A dripping shower valve can waste thousands of gallons of water a year, not to mention the annoying drip, drip, drip all night long.
If you have a 2 or 3 handle shower faucet, check out our article on repairing that type of faucet at Repairing a Multi Handle Shower Valve
Your single lever shower valve has a cartridge inside the valve which can go bad over time. This cartridge is made to be replaced when this happens.
To replace this cartridge in your dripping shower valve, it is best to know what make and model faucet you have. Having a new cartridge on hand before you start is a big help. This is not always possible, so it is best to tackle this job when you know the plumbing store is open.
Aside from having a new cartridge, basic hand tools can usually get the job done.
- Allen wrench set – For removing the handle
- Phillip screwdriver – For removing the cover plate
- Flat blade screwdriver – Depending on the age of the faucet
- Needle nose pliers – to remove the retaining clip
- Lineman or water pump pliers – to extract the cartridge
If the valve cartridge decides it wants to be stubborn and not just pull out, you may need a cartridge removal tool. They can be purchased where ever you buy your replacement parts.
Hop on over to the Next Page for instructions and video on how to replace your shower valve cartridge.
The steps to replacing a dripping shower valve cartridge are pretty straight forward.
Be sure to turn off the water supply to the faucet before you begin.
Remove the handle, usually held on with an allen (hex) wrench.
Remove the valve sleeve
Remove the escutcheon (face plate), this will depend on how far the valve is recessed in the wall. Whether you can get to the retaining clip.
Remove the retaining clip
Pull the cartridge from the valve