What is the cause of my shower leak? Help.

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  #1  
Old 07-25-17, 12:51 PM
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What is the cause of my shower leak? Help.

I've had this leak for many years now, and I'd like to fix it once and for all if possible. I put a shut-off valve at the shower arm, and that works. However, as the years go by, I noticed the handles need to be shut off tighter, and tighter. Before, if the handles were horizontal like at 3 o'clock, it was good enough to shut off the water, but now, the handles need to be pointing at around 4 o'clock.

Do you guys think the problem is the shower arm, or the handles? If it's at the handles, then I have no clue how to get to the nut. Below I have a picture exposing the handles. There is nut hidden inside a metal pipe/cover. There doesn't seem to be any clearance inside for a socket wrench, because the nut basically covers almost the entire diameter of the pipe. And with the stem sticking out, you need a really deep socket, so I'm probably way off base in terms of solution. I removed one of the flange, thinking more area will be exposed, but nothing. How would you guys get to this?

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Last edited by moctodyid; 07-25-17 at 01:06 PM.
  #2  
Old 07-25-17, 01:40 PM
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Not clear but I think you are describing a drip from the shower head when you turn off the water. The water is not being turned off completely so it continues dripping out the head. I think you just need to change the washers on the stems. They do wear out which matches your symptom of needing to turn the handle further when you shut off the water. If you need help changing the washers, post back here.

- Peter
 
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Old 07-25-17, 02:01 PM
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Yes Peter, you are describing my issue exactly. How do we get to the washers though base on my pictures?
 
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Old 07-25-17, 02:29 PM
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First turn water off to house. They have plumbers sockets to reach in and take nut off inside chrome part. Most builder supply store have them. Usually will have a small pack of different size washers to use. Here is a example of ehat you need.
https://www.lowes.com/pd/BrassCraft-...ench/999903493
 
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Old 07-25-17, 04:27 PM
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Is there an alternative to getting those specialize wrenches? Are the pipe covers threaded, and therefore can be turned? Because I found a strap wrench in my garage. If I can turn it, then I can just use a regular wrench to remove stem. Is there any reason I shouldn't try to turn the pipe cover?
 
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Old 07-26-17, 09:04 AM
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The covers are threaded on mine and help hold the faucet in place by putting pressure against the faucet escutcheon (that round plate with the hole in it). Using some tape or a cloth with a pair of slip lock pliers help remove them on mine but beware that it may be tough due to mineral deposits. I would be surprised if you had a strap wrench that small and would not damage the sleeve.

- Peter
 
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Old 07-26-17, 04:14 PM
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Thanks for the confirmation! I never thought it was possible to unthread the pipe/sleeve, so I never tried to force it, but I was very confuse how people would get to the nut. I'll have to add those socket wrenches to my tool box. I also went to youtube and saw some guy just unthread his pipe/sleeve by hand. So I figure it's safe to try with some force now, and you're right, the mineral deposit has made it stuck. But my strap wrench actually worked! I replaced the washers today, and the leaking has stopped.

I like to browse Lowes, and whenever I see their yellow sticker prices that are crazily discounted like 80 to 90%, I buy the tool without knowing if I ever need it. LOL! This set was like $2.97 or something. Finally came in handy!

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