No Water in Shower but Sinks Are Fine

What do you do when you turn on the faucet and no water come out? It can be a bit of a mystery, especially if it’s only happening in the shower and not the sink.

If your shower is not working, don’t despair! There are a few possible causes and solutions. Firstly, check to see if the shower valve has turned bad. If so, you need to replace it. Secondly, check if the shower head is clogged. If so, clean it by removing it and soaking it in vinegar overnight. Lastly, examine for leaks in the pipes. If there is, you might need professional help.

Further, in this post, we will explore some common causes of this problem and provide solutions to get your water flowing again!

Why is there No Water in the Shower? [4 Main Causes]

There may be no water in the shower due to a low water pressure issue in the building. However, if you state that all water faucets have water but the shower isn’t throwing off any; this points out that something in the shower system has turned bad.

Here’s the list of reasons why there is water in the sink but not in your shower. 

Cause #1: Shower Valve has turned bad

shower valves

If your shower valve has turned bad, it may be preventing water from flowing into your shower. When the shower valve’s cartridge turns bad, it prevents the water from flowing into the shower head.

If the shower handle is free to rotate in either position, and water is pouring out from the handle, it is a sign the shower head has turned bad.

Cause #2: Shower Head is Clogged

If your shower head is clogged, it prevents water from flowing into your shower.

If this is the case, then you might see tiny water droplets drizzling from the showerhead from time to time.  However, if the shower’s nozzle is completely blocked, you might not witness this sign.

Cause #3: Problem with the Water Heater

water heater line

If the shower shows no water when you turn on the warm water line, then the problem lies with your water heater. Check and see if other warm water faucets are affected.

However, sometimes the water heater also affects the cold water line. For instance, some shower valves are pressure regulated, i.e. they will also shut down the cold water line to balance the pressure on both lines.

Cause #4: Internal leakage in Pipes

If nothing is wrong with the shower components, all other bathroom faucets are fine. Then, there is something in the way that is leaking out the water, either the pipe going to the shower head has leaks or there are leaks within the bathroom’s water supply line. That’s quite hard to trace.

What to Do When There Is No Water In The Shower?

Now, that you know what might be the cause of no water in the shower. It is time to get your plumbing kit ready and resolve these issues.

Replace the Shower Valve’s Cartridge

If the shower handle is dripping water and there’s no water in the shower, that indicates a faulty cartridge. Replacing the valve’s cartridge is easy; you just need to follow the mentioned steps.

shower valve cartridge
  1. Turn off your washroom’s water supply from the main supply line.
  2. Open any of the faucets to make the water lines empty.
  3. Examine your shower handle and look for the cap.
  4. Pop off the cap with the help of a flathead screwdriver.
  5. Under the cap, you will find a screw, take it out of it.
  6. The handle is now free, remove it.
  7. The shower’s cartridge is now exposed, remove it with a wrench and replace it.
  8. After you have replaced the cartridge, reattach the shower handle and turn on the water supply.

Thoroughly Clean the Showerhead

A clogged shower head is also a common reason for water in the shower. So, to unclog the showerhead, you need to detach it and thoroughly clean it.

However, you can also clean it without removing it from the pipe. Follow these two tips to thoroughly clean the shower head.

#1 Rub the Nozzle

Rubber nozzles are used on many shower heads. Simply rubbing each nostril with your fingertips can remove any mineral deposits that have accumulated. Another option is to use a toothbrush to scrape the nozzles carefully.

#2 Soak it in Vinegar

showerhead soaked in vinegar

If you want to keep the shower head fixed to the wall then,  

  • Take a plastic bag filled with vinegar, and tie it around the shower head.
  • Keep it in place by tying a rubber band or twisting the knot.
  • Let it stay there for a few hours.
  • Remove the bag and run the water for a couple of minutes to flush out the vinegar from the shower head.

If you don’t mind removing the shower head, soak it in white vinegar. Just dip the shower head completely in vinegar solution and let it stay for a few hours.

Attach it back to the shower pipe, and let the water run through to flush out the vinegar. 

Check Water Heater

Check if your water heater is powered on. It is better if you restart it and then try opening the shower head.

If these things don’t work, it means the water heater is out of work. You need to get it repaired or replace it.

Replace the Shower Completely

a plumber measuring the dimensions of shower parts

If your shower is quite old and when you remove it fractures and there is no way it can be used again. The best thing you can do is replace it.

Replacing a shower can be a daunting task, so it’s best if you take professional help.

Look for Internal Leaks

If none of the methods work, the last thing to look for is leaks. External leaks are visible but when the leak is internal; within the pipes, locating the leaks is quite difficult.

So, to diagnose the source of leakage, it is in your best interest to call an expert plumber.


At last, we have answers to some frequently asked questions by people.

What is a shower diverter?

In case, you have a shower and bathtub combination, the faucet handle diverts the water from the tub tap to the shower head or the other way. This is where the diverter is employed.

The shower diverters are located behind the wall, and you control them through the faucet handle.

How to know if you have a faulty shower valve?

If you have trouble turning the shower handle, there is a loss of water pressure in the shower head, the shower head, or the handle leaks. Then, these signs indicate that your shower valve is at fault.

Do showers have shut-off valves like toilets?

No, the showers don’t have a cut-off or shut-off valve. Toilets have a shut-off that supplies water to the toilet’s cistern. In addition, sinks also have a pair of these valves, underneath them.

How often should you descale your shower head?

You need to descale your shower head every six months. If you live in an area with hard water, then descaling it every three months is a good idea.

Final Thoughts

A shower is one of the most important parts of our daily routine and when it stops working, it can be a huge inconvenience. I hope this article helped you in some way to understand what might be the problem with your shower and how to fix it.

Do let me know in the comments below if you have any further questions.

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