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Shower stem

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  • Shower stem

    I am extremely proud that I fixed the leaky bathtub faucet. There are tons of articles and videos on the web, if you know the brand it really helps. Ok, so it took 4 trips to Westlake, and 4 days. Then I fixed the leaky sink faucet. This time it only took 2 trips to Westlake. Now I'm trying to fix the leaky downstairs shower. This is proving to be more challenging. There is no indication on any of the parts what the brand is.

    I have learned what an escutcheon is. In the decorative sense, not the heraldic.



    You can see I got the handle off, and that I can't remove this stem. (It's two-handle.) That black ring inside is rubber. The brass surrounding it does not move. It doesn't have anything you can grip with a wrench (or a shower valve socket). I used quite a bit of force with pliers to no avail.

    After studying the stems in the hardware store, I think it is meant to be pulled out. I'm not sure how to get a grip on it. I browsed the plumbing tools (which is how I learned about shower valve sockets). One of the Westlake associates thought extracting the rubber bit might reveal something I could grip onto. The other associate thought it should be pulled, and suggested a combination of vice grips and a hammer (but how to get any leverage with the wall so close?)

    By the way I am more proud of my plumbing adventures than I am of my PhD. This stuff is HARD.
    Last edited by melalvai; 12-31-2012, 08:39 AM.

  • #2
    Re: Shower stem

    I can't see your pics. They are not coming up. Sorry
    Know how it comes out before you go to town. Or you will break the valve and have to go in wall and replace it. And that might require a plumber.
    Congratulations on fixing the leaks. Shower or bath valve leaks can be a real pain. There are special tools they sell to remove some frozen stems but you need to know how they come out.
    Also I suggest you do these at a day and time when if it breaks you can get a plumber out.

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    • #3
      Re: Shower stem

      ~~

      ... it was plumbed by Ray Charles and his helper Stevie Wonder

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