MIRA Electric Showers - basic faultfinding..

After being away from home for what seems like a month, I came back to over six months worth of household tasks. Including trying to fix and/or source a repair for our electric shower. If your here looking for humour, or Lotus Notes - well, skip on. Hopefully this blog entry will save some other poor bugger the pain and misery of finding and then calling out a plumber. (For the record, our local plumber is really good. Just really busy, and therefore difficult to get round unless its a dire emergency.)

So its a MIRA Electric shower - an Elite 2 or a Play - and consumes 9.5kva of electricity. Its not a "pumped" shower - just one that heats existing cold water. Okay, to the symptoms:

  • Very little water would come out of the shower head

  • The "Low Flow" light would come on<./li>
  • The water termperature would be high.

  • No sudden incident to provoke this.

  • Right, off it came from the wall, and an inspection for any debris in the inlet our outlet pipes. Nope. Thankfully, most Mira units (this is our second) are quite easy to disassemble. Check out the Miras web site for instructions if you've lost yours. Important points to note:

    • Disconnect the bloody electricity first. There's usually 10kva going through there, which is more than enough to dispatch you to the next life. In a heartbeat. Seriously, Play safe. And you are on your own.

    • Be a love and switch off the water. Else it'll be quite to get anything done, with a few liters per second of stuff gushing towards yourself.

    Okay, idiot warning over, what to do ?

    Well, after checking for any blocked stuff (takes about a second), I then looked at the "inlet filter". This is a rather cute little piece of plastic with a hexagonal nut (as on "bolt", not "acorn" or "loonie") clear plastic cover which screws into the copper pipe immediately before it's mated with the shower. (on my two showers, this was on the left of the unit) Two seconds with a DECENT wrench (a device for loosening nuts, not a girl from the middle-ages) so as not to tear or warp the plastic, and I end up with what looks like a plastic nut, with an inch or two of "filter" sticking out. Which was all covered in debris. (We dont have "hard" water in this area, so I'm guessing this took over 8 year to build up. I imagine in a hard water area, you would have to play this game every year).

    I *suspect* that this filter is quite fragile, so use a cotton bud under running water till it goes clear. I also blew gently through it to clear it. Once its a nice clear color, then pop it back in, and reassemble the shower.

    Lo and behold, and even a quick "Huzzah!" - I've saved meself a few hundred quid callout and new shower unit..

    Oh - the previous unit had broken its casing and a flange-holder - both made of plastic, and rendering the unit useless. Its odd that a shower should have plastic components that mate the incoming copper pipe and the internal pipework, but there you have it.

    And now - its beer-o-clock..