Kohler Shower Valve Troubleshooting (11 Problems Solved!)

Kohler valves arguably have the best flow rate, which offers a more refreshing showering experience. But like every other shower valve, Kohler valves suffer a few issues that need fixing. So, this Kohler shower valve troubleshooting guide shall help you resolve those issues.

I’ll talk about how you can adjust the valve’s temperature, replace the valve or its stem, fix a leakage, adjust the pressure, among many other issues. The idea is to help you identify a problem with your Kohler shower valve and address it accordingly.   

So, if you are ready, let’s get started with the troubleshooting guide, highlighting the problem, possible cause, and relevant fix.  

kohler shower valve temperature adjustment

Kohler Shower Valve Troubleshooting Guide for Common Issues

Let’s discuss how you can fix common issues affecting Kohler shower valves:

1. Kohler Shower Valve Temperature Adjustment

Is your Kohler shower water too cold or too hot? Then, it’s time you adjust the valve’s temperature, something you can do by adjusting the built-in stop or screw on the regulator.


Here’s is how to adjust the Kohler shower valve temperature:

  • Use a Phillips screwdriver or hex wrench to loosen the shower handle from its faucet. Consider getting the Magnetic Screwdriver Set which has the Phillips screwdriver and hex bits you may need for your DIY project
  • Loosen the faceplate and set it aside
  • Gently turn the valve stem and the collar clockwise to make the water colder or anticlockwise to make it hotter.
  • Once you are okay with the water temperature, reinstall the Kohler faceplate and handle just as they were.

2. Hot Water Is Coming First from The Kohler Shower Valve

Ordinarily, cold water should come out first when you switch the shower heater on and turn the handle. But if hot water is the first to come out, there’s a problem with your valve, which you should address.

The chances are that the valve is upside down. As a result, water is mixing backward.


Your goal is to locate the mixing assembly, which you can spot featuring a red and black collar mixing water backward. 

Here’s is how to go about it:

  • Turn off the heater and shower main water supply
  • Loosen the black cap on the valve to pull out the mixer assembly 
  • Turn the mixer assembly with the black part facing upwards
  • Put things back as they were
  • Turn the shower water supply on and try switching the heater on and turning the shower knob

3. What If the Water Is Burning Hot?

If the water becomes burning hot after doing the above fix, then you should readjust the anti-scald valve using these tips:

  • Unscrew the shower handle and the faceplate using a Phillips screwdriver or Allen wrench
  • Take out the faceplate and put it aside
  • Measure the water temperature before adjusting the anti-scald valve. You can do that with a shower thermometer like this LED Digital Shower Thermometer by Xhope.
  • If the shower water temperature is over 120 0F by more than 5 0F, adjust the anti-scald valve clockwise to make it colder. The right shower water temperature usually is 120 0F, but you can always go slightly lower when bathing kids.
  • If the water temperature fails to adjust, take out the O-ring (from the faucet) and reposition it correctly. It could be that it’s sitting wrongly.
  • Reinstall the shower handle and faceplate before trying water
kohler shower valve no cold water

4. Kohler Shower Valve No Cold Water

If your Kohler valve only allows hot water through, the chances are that the cold water inlet is not open. It could also be that the valve is damaged. So, you should check both possibilities.


Check to see if the cold water inlet is open. If it’s not, turn it clockwise to open it. But if the inlet is open, it could be that your shower valve is faulty. So, you may have to replace it.

5. Kohler Shower Valve No Hot Water

Like the above case, only cold water will come out if the hot water inlet is not open. But still, if both inlets are open but the valve is faulty, there’s always the risk of getting only cold water or hot water.


Check the hot water inlet to see if it’s open. If it’s not, turn it clockwise to open it. Also, check the condition of the valve. If the valve looks worn out, you should replace it right away.

6. Kohler Shower Valve Replacement

Before anything, you should gather all the necessary supplies, which include:

  • Pliers
  • Screwdriver
  • New Kohler shower valve
  • Plumber lubricant

Once you’ve all the above supplies, go ahead and replace your Kohler shower valve using these steps:

  • Lay the pieces of cloth on the floor to hold the screws from dropping down the drain
  • Turn off the shower water supply
  • Use the screwdriver to loosen the shower handle
  • Unscrew the screws on the trim plate
  • Loosen the valve cartridge and then disconnect the Kohler valve from the shower water pipe
  • Grease the pipe to soften it, and that allows you to loosen it easily
  • Remove the shower valve now and slide in the replacement 
  • Reassemble everything as they were
  • Turn the water on and test the leakage

If there is no leakage, then you did it! Congratulations!

7. Kohler Shower Valve Not Turning Off -Troubleshooting

Sometimes, the Kohler valve may fail to turn off entirely and allow water to trickle continually. If that’s the case, it could be that you fitted the wrong hardware. So, it’s essential that you countercheck everything.


Here’s is what to do when your Kohler shower valve doesn’t shut off:

  • Use a flat screwdriver to expose the screw holding the existing Kohler shower hardware
  • Use an appropriate screwdriver to unscrew the hardware
  • Use an adjustable wrench to loosen the stem nut and pull out the hardware assembly
  • Examine the O-ring to see if anything is broken to replace it
  • Carry the Kohler hardware assembly to the nearest local store to get the correct replacements
  • But if you are a DIY guru, look for the Kohler hardware assembly parts online
  • Go back home and reconnect everything
Kohler Shower Valve Leaking

8. Kohler Shower Valve Leaking – Troubleshooting

The problem with a leaking Kohler shower is that it could lead to excessive water wastage and high water bills. So, this is a serious issue that needs immediate fixing.

But first, it starts with figuring out the reason behind the leakage. In most cases, the Kohler shower valve leaks because it is defective or its cartridge is faulty.

Remember, the cartridge is the built-in plastic that connects the valve with the handle. It looks like a small Kohler shower valve.


If the shower cartridge is faulty, water won’t just leak, but you’ll also hear a ticking sound when you are not using the shower.

If that’s the case, replace the cartridge right away. But if the valve is just too old, you should replace the entire thing. Let’s talk about how you can do it next.

9. Kohler Shower Valve Stuck

Sometimes, the cartridge may get stuck inside the Kohler shower valve. That mostly happens when the O-ring accumulates minerals, especially after using the cartridge for a long time. So, this is a case of an old valve or cartridge.


While the best solution is to replace the Kohler shower valve, you can first try pulling out the cartridge. You can do that using a good cartridge puller.

But if the cartridge puller doesn’t work, inject vinegar using a syringe into the valve to soften things, and then try pulling out the cartridge using a puller.

Note that the shower valve itself could also stick, which indicates wear and tear. If that’s the case, then you should replace it.

10. Kohler Shower Valve Pressure Adjustment

Sometimes, you may experience a very high or low water pressure even when it has nothing to do with the tubing or clogging.

If that’s the case, then you should go ahead and adjust it by turning the pressure adjustment screw on the valve.


Here’s how to go about it:

  • Turn the adjustment screw clockwise to increase the shower water pressure
  • Or turn it anticlockwise to lower the water pressure 
  • Do 1-2 turns before testing the slower to see if the pressure is correct
Are Kohler Shower Valves Universal

11. Troubleshooting Leaking Kohler Shower Faucet

More often than not, when the shower faucet is dripping or leaking, the reason is a worn-out valve stem. In the valve stem are rubber washers that wear down over time, causing the valve to leak.


The fix here is to replace the shower valve stem. So, find a good Kohler shower valve stem as the old Kohler shower valve stem replacement.

People Also Ask

1. Are Kohler Shower Valves Universal?

Kohler shower valves are not universal, which is quite a shame. They all come with different body designs to match different shower trims. So, you cannot interchange them with other valves.

2. How Do I Adjust Hot Water On the Kohler Shower Valve?

The Kohler valve has a built-in screw or regulator that you can adjust to make the water cold or hot. Turn it clockwise to make the water colder and counterclockwise to make it hotter.

3. Why Is My Kohler Water Not Getting Hot?

If your shower water is not getting hot, the heater likely has an issue. However, don’t forget to check the temperature regulator on the valve as it could be wrongly positioned. Turn it anticlockwise to increase the water temperature.

4. Why Is My Kohler Shower Only Running Hot?

Your Kohler shower is only running hot because the temperature regulator is broken, out of position, or worn out. It could also be that the cold water inlet is not open, and consequently, only hot water is coming out.

Also Read:

Closing Remarks on Kohler Shower Valve Troubleshooting!

Generally, it’s easy to troubleshoot most Kohler shower problems. Above are the most typical issues and the fixes when it comes to these valves.

So, consider the tips whenever your Kohler shower valve has an issue before calling an expert. You may end up saving yourself some money and time if you can fix it!

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