A leaky showerhead can sometimes be expensive and irritating. Aside from the annoying 'Drip! Drip! Drip!' Sound a leaky shower faucet (showerhead) produces, it poses other unforeseen risks. A leaky showerhead might leave behind a wet floor surface which can cause a slippery floor leading to harm from falls or slips. Also, puddles of water left behind for long periods can produce a musty smell or a conducive environment for breeding microbial bacteria, fungi, or other health hazards.
However, all this can be avoided; given the right guidelines and tools, you can properly fix a leaky shower head and cut down on the expenses of hiring a professional to do it. But before we delve into it, let’s look at some of the more common causes of a leaky shower head.
Common causes of a leaky shower head
Once the water starts dripping or drizzling from a shower faucet/head, there is most likely a problem with the valve. In some instances, it’s all because of wear and tear of the inner seals, clogged parts due to hard water, or corroded components. Over time, gaskets and the rubber O-rings which seal connections between parts start to wear and tear, allowing space and holes to develop which water can escape through.
Caution to observe when fixing a leaky shower head
Find and shut off the shower head's water supply to avoid any surprises as you work on it. When you shut down a showerhead and water continues to drip from the showerhead, your natural response is to tighten the handle as tightly as possible.
However, this may aggravate the situation. Ensure the shower head handle is completely turned off but not too tight! This could ruin the valve. Place cloths on the floor or tub beneath the shower head and on top of the drain to guard the floors and avoid minor parts from falling down the drain.
Fixing a shower head is not rocket science; it's a simple process that any DIY person can do, given proper guidelines. Today we will provide you with a detailed approach to fixing a leaky shower.
Remove the showerhead.
Begin by removing the showerhead so that you can closely examine the issue. The method for removing it will be dependent on the design. Older and simpler showerheads commonly feature a screw at the center or a locking screw on the side. Most current models feature a locking screw hidden behind a cover cap; therefore, you must pry off the lid to reveal the screw.
After removing the cover cap, unscrew the lock screw and set it aside. Wiggle on the handle and pull it out of the shower body. After removing the showerhead, examine it for any cracks or breaks to determine if the damages incurred require you to mend or replace the shower faucet. If everything seems okay, proceed by removing the sleeve and trim. For this process, you will need a plumber’s socket wrench.
Properly clean your shower head.
The next step is to clean out any buildup of particles, grime, or dirt that might affect the device's performance, causing poor water flow or blockage, leading to leaks. There are numerous cleaning products you can consider that are pretty effective. However, if you are looking to save up on some money, a solution of warm water and white vinegar is a good alternative.
Also, this solution does not contain harsh chemicals that might damage your shower head, making it a great cleaning agent.
Place the showerhead into the mixture and let it rest for a few minutes, after which you can scrub it with a toothbrush to eliminate the remaining grime, if any is left behind. This process should unblock places where grime or dirt has settled and bring you a step closer to a better showering experience.
Secure or replace O-rings.
Now that the showerhead is open, you can properly analyze the O-ring for any damages. The O-ring is the unit responsible for preventing the leakage of water. If it seems fine, apply some sealing tape on the threads found at the pipe stem's edge to firmly secure the O-ring. However, if the O-ring is worn or torn, it's high time you consider replacing it with a newer unit.
Replace your valve cartridge.
Begin by switching off the main water supply of your water home. Locate the handle knob and pry off the cover cap to expose the handle screw. Unfasten the screw using a screwdriver and set aside the handle. Pry off the stop tube to expose the valve cartridge and then pull up the cartridge clip extending on the handle washer. Pull out the handle washer using pliers or a special tool called a cartridge puller.
The next step is to analyze the cartridge valve for any notable damages, and if there are any, you will have to replace the unit with a new one. But before purchasing a new cartridge valve, you need to identify the cartridge model and style since it's not a one-size-fits-all situation. It would be best to replace it with a new identical model for this to work.
Place in the new cartridge valve and reverse the process to install and completely place the knob back to its initial setup. Ensure you tightly screw every unit when you are closing it up.
Re-attach the showerhead.
The final step is to re-attach the showerhead back to the body. Hand tighten the showerhead until it's secure, then use pliers to tighten it further. Reverse the process as you did when detaching the showerhead from its body, making sure you tightly fasten the screw. All that is left is to test it out, turn on the water supply and let the shower run for a short time. Then, shut it down and observe if the showerhead is still leaking.
Your showerhead should stop leaking with some luck and properly following this guideline. Seeking professional help is not a bad idea; however, you don't need to call a plumber for every detail, especially something you can do on your own given the right steps, tools, and time. Samodra offers you durable shower heads with high quality. Its body is constructed of high-quality brass ensuring dependability and longevity. Visit Samodra’s website to find out these quality products.