Going from a three handle to a single one

Discussion in 'Shower & Bathtub Forum & Blog' started by nelaco, Aug 9, 2005.

  1. nelaco

    nelaco New Member

    Messages:
    12
    Hello group, I hope everyone is doing well. I just joined this forum because I have an issue with my shower. I am renovating the bathroom and the current shower controls have to go. They never work and they feel cheap. I just purchased a single handle from Standard American... http://www.americanstandard-us.com/ProductNew.asp?prodID=1336
    The old system has a door in the back to access the valve, etc. It all seems to be soldered together, so there is no way for me to just unscrew and screw some braided hoses to the new valve. Unless you think I can do it, I already called a plumber and he would charge me about $75 an hour and he says he might need 2 at the most. I am planning to raise the valve about two feet from the current setup. If I do this myself, I'll save some money on the plumber. My question is, first, how big does the opening has to be for the new valve so I can install another door in case it needs repairs in the future, and second, what do you suggest I use to cover the 3 holes left by the old handles. I tried to attach some pics so you get a better idea, but some how the "Manage attachments" doesn't respond. Here is a link http://i8.photobucket.com/albums/a13/nelaco/1384d6dc.jpg
    http://i8.photobucket.com/albums/a13/nelaco/f9673340.jpg
    http://i8.photobucket.com/albums/a13/nelaco/46e37bf8.jpg
    http://i8.photobucket.com/albums/a13/nelaco/696a856f.jpg
    http://i8.photobucket.com/albums/a13/nelaco/e4c2d496.jpg
    http://i8.photobucket.com/albums/a13/nelaco/f9673340.jpg
    The new access hole would be on the side of the wall that has just plain drywall, the old one is on tile so I guess I'll just paint it or something. Thanks in advance for any help you can give me.

    Nelson
    Last edited: Aug 9, 2005
  2. plumguy

    plumguy New Member

    Messages:
    192
    Location:
    MA
    They make a "goof plate" or some call it a repair plate for going from a 3 handle valve to a single handle.In your'e case it would not help because it has a hole in the middle, I'm not sure if they make a solid one. You would probably never match that tile but maybe you could install some decorative tile. As far as the size of the access panel that would be up to you! How do you feel about the size you have now?
  3. nelaco

    nelaco New Member

    Messages:
    12
    Thank you for the advice. The size on the one now is about 14 x 14. I guess I could make one the same size...right above the tile. I am kind of tempted to do the sodering myself...done it before, but for a water softener in my garage. Thanks again!
  4. plumguy

    plumguy New Member

    Messages:
    192
    Location:
    MA
    Sounds like a great place for a picture or mirror!! :D
  5. nelaco

    nelaco New Member

    Messages:
    12
    True. Do you all think that I should leave the soldering to a pro? Are there any kits out there that make it easier? I do have the tools from the previous time...4 years ago, when I soldered the pipes for my water softener.
  6. plumguy

    plumguy New Member

    Messages:
    192
    Location:
    MA
    It is hard to determine your'e skill and confidence level, however I would never talk you out of hiring a pro.
  7. jimbo

    jimbo Plumber

    Messages:
    8,997
    Location:
    San Diego
    This would be a good time to gather up a few scraps of pipe and a couple of dollars worth of fitings and go out to the gargage and practice your soldering technique. With the higher melting temp. of lead free solder, there is a delicate balance between hot enough for the solder to flow, and burned flux. Do a half dozen fittings for practice and you will start to "know" when a joint flowed right and when it didn't.

    When doing the job inside the walls, always draw a pail of water from a tap, before you start, because drywall backing and 2X4 can burn. And when the fire starts, you have already shut off the water to the house! Any good supply house or even the depots sell a flame protector pad, which is really worth the money when working in close quarters like a shower valve.

    Surveys have been done on favorite fluxes to use. There are as many favorites as there are plumbers! For what it's worth, I personally like the Oatey tinning flux. It is gray in color ( green package) and has powdered solder mixed in it. Others prefer NoCorrode , or the various water soluble brands. Practice with whatever you decide to use, and you will become comfortable with how it works.
  8. nelaco

    nelaco New Member

    Messages:
    12
    That sounds like a great idea! Appreciate the tip. I'll get the stuff today and see how it goes. Thanks again!
  9. your choice...

    I am not trying to rain on your parade here

    but I am just wondering how you decided on

    an American Standard faucet?? It looks to

    be a rather expensive one...

    -

    I have not had much luck with that brand , at least

    makeing easy repairs in a tmely manner..

    and have tried my best to steer clear of them when I could
  10. nelaco

    nelaco New Member

    Messages:
    12
    I just came across a sink and a toilet that I liked, and it had a matching shower kit, so that's why I got it...it was a Expo Design Center. I had no idea American Standard wasn't very good. The salesperson of course said the opposite.
  11. that are ok

    they are ok, thats about it...

    I only install Delta , and I like Ford trucks...


    personal preferances if you know what I mean.


    its a matter to me more of financial survival
    as a company to get something that I dont
    have to make lots of call backs on


    dont take me too serious, I am sure they are ok.
  12. nelaco

    nelaco New Member

    Messages:
    12
    Cool, it is just for the guest bathroom so it's not going to get used much. Thanks again!!
  13. alhurley

    alhurley Guest

    Moen makes (at least they did make) a conversion cover plate but it only works with their single-handle controls and it is designed to cover the 2 side controls and place the new control where the center was. You have to enlarge the center hole to accomodate the new control, and you will need adequate access behind the wall to modify the plumbing.

    Given this is a guest bath as you say it sounds like your current approach is a lot of work. The Moen solution might not be "perfect," but if it was me I'd give it a long look for this situation. :cool:

    ---------------
    just checked Moen website - it's called a "remodeling cover plate."
    Last edited by a moderator: Aug 15, 2005
  14. nelaco

    nelaco New Member

    Messages:
    12
    Appreciate the help...I ended up replacing 6 tiles with new ones. The old ones were 40 years old, so I just got "creative" and got 3 beige and 3 with some kind of art on it. It looks great! Thanks again for all the help.
  15. DanMcD

    DanMcD New Member

    Messages:
    121
    Location:
    Dayton, OH
    American Standard Single Handle Faucet

    I have had the single handle American Standard faucets (ones with the ceramic cartridge) in my two bathroom sinks and two showers and they have not leaked or been replaced for over 27 years.

    So I have no idea why you do not like them!

    Dan
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