What's causing the leak?

Discussion in 'Plumbing Forum, Professional & DIY Advice' started by despec, Sep 7, 2007.

  1. despec

    despec New Member

    Messages:
    3
    Hello to all,

    I have a three-stem shower set-up. When I use the diverter to direct water to the showerhead, I notice that water is leaking from the cold water stem (leaking through the escutcheon and traveling down the stem). Is there a washer or seat that needs to be replaced, or do I need to replace the whole stem. I have already replaced the diverter stem thinking that that might be causing the leak, but I still have the leak.

    Thanks for all help in advance.

    Regards,

    David
  2. Tighten the packing on the stem....the nut that threaded tube allows the scussions to thread tight to the wall before the handle.
  3. patrick88

    patrick88 Plumber

    Messages:
    836
    Location:
    Webster Ma.
    I would take off the handle and chrome to find the packing nut behind. Then tighten the packing nut that the stem pokes through and check for any other signs of trouble.

    The best thing to do is replace the whole unit to a nice new single handle valve, and not throw money at something that is old and worn.
  4. confutatis

    confutatis New Member

    Messages:
    3
    Patrick,

    I definitely would like to go to a single handle unit and such, but that would mean a lot more work, and work that I am not confident that I have the expertise to do. Quite honestly, I'm really tired of dealing with these stems!

    David
  5. patrick88

    patrick88 Plumber

    Messages:
    836
    Location:
    Webster Ma.
    If you have a supply house that caries all the parts you need just replace all the internal pieces, Seats, Stems, Bonnets, and packing nuts. Just think if the valve lasted this long before it started to leak replacing all the parts should make it last for a long time.

    I don't see the point of doing minor repairs like tighten packing nuts because they are a temp fix at best and if you turn them to much they can break. The packing in the old valves are rubber and when the rubber gets old it cracks.
  6. GrumpyPlumber

    GrumpyPlumber Licensed Grump

    Messages:
    1,404
    Location:
    Licensed Grump
    If the packing nut doesn't work, the valve is likely either a Gerber or a General.
    Supply house should have those parts.
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