We are just having an extension put on the house which will include a
shower, sink and toilet . As the shower / toilet room will be on the other
side of the house to the water cylinder we are thinking of having an
electric water heater to provide the hot water. It is expected that the
shower will only be used by visitors so we do not want to pay too much for a
rarely used facility. The reason for this query is does anybody know of a
water heater that can supply both a hot water tap and a shower, it seems
like a reasonable idea but I haven't come across any products to fit my
Something like this:
The electrical supply must be heavy enough to run this size of heating
elements (9.5 thousand Watts), so make sure you get a good electrician as
well as a great plumber.
BTW. We have just done some refurbishing of our bathroom and
plumbing had to be rearranged. Because of various delays (we were
running over the backyard to my daughters house immediately
behind us, for showers!) the 35 gallon electric hot water
tank/cylinder was off for a week. However when we drew water
again for pressure testing the new 12 mm. copper pipe soldered
fittings (ten joins, and none leaked!) water in the well (foam)
insulated tank was still warm. The 35 Imp. gallon with it's two
3000 watt heaters works fine for our hot water needs. The 3000
watt heaters are wired 'flip-flop'; first the upper one heats the
top of the tank, then its thermostat flips over and the lower
heater heats bottom of the tank etc.
The trick to effective copper pipe soldering/sweating is;
rigorous cleaning of pipe ends and the interior of fittings with
sandpaper or steel wool. Reasonable amount of flux (you don't
need it frying and sputtering but use enough), adequate heat; we
use a hand held propane torch*. When the fitting and pipe are hot
enough touch the solder to the joint and solder will 'wick' into
the slight gap between pipe and fitting. (You can see it being
drawn in). Again use enough but it's easy to over-solder. On one
occasion, many years ago, I filled up the interior of a fitting
with solder so water wouldn't flow at all! Embarrassing!
The ends of pipes are easy to clean. On this occasion one of the
brand new fittings was sand-cast brass and where the copper pipes
would join, very dusty. Lacking a small clean wire brush I
wrapped sand paper around a small piece of dowel to scrub the
inside of the joint.
Most d-i-y copper pipe jobs involve old and new fittings etc. If
you make a nice job of sweating out the 'old' fitting and keep it
clean and undamaged it will most likely remain nicely 'tinned'
until you insert the new piece of pipe into it. You may have to
'tap' the new pipe into the old fitting or occasionally apply
heat to melt the old solder coating enough to insert the new
pipe; flux it and carry right sweating into place right there and
We used a piece of old asbestos tile behind each joint to avoid
fire hazard with our wooden construction had water and/or fire
extinguisher always handy. * Also had one propane torch 'nozzle'
that must have a defective jet orifice? Flame was only about two
centimetres and had insufficient heat to melt anything! Put it
aside until we repair or bin it!
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