If your bath or shower faucet drips, you can fix the old shower valve and faucet with a few inexpensive replacement parts. (If the spout and handles are worn, you can change them out, too.) But if it’s a new style you’re after or features like preset temperatures or anti-scald protection, it’s time for replacement. How to change shower fixtures and installing a new shower faucet is a straightforward process of connecting the new valve to the old pipes. Sometimes all you need are the manufacturer’s instructions and some basic plumbing know-how. But it isn’t that easy very often. This article will focus on three complications that installation manuals and plumbing books ignore.
Glue the access panel’s frame into place and snap on the cover after you’ve installed the new faucet. You can paint the panel to match the wall.
To replace the faucet, you have to work里面墙上。有些家庭有一个可拆卸面板中next room behind the faucet. If you don’t have an access panel, you might be able to replace the faucet by cutting a hole in the shower surround (Problem 3 below), but the best solution is to install a paintable plastic panel behind the faucet. You’ll find them in various sizes at plumbing suppliers, some home centers or online (search for “access panel”). Buy a panel that’s at least 14 x 14 in. If you don’t want to install a panel because it would be an eyesore, an oversized cover plate inside the shower surround is another option (Problem 3 below). If you already have an access panel but it’s too low to provide easy access to the faucet, you can install a second panel above the existing one.
Don’t try to position the access hole by taking measurements. Instead, remove the tub spout or faucet handles and punch a marker hole through the wall (Photo 1). If the wall is plaster rather than drywall, use a drill and a long bit instead of a screwdriver. Before you cut a hole sized for the access panel, cut a smaller hole (Photo 2). That way, you can see exactly where the pipes and valves are located and position the full-size hole for best access to them. Use the access panel frame as a template to mark the full-size hole. To avoid damaging the frame of the panel, install it after you’ve replaced the faucet （照片3）。
To preserve those threaded ends, unscrew the union fittings that connect the supply lines to the faucet (Photo 1). You can leave the spout nipple connected to the faucet and remove it along with the valve. If the faucet is connected to a showerhead, cut the “shower riser” pipe (Photo 2). This pipe isn’t under constant pressure, so you can reconnect it with a special coupler later.
Connect the new faucet as shown in Photo 3. To connect the cutoff shower riser, use a special compression coupler designed for galvanized steel pipe (called a “Dresser” coupling). For a better seal and easier installation, apply Teflon pipe sealant to the coupler’s threads and rubber seals. Run the shower and check the coupler for leaks. If you find one, tighten the coupler’s nuts.
Figure A: New Shower Valve Connections to Galvanized Pipe
Problem 3:Replacing two handles with one
A tile bit in a rotary tool cuts through most ceramic tile.
Mount the oversized cover plate. Install the faucet’s standard cover plate over it.
To install a single-handle faucet, you’ll have to cut a hole into your shower surround. If your surround is fiberglass or acrylic, cut the hole using a jigsaw and a fine-tooth blade (a coarse blade causes more vibration, which can crack the surround). Apply strips of masking tape to the surround to avoid scratching or chipping the surface. Run the saw at full speed, but push it slowly and gently along the cut mark. If you feel the blade hitting a pipe inside the wall, stop immediately and continue past the pipe using a hacksaw blade.
To cut tile, use a rotary tool equipped with a tile-cutting bit (Photo 1). Set the cutting depth of the bit at 1/4 in. and make the first pass. Make more passes, setting the bit 1/4 in. deeper each time until you’ve cut completely through the surround. If you don’t own a rotary tool, you have a few other options: You can try a jigsaw and ceramic tile blade (about $5). These blades cut softer tile well. If you find that your tile is too hard, drill a series of 1/4-in. holes through the tile and wall using a carbide ceramic tile bit (about $5). Drill the holes close together so there’s little or no space between them. Then cut any material between the holes with the ceramic tile jigsaw bit.
Have the necessary tools for this DIY shower faucet replacement project lined up before you start—you’ll save time and frustration.
You’ll also need soldering supplies (solder, flux and emery cloth) and a rotary tool tile-cutting bit, a ceramic tile jigsaw blade and/or a ceramic tile drill bit.
Required Materials for this how to change shower fixtures project
Avoid last-minute shopping trips by having all your materials ready ahead of time. Here’s a list.