We are remodeling our bathroom and I want the "old fashioned" two
faucets: one for hot and the other for cold.
Both the plumber and the plumbing supply company say that two faucets
have been declared illegal and that we must, by law, use the one
faucet (for both hot and cold) in the shower. They say that the
legislature mandated one faucet in case someone flushed the toilet and
somebody else is taking a shower.
Only my wife (of 30 years) and I live at home and, duh, we know when
the other is showering or using the toilet. We knock on the wall or
simply ask, "may I flush?"
Yes, I have used the one faucet shower (e.g., hotels) and have a
strong preference for the two faucet shower.
Now, is it really true that some legislature has actually outlawed two
faucets in a shower?
If so, which legistature (e.g., federal, state, county)? I need to
see this in writing.
P.S. I can understand mandating safe electricity practices, of course,
but faucets in a shower?
On 9/8/2008 12:13 AM email@example.com spake thus:
Don't know for sure (IANAP), but this one sure smells like BS to me.
Think about it: there's nothing about a single-handle control that's
going to control temperature in case someone flushes a toilet any better
than two faucets (assuming no tempering valve, auto temperature control,
etc.). So nothing inherently safer or less safe either way.
Codes are written and enforced at the local (i.e., municipal or county)
level. There do exist national codes, but the local building inspector
is the one who has the final say-so.
 I am not a plumber.
Washing one\'s hands of the conflict between the powerful and the
powerless means to side with the powerful, not to be neutral.
On Mon, 08 Sep 2008 00:13:53 -0700, samueltilden wrote:
Don't know your state, but other locations don't have that restrictions
as far as I can discover from a quick Internet search. Several Plumbing
supply houses on Internet still sell 3 handle tub faucets just fine from
You are just remodeling, not new construction on a new bathroom so I
don't see why you don't qualify for grandfather clause.
By the way, a scald guard can be place in the copper line going from the
diverter valve to the shower head. It is a just one more thing to fail
in the future so you have to take out some drywall.
Are you talking about the control valve? Lots of manufacturers make those
with two handles so you should have your plumber contact them and let them
know they are in violation of his law.
The BEST upgrade we have made here for YEARS is the delta single
handle temp and seperate handlew for flow valve. not only does it
prevent scalds but it allows any flow from weak to powerful.
the lack of flow control is why ii hated single handled valves.
this solved that:) plus the valve has a lifetime parts guarantee.
american standard moved production overseas, and the replacement parts
for my old faucet werent very good.......
lastly at home resale time the buyer will want a discount, and look at
your home as a fixer upper...
your better off replacing the valve.........
Call up the plumbing inspector in town and ask him. I heard that the single
handled models are required to keep people from getting scalded. There are
adjustments to control the flow of hot and cold water.
Anti scald has been a requirement for some time. If you look at how they
do it it is really simple to do implement in a single handle valve.
Also if there are older folks or young children or even a sleepy you it
is impossible to blast yourself with hot water turning on a single
I wouldn't have anything but single handle faucets anywhere in the
house. The are just so much easier to use.
Suppose you're the 5th person taking a shower that morning,
and the hot water from the heater is only luke-warm.
Does the mechanism allow you to turn it to 100% from the
Or, suppose you want to fill a bucket with 100% really-hot
water, and you want to get the water from the shower.
Perhaps the protect-the-human faucet will impede you from
PS: yes, with low pressure, a flushed toilet can be
a hot experience indeed.
Although with a regular toilet, with a tank, just
how much water per minute is coming in
Now, those powerful pressure-flush toilets (admitting that
I have no idea how they work), being on the same
cold-water-line as that could sure get someone
burned while in the shower!
I'd tell the legislature to go pound sand. I hate single controls for
showers, You can't control the pressure or volume. It's both wide open
all the time. Only a shit head would invent something like that.
What kind of single control are you using? My 30 year old cheapo Delta lets
me control both pressure and volume, and I can control the water temp with
it too! I have a double faucet shower in my basement 'mudroom' and I'll
have to say I like the single better. I like LOTS of water (pressure and
volume) and when I want to turn the temp down I invariably find that which
ever one I turn is all ready at the max - turn the hot down and it was
already nearly off. Turn the cold up and it was already at the max. Single
control lets me turn the one knob and get the desired results....
In some states two-handle faucets have been made illegal according to the
published uniform plumbing code of that state. Each state produces their own
uniform plumbing code. By illegal, it means that a licensed plumbing
professional can NOT install this device for risk of his license being revoked
by the state, in essence ruining his business and/or livelihood. Any existing
two-handle is grandfathered in if it existed prior to the code being written.
However, if the valve goes bad and needs to be replaced, it MUST be replaced
with a pressure balanced single handle valve. The only way around this is to
have an unlicensed individual (handyman, do-it-yourselfer) perform the repair.
If you do this though you are rolling the dice on whether or not this repair
will be done properly. If, let's say, your handyman replaces the valve and does
a shoddy job and the valve bursts 3 months after installation, any damage to
floors, walls, ceilings, etc., will be the responsibility of the homeowner to
fix out of pocket. The insurance company will disregard the claim because your
device was not installed by a state licensed industry professional.
Hope this helps!
This is the code text (IRC as adopted in Florida)
P2708.3 Shower control valves.
Individual shower and tub/shower combination valves shall be equipped
with control valves of the pressure-balance, thermostatic-mixing or
combination pressure-balance/thermostatic-mixing valve types with a
high limit stop in accordance with ASSE 1016 or CSA B125. The high
limit stop shall be set to limit water temperature to a maximum of
120Β°F (49Β°C). In-line thermostatic valves shall not be used for
compliance with this section.
Whether that means you actually have to use a "combination valve" is
open to conjecture but most AHJs seem to think that is what it says
Very interesting. I've been investigating this topic all morning because we had
a client who refused to change and just wants an unlicensed handyman to do it.
What more I'm finding out is that this is actually nationwide, not state by
state. It's related to (as you said) ASSE 1016, which is the Scald Prevention
measure. The Mass. Plumbing Code lists it as follows:
When a flow control valve or shower head is designed to completely shut-off and
is installed on the outlet pipe from a shower control unit, check valves shall
be provided in the hot and cold water supplies to the unit to prevent by-passing
of hot or cold water. An exception to the requirement above is when
Product-approved shower control units are designed to prevent bypassing.
1. All showers, shower stalls, shower compartments, gang showers, and shower
baths, either multiple or single, shall be equipped with an approved adjustable
self-cleaning and draining shower head.
2. The water supply to a shower head shall be supplied through a
Product-approved individual thermostatic, pressure balancing or combination
thermostatic/pressure balancing valve complying with ASSE 1016. The device shall
conform to the following requirements:
the device shall incorporate a design that limits the maximum deliverable
temperature of hot water to 112EF; and
the device shall be designed to prevent bypassing of water.
According to #2 of the previous there is not much room for conjecture as it
states "shall be supplied through."
The Uniform Plumbing Code book, ISSN 0733-2335, states in section 420.0 - SHOWER
AND TUB/SHOWER COMBINATION CONTROL VALVES: "Showers and tub/shower combinations
in all buildings shall be provided with individual control valves of the
pressure balance or the thermostatic mixing valve type. Gang showers, when
supplied with a single temperature controlled water supply pipe, may be
controlled by a master thermostatic mixing valve in lieu of individually
controlled pressure balance or thermostatic mixing valves (pg. 30-31)."
Again this removes any conjecture form the conversation as these are the
regulations set by the regulatory agency that licenses plumbing professionals.
Any deviation from said regulations could be cause for termination of
Do you have evidence of this? I've never heard of a claim being denied
because of a DIY install. I've never heard of an insurance company
asking for information about an installer.
If the valve bursts, it is a manufacturer's defect, not a problem with
the installer anyway but the warranty excluded paying for damages, thus,
your insurance will cover. If it is a faulty install, you will be paid.
On Friday, September 6, 2013 1:14:43 PM UTC-4, Ed Pawlowski wrote:
Frequently claimed here, but I've yet to see one example of
an insurance company doing it. And he's also wrong on another
aspect. There is absolutely nothing preventing people in most
parts of the country from doing repairs in their own home
themselves without being licensed. You are frequently required to get
a permit, depending on what you are doing. But even here in the
Peoples Republic of NJ, you can do work on your own home, without
replying to firstname.lastname@example.org , mcadchri wrote:
I'm going to try and reply to the previous two comments in this section here so
bear with me. As far as evidence is concerned, only what you learn from speaking
with customers and adjusters on the job. You're more than welcome to try to read
through the hundreds of pages of legal jargon in your homeowner's insurance
policy manual to find the specifics, but I'll pass. We all do know though that
when a large claim is made an adjuster comes out to do an investigation (or the
insurance company sends a licensed professional on their behalf). This is to
find out what caused the leak (in this example of a shower valve leak). If they
conclude that the valve body itself is the cause of the leak, then of course
they will pay because this is what the insurance is for. However, if it is
determined that one of the sweats (copper + silver + copper fusions linking the
valve body to the pipe) is at fault for the cause of the water they are going to
question the owner on who installed the valve. This step is because if another
person is at faulty for shoddy work, they'll want them to pay. That's why
professional companies also carry insurance policies. Every insurance company is
different on how far they deem reasonable to investigate, normally depending on
the overall cost of the repair. The model/identity number of the valve can be
easily traced to show when it was purchased. This can be compared to the tenure
of the homeowner in the residence. You can see where this goes. So you see, it
all depends on the company. Nothing is black and white, we all know that. The
problem with your statement is that you're making the assumption that the VALVE
is the problem, but in most cases it's the INSTALLATION.
To the second comment, I never stated that a person could not do it themselves.
Of course they can. That is every home owner's right. As long as there's no HOA
a home owner can do whatever they wish to their home. And yes, a homeowner can
pull their own permit in order to perform these tasks. But a permit couples with
an inspection to ensure it is done properly and in accordance with city code.
Somehow we got off track and we are now talking about people doing their own
work. That's not at all what the question was or what the thread is about. The
question was is it legal for a Plumber to install a 2 or 3 handle valve that is
not pressure balance or containing thermostatic controlled. The simple answer is
this: A LICENSED PLUMBING PROFESSIONAL CAN NOT PERFORM THIS ACTION IN ACCORDANCE
WITH THE UNIFORM PLUMBING CODE, INTERNATIONAL BUILDING CODE, OR ASSE 1016;
THEREFORE THE INSTALLATION OF SUCH A DEVICE PUTS THE LICENSE OF THE PLUMBER
PROFESSIONAL AT RISK OF TERMINATION.
But if you want to put it in your home, go ahead. It's your home. You just
probably won't find an experienced licensed plumber, you know the people who do
this work for a living and are educated in it, who will risk his license to do
it for you. Hope this helps!
HomeOwnersHub.com is a website for homeowners and building and maintenance pros. It is not affiliated with any of the manufacturers or service providers discussed here.
All logos and trade names are the property of their respective owners.