Mixer taps typically stay at the last temperature they were set at unless you change their position. So, when you turn a tap on, it will run cold, warm or hot water depending on the way you last used the tap unless you move it first.
While this is convenient, it can have downsides. Adding an anti-scald guard to the tap may be a good idea. How does this guard work, and why should you use one?
What Is a Mixer Tap Anti-Scald Guard?
A scald guard sits inside the tap's housing. It changes the way the tap works when it is turned off and on.
When you turn your mixer tap off, the guard automatically turns the water to its cold position. So, every time you turn the tap on, it starts by dispensing cold water. Even if you left the tap in a full-on hot setting when you last turned it off, the guard makes it run cold.
What Are the Benefits of Anti-Scald Mixer Guards?
If you turn on a mixer tap that is at a hot setting, then you could accidentally scald yourself. You might assume that the tap is set at a safe temperature level; however, someone else could have used it before you.
This may be more of a worry for you if you have young children in the house. You may have warned them about not turning on the tap unless it is in a warm or cold position. They may understand this in principle. However, kids don't always think before they act. They might assume that everything is OK because they've never been scalded by hot water from the tap before. You don't want them to learn this lesson the hard way.
A guard is also useful if you have older people living with you who may not be as sharp mentally as they used to be. For example, if one of your parents has dementia, then they might forget to check the tap's setting before they use it. Again, they could have a nasty accident.
An anti-scald guard protects everyone who uses the tap. The tap will always start by running cold, so you don't need to worry about people not using it correctly.
If you want to replace an old mixer tap, you can also buy a tap that has a built-in guard rather than retrofitting one. To find out more about both options, contact your plumber.