Why The Shower Gets Cold (or Hot) When You Flush The Toilet

It’s actually not likely that using the toilet while someone is showering would cause the hot shower to become cold, but the contrary, the shower should actually get warmer or too hot. This is because your plumbing system should have a main trunk and water supply with branches coming off it to supply individual rooms. The hot and cold supplies are separate, so if the toilet is flushed (a cold water source), it is only the cold water supply that is affected across the rooms in the home. The cold water supply is reduced by the toilet, reducing only the cold water supply to the shower and causing it to be more hot temporarily. If this, in fact, is what you experience in your home and don’t like it, there are a few things you can do.

You can reduce how much water is being used by the toilet by adjusting the supply valve to the toilet, but this might increase the noise and fill time, as well as minimize its ability to flush larger contents. It might be easier to experiment with the use of the tank. By placing a jug or brick in the back of the toilet, it will use less water when flushing. Be sure you have instruments available in case of a blockage, such as a strong plunger or bucket to send additional water and down. Installing a low-flush toilet is also an option, but toilets made after 2002 should be efficient, according to standards that were put in place at the time.

If you are in fact experience sudden cold showers at times it’s probably due to a low supply in warm or hot water. This could be caused by previous showers using up the hot water that was available and needs time to replenish or the use of hot water in a clothing or dish washer can have the same affect. If you have an electric hot water heater and the previous shower was 20 minutes long, you’re looking at a 50-60 minute wait for the most available hot water for the next shower. If you have a gas hot water heater, the wait will be much less. Regardless, wait between showers and see if this is your problem.

The thermostatic mixing valve is a valve that hooks up to all showers and tubs in your home and keeps temperatures constant, no matter the circumstance. These valves are not standard in all home’s plumbing and should be checked to see if you have one and if it needs adjusting. Your local plumber can help you with this and make any changes or adjustments if you are experiencing this common issue or use a lot of water due to having multiple residents, guests or a business that uses a lot of water.

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