Updated: February 22, 2021 by Lonnie Thomas

How to Adjust The Temperature on a Touchless Kitchen Faucet

Touchless kitchen faucets are the latest standard in kitchen sink technology. Hands free makes things easy, helps control the spread of dirt and germs, and it gives us that feeling of sophistication.

But smart technology can make us feel dumb.

Sometimes convenience comes with a learning curve—but once you figure it out, you’ll wonder how you ever lived without it.

It may be unfamiliar, more complicated, and confusing. But using a kitchen faucet with touchless technology is no harder than using a light switch. If you want to know how to adjust the temperature on a touchless kitchen faucet, you have come to the right place. If you are here because your water is running too hot, skip to the end to find out how to fix it.

Touchless Kitchen Faucet Temperature Control

The first thing you need to do is figure out which model of sink you have. On touchless kitchen faucets, the temperature is controlled by a separate control unit or by the handle.

Some let you simply turn the handle while it’s in the off position to control the temperature, while older models require you to turn a dial located on the control box under the sink. Below is an overview of some of your temperature-controlled kitchen faucet parts that you might want to get to know.

Control box

The control box mixes hot and cold water. It acts as both a junction box and a bypass. It requires 4 hoses to get the job done.

Using the handle the old fashioned way (normal mode), it works like a traditional junction box. Water from the hot and cold water lines is mixed, and then it loops around into a 3rd line that runs out of the faucet.

It also houses the automatic faucet temperature control valve for hands free operation.

Motion Sensor

The sensor detects motion with the same technology used in smartphones. The motion sensor connects to the control box underneath the sink. It uses infrared light to detect when something is placed near it.

When the motion sensor is triggered, the electronic control valve will regulate the temperature of the water. Companies like Moen and Delta make sinks with multiple sensors, as well as touch sensors.

Electronic Control Valve

When it comes to hands free operation, the magic happens in the electronic water temperature control valve. On older models, it’s controlled by a dial underneath the sink. Newer models use the handle to control the temperature while it is in the off position.

A battery pack powers the sensor and the water temperature control valve in some models. When you set the temperature, it will always stay the same for hands-free use until you move the dial or handle.

Thermostatic Mixing Valve

Thermostatic mixing valves prevent scalding and the growth of bacteria. They can be installed on the water heater or directly to fixtures like kitchen faucets and showers. Water needs to be at least 140°F to kill bacteria growth in the lines, but that is much too hot for contact with your skin. The thermostatic mixer lowers this temperature to a safe 120°F.

Moen Kitchen Faucet Temperature Adjustment

Moen kitchen faucets are known for their flawless craftsmanship and top-notch features. To figure how your faucet works, all you need to do is take a peek under the sink at the control box.

There are two types of control boxes for Moen’s touchless kitchen faucets. One with a dial, and one without a dial.

  • No Dial – for manual operation, use the handle normally. Pull forward for cold and backward for hot. For hands free operation, pull the handle either forward or backward while it’s in the off position.
  • Dial – for manual operation, use the handle normally. Pull forward for cold and backward for hot. For hands-free operation, adjust the dial under the sink to control the temperature.

Delta Kitchen Sink Faucet Temperature Adjustment

Delta is also known for making some of the best touchless kitchen faucets in business. They are sleek, and they now come with cool features like voice control and led lights. Their control boxes don’t have dials, so you won’t have to take a gander under the sink. Delta sinks use a solenoid valve as the faucet temperature regulator.

  • Adjust the temperature – for manual operation, pull the handle forward for cold and backward for hot. To adjust the temperature for hands free operation, simply move the handle forward or backward while it’s in the off position.

Ouch! The Water is Too Hot! How Can I Fix it?

Hot Water Lever

Sometimes the water may come out too hot, with the potential to burn your hands. To fix this, you need to adjust the scald guard on the sink. The scald guard is a thermostatic mixing valve that controls the maximum temperature setting. As its name suggests, it’s there to prevent people from getting accidentally burned.

For Moen and Delta kitchen faucets, you can set the maximum temperature by moving the adjustment spindle. It is located inside the handle of your faucet. It’s an easy fix that can take a beginner anywhere from 5 to 30 minutes. All you will need is an Allen wrench and a small flathead screwdriver.

To adjust the scald guard, follow these steps.

  1. Shut off the water. First, shut off the cold and hot water valves underneath the sink. Open the faucet to drain any remaining water. While you are down there, make sure that the hot and cold water lines are correctly installed.
  2. Remove the handle with the Allen wrench. If you don’t know how to do this, consult your kitchen product manual, or look it up online.
  3. Adjust the lever. Once you take the handle off,  you will see the scald guard on top of the cartridge. Rotate the lever clockwise to lower the temperature or counterclockwise to increase the temperature.