Plumbing: Faucet Repair: Shower Faucets


Antiscald, also called pressure-balance, valves are designed to prevent sudden blasts of hot or cold water coming through the showerhead when another plumbing fixture is turned on or the toilet is flushed. A jolt like this poses a very real hazard, because it can cause you to slip and injure yourself. Burns are another danger, especially for children and older folks who have sensitive skin.

Antiscald valves work by detecting and compensating for changes in pres sure in the hot and cold supply lines. Even better, you can set the maximum temperature for an individual valve (see "Adjusting an Antiscald Valve" image below).

Most antiscald valves have a single handle; however, many older homes have two- or three-handled valves. In this situation, you can either look for a two-handled antiscald valve or special order an escutcheon plate that will cover the old handle holes.

To avoid or minimize tile repairs, install the valve from the back side of the tub or shower wall and tie into the existing copper pipe. If you have galvanized pipe, you can transition from galvanized to copper by using a dielectric union to prevent corrosion.

Protect your tub and shower and keep debris out of the drain by taping an old sheet to the tile wall below the work area. When dry-fitting pipes, make sure all the joints seat completely so the measurements will be accurate. Finally, install the shutoff valves right away so you can turn the water back on to the rest of the house.


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1. Remove handle and escutcheon plate from valve. Shut off water supply to shower. Measure setback from tile surface to center of pipes in wall. To simplify installation, buy a valve with a similar setback.

2. Cut an access hole behind the valve if you don't already have one. Remove tub spout and shower arm and cut supply pipes where shut off valves will be located. Remove old faucet valve and all old pipe above shutoff cuts.

3. Use old valve and pipes as a template for sizing new valve assembly. Solder connections. Use a fireproof cloth to protect flammable materials in the work area. Open the shutoff valves and remove valve cartridge while soldering.

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Recommended Products

Kohler Pressure Balancing Shower Faucet in Vibrant Polished Brass - K-T132-9B

Kohler Pressure Balancing Shower Faucet in Vibrant Polished Brass - K-T132-9B

Pressure Balancing Shower Faucet Oval Handle Showerhead, arm and flange Includes K-262 Ceramic Dial Plate and Handle inset. Please choose color. Recommended Valves availabe. Please Choose.Note: The 88526-C/F is required for all thin wall instalations of the K-306-KS.


Kohler Pressure-Balancing Bath and Shower Faucet in Vibrant Polished Nickel - K-T13133-3B

Kohler Pressure-Balancing Bath and Shower Faucet in Vibrant Polished Nickel - K-T13133-3B

Pressure-Balancing Bath and Shower Faucet Pressure-Balancing Bath and Shower Faucet with push-Button Diverter 6-7/8" Non-diverter spout Cross Handle Single function showerhead, arm and flange Recommended Valves available. Please Choose.


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4. Secure valve and pipes with support blocks and pipe straps (see Step 3). Install escutcheon plate, set antiscald limiter and install handle. Install tub spout and shower arm and test the valve and connections.
Adjusting an Antiscald Valve

Adjusting an Antiscald Valve

Antiscald valves usually have a gear- like rotational stop behind the handle that controls the hot water flow by limiting how far the handle can be turned in the "hot" direction. Just remove the handle to gain access.

If your home is not equipped with antiscald valves, lower the water heater setting so the maximum hot water temperature is around 1200 F

Safety: Not so hot!

If your home isn't equipped with antiscald valves, lower the water heater setting so the maximum hot water temperature is around 1200 F (50° C). Use a cooking thermometer to check the temperature.

Last modified: Friday, 2007-11-02 22:09 PST