Replace non-leaking Moen Posi-Temp shower valve or cartridge?

Discussion in 'Shower & bathtub Forum & Blog' started by lonestar_shawn, Sep 4, 2013.

  1. lonestar_shawn

    lonestar_shawn New Member

    Messages:
    3
    Location:
    Texas
    Hi everyone,
    I have ripped out the drywall and tile in my shower, and I'm going to put in a new pan, walls, and new tile. My question is about the 13 year old shower valve. It has never leaked. Should I replace either the valve or cartridge while I have easy access to it, or should I leave well enough alone?

    Thanks!
    Shawn
  2. jadnashua

    jadnashua Retired Defense Industry Engineer xxx

    Messages:
    21,892
    Location:
    New England
    While it could last much longer, I'd seriously consider at least a new cartridge and trim to match up with your newly created shower. Plus, consider that what's there may need to be moved to mate up with what may be a different thickness wall, depending on how it is built up and the tile you select. It would also depend on what is there now - some rough-in valves (like the Delta R10000) have been around for a long time, and give you huge flexibility on not only the trim you were to select, but also the function, such as single-handle pressure balance, two handle temp/volume pressure balance, or two handle thermostatically controlled, all depending on the trim and cartridge you select for the rough-in. At 13-years old, it is almost certainly at least a pressure-balanced valve (which is the minimum required for a shower in the USA). Personally, I like a thermostatically controlled valve, especially if you take a long shower (or are the second or third one!) since it will adjust the hot/cold balance to keep the temp up as long as possible as the tank starts to cool off.

    Last, drywall (with one exception, and some will debate that) has no place in a shower construction. There are numerous ways to build a good functional shower, and personally, I prefer a surface-applied membrane so that the entire enclosure is waterproof right beneath the tile, but the more traditional versions do work. The advantage of a surface applied membrane such as Kerdi from www.schluter.com is that your shower pan becomes much simpler - only one sloped layer, then the membrane, and tile rather than preslope, membrane (folding corners and dealing with the curb) and then a setting bed before the tile with a conventional shower. Keep in mind that in a correctly built shower, it is the structure, NOT the tile, that is the waterproofing/management layer - tile is the decorative/wear surface. You could technically shower in the thing before the tile was on and it should not leak, but would be a mess - don't do it!

    You need to decide your construction method, then carefully follow all of the rules for that type. Mixing and matching is usually not a good idea with various techniques. Good workmanship is critical, but it is not overly hard, just detail oriented. You might want to check out http://www.johnbridge.com/vbulletin/forumdisplay.php?f=1 for some ideas, too.
  3. lonestar_shawn

    lonestar_shawn New Member

    Messages:
    3
    Location:
    Texas
    Thanks for the detailed info! I didn't want to get too much into it in this thread but the plan is to use hardi with red guard and not drywall. Also, I have a fiberglass pan so I'm not tiling the floor.

    We already have the new trim to match the other fixtures and the old valve will work with it, so I'm not concerned about moving it or changing the functionality. My concern is that if a change a valve that's not leaking the new valve may leak due to installation, manufacturing defect, etc. So I guess the question is, which is lower risk?

    Thanks again.
  4. jadnashua

    jadnashua Retired Defense Industry Engineer xxx

    Messages:
    21,892
    Location:
    New England
    You can always replace the cartridge later, and the valve body ordinarily lasts a long time. I'd probably leave it if you already have trim that fits that you like. Depending on what you have, sometimes it is hard to find trim in the style and finish when it starts to get older, but if you're happy with what's there, go for it.
  5. Terry

    Terry Administrator Staff Member

    Messages:
    14,890
    Location:
    Bothell, Washington
    It depends on the brand.

    Something like a Delta or Moen has been using the same brass body. Changing out the cartridge would make it like new again. But you have time, those are common parts.
    If it's a brand that you can't find parts for, now is the time to change it out.

    [​IMG]

    These cartridges for the Moen Posi-Temp are plentiful. No worries there.
    Last edited: Sep 5, 2013
  6. asktom

    asktom Member

    Messages:
    529
    Location:
    Victor, MT
    It also depends on how good the trim looks. Trim that seemed fine in your old shower may seem dingy against a new wall. Again, it depends on the brand, normally choices will be limited (if available) and by the time you get a new cartridge and trim you may be up to the price of a new valve. Some models are inexpensive and easy to find, others not.
  7. dj2

    dj2 Member

    Messages:
    407
    Location:
    California
    It's completely up to you. IMHO changing the trim and cartridge will be enough.
  8. lonestar_shawn

    lonestar_shawn New Member

    Messages:
    3
    Location:
    Texas
    Hi everyone,
    Here is the existing valve. Can someone help me ID this?

    [​IMG]
  9. hj

    hj Moderator & Master Plumber Staff Member

    Messages:
    26,487
    Location:
    Cave Creek, Arizona
    IT is a Moen Posi-Temp pressure balanced valve, so you an leave it as is, or replace the cartridge if you want to.
    Last edited by a moderator: Sep 5, 2013
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