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What is Scald Guard?

By Shannon Kietzman
Updated May 17, 2024
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A scald guard is a device used to prevent the water from the bathtub or sink from becoming too hot. This is important because water that becomes too hot can cause severe burns, or scalds. While a homeowner should be sure to set the hot water heater to a temperature that will prevent accidental scalding, a scald guard provides an additional barrier.

A scald guard is typically installed in homes with small children or in the homes of the elderly. New parents should not hesitate to install this device, as hot water burns make up approximately 20% of all reported burns in the United States. In addition, approximately 2,000 children are treated for such burns in the United States every year. Scalds can also lead to other injuries, such as falls, shock, broken bones, and heart attacks. These side effects are particularly problematic for the elderly.

Scald guards should be installed for both the bathroom and the kitchen sink, the two areas where scalding accidents occur most often. In most cases, a scald could have been prevented had a guard been installed. For this reason, most states now require some form of anti-scald device to be used or implemented in homes. These devices can be easily installed in a sink or in a shower or bath.

There are a few different scald guard designs available for the homeowner. One type is installed directly into the hot water line and also needs a cold water feed. This can be installed in the water heater, though it also requires the installation of a swing check valve to prevent the hot water from getting into the cold water supply.

Another type of scald guard works by maintaining a constant water temperature. In this way, it combines both hot water and cold water in order to keep scalding hot water from reaching the sink or shower. It can typically be adjusted to a few different degree settings in order to meet the preference of the homeowner. This also limits the hot water flow when the cold water has been turned off.

About Mechanics is dedicated to providing accurate and trustworthy information. We carefully select reputable sources and employ a rigorous fact-checking process to maintain the highest standards. To learn more about our commitment to accuracy, read our editorial process.
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