Shower Cable Overheating: 3 Things You Can Do

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Showers are one of the greatest inventions of mankind. And electric showers? Don’t get us started. The instant warm water is enough to melt all your worries away. But that doesn’t mean, you have to struggle.

For instance, your shower cable overheating can quickly steal your joy away. But it need not be so. 

Shower cables mainly overheat due to 2 reasons. Either a loose connection or a poor quality switch. To prevent this from happening, check if your cables are compatible with your electric shower. Next, install an insulator. And if you already have one, check if it’s functioning. Lastly, try tightening the wires of your shower.

That was just a small glimpse. If you want to know what we have in store for you, keep reading.

Why do Shower Cables Overheat?

To understand why shower cables overheat, we need to understand an electric shower mechanism. A great way to explain this is to take the example of a toaster. 

The shower water gets heated the same way your bread gets toasty. You see, electric showers feature a cable that gets super hot. When cold water passes through this filament, it warms up. 

Thus, your shower never really runs out of hot water. And, you can hop in to shower immediately after your sibling. 

But due to this mechanism, the shower cable sometimes overheats. Why? Let’s find out.

1. A Loose Connection

One of the prime reasons for overheating is loose wiring or connection. When there’s a loose connection somewhere, it creates resistance. That means, more electricity is required to perform the same job. 

As a result, the cable gets heated beyond its capacity. Plus, a loose connection may lead to a weakened shower pull switch

Back on topic, most electric showers come with a safety feature. Thus, the heating system may shut down in such a situation. If you ever experienced the water running cold, now you know why.

2. Poor Quality Switch

Other than a loose connection, you may also experience overheating due to a cheap switch. Now don’t get us wrong. Not all cheap appliances are bad. But if you experience this problem often, go for a premium quality switch.

Firstly, this will save you more money in the long run.

Another common reason why that happens is that you may be using an inferior quality switch. This also causes a malfunctioning shower isolator.

How to Stop Shower Cable Overheating: 6 Step Solution

So we glossed over the two primary reasons behind overheating. What’s next? Well, of course, the solution. Although these steps require a bit of experience, don’t get daunted. 

With a little bit of patience and time, you’ll diagnose the problem in no time. So without any more chit-chat, let’s see how it’s done.

Step 1: Check Your Cables

Before you jump into complex troubleshooting, check if your cable falls under the kW rating of the electric shower. Any idea what a kW rating is?

It basically signifies how powerful your shower is. Showers ranging from a 7-8 kW rating are moderately powerful. Since they don’t consume much energy, they’re perfect for smaller homes. 

Showers above 9 kW are perfect for heavy-duty use. Since it features a heavy water flow, it could even cause your shower tray to overflow

But when installing a high kW shower, make sure your home system is compatible with it. If your electric shower is too powerful for your cable, it can cause overheating.

If this is the case, you may need new wire insulation.

Step 2: Install/Check the Isolator 

All-electric showers are recommended to come with isolator switches. These cut off the current supply to your shower. So if you don’t have one installed, you need to do it asap!

Although it’s fine to keep the isolator switch turned on, it can cause overheating. Especially if the shower isn’t being used for a few days, turn the switch off. 

If you choose a pull cord switch, go for a 50A one inside your bathroom. Or else, you can opt for a 45A switch, outside. 

We’ve got some suggestions for the following isolator switches mentioned above. Let’s look at those options, shall we?

  
  

Now if you have an isolator installed, check whether it’s faulty or not. After all, burnt isolator wires can also contribute to shower cable overheating. 

This will reduce the risk of overheating by a mile.

Step 3: Tighten the Wire

So you’ve checked your cables and installed an isolator. Is your shower cable still not working? Then it may be time to tighten your wires. 

Remember how we told you loose wires can cause overheating? So disassemble your shower and give your wires a check. 

If you find that some connections seem loose, tighten the wire attachments. Since these wires are connected to terminals, check whether the terminals are fitted. 

Once you’ve solved this issue, your problem will hopefully be solved.

Finishing Tips

So those were the key points on how to diagnose an overheating cable. Before you leave, we wanted to share some additional tips with you. 

Reduce Your Shower Time 

If your shower cable is overheating, it might help to cut back shower time. The longer you shower, the cable is getting hotter. As a result, the shower cable quickly wears down. 

Thus, reducing your shower time greatly increases the lifespan of your cable. Also, it allows the cable to cool down between uses. 

Now you can use the electric shower almost immediately. But, a cool-down period is important. 

Seek Professional Help

Our advice is a simple troubleshoot if you’re moderately experienced in handling electricity. In case you’re a beginner, we suggest hiring an electrician. 

That’s because it’s a pretty risky job. One slip of a finger can cause an injury of a lifetime. Moreover, you can cause further damage to your electrical appliance.  Thus if you do think it’s a bit overwhelming, please ask for help.  

FAQs

Question: Is it dangerous if a plug gets hot?
Answer: Yes. A hot cable or plug can cause a risk of a fire. Thus, if left on its own, it could even burn your entire house down. Other than that, you could even face an electric shock if you touch it. Thus, it’s best to get a faulty plug replaced as soon as possible.

Question: Why would neutral wire burn out?
Answer: The neutral wiring burning is a sign of a loose connection. This happens, when the high temperature burns the insulation. As a result, the circuit breaker activates. Thus the electric shower doesn’t work properly. However, the circuit breaker works as an alarm bell and indicates a problem.

Question: Will burnt wire still work?
Answer: If the wire isn’t damaged all the way to the core, it will work. As long as it can conduct electricity, it will remain functional. But if you notice early signs of burning, it’s best to replace the wire.

Bottom Line

And that is a wrap to today’s post. But it isn’t goodbye yet. If you enjoyed this read and learned new things, let us know. 

Moreover, any further queries on a shower cable overheating, are cordially welcome. 

Until then, stay happy and healthy!

Scott Kelly