Low water pressure? A new tub spout could help pressurize your morning shower
If your tub spout diverter is diverting more water to the tub than the shower or it is looking a little too old and worn, installing a new tub spout can be an easy and cost efficient solution.
Step 1: Remove your old tub spout. Most spouts are simply screwed onto a threaded nipple, but a few styles are held in place with set screws. Check the underside of your existing spout, if there is a set screw you will need to remove it before proceeding. Firmly grasp your old spout, or better yet, insert a hammer handle into the front of the spout, and turn the spout counter clockwise to loosen it. If the spout won’t budge, try loosening it by pressing a flat head screw driver between it and the shower wall, just in case someone has siliconed or puttied it to the wall. If the spout is verily old and has a large amount of calcium build up inside, you may have to resort to using a pipe wrench to remove the spout. Be sure to wrap the jaws of the wrench with duct tape if you plan on reusing your existing spout. Be careful though, you do not want to twist or break the pipe inside the wall.
Step 2: Clean and prepare the area for your new spout. Use a green scrub pad and a good cleaning solution such as CLR or Lime-Away to clean any hard water deposits around the spout area. Remove any silicone or plumbers putty remnants with a sharp putty knife. If the hole behind the tub spout is large you may want to install a plastic escutcheon washer or a tub spout trim ring before installing the new spout to assure that water does not run down behind the spout.
Step 3: Install the new tub spout. Wrap three layers of Teflon plumbers tape clockwise around the threads of the nipple protruding from the wall. Carefully turn the new spout clockwise onto the nipple until it is upright and tight to the wall. For extra protection you may apply a thin bead of tub & tile caulk around the back of the spout, but this is typically not necessary.
Turn the water on in your tub and test to be certain both the spout and diverter work. Put away your tools, recycle the old tub spout and be prepared to enjoy your morning shower just a little bit more than before.
Take your old tub spout with you when purchasing a new spout to insure the spout you select will fit your specific application.
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