Preventing tap water scalds: do consumers change their preset thermostats

Am J Public Health. 1993 Oct;83(10):1469-70. doi: 10.2105/ajph.83.10.1469.


One goal of the regulatory approach to tap water scald prevention is the installation of hot water heaters at thermostat settings considered safe. In this strategy, it is assumed that consumers will not change preset thermostat settings, an assumption evaluated in a study of 62 families. It was found that 60% of the sample did not change their preset thermostats. Surprisingly, some of those families (27%) who did not increase their settings still had unsafe (> 54 degrees C) water temperatures.

MeSH terms

  • Accidents, Home / prevention & control*
  • Burns / prevention & control*
  • Humans
  • Thermometers
  • Water Supply*