How to Fix a Dripping Shower

Leaking Shower HeadDrip, drip, drip . . .  It has to be one of the most annoying noises to a homeowner. Other than leaving a rag at the bottom of the shower, how do you fix it?! While installing a new shower will fix the problem, it isn’t always the most cost effective for everyone. So, the shower experts at Janssen Glass & Door did their homework to help you fix that dreaded drip! Most single-handle, cartridge-style faucets can be repaired in an hour or less with basic tools. You’ll need a 4-in-1 screwdriver and an adjustable wrench. Here’s how to do it:

Remove the Shower Handle Cap

First things first, turn off the water supply to your shower. Turn off the water at the fixture shutoff valves or at your home’s main valve. Next, pry off the handle cap so that the internal handle screw is exposed.

Take out the Cartridge

Next, pull off the stop tube. Pry up the cartridge retaining clip with a small screwdriver. Remove the handle washer and then twist the cartridge stem loose and pull it out with pliers. Virtually every faucet manufacturer has a different method of securing the cartridge to the faucet body. Look for a clip or spring and remove it. Cartridges are often difficult to pull out. Some manufacturers include a removable cap with new cartridges. Align the cap with the old cartridge ears and try to twist the cartridge loose. Then pull it out with pliers.

Look on the handle or trim for the faucet brand or manufacturer. Take the old cartridge with you to a plumbing parts store or a home center to find an exact replacement. A sales associate at a plumbing parts store may be able to identify the brand and model from a photo.

Related Read: Remodeling Your Bathroom is a Safe Investment

Install the New Cartridge

Turn the hex screw by hand until it bottoms out. Snug up the hex nut by hand and tug on the cartridge puller handle. If the cartridge won’t pull out, hold the puller handle steady and tighten the hex nut two full turns. Pull the cartridge out of the faucet body. Buy an identical replacement cartridge, align it properly and reassemble the parts.

And that’s it! Some faucets will require different instructions. In that case, it’s best to contact the manufacturer. If you decide it’s just time to get rid of that old shower and faucet, contact Janssen Glass & Door at (913) 677-5727. We can help make the new bathroom of your dreams a reality.