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Best way to plumb for outdoor shower (with hot water)?

Hi guys,

I am wanting to have an exterior hose bib that allows for hot water, so I can hook a shower up to it.

Because I am in a tiny house on wheels, my walls are only 2x4. The only product I have found is woodford hot/cold bib http://s3.supplyhouse.com/product_files/Woodford-V22CP-4-MH-Submittal.pdf

Unfortunately, even for the 2x4 model, it's 5 7/8" long. So this product would stick out on the interior side.

It's also important to note that my one piece corner shower will be on the same wall, so there is no room to come out on the interior side.

Are there any other options besides having two hose bibs with hot and cold (not even sure how I would control the temperature here?)?


Asked by Grey Wolf
Posted Sep 12, 2017 10:00 PM ET


7 Answers

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There are lots of articles online with information on outdoor showers. The images below came from two Fine Homebuilding articles -- one in Issue #157, and the other in Issue #253.

You can use an ordinary shower valve, as shown in the second image, or you can simply use ordinary ball valves or stop-and-waste valves (with the hot and cold lines connected to a tee that feeds the showerhead). The most important point is that you need shut off valves on the inside of your house (or frostproof sillcocks) along with boiler drains or removable plugs that allow the lines to be drained in the autumn.


Outdoor shower plumbing 1 - FHB 157.jpg Outdoor shower plumbing 2 - FHB 253.jpg
Answered by Martin Holladay
Posted Sep 13, 2017 4:59 AM ET


Thanks Martin.

So what kind of hose bib would I need on the outside? I would like to avoid using a shower handle like the image.

Answered by Grey Wolf
Posted Sep 13, 2017 7:20 PM ET


If your tiny house will be parked somewhere with freezing weather, the type of hose bib you want to buy is called a frostproof sillcock.

Answered by Martin Holladay
Posted Sep 13, 2017 7:50 PM ET


Roger that. But how exactly would I control the hot water temp from the outside?

Answered by Grey Wolf
Posted Sep 13, 2017 8:26 PM ET


It sounds like you want to plumb your outdoor shower as shown in the illustration below. You will notice that there are two valves leading to the shower head -- a hot-water valve and a cold-water valve. These are mounted in the shower, at about belly-button height.

The idea is that you adjust the hot and cold water valves until the temperature of the water coming out of the shower head suits your purposes. Believe it or not, this type of two-handle shower valve used to be common. People in their 60s (like me) grew up with this type of shower valve, before the invention of the single-lever shower valve.

It's a little like an old-fashioned telephone dial, I guess. If you've never seen one, you don't know how to operate it.


Outdoor shower plumbing 1 - FHB 157.jpg
Answered by Martin Holladay
Posted Sep 14, 2017 5:41 AM ET


Sounds good Martin. I went ahead and did that. I'm thinking its just best to flash around the pex with a rubber gasket and then install the hose bib before the siding (leaving the necessary space for my siding)?

unnamed (5).jpg
Answered by Grey Wolf
Posted Sep 19, 2017 6:28 PM ET


If you are installing frost-proof sillcocks (which are generally about 12 inches long), the plumbing connection is made indoors, on the warm side of the wall.

If you are installing old-fashioned hose bibs -- the kind that can freeze -- you should buy them first, to determine where the Pex should be cut. You want the flange of the hose bib to be even with the block on which it is mounted.

Answered by Martin Holladay
Posted Sep 20, 2017 4:22 AM ET

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