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WisconsAnn
Spinning Shower Diverter

Hi there,

Our shower diverter stopped working today. There's no set screw (or hole for one), so I believe we've got a screw on model but when I spin CCW it just spins and doesn't come off. Would spinning with more force (e.g., with pipe wrench) help? Other thoughts on how to tackle this (I don't own a blow torch and am a bit worried about the damage I might do with one).

Thanks!
Ann

dj1
Re: Spinning Shower Diverter

There is a special tool to remove the stem.

A temporary solution is to replace the spout with a spout with a built in diverter in it (about $20).

A. Spruce
Re: Spinning Shower Diverter

There is rarely a set screw in a faucet handle. Is there a nib in the center of the handle? Usually, faucet handles are held on by a screw in their center, it is possible that the screw is hidden under a nib, or plug, in the center of the handle. Pop this loose and you'll see the screw. Word of warning, put a washcloth over the drain, you don't want to pop the nib out and have it find its way down the drain.

WisconsAnn
Re: Spinning Shower Diverter

Thanks for your quick responses! Just to clarify, it is the bathtub spout I'm trying to replace (with an integrated diverter) and it is smooth throughout - no set screw - so I'm pretty sure it must be a screw on model. With some force it does turn CCW but that doesn't seem to be moving it off the pipe.

Ann

dj1
Re: Spinning Shower Diverter
WisconsAnn wrote:

Thanks for your quick responses! Just to clarify, it is the bathtub spout I'm trying to replace (with an integrated diverter) and it is smooth throughout - no set screw - so I'm pretty sure it must be a screw on model. With some force it does turn CCW but that doesn't seem to be moving it off the pipe.

Ann

OK, I misunderstood you earlier.

To remove the spout, use an adjustable wrench. I use a rag around the spout to avoid scr-aches.

Don't know how? call a plumber.

A. Spruce
Re: Spinning Shower Diverter

You said diverter, not spout earlier, hence my confusion.

Spouts are attached one of two ways, either by compression, they tighten around the nipple protruding from the wall, or they are threaded onto the end of that nipple.

As DJ said, using channel lock pliers or a pipe wrench, carefully turn the spout CCW. By the time you've turned it 90*, you will quickly be able to determine if which style the spout is by looking along the underside of it. There will be either a hole or a slot, in this hole or slot you'll see an allen head screw and the pipe clamp. Loosen the screw, remove the spout. If it is threaded, you won't see any clamping device, so simply keep twisting CCW.

Also, as DJ said, use a rag to keep from scratching the spout with your wrenches. If you're tossing the old spout, no rag necessary, but you WILL want that rag to tighten the new spout into place if it's threaded.

bill
Re: Spinning Shower Diverter

As DJ said, using channel lock pliers or a pipe wrench, carefully turn the spout CCW. By the time you've turned it 90*, you will quickly be able to determine if which style the spout is by looking along the underside of it. There will be either a hole or a slot, in this hole or slot you'll see an allen head screw and the pipe clamp. Loosen the screw, remove the spout. If it is threaded, you won't see any clamping device, so simply keep twisting CCW.

I would suggest that you feel for the slot before you turn the spout. If it is a slip on spout you will destroy the copper pipe. I can always undo the set screw key from under by using the short side of the allen key. If there is no slot at the back bottom of the spout then go ahead with unscrewing the spout but not before checking. One time i did not check and snapped of the copper pipe.

Mastercarpentry
Re: Spinning Shower Diverter

Use a small mirror to look under the spout for a setscrew. Like Bill I made the mistake of trying to unscrew a slip-on spout once- and that once was enough to teach me to always check visually for hidden fasteners with anything that isn't moving as you think it should!

Phil

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