Shower Valve: Repair a Leak

  • 1-2 hours
  • Intermediate
  • 0-50
What You'll Need
Craft knife
Steel wool

If you are anxious about a leak in your shower, then you may want to know how to repair shower valve parts. The shower valve may sometimes drip simply because it has not been turned hard enough to fully block the flow of water, but the constant drip can get on your nerves, and give you a high water bill. Fixing the problem of a leaky shower valve can sometimes lead to you calling for a plumber, but if you have some basic home improvement skills you can easily repair shower valve leaks and prevent yourself from having to pay a higher water bill.

Step 1 - Turn off the Water

Before you do anything else, turn off the water supply to your bathroom. This will prevent the leak from continuing while you are working, and will also prevent you from getting a face full of water if you make a mistake. Turn off the water supply at the mains, and then run all of the water in your bathroom until the pipes are completely empty. When the water is drained, put the plug into your tub, or cover the shower drain with a towel, as this will prevent you from losing screws by having them fall into the drain.

Step 2 - Remove the Shower Knob

shower faucet

Take off the shower faucet knob beginning with the hot/cold dial in the center. These usually pop out if you pry them with a screwdriver tip, or the edge of a craft knife. You should then place this to one side. Once the cover is off, you should be able to see a screw inside your shower knob. This may be difficult if it is covered with dirt and grease, so go carefully. Take off the shower knob.

Step 3 - Replace the Valve

Once you have the shower knob off, remove the shower valve itself. You may find that it has become oxidized, or just covered with slime, which can hinder its movement, but you should be able to grip it firmly and unscrew if you have a shower wrench, which is designed to have a stronger grip for slippery items. Look at the valve, and decide whether you wish to replace it fully, or simply remove the washers around it. Washers are fairly cheap, but shower valves will only cost around $30, and you will get a completely new valve for it. Insert the shower valve into the hole, and screw back into place.

Step 4 - Refit the Shower Faucet

The final step is the easiest, as you simply have to fit back everything that you removed. It is a good idea to cover your parts with a little grease, so that they can move freely in future. Push the shower knob into place, and hold it firmly against the hole while you screw it tightly into position. Add caulk to protect the shower faucet from leaks. Take the cover and slide that down into the hole first, and then push to top into the wall until you hear a click.