The shower valve on the market today is designed to provide an easy and efficient way of controlling the flow and temperature of water in your shower. Most shower valves are comprised of two primary pieces: a body, which houses the flow and temperature control components, and a trim, which contains the handles and escutcheons that the user interacts with.
Additionally, shower valves often feature a diverter, which enables the user to divert water to a secondary outlet, such as a showerhead, handheld shower, and/or body jets.
The two main types of shower valves are pressure-balanced and thermostatic. Pressure-balanced valves sense the fluctuations in water pressure and then adjust the cold and hot water proportionately, ensuring that the temperature remains consistent even with pressure changes.
Thermostatic valves, on the other hand, feature a built in temperature control. With these, you set a desired temperature, and the valve will maintain that temperature regardless of the incoming water pressure.
When it comes to shopping for a shower valve, you’ll have a wide variety of options, ranging in style and quality. Generally speaking, the more you spend, the nicer and longer-lasting the valve. It’s important to do your research and select a shower valve that is compatible with your water pressure and meets the required flow rate for the desired shower head or heads.
It’s also important to ask a licensed plumber for help in the selection process, as improper installation of the shower valve can cause water damage and potential injury.
What is the most common shower valve?
The most common type of shower valve is the compression valve. It is the most widely used because it is the easiest to install, has been around for decades, and provides reliable performance. Compression valves are in most residential homes due to their affordability and easy installation process.
A compression shower valve is usually composed of two handles that control the water temperature and pressure. A washer within the valve compresses when it is turned, causing the valve to turn off, thus controlling the flow and temperature of the water.
Compression valves are also the most common type of valve used for toilets and kitchen faucets as well.
Compression shower valves are designed for durability and for a lifetime of performance. They are usually made of brass and come in a variety of sizes and finishes, making them accessible and adaptable to different styles and types of décor.
Many modern shower valves come with a pressure-balancing feature to provide and maintain a constant, comfortable temperature, making them a reliable and desirable option.
What type of shower valve is best?
The best type of shower valve depends entirely on your personal preferences and the design of your bathroom. If you have the space to fit it, digital or electronic shower valves provide the ultimate in luxury, allowing you to adjust water temperature and flow with the touch of a button.
If you’re after a more modern look, thermostatic valves, which use a dial or lever to control the temperature, work well. For a more traditional look, pressure balanced valves, which use a single lever for both temperature and flow control, are a great choice.
Whatever style you choose, make sure it meets the necessary safety standards and is installed correctly.
Can I replace a shower valve myself?
Yes, you can replace a shower valve yourself as long as you have the right tools and feel comfortable doing the job. Replacing a shower valve can be a difficult process and requires some plumbing know-how.
Before attempting to replace a shower valve yourself, make sure you are familiar with basic plumbing concepts and have the proper tools. You’ll need wrenches, screwdrivers, shut-off valves, and pipe clamps.
It’s also a good idea to shut off all water to the valve before attempting to make any changes. To accurately measure and determine the size of the valve needed, take precise measurements of your current shower valve as well as the space your valve will fit into.
Once you have the correct measurements and materials, you can start to replace the old shower valve with a new one. First, you’ll need to detach the valve from the wall and cut off the old supply lines.
Once the old valve is detached, you can attach the new valve with the shutoff valves and ensure it is properly secured with plumber’s tape.
To finish the installation, you’ll need to attach the new supply lines and test the valve for leaks. Once all connections are secure, turn the water back on and make sure all connections do not leak before using the new shower valve.
While replacing a shower valve may seem daunting, it’s actually a simple task with the right tools and instructions. Just remember to turn off the water before tinkering and you’ll be able to successfully complete the job.
How much does it cost to replace a shower valve?
The cost of replacing a shower valve can vary greatly depending on the type of valve, the complexity of the project, and any additional materials needed. The labor cost alone of replacing a shower valve can range from $200 to $600, while the cost of parts can range from $50 to $150.
The total cost of replacing a shower valve can therefore range from $250 to $750 or more. You may also need additional specialty tools to complete the job which could result in additional materials costs as well.
What shower faucets do plumbers recommend?
When it comes to shower faucets, plumbers highly recommend fixtures that combine high quality materials and a good construction. A couple of the top names in shower faucets that plumbers recommend are Delta, Moen, and Grohe.
Delta offers a wide selection of shower faucets in various styles, from traditional to contemporary. Their products are durable, offer many finishes and come with a variety of water-saving technologies.
Moen is another well-known brand, with a range of shower faucets that feature designs that are simplistic and timeless, yet still incorporate the latest technologies. Moen also stands out for their quality spot-resistant finishes, making maintenance a breeze.
Finally, Grohe is known for stylish, innovative designs and advanced technologies with a luxurious feel. Their faucets feature a German engineering, making them incredibly durable and efficient, while also having an ergonomic design that makes operation trouble-free.
Do you need plumber to change shower valve?
Yes, it is typically not recommended for a homeowner to attempt to change a shower valve without the assistance of a plumber or at least an experienced handyperson. Changing a shower valve can entail a complicated process and involves working with existing plumbing and water lines, which can be risky.
Many shower valves today require specific replacement parts, so it is important to know the exact type and brand of valve in order to purchase the appropriate parts. Professional plumbers or experienced handypersons are trained to know the intricacies of shower valve installation and repair and are equipped to handle any issue that may arise during the process.
Do I need an electrician to replace a shower?
The answer depends on the complexity of the job, and whether the person attempting the job has the required knowledge, experience, and safety equipment. If the job requires running new power, someone certified and experienced in electrical work should be consulted.
In most cases, replacing a shower can be managed by a DIY-er with some skill in plumbing and electrical work. However in some cases, such as replacing an old shower with a modern one that requires additional features and/or customizations, it may be best to consult a professional for the job.
It’s also important to consider if you have the proper tools and personal protective equipment (PPE) such as face masks and gloves to work safely with electricity.
In short, if you have the right skills and tools, replacing a shower yourself might be a feasible option. If the job is more complicated or beyond the scope of your abilities and tools, consulting a professional electrician could be the safest and most efficient option.
How do I know what model shower valve I have?
The best way to determine the exact model of your shower valve is to visually inspect the valve, as many models of valves feature similar components but with distinct overall appearances. Longer models usually stand out from the wall, while some will be embedded in the wall and require partial or complete disassembly in order to identify the make and model.
You can typically find the model number printed on the valve or engraved onto the metal.
If the valve is covered by tile or other materials, you can access the valve housing by cutting a small hole (about the size of a quarter) in the wall. Turning off the water supply to the shower system first, use a utility knife or small handsaw to make the hole.
Once done, you should have direct access to the valve body, allowing you to identify the make and model.
When inspecting the valve, make sure to also check for any stamped or engraved information, as this will help confirm the make and model.
Finally, if the valve is still unidentified, you can compare photos of valves from different manufacturers on their websites or in home improvement catalogs to find a match.
How does a 3 way shower valve work?
A three-way shower valve is an automated valve system that evenly distributes hot, cold and shower water to create a comfortable shower temperature. The valve control has a temperature-limiting device so the temperature will not exceed a user-defined safety point.
When the valve is turned, two separate valves open to combine the hot and cold water. The valve then sends the water to the shower head where it is distributed as a mix of both temperatures creating the perfect desired shower temperature.
Some three-way shower valves come with a diverter, allowing the user to switch between hot and cold, or shower, with a simple switch similar to a light switch. Three-way shower valves are becoming increasingly popular in bathroom remodels and new home constructions since they offer the convenience of one combined temperature control rather than having two separate temperature controls.
What is the difference between a 2 way diverter & A 3 way diverter?
A two-way diverter is a plumbing device that allows you to divert water in two directions by means of a single opening. It is often used to divide the flow of water between two taps, one hot and one cold.
It is also used to divide a single water line into two to provide hot and cold water to a single fixture, as well as for diverting water from one fixture to another.
A three-way diverter is a more complex device that provides three diverting valves instead of just two. It is used to divide a single water line into three to provide different temperatures of water in one fixture.
This is ideal for applications such as a shower, which requires a different mix of hot and cold water for each of the three settings, such as full hot, full cold, and a mix of hot and cold. A three-way diverter can also be used to provide slightly different pressure levels of water at different locations or to divert water to two separate fixtures.
How do you use a 3 Dial shower?
Using a 3 dial shower is very simple. Begin by ensuring there is no water coming from the shower head when the dials are in their starting positions. Once you are sure, set your temperature and water pressure by turning the dials.
Typically, the left dial sets the temperature and the right dial controls the pressure. When figuring out which is the “cold” and “hot” dial, you may look for the letters C and H near the dials, however, some showers may not have this feature.
As you adjust each dial, be sure to rotate them slowly to avoid any sudden spikes in temperature or pressure. Once you have set your desired temperature and pressure, press the pause button if your shower has one, and you are ready to take a shower!.
What is a 3 port diverter valve?
A 3 port diverter valve is a type of valve that is typically used when it is necessary to divert a flow of liquid or gas from one port to another. It works by controlling the flow of the medium and can be used to select between one, two or three different outputs.
Depending on the particular 3 port diverter valve, the different ports may be connected to separate outlets or they may be connected to multiple outlets. This type of valve generally features a main body with one or more inlet ports and two or more outlet ports, along with a manually operated handle and a stem that moves with the handle to direct the flow from one port to another.
The 3 port diverter valve can be used for a variety of applications, such as controlling the flow of water in systems like fire sprinklers, diverting hydraulic fluid in hydraulic systems, controlling the flow of steam or gas in heating or cooling systems and controlling air diverted from a compressor.
How do you adjust a thermostatic mixing valve?
Adjusting a thermostatic mixing valve involves making sure the temperature is calibrated correctly to the standards set by national and local plumbing codes. Generally, the process involves shutting off the water supply, ensuring the valve is in the off position, and using a flat-head screwdriver or hex key to adjust the temperature set screw.
This will change where on the thermostat the valve should open, which in turn changes the mixed temperature. It is important to ensure there is an adequate flow of cold and hot water, even before turning the valve on by slowly opening it until you reach the desired mixed output temperature.
Once the desired mixed output temperature is reached, the next step is to adjust the pressure balancing mechanism. This is generally done by turning the pressure balance screw located on the side of the valve slightly.
If the valve is not adjusting properly, it could be a sign of a more serious problem such as a mineral build up or a faulty pressure balance mechanism. If so, professional plumbing assistance is recommended.
Finally, after successfully adjusting the temperature and pressure balancing mechanisms, re-test the valve to make sure the temperature readings are accurate. Also, be sure to regularly inspect the valve, especially in areas of higher usage and wear, to ensure continued safe and efficient operation.