherwood
    Apr 19 at 14:50


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