Why Does My Electric Shower Keep Cutting Out? Top 9 Reasons

sam shead

Sam Shead

Last Updated: 11 Jun 2024

Have you ever stepped into the shower, looking forward to a warm, relaxing rinse, only to be rudely interrupted by sudden cold water? 

It's not just frustrating; it's a chilly reminder of a common issue many homeowners face with their electric showers. 

Why does this happen, and what can you do about it?

This article will bridge the gap between your chilly predicaments and the warm, consistent showers you deserve. 

From understanding the core reasons behind these interruptions to practical solutions, you can implement immediately, get ready to turn your shower experiences around for good.

Key Takeaways

  • Understanding the Basics: Electric showers heat water on demand, which means water temperature or flow issues can cause them to cut out unexpectedly. Proper maintenance and understanding of the basic mechanics are essential for troubleshooting.

  • Primary Cause of Cutoffs: The most common reason your electric shower keeps cutting out is water pressure issues that prevent the heating element from functioning correctly. Ensuring your home has the right water pressure is crucial.

  • Check and Maintain: Regular checks for limescale build-up and ensuring your shower's thermostatic and pressure controls are functioning can prevent many cutout issues. Routine descaling and inspections are recommended.

  • Professional Help: You should consult a professional if you experience frequent cutouts accompanied by signs of electrical problems, such as tripping breakers or flickering lights. This ensures safety and the correct resolution of underlying issues.

  • Find out the top rated electric showers in 2024 from Best Electric Showers.

Free PDF: Ultimate Buyer's Guide to Electric Showers

Understanding Electric Showers: How They Bring the Heat

Have you ever wondered how your electric shower provides hot water as soon as you turn it on? 

Unlike traditional systems that store pre-heated water, electric showers heat water instantly, ensuring you never run out. 

Here's a simple breakdown of their operation:

Electric showers connect directly to your cold water supply. 

When you switch the shower on, cold water flows into the unit. 

Here, it passes over a heating element — similar to a kettle — where electricity heats the water to your desired temperature, all within seconds. 

This process relies on a stable flow of water and electricity to maintain consistent temperatures and avoid disruptions.

Control knobs or digital controls allow you to adjust the water flow and temperature, giving you a personalised shower experience every time. 

The instant heating capability of electric showers makes them highly efficient, as they only heat the water you use, reducing energy waste.

Understanding this fundamental operation helps troubleshoot common issues, as water flow or electrical supply disruptions directly impact the shower's functionality.

Common Reasons Why Electric Showers Cut Out

Are you facing an abrupt cold splash when you least expect it? Electric showers can cut out for a few common reasons, affecting your daily comfort. 

Let’s explore these reasons to help you swiftly identify and fix the issue.

1. Is It All About Pressure? Understanding Water Flow in Electric Showers

A significant drop or inconsistency in water pressure is one of the primary culprits for showers cutting out. 

Electric showers require a minimum water pressure to operate effectively. If the pressure falls below this threshold, the shower may turn off to prevent damage to the heating element.

2. Measuring Up: Simple Steps to Check Your Shower’s Water Pressure

Electric showers require a specific range of water pressure to function correctly. 

Too low pressure won't activate the heating element, leading to cold showers. 

Conversely, too high pressure can damage internal components, causing the safety cut-out to engage.

3. How to Check Water Pressure

You can use a water pressure gauge to check your shower’s water pressure. 

Attach it to a tap close to the shower and read the pressure level. 

Ensure it aligns with your shower manufacturer's recommendations, typically around 1-3 bar.

4. Heat Control: Why Your Electric Shower Overheats

Overheating can occur if the water flow is too low—due to a clogged shower head or a closed valve—causing the shower to cut out as a safety measure. 

Conversely, if the water is too cold, it may indicate that the heating element cannot keep up, possibly due to scaling or wear.

5. Overheating and Its Effects on Shower Functionality

When an electric shower overheats, it automatically shuts off to prevent damage. 

This can be caused by restricted water flow or malfunctioning elements within the unit. 

Regular maintenance helps prevent such issues, ensuring a consistent water flow.

6. Thermostatic Control Failures

Thermostatic controls help regulate the water temperature in your shower. 

If these controls fail, it can lead to sudden temperature changes or complete cut-out. 

Replacing the thermostat or servicing the unit is often necessary to resolve this.

7. Electrical Faults

Faulty wiring, a deteriorated connection, or a tripped circuit breaker can lead to sudden shutdowns. 

Electrical issues are particularly concerning because they can pose safety risks. 

Regular inspections by a qualified electrician can prevent these problems and ensure your shower operates reliably.

Understanding these common issues helps troubleshoot and guides you in maintaining your shower to prevent frequent disruptions. 

Regular maintenance checks and promptly addressing small issues can save you from bigger headaches.

8. Power Supply Interruptions

Power cuts, circuit breaker trips, or faulty wiring can all lead to your electric shower cutting out. 

Such interruptions not only stop the shower suddenly but can also pose safety risks.

9. Signs of Electrical Problems in Your Shower

Be alert for signs like frequent resetting of the circuit breaker, flickering lights, or burning smells when the shower is in use. 

These symptoms could indicate more severe electrical issues that need professional attention.

Fix It Yourself: Easy Steps to Diagnose Electric Shower Problems

When your electric shower starts acting up, you don't always need to call a professional immediately. 

Many common issues can be diagnosed and resolved with a few straightforward troubleshooting steps. 

Here’s a practical guide to help you identify and fix the most common problems.

Step-by-Step Guide to Diagnosing Common Issues

Step 1: Check Water Pressure

Begin by checking if there is adequate water pressure. 

You can do this by using a water pressure gauge, which attaches to a tap like your garden hose. 

If the pressure is below the manufacturer’s recommended level, consider adjusting the main water valve or consult a plumber to address external water supply issues.

Step 2: Inspect the Shower Head and Hose

A clogged shower head or a kinked hose can also lead to pressure problems or overheating. 

Remove the shower head and clean it thoroughly to remove any limescale or debris. 

Also, check the hose for any twists or obstructions restricting water flow.

Step 3: Evaluate the Temperature Controls

If the water temperature is fluctuating, inspect the temperature control dial. 

If it feels loose or unresponsive, the internal thermostat may need replacing. 

For thermostatic showers, make sure the thermostat hasn’t failed, which could prevent it from accurately moderating the water temperature.

Step 4: Examine Electrical Connections

Safety first—ensure the power is turned off before inspecting any electrical components. 

Look for any signs of wear, corrosion, or loose connections. 

Check the circuit breaker or fuse box for any tripped breakers or blown fuses. 

Call a professional electrician if you need more clarification or spot anything suspicious.

Step 5: Reset the Shower Unit

Some modern electric showers have a reset function that recalibrates the system and removes any temporary faults. 

Consult your shower’s manual for instructions on how to perform a reset.

Following these steps, you can tackle common issues that cause your electric shower to cut out. 

Regular maintenance, like descaling the shower head and checking the hose, can prevent many problems before they start. 

However, if these steps do not resolve the issue, it may be time to consult a professional.

Keep It Running: Essential Maintenance for Electric Showers

Regular maintenance is crucial to prolonging the life of your electric shower and ensuring it continues to function efficiently and safely. 

Here are some essential maintenance tips that can help you avoid frequent cutouts and other common issues.

Regular Descale Your Shower Head

Hard water can lead to limescale buildup, which might clog and slow the water flow, causing the heating element to overheat. 

Regularly cleaning your shower head can prevent this. 

Simply detach the head and soak it in vinegar overnight, then rinse and reattach.

Inspect and Replace Hoses and Filters

Check the shower hose and any filters for wear and tear or blockages at least twice a year. 

Replace the hose if it’s damaged or shows signs of significant wear to prevent leaks and maintain proper water flow.

Test Water Pressure Regularly

You can monitor your water pressure with a simple gauge test and ensure it meets the requirements of your electric shower. 

Adjustments might need professional help if pressures are consistently too high or too low.

Monitor Electrical Components

Keep an eye on the electric shower’s power supply and connections. 

Look for any signs of corrosion or damage. 

It’s a good practice to have an electrician check the electrical components of your bathroom periodically, especially after any noticeable issues or if the shower unit is old.

Implementing these preventive maintenance steps can help ensure that your electric shower remains in good working condition, providing you with a reliable and enjoyable experience. 

Regular checks save you from future breakdowns and protect your home from hazards.

Expert Needed: When to Call in a Pro for Your Electric Shower

While many electric shower issues can be resolved with basic troubleshooting, there are circumstances when calling a professional is necessary to ensure safety and proper repair. 

Here are some scenarios where expert help is crucial:

Persistent Electrical Issues

If you've noticed frequent trips in your circuit breaker or signs of electrical faults such as burning smells, sparking, or inconsistent power supply, it's time to call a certified electrician. 

Electrical issues can pose significant risks, including fire hazards, and require professional diagnosis and repair.

Water Pressure Problems That Persist

Should adjustments to the main valve not resolve water pressure issues, or if you suspect the plumbing might be compromised (e.g., pipe damage or deep blockages), a professional plumber should be consulted. 

They can provide a comprehensive assessment and resolve underlying problems that are not accessible or apparent to the average homeowner.

Installation of New Units or Major Parts

Professional installation is recommended when installing a new electric shower or replacing significant components like heating or internal electronics. 

Incorrect installation can lead to problems, from poor performance to serious safety risks.

Legal Compliance

Certain works involving water and electricity may require compliance with specific safety standards or building regulations in some regions. 

Professionals ensure that any work done complies with local laws, which can be crucial during insurance claims or property evaluations.

Knowing when to call in the experts, you can maintain your electric shower's safety and functionality while protecting your home and family.

© Copyright 2024 Best Electric Shower LTD. All rights reserved. | Company Number: 15606794 | Registered in England and Wales with registered office in Linden Fields, Tunbridge Wells, England, TN2 5QX

Email Support: support@bestelectricshower.co.uk | Customer Support: 02081752283  

Privacy Policy | Cookie Policy | Terms of UseAffiliate Policy

© Copyright 2024 Best Electric Shower LTD All rights reserved | Company Number: 15606794 | Registered in England and Wales with registered office in Linden Fields, Tunbridge Wells, England, TN2 5QX

Email Support: support@bestelectricshower.co.uk | Customer Support: 02081752283  

Privacy Policy | Cookie Policy | Terms of UseAffiliate Policy

© Copyright 2024 Best Electric Shower LTD All rights reserved | Company Number: 15606794 | Registered in England and Wales with registered office in Linden Fields, Tunbridge Wells, England, TN2 5QX

Email Support: support@bestelectricshower.co.uk | Customer Support: 02081752283  

Privacy Policy | Cookie Policy | Terms of UseAffiliate Policy

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Free Guide: Ultimate Buyer's Guide to Electric Showers