Trim and Stem Question

Discussion in 'Shower & Bathtub Forum & Blog' started by shilo48, Mar 10, 2010.

  1. shilo48

    shilo48 New Member

    bailey, colo
    I googled a question and found this forum. Been reading and learning a lot THANKS. The extent of my plumbing has been to replacing a sink faucet a couple times. I'm trying to fix up a house. I would like to replace the tub and shower trims and handles, without removing any of the tiles or replacing the ones that already have holes in them (I can get to everything from the back right now). After a couple trips to habitat resale, and some Craigslist ads I have collected different trims then the valve and stems I have. I have now discovered that I have a 3-handle, price pfisher diverter (I think that’s what you call it) in the wall. Anyway, it has a knob for hot, cold, then when you turn the middle one it sends the water from the tub spout up to the showerhead. And I have bought Moen trims, tub spout, and handles.
    HERE'S THE QUESTION: Can I either buy Moen stems and fit them with the price pfisher (pp) valve body, or can I just put the Moen trims and handles on the pp stems? Is it all right to mix and match that way?
    If anyone else has been in this situation could you please advice me so I don't have to repurchase trims ect, or change the valve in the wall.
    I have already figured out that if there is a next time I will figure out what I have in the wall first.
    Thanks ahead for help!!!
  2. jimbo

    jimbo Plumber

    San Diego
    We get this question ALL THE TIME. For the benefit of other budding DIY folks, I will be a little bit brusque with this answer....nothing personal, because you just didn't know and we all have to learn:

    Would you go to the Ford dealer to buy a new fender panel for your Toyota! Shower parts are often not interchangeble among different models of the SAME BRAND! They are NEVER interchangeable between brands.

    You have a very common 3 handle shower, so there is some variety of replacement trim available. You can find an assortment of knob and lever style handles, and will be able to find chrome, brushed nickel, and venetian bronze finishes. ALL will be made by Price Pfister, or will be aftermarkets marked FOR PRICE PFISTER.
  3. shilo48

    shilo48 New Member

    bailey, colo
    Hello Jimbo,
    Thanks for your input, I understand what your saying. Unfortionanetly I thought changing t&s trims were as easy as outlet or switch plates on the wall. I’m finding out different and what my save a nickle and costing me a dollar approch is getting me. That being what it is maybe someone might be able to direct me on something else. I’ve now decided I want to just change the trims. When I go to price I find only one set of 3-handle/nickle or brushed nickle/t&s trim so does that mean I have to live with that one, or is there another place I can find different designs?
  4. jadnashua

    jadnashua Retired Defense Industry Engineer xxx

    New England
    Unless the valve was very popular and some aftermarket place decided to make something to fit, you either have to go to the manufacturer or an aftermarket manufacturer that made one to fit. In other words, if it isn't made specfically for that valve, it won't, or is unlikely to fit. Look up aftermarket shower valve parts and see what hits you get.

    Now, if it is super critical, you could pay a plater to put whatever finish you want on. Problem is, that may cost more than replacing the whole thing with something modern.
  5. hj

    hj Moderator & Master Plumber Staff Member

    Cave Creek, Arizona
    You go with WHATEVER PricePfister has. NOTHING else will work unless a third party has produced something. Usually those third party units are very "vanilla" with little embellishments to make them attractive or pricey. One thing you will find, however, is that the new PricePfister trim will only fit the current ceramic seal stems, OR the older "Classic" or "Crown Jewel" stems, (which you can purchase separately if your valve does not have them), not the more popular "Verve" ones.
  6. 98ZJUSMC

    98ZJUSMC New Member

    Tunnel Hill, Ill
    I found that out very quickly in my beginning shade tree plumbing career. Working on a jet pump well system used to pull water from Lake of Egypt (S. Illinois), uphill 120 feet to my house. I junked the jet pump and sunk a submersible at my shoreline. I had twice the water pressure, instantly. Replacing shower and tub parts (Kohler) was a pain in the butt. You HAVE to use the model specific parts. Poor True Value guy....I wasted two hours of his time for about $30.00 in parts.
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