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Landlord refusing to fix shower, where do I stand ?

(19 Posts)
ilovewelshrarebit123 Thu 14-Dec-17 17:08:53

I rent and my electric shower is barely warm on the highest heating setting. We can just about get under it but it's not great!

Reported to letting agency who contacted landlord. She said the central heating affects the shower temperature, so if you have the heating on it won't be hot (she used to live in the house). So in view of this she's refusing to send anyone out to look at it as she believes it's not faulty.

I'm no plumber but how can gas central heating affect an electric shower? Is she really expecting me to turn off the heating in order to have a hot shower!

Where do I stand with this with the landlord and letting agency. I'm a good tenant, house is spotless and rent always paid on time.

I shower daily and I wouldn't have rented a house without a shower as it's important to me.

blueskyinmarch Thu 14-Dec-17 17:18:36

Have you tried switching off the heating then trying the shower to see if what she says is correct? It still wouldn't be great but at least you would know how to get a hot shower.

Fekko Thu 14-Dec-17 17:20:26

So in the winter you have to switch off the heating to get a hot shower? That can't be right.

finnmcool Thu 14-Dec-17 17:22:05

When I get in my shower, the central heating does stop, but kicks back in as soon as I turn the shower off.
My boiler is a combi and the shower comes straight off the taps, not electric.
I thought it was normal to be honest.

Roomba Thu 14-Dec-17 17:29:00

Well she is clearly incorrect if it is an electric shower and gas heating. Yes, my heating goes off temporarily when my hot water is running, but my hot water uses the has boiler to heat.

Can't you just tell her you've tried what she suggested and it didn't make the slightest bit of difference? She may be more likely to listen and get someone to look at it then if you simply correct her assumption about the cause. Some people really don't like being told they're wrong and just get defensive and difficult I'd you try. Humour her and you may get a different result? It shouldn't be this way, of course, but sometimes you have to take people's ego into account.

dementedpixie Thu 14-Dec-17 17:32:41

Does it heat the water itself? Ours is an electric shower so it heats its own water and doesn't take it from the hot water tank so is unaffected by whether the heating is on or not (gas central heating)

Hereward1332 Thu 14-Dec-17 17:50:31

If water pressure is low that could be an issue. Low throughput would cause the shower thermostat to cut out. Could the CH be lowering water pressure?

Mulberry72 Thu 14-Dec-17 17:54:02

Is the shower definitely electric and not run off the gas boiler?

We had an issue with our hot water earlier this week, it turned out to be to do with the gas supply at the meter. Apparently (according to gasman so happy to be corrected) hot water calls for more gas the central heating and it can be affected if demand for gas is in high demand at the time.

user1471458525 Thu 14-Dec-17 17:58:19

If it's an electric shower that you have to pull a cord switch to turn it on, a panel where you press a button when the light comes on then she is taking bullshit. The water will be heated by the element in the shower. If it's a thermostatic shower where you just get in and turn a knob and the water comes out then the thermostatic mixer valve has gone.

WindyWednesday Thu 14-Dec-17 18:02:11

What would you do if you owned the property? sometimes you have to go with the flow. Things don’t always work in the way you want to. Why not ask her to come round and show you how it works. Then you can demonstrate the temperature of the water.

The other way to go about it if you have no joy, is to mention legionella to the letting agent. It likes to breed in tepid water, shower heads especially can be at risk. Ask to see the legionella report for the property.

SkyIsTooHigh Thu 14-Dec-17 18:31:04

If you do turn the central heating off does that solve the problem? Is the central heating control unit difficult to access?

Try it. If you find you now have an amply hot shower for the sake of flicking a switch off for 10 mins, I'd crack on TBH. If you find it's still not hot enough (and I have to think this is prob quite likely) then go back and say so.

Graphista Thu 14-Dec-17 19:55:36

Do you have a bath? Tricky, I know you say you wouldn't have rented without a shower but I think legally as long as you can keep clean there's no obligation on the landlord, a quick Google does seem to support what I think. BUT I understand why you're fed up!

If you DON'T have a bath though I think landlord does have to repair and it has to reach a reasonable temperature. Precisely to avoid bugs like legionnaires developing.

Talk to shelter, they're pretty good on this stuff.

ilovewelshrarebit123 Thu 14-Dec-17 21:58:14

It's definitely an electric shower, you have to pull a cord to get it to work.

Landlord won't communicate with me, she lives behind me and made it very very clear she would only communicate through the agency.

Switching the heating off made no difference. I've emailed back saying that she lived in the house over a year ago so things can change, so it's quite possible it's now faulty.

I'll legionnaires in my pocket fit now and see what happens. I also don't see why I should put up with it TBH, I pay £650 on my own for this place which is pricey for the area, so the least I expect is a working shower.

mrsm43s Thu 14-Dec-17 22:08:57

It's a long time since I lived somewhere with an electric shower, but don't you have to pull the cord and then wait 15-20 mins for the water to heat up before showering? Pulling the cord operates the immersion heater which has to heat up the water? I'm pretty sure that is how it was in my parent's old house, but that was some 25 years ago or so - I'm sure things have moved on since then. Might be worth a try, though.

Has the shower always been like that (which might indicate you're using it incorrectly) or has it suddenly started to heat up less, which is more likely to indicate a fault.

LIZS Thu 14-Dec-17 22:13:48

The cord might operate a pump rather than the shower being electric.

ilovewelshrarebit123 Thu 14-Dec-17 22:22:05

I know it's an electric shower, I've got the instruction book. Elements heat the water almost immediately so literally in seconds.

Graphista Thu 14-Dec-17 22:25:08

Most electric showers now have a heating element within the unit. It sounds like this one isn't working and I really don't see how it would have anything to do with the gch.

Rents Thu 14-Dec-17 22:33:26

It will be low water pressure affecting the shower. It needs to go through with a certain force to hit the heating elements. Mine runs cold if someone flushes a loo or runs a tap. Works ok with the CH on though so must depend on which way the plumbing runs.

Still, that's beside the point. Your landlady should have either informed you before your rental commenced (if it's not fixable) or sort it out for you. A hot shower certainly shouldn't be 'just one of those things'.

SkyIsTooHigh Thu 14-Dec-17 22:34:19

It's a box on the wall of the shower cubicle I take it?

It is the time of year when the ground water gets colder and electric showers have more work to do in heating it to comfortable. In winter we change the setting of ours down to low water flow or something. It has less water to heat up, so it achieves a higher temp than the tepid it would otherwise manage. The cost to us is a more paltry water output, but some warm-enough water is better than more tepid water.

Also is your showerhead descaled? We find these showers can get really clogged up, which makes it feel more paltry but can also stop the unit working, as a failsafe.

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