Removing Stuck Shower Arm and Drain

Discussion in 'Shower & Bathtub Forum & Blog' started by jgold47, Dec 18, 2013.

  1. jgold47

    jgold47 Member

    Nov 30, 2010
    Detroit, MI
    This ties to my other thread, but wanted to keep them separate. I tried to replace the shower arm in my 1920's shower. I'm pretty sure the arm is not original however, but regardless, with all the pipe wrenches I could find, I couldnt get the thing to move at all.

    two questions -
    1. Wrench harder?
    2. does heating the arm help at all?

    part two, I am going to try and remove the drain from the tub as the tub uses an oldschool stopper system thats long gone and we have no way to plug the drain for a bath. I've got all the various tools the big box stores sell, including that gnarly extractor, but is there any chance that its somehow not threaded onto the waste pipe?
  2. Terry

    Terry Administrator Staff Member

    Aug 17, 2004
    Bothell, Washington
    Heating the arm will make it harder.
    Heating the fitting in the wall would make it easier, but that is hidden.
    In an old home like that, you may need to put a pipe wrench on it. Longer gives more leverage.
    And be prepared to go into the wall if that doesn't work.

    The tub drain should be threaded.
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  4. hj

    hj Moderator & Master Plumber Staff Member

    Aug 31, 2004
    Cave Creek, Arizona
    1. use a bigger wrench
    2. It is threaded, but if the thread is "seized" you may snap the tube under the floor, so be judicious with your efforts and if it does NOT turn fairly easily, which it probably will not, be prepared to carefully cut it out.
  5. cacher_chick

    cacher_chick Test, Don't Guess!

    Jan 5, 2008
    Test, Don't Guess!
    Land of Cheese
    Before starting, be prepared for the possibility that you may have to open up the wall and have access from below to replace the tub shoe along with the waste and overflow assembly.
  6. johnfrwhipple

    johnfrwhipple BATHROOM DESIGN & BUILD for both Canada & the US

    Jul 20, 2009
    Design Work World Wide: Bathrooms Vancouver Area
    North Vancouver, BC
    Man Hands are needed. Elbow grease a must.

    If you where my buddy here in Vancouver I'd give you a "Chirp" and say something like "Try putting your purse down first" or "Maybe the wrench is getting caught in your blouse" - One thing you get working the tools every day is a killer grip. Most homeowners do not have the strength to really make these tight fittings twist out.

    After "Chirping" my friend and failing (which Vegas has at 50/50 odds) I'd be looking for my "Big Wrench".

    I find cursing helps. LOL

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