Whether replacing an old shower valve or installing a new shower entirely, installation of new shower valves is part of the process. Most modern shower mechanisms are similar and require the same basic installation technique. Installing shower valves is a project most people can handle, avoiding the cost of hiring a professional plumber.
- Skill level:
Things you need
- Torque socket
- Utility knife
- Circular saw
- Emery cloth
- Soldering iron
Turn off the water supply to your home. Unscrew the fasteners holding the pipe flange against the wall or backstop with a torque socket. Set the fasteners aside. Score the caulk from around the flange with a utility knife if the flange has been caulked into place. Work carefully to avoid scratching the tile.
Hold the shower-valve template against the wall where you are installing the shower valve. Trace template onto the area.
Cut carefully into the wall with a circular saw. Open a small hole to locate water pipes. Cut open the area outlined by the template.
Remove the water pipes at the back of the wall. Cut plastic pipes with a hacksaw, solder copper pipes with a soldering iron to separate valve body from pipes. Twist the body of pipe when the solder begins to melt. Get as close to the valve as possible. Remove the rest of the pipes the same way.
Place a support behind the old valve's location. Cut a 2- by 4-foot wood plank to fit the space. Set it between the wall studs where the new valve will be mounted. Adjust the support so that the valve sticks out of the wall to the needed distance.
Cut the water-supply pipes that lead to the water-jet assembly to lengths indicated in the instructions that came with the shower valve.
Clean the ends of the water-supply pipes with emery cloth and a wire brush. Cover the inside and outside of copper-pipe openings with flux to prevent oxidation and allow the solder to bond more strongly to the pipe. Apply PVC cement to bond plastic pipes.
Insert the water-supply pipes into the body of the valve.
Measure the length from the supply pipe to the shower riser. Cut the riser to the measurement and fit it to the piping assembly.
Check the piping assembly to see that all the pipes are fitted correctly. Solder copper piping or apply PVC cement to bond piping unit. Connect the shower head to the unit.
Turn on the water supply and check for leaks. Turn off water and solder or apply PVC cement to seal any leaks.
Position the escutcheon in place and install the control handle for the shower.
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