Need advice on new shower valve

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New Member
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New York
Hi shower heads:

I'm renovating my main bathroom and trying to figure out the best shower valve to get. I've read up on pressure balance and thermostatic and still not quite sure which I really need.

My situation is this: I own a two-family house, renting out the other unit to a tenant upstairs. I don't know if any of this matters, but the tenant's main bathroom is right above mine and fed by the same hot and cold lines. There are two other bathrooms (1 full, 1 half) in the house. The half bath is also fed off the same hot and cold lines, as is a washing machine. The other full bathroom, as well as both kitchens, are fed from different hot and cold lines. Ultimately, of course, the same water main and the same hot water heater feeds everything.

I like hot showers (who doesn't) but in the shower I have now, which is a basic mixer, I am constantly needing to fiddle with the cold water whenever someone flushes a toilet, or the washing machine fills up, or the tenant upstairs does something in their bathroom. The cold pressure goes down and I have to turn up the cold volume to stop from being scalded. Then the cold pressure goes back up and I have to turn the cold volume back down to stop from being frozen. It's annoying.

It sounds like the pressure balance is what I need -- but when the cold pressure goes down as a result of a toilet filling, will the whole shower slow to a trickle? If so, should I look into getting the thermostatic so I can control both temp and pressure? Or will the thermostatic be pointless? I already turn the hot volume up close to the max, so maybe the thermostatic won't actually help me with the volume. I can't really make the hot water heater hotter because of our tenant.

I know the thermostatic costs more. I can afford it. Although if it's more likely to fail and need repair/replacement, that's something I'd consider in my decision.

Thanks for any and all advice.


The Plumbing Wizard
Staff member
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Bothell, Washington
Hey, wait a minute.

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