Old Valve Body New Valve Stems

Discussion in 'Shower & Bathtub Forum & Blog' started by publicsteele, Oct 18, 2004.

  1. publicsteele

    publicsteele New Member

    Oct 18, 2004
    Thanks for running this message board!

    I recently bought a "Price Pfister style" remodeling kit made by Danco. It is a 3 stem compression system.

    When I tried to install the new stems I found that the older valve body is a little wider and the threads are tighter... the stems didn't fit. When I went to my local hardware store I took the old and new valve stems and asked if he had any kind of adapter. He just laughed at me and said no. He also said the old stems are Price Pfister as well.

    Do you know if there is anyway I can get the new stems into the old valve body? It is in good condition and working fine.

    Also, when I went to replace the seats, which fit just fine, I noticed there was no old seat in the diverter. There were also no threads. Is this a problem?

    Thanks a lot!
  2. jadnashua

    jadnashua Retired Defense Industry Engineer xxx

    Sep 2, 2004
    Retired Systems engineer for defense industry.
    New England
    A divertor doesn't need to hold water pressure, all it does is direct water from one direction to the other, thus, it has no need for a seat. If working correctly, it should divert all water in the desired direction, though. Not sure on the other items...

    I'm not a pro...
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  4. LonnythePlumber

    LonnythePlumber Plumber, Contractor, Attorney

    Sep 6, 2004
    Plumber, Contractor, Attorney
    Wichita, Kansas
    Stem's are Specific

    Stems are specific to a model of a brand. You can't adapt. You either have the right ones or you don't.
  5. publicsteele

    publicsteele New Member

    Oct 18, 2004
    still confused

    Thanks for the responses. So, let me get this straight. If I want to change my faucet brand, I have to open my wall and change the three stem valve body?
  6. jimbo

    jimbo Plumber

    Aug 31, 2004
    San Diego, CA
    Parts have to be exact replacements. Genuine OEM are better, but Danco stems work. You mentioned that the original valve is a PP, so the Danco rebuild kit should work. All three stems have seats, IF it is an older unit that actually used seats. Did it have seats on the hot and cold? Newer PP are ceramic disc and have no seats, and The Danco ( or for that matter the PP S10..series remodel kits) will NOT work.

    For sure, to change to a different brand or sometimes even to have a different style form the same manufacturer requires replacing the body in the wall. (Anyone remember the Columbo episode where the perp hid the body inside a wall?)
  7. Deb

    Deb Plumber

    Sep 5, 2004

    Yes, if you want to change your faucet brand, you have to open the wall and change the three stem valve body (you cannot put a Chevy starter in a Ford either).
    However, you should be able to get Price Pfister stems, even if the valve is old. Many places have stem books--just like it sounds. There are hundred of different kinds and sizes. They often have full size drawings of the stems so you can match them perfectly (which they have to be). You should always take the original parts with you when buying replacements. I like to replace the seats while I have everything apart. You should always buy original manufacturers parts.
    If you install a new valve, I recommend a pressure balance valve. Not only are they code virtually everywhere, they are the smart, easy way to protect your family against accidental scalding.
    The Pipewench
  8. hj

    hj Moderator & Master Plumber Staff Member

    Aug 31, 2004
    Cave Creek, Arizona

    Take that kit back to Home Depot. Look through the PricePfister section to find a three valve unit you like. They will either have china lever handles or chrome/acrylic round ones. Take it home. Then remove the seats from the hot and cold sides and throw them away,(I assume this is not a Crown Jewel model with the "flat" round handles and notches around the edges. If so then put new seats back in), along with the old stems. Then install EVERYTHING from the new valve, including the diverter seat. You will then have a "lifetime" faucet that should never leak, and will not leak around the hot and cold stems, nor will they tighten up to the point you cannot turn them.
  9. publicsteele

    publicsteele New Member

    Oct 18, 2004
    problem solved Thank YOU

    Thank you to all who replied to help me out. It turns out that the stems were not P. Pfister afterall. I got a bad tip from my local hardware store guy.

    I found the right stems and got generic handles. Installing the diverter stem was a little tricky but after several adjustments, I found the right number of turns to make it turn smoothly and effectively.

    The dealer didn't carry the diverter stem I needed, but I was able to rebuild it with elements from the old H/C stems and some new washers. It now runs very well.

    Thanks again to all who helped.
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