No cold water in apartment, please help!!

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Nycgirl646

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I live in a prewar co-op apartment in NYC and it takes 5-10 minutes for the cold water in my kitchen to get truly cold. It can start out anywhere between 70-80 degrees fahrenheit when first turned on and takes 5-10 minutes to drop to temperatures in the low 60s. The super and plumbers have looked in my apartment and they think the problem is in my apartment line somewhere. They tested my faucet but that wasn't the problem, they looked under the sinks of other apartments in my line and couldn't find any cross-connections between the hot and cold water lines, however other people in my apartment line experience the same problem and others in different apartment lines experience this problem and various other issues. The board president who lives in my building has a cold water temperature of about 68 degrees for 3 minutes which I think is high. I used to live in a different unit in the same building and never had an issue with the water, I tested it and the kitchen started at 58 degrees and the bathroom went from 69 to 58 in less than a minute.

The board president think the water temperature in my current apartment of 70-80 degrees is normal and that there's not a problem. He said that water may start out cold when it's sourced from upstate but reaches "ambient" temperature when it sits in the pipes. I don't think this is true because my old studio in the same building didn't have this issue and neither do my parents who also live in an NYC apartment. I've talked to another plumber who say it sounds like an issue with the building. A friend of mine suggested a theory that one of the temperature controls that regulates my unit or line is not functioning properly or it could be an intermittent problem with the building. Others have suggested things like a leak in the water tank, a check valve on a water heater that needs to be installed, and circulation pumps. What do you think?

NYC law states that all residents must have heat, hot, and cold water at all times. A lawyer I spoke to said there should be a constant, consistent supply of cold water from when the faucet is first turned on. However, he could only define cold water as water that is drinkable.

How would you define COLD water that you would drink? Not tepid or cool but COLD. What temperature is ideal for drinking to stay hydrated? Any advice would be VERY MUCH appreciated.
 

Matt30

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The temperature of your cold water 100% depends on what temperature the utility delivers it at. That’s gonna vary depending on their treatment process. There is no standard where I live about the delivery temperature
 

Geofd

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maybe the piping runs thru a chase with steam...hot water heat ...hot air from duct work have the y found the beginning of the run?????
 

voletl

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This seems like a very unnecessary problem if you want cold water simply put the water in your refrigerator or freezer as long as the water is considered potable then you do not have a case for anyting.
 

CT18

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Is it just the kitchen. The hot side of the faucet may be getting over to the cold water side. I dont know what type of faucet you have.
 

Geofd

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I live in a prewar co-op apartment in NYC and it takes 5-10 minutes for the cold water in my kitchen to get truly cold. It can start out anywhere between 70-80 degrees fahrenheit when first turned on and takes 5-10 minutes to drop to temperatures in the low 60s. The super and plumbers have looked in my apartment and they think the problem is in my apartment line somewhere. They tested my faucet but that wasn't the problem, they looked under the sinks of other apartments in my line and couldn't find any cross-connections between the hot and cold water lines, however other people in my apartment line experience the same problem and others in different apartment lines experience this problem and various other issues. The board president who lives in my building has a cold water temperature of about 68 degrees for 3 minutes which I think is high. I used to live in a different unit in the same building and never had an issue with the water, I tested it and the kitchen started at 58 degrees and the bathroom went from 69 to 58 in less than a minute.

The board president think the water temperature in my current apartment of 70-80 degrees is normal and that there's not a problem. He said that water may start out cold when it's sourced from upstate but reaches "ambient" temperature when it sits in the pipes. I don't think this is true because my old studio in the same building didn't have this issue and neither do my parents who also live in an NYC apartment. I've talked to another plumber who say it sounds like an issue with the building. A friend of mine suggested a theory that one of the temperature controls that regulates my unit or line is not functioning properly or it could be an intermittent problem with the building. Others have suggested things like a leak in the water tank, a check valve on a water heater that needs to be installed, and circulation pumps. What do you think?

NYC law states that all residents must have heat, hot, and cold water at all times. A lawyer I spoke to said there should be a constant, consistent supply of cold water from when the faucet is first turned on. However, he could only define cold water as water that is drinkable.

How would you define COLD water that you would drink? Not tepid or cool but COLD. What temperature is ideal for drinking to stay hydrated? Any advice would be VERY MUCH appreciated.
sometimes a single hand faucet will cause this shut the hot off under your sink and see what happens
 

Richard Gavle

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No plumber here but worked in a few buildings with this issue.

Most often it as mentioned previously it is due to the routing of the pipes through a wall cavity where the ambient temps are 80°f and greater.

However another cause that is often overlooked is a leaking shower valve where the protective device for scald prevention allows hot water to bleed over to the cold water side.

If you have access to your showers pipes simply feel the cold water line next to the valve when the shower has not been in use. If its hot this is the problem.
 

Nycgirl646

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This seems like a very unnecessary problem if you want cold water simply put the water in your refrigerator or freezer as long as the water is considered potable then you do not have a case for anyting.
I don't consider it 'potable' when it first comes out, but I guess it could be considered potable after waiting 5-10 minutes.
 
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Diehard

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I don't consider it 'potable' when it first comes out, but I guess it could be considered potable after waiting 5-10 minutes.
You raise a good thought. If it was warm due to cross connection from a hot water source, I wouldn't want to drink it, cooled or not. My reason being hot water is not as pure as cold water once it's gone through a water heater.
One reason..."hot water dissolves contaminants more quickly than cold water, and many pipes in homes contain lead that can leach into water."
 

voletl

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It doesn't work that way it's either your water is potable or your water isn't it can't non potable for the first 10 15 20 seconds or hours or minutes and then become potable all of a sudden it just does not work that way.

My suggestion to you is if this problem is very serious to you you contact the department of buildings and tell them exactly what your problem is and see what they say there are multiple agencies to contact in the city
 
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