The limitations of a pseudo-transient approach for modeling temperature wave propagation in district heating pipes were investigated by comparing numerical predictions with experimental data. The performance of two approaches, namely a pseudo-transient approach implemented in the finite element code ANSYS and a node method, was examined for a low turbulent Reynolds number regime and small velocity fluctuations. Both approaches are found to have limitations in predicting the temperature response time and predicting the peak values of the temperature wave, which is further hampered by the fact that the fluid is represented as an ideal fluid. The approaches failed to adequately predict the temperature wave propagation in the case of rapid inlet temperature changes. The overall conclusion from this case study was that in order to improve the prediction of the transient temperature, attention has to be given to the detailed modeling of the turbulent flow characteristics.