Extremely Tight Danco Stems - How to?

Discussion in 'Shower & bathtub Forum & Blog' started by parker, May 21, 2006.

  1. parker

    parker New Member

    Messages:
    3
    Howdy,

    New here and love the info on the site! I did some quick searching but couldn't find the answer I was looking for.

    I replaced the original Price Pfister H/C bath stems with some new Danco replacement stems. (Model 05034P).

    The installation of the stems was fine. The problem I'm encountering is that both the H/C stems are very difficult to move. I've either installed these stems incorrectly, am missing something silly, or am in a catch-22 situation.

    My problems seems to be with that round "bolt" that fits over the stem and is used to compress the last o-ring arond the stem. This "bolt" also has threds on the inside of it for external fittings, etc.

    If I loosen the bolt that compresses the o-ring around the stem, the handle works smoothly, but water leakes out of that o-ring.

    If I tighten the bolt that compresses the o-ring around the stem, the water leak stops, but the handle becomes really hard to operate.

    There *has* to be way to stop the leakng *and* allow these stems to move smoothly and easily. The orignal stems were nice and smooth (just needed some new o-rings, but I opted for new ones thinking new would be better. I guess I was wrong :( )

    Any help or advice would be appreciated.

    Parker
  2. jimbo

    jimbo Plumber

    Messages:
    8,997
    Location:
    San Diego
    Not sure what shower you have, but if it is a typical PP, there are no O-rings involved. On any stem which has an o-ring stem seal, there is nothing to "tighten the packing". O-rings do not work like that. You are describing a stem packing gasket and packing nut. Some lubrication is needed on the packing and the stem, which will allow you to tighten the packing nut adequately and still be able to turn the stem. Use waterproof plumber's grease or silicone faucet grease.


    Danco is a generic parts brand, but actually the quality is usually good. However, you will get an almost universal recommendation on these plumbing forums to use Original Brand parts when available, which for PP they are. For just a few dollars difference, why chance a hassle?
  3. parker

    parker New Member

    Messages:
    3
    Thanks.

    I applied some grease and it helped, but nothing close to what is currently in the other two showers in the house (same PP stems).

    I guess the next thing I'll do is buy OEM PP stems and see if that makes a difference.

    Anyone know what the original PP Crown Imperial model number is for a Danco #1 05034P stem is?

    Thanks for your help.

    Parker
  4. parker

    parker New Member

    Messages:
    3
    Just a follow up and FYI,

    I took the Danco stems back to where I bought them and the great folks there rebuilt them. The problem was was with rubber packing that Danco put in the parts. Using good packing made all the difference. They work like a charm now. No faucet grease was needed.

    Parker
  5. hj

    hj Moderator & Master Plumber Staff Member

    Messages:
    26,279
    Location:
    Cave Creek, Arizona
    Pp

    Now, if I had rebuilt that faucet for you, you would have gotten quarter turn ceramic seat stems, that never leaked or got tight, and new chrome or whatever trim and a lifetime quarantee from Price Pfister.
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