Scalded By Hot Water New York City Injury Attorney

Written by
Abraham Jaros
Updated on Friday, Nov 17, 2023

Most persons, particularly in large cities, reside in apartment buildings where they have no control over the boiler or hot water systems. A recent study showed that there are approximately sixty thousand hot water scalding incidents per year.

It is now basically understood that the standard set for hot water by the American National Standard Institute (ANSI), standard #Z21.10.1a-1991, is that the hot water should not generate water above 120 degrees Fahrenheit. Previously, during the 1970’s the standard was that water could not be above 140 degrees Fahrenheit; in the 1980’s the setting was lowered to 130 degrees Fahrenheit; and in the 1990’s it was lowered to 120 degrees Fahrenheit.

The valves on showers or tubs should be adjusted so that the handle’s top position should not have water coming out of the spigot that is more than 120 degrees. New York State Plumbing Code § 424.3 requires valves that conform to the requirements of ASSE 101.6 and CSA B 125 which require a maximum setting so that water cannot exceed 120 degrees.

A Harvard Medical School study dating back to the 1940’s showed the relationship between hot water and burns. The hotter the water, the less time it takes to cause a burn: when water is 150 degrees, a serious burn can be caused in just two seconds; at 140 degrees, it takes six seconds; and at 130 degrees it takes thirty seconds. Most people take a bath or shower using water that is between 105- and 110-degrees Fahrenheit.

With respect to older appliances, scalding protection should be provided by adding a thermostatic control which attaches to the showerhead and bathtub spigot. The way these devices work is that it is preset at a temperature for exiting hot water at 114 degrees. If the exiting water is more than 114 degrees, it will be stopped from exiting the tap.

If the water in your bathtub or shower is scalding hot when you turn it on, you should complain to the landlord, super and/or managing agent. If they do not fix it, then you can file a complaint with a government agency. If you are paying rent, you can ask for a rent abatement on the grounds that the apartment is not properly habitable and is dangerous. Keep a record of your complaints, make them in writing, if possible, by either a letter or email. If anyone is hurt by scalding water you will then have a record of your complaints.

If the landlord attempted to fix the problem by using a plumber and despite the effort to repair it there is still scalding water and someone is injured, the plumber who failed to make proper repairs, as well as the landlord, could be held responsible.

If you or a loved one were injured by scalding water and are in need of legal assistance call the lawyers at Jaroslawicz & Jaros. The initial consultation is free of charge, and if we agree to handle your case, we will work on a contingency fee basis, which means we get paid for our services only if there is a monetary recovery of funds. Please call to ensure that you do not waive your right to compensation.

Get the advice and guidance you and your family need

You do not have to go through this alone.

At Jaroslawicz & Jaros, we have over 40 years of experience helping accident victims in New York recover compensation. The clients we represent benefit from the personal attention of our knowledgeable and experienced attorneys.

We Have Recovered Over $2 Billion for Our Clients.

The attorneys at Jaroslawicz & Jaros have obtained verdicts and settlements of over $1 Million for hundreds of our individual clients. Since all New York personal injury law firms generally charge the same legal fee why not hire an experienced law firm with a proven track record?

When you retain the New York City accident lawyers at Jaroslawicz & Jaros, you will always work directly with your lawyer, and not with a paralegal or secretary. We will always be available to you! Our hundreds of positive client reviews and testimonials speak for themselves.

Experience and a track record of results

Contact the attorneys at Jaroslawicz & Jaros for a free legal consultation regarding your rights and your legal options. If we agree to handle your case, we will work on a contingency fee basis so that you don’t have to worry about any upfront costs.

Contact us today for a free consultation

Picture of Abraham Jaros

You can reach partner Abraham Jaros directly, either call his cell 917-842-9544, or email him at Or call Jaroslawicz & Jaros at 212 227 2780 in New York, or toll free 800-269-2780, or submit an online questionnaire.