Q: Whenever I adjust the showerhead, the shower arm moves in and out of the wall. Will this movement cause problems? Is there some way to stabilize the arm without opening up the wall?

A: Richard Trethewey replies: I wouldn't worry too much about a small amount of movement, but if it's moving a lot, a joint might break and start to leak.

The only proper way to secure the arm is to open up the wall behind the shower riser — the pipe connecting the shower arm with the shower valve — and secure it to a stud or to blocking between the studs using a U-shaped strap.

I know that sounds drastic, but other less invasive methods, such as wedging a piece of wood between the pipe and the wall, usually won't work for very long.
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