Shower Plumbing Repair Tips Shower Plumbing Repair Tips
Shower plumbing repair will be necessary from time to time. Taking shortcuts can lead to disaster later. Here are a few tips that will help you maintain your shower and make necessary repairs much easier.
Caulk will help to seal the areas around fixtures that can create problems with leaks. Not using enough caulk can cause slow leaks that will result in major damage eventually. It's always best to use too much than not enough. Be sure to apply liberal amounts of caulk to the round pieces that connect the shower pipe to the wall, called escutcheons.
Thread sealer is available in several varieties. Teflon tape will come on a roll. It's designed to be placed around the threads before the shower head is connected. Pipe dope will do the same thing, it's just a different kind of thread sealer. Threaded joints can leak when thread sealer isn't used. If the thread leaks behind a wall, you may have to tear part of the wall out later to repair the damage. Thread sealer is inexpensive, and is something that is good to have lying around in a junk drawer or tool box.
Primer and Glue
It's not uncommon to find PVC pipe used in a bathroom. While this is inexpensive and effective, it does require an extra step when working with it. A primer needs to be used before glue is used when doing any kind of joining or repair work. The primer will allow the pores in the plastic to open up. This allows the glue to penetrate more deeply, forming a tighter bond. Any hardware or home improvement retailer will carry primer and glue specifically for PVC applications.
Check for Leaks First
If you've had to fix any plumbing behind a wall, don't close the wall up until you know there are no leaks. You can inspect for leaks with a simple pressure test. Just open the diverter valve and rotate it from hot to cold. Do this over several times. This will allow you to see any leaks and correct them before you close the wall up.
Consider Shut Offs
If you need to repair something in the bathroom, you will find it is a hassle to turn the water off to the whole house. Other members of the household may need to use another bathroom, run water in the kitchen, etc. If you install a shut off just for the shower, you can avoid needing to turn off the water to the whole house. This will allow you to take your time when you need to work on anything in the bathroom without being rushed by family.
Invest in a Pipe Wrench
A pipe wrench is designed to be able to get in to tight areas without much effort. They aren't expensive tools, and can be easily stored in a tool box or a closet. Having a pipe wrench will not only make the job easier, it will also lessen the chance of damaging a pipe just by trying to get to it.