A shower faucet handle isn't something we think about most of the time. With wear, though, some problems can arise that require your attention. When first installed the shower faucet will work great and you can turn it on and off with no problems. Through use and the mineral deposits found in water, especially if you have hard water, a buildup can occur within the shower faucet handle that causes it to stick.
When the handle starts to become harder to use, people compensate this by either twisting, pushing, or pulling harder to make it work. All this extra force can lead to internal leaks and damage the walls and floor, or simply break the handle making it useless.
Step 1 - Take Note of the Situation
Before making any repairs it is important to first take a look at your faucet and begin gathering your information. You will want to:
- find the installation instructions if you still have them or look them up online
- take any measurements
- note the make/model of the handle
- look for any other damage that might need to be addressed
Knowing this information will help you when you go to the hardware store.
Step 2 - Purchase a New Handle
If you've taken the time to find your manual or know the make and model of the shower faucet handle, then locating it in the hardware store should be pretty easy. However, if not, then ask for help in locating it. You might want to take a picture of the handle to show the clerk at the store so they can match it up correctly.
Step 3 - Prepare the Work Area
After returning home with the new shower faucet handle you will want to take some time in preparing the area. First, shut off the water going to the shower area. The shut off valve is either located at the rear of the tub behind the access panel or you can use the main shut off if you can't find one in the bathroom.
Once the water is shut off and you have drained it out of the pipes, then close the drain to the tub. You are working with small parts, especially important screws, and you don't want to lose them down the drain.
Step 4 - Replace Shower Faucet Handle
Remove the screw holding the handle on and, with the help of a handle hammer if needed, remove it from the faucet. Check to see that all the gaskets are alright and not broken. If so, you will want to replace these to stop any leaks. Clean away any lime deposits to stop future breaks, and replace with the new handle.