Mental Floss
BIG QUESTIONS

Why Does the Left Knob Control Hot Water and the Right Knob Control Cold?

Amanda Green
the mag
iStock
iStock / iStock
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In olden days, most sinks had a single pump for cold water on the right—to accommodate the right-handed majority. When dual-temperature faucets appeared, the cold water stayed on the right while hot water occupied the left. The Uniform Plumbing Code now requires that faucets “shall be connected to the water distribution system so that hot water corresponds to the left side of the fittings.” It’s a rare victory for lefties. Who uses cold water, anyway?

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