A shower valve is certainly one of the basic appliances in our daily life. Since the time man understood the need for water, they have been coming up with easy and efficient ways to manage water flows. Carrying water in buckets and pulling them up from deep wells were getting too much time consuming and stressful.
So men invented new ways to regulate water from reservoirs set in high places so that water could flow down with the help of gravity or using powerful motors. But to make sure excess water was not being wasted, the Water valve was discovered. It is now known as a shower valve or hand wash valve. And though it may look simple they way it works is complicated.
There are mainly two types of valves. One termed as manual and the other as the thermostatic valve. Initially, all valves work in the same dynamics. The valve is composed of many intricate parts and tools that manage the water flow. In almost all showers, there are two water lines where one line delivers cold water and the other delivers hot water. But they come out of just one shower head. The purpose of the valve is to stop the water flowing when not needed. And mix the two different temperatures of water in proportions and combinations that give us the perfect temperature of water.
The valves mainly work by using a handle that can be turned, flipped or pushed to turn the water flow on or off. When the valve is turned on, a small cartridge or piston inside it positions in such a way that a pathway is created. The pathway connects both the cold and hot water lines and they can run through it to the shower head. The cartridge has mainly two or one hole that acts as an opening which when turned on, lines up to the openings of the water pipes. To manage the temperature of water, the piston or cartridge is further turned toward the hot water line or the cold water line.
In such case, if it is turned towards the hot water line, the opening for the cold water line reverts in such a way that its flow is decreased. This results in warmer or hotter water and the same happen for turning toward the cold water. The initial total volume of water can also be controlled by a second piston that acts as an obstacle for the final water flow toward the shower head.
If the piston or sleeve is moved from the pathway the water enters the showerhead the water pressure will be greater. And doing the opposite will result is less water pressure and volume. All of this can also be controlled by the handle solely. This is how a shower valve works.