Main feed stop tap problem

14 Jul 2005
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United Kingdom
Can anyone help please

I'm trying to fit a shower mixer tap for my mum who is nagging me constantly to have a shower fitted. Problem straight away !!!

The stop tap under the sink is well stiff. It's an open gravity system with two tanks in the loft - shutting the hot water off wouldn't be a problem as i could just drain the main tank by lifting up the ballcock. Obviously the cold needs to be shut off at the main stop tap under the sink as there is no isolating valves in the bathroom at all.

I've tried using a rag and with all my strength to turn it to the right but it doesn't budge a milimetre. I've blasted it with WD40 and left for an hour and still no joy - Got a little desperado and slightly tapped it with a hammer but still doesn't move a cat's whisker. Well that's it job failed miserably unless someone can help. I don't want to attack it too much just incase the dam thing snaps off and floods the kitchen

I've had a look for the outside one in the garden but no signs unless that's it outside on the pavement near the road.

Any advise on this please.
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Surely you will be feeding the shower with cold water from the tank not the mains. So if you tie up the ballcock you can drain both the cold and hot feeds to the bathroom.

By the way what is your strategy to deal with a burst mains pipe in your house. You need that stopcock sorted. you really need to locate the valve at your property boundary. It will be in the footpath.
Cheers Joe - thanks for your input.

I Don't understand what's happening - From all the info i've read the cold should drain off through the tank - I originally went into the loft, tied up the ball cock from the main tank and then turned on cold bath tap and basin to drain the water- left this for about 15 minutes and the water level didn't move a bit, and no it's not refilling because it's tied. Could it be possible that the upstairs cold is coming off the rising main - it seems a very fast flow.
When the hot taps are on upstairs the tank then starts to empty -

Any ideas - am i not turning off a valve or something that lets the cold empty.

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Terrywookfit - spot on chief !!!

Finally got the stop tap to turn after using a large spanner - took some doing though, bit at a time, just to make sure the handle didn't break off.
ran up stairs in joy and the cold water was isolated - this is a learning curve for me as all the information I have gathered from people, states that the cold feed on open systems is fed from the header tank.

So in this curcumstance, the upstairs is direct fed from the incoming main - how come this is not standard ? I mean better pressure and drinking water upstairs - why do it the other way.

Thanks will be having a go at doing the taps tomorrow now and can't wait to get into that 3 inch gap to release the hot tap nut. Night mare.
So just to confirm - you can do it either way then ?
Anyway more to the opint am i still ok to go ahead with this mixer shower ?

Thanks for both your help with this.
Depending on brassware fitted and plumber who installed it!

Sinks and basins are usually fed from mains as drinking water!!

You will have unbalanced supplies to bath mixer so fluctuation of temperature will occur!
Oh well it's my mums, so she will be the one who suffers when the shower goes really hot or cold. will be like one in really cheap and nasty bed and breakfast joint at the coast. Arrr Fu**ing shower is crap. LOL

Thanks again - have a nice weekend

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