Shower handle sticking out too far

Discussion in 'Shower & Bathtub Forum & Blog' started by alphonse55, Dec 31, 2007.

  1. Redwood

    Redwood Master Plumber

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    chel_in_IL, In any future project I would get rid of as much of the Galv, as possible. At least the stuff in any wall that is opened up! Just put a 8" brass nipple between any copper and Galv. connection.
     
  2. DianaJ

    DianaJ New Member

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    Jan 23, 2008
    showerhead defective

    The Moen showerhead in the 82496 kit seemed to have much more volume than 2.5 gpm spec. Turns out the internals were defective and missing part of the restrictor. So I used a Grohe showerhead that I had from 10 years ago and it now has the proper flow volume out of the showerhead which is much better than the excess volume out of the moen valve water spout. Along with the extra swivel from the Grohe showerhead makes this Moen acceptable; even with the unappealing Moen handle sticking out problem.
     
  3. patrick88

    patrick88 Plumber

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    I would assume your plumber installed it to the best of his ability with the limits he faced. Opening the wall might not have give the valve any more room to move back. The wall behind is a big factor also.

    The shower valve should have come with a thin plastic plate. This is attached to the valve body for thin plastic walls. It hold it so the valve sticks out within tolerances.
     
  4. ejacobson

    ejacobson New Member

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    Dec 2, 2005
    My Valve Is Out Too Far Too!

    This thread may have saved my butt.

    I have the same problem alphonse55 and Daydream46 have. My plumber probably didn't read the installation specs and mine is a Moen as well. The valve sticks out such that it leaves about an inch gap between the handle and trim plate. I was thinking there was no way to fix this without ripping off my newly tiled wall and repositioning the valve. But then I saw this post...

    Here are two pictures of mine, below, after applying the same workaround (i.e., using the Stop Tube to bridge the gap). I added rubber washers to the screws since they will be exposed now. Also, the shiny stuff around the Stop Tube is fresh caulk. I added the caulk because I didn't trust the weak little gasket where the trim plate meets the Stop Tube.

    I have a question, though, about the black tube (spans gap between wall trim plate and handle) referred to as the "Stop Tube Kit" in Moen's specs. According to the Moen manual, http://www.moen.com/shared/pdf/instruction_sheets/INS795C.pdf, (see step 6), the tube thingy, part B, is supposed to be used if the valve is too far back into the wall. But in this thread, it was used to fix a problem with the valve being too far out of the wall.

    1. What is this piece truly intended for?

    2. If it was meant to be used back inside the wall why would its finish match that of the handle? In other words, it certainly looks like it was designed to be seen, not hidden.

    3. Finally, many people on this thread are saying this is acceptable. When I look at the wall side of the handle piece (see 3rd picture), I certainly can't believe Moen designed it to be away from the wall in some installations. Am I missing something.
     

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  5. steveg91

    steveg91 New Member

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    I think the plumber failed to check how far out the finished product would be. (Maybe because he didn't like where you bought the product he didn't pay as much atttention to the job...)I always insist on having the finish plumbing on hand so I can verify what the finished product will look like before I install anything.
    I'm getting the feeling that these answers are backing up the "plumber" out of professional respect or because we all know how difficult some jobs can be.
    Bottom line though is that it is sticking out to far, period. As was mentioned, maybe it can be fixed by opening the wall behind it.
     
    Last edited: Jul 7, 2008
  6. hj

    hj Master Plumber

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    valve

    I'm getting the feeling that these answers are backing up the "plumber" out of professional respect or because we all know how difficult some jobs can be.

    Now you are attacking our credulity. The MANUFACTURER is the one who decides the +/- tolerance of the valve. Exceed those limits and you either cannot install the trim parts, or you have to add a "deep rough" adapter. Between the + and the -, whatever they are is an acceptable installation. I personally prefer to hug the shorter distance, even if it puts the handle out further, because, regardless of what I am told will be the finished wall, customers often decide at the last minute that a thicker tile, or a mud method installation would be a lot nicer. Sometimes, such as with a couple of mine in the last two months, they decide to use a tile that is 1" thick, and it exceeds the +/- tolerances and still has to be opened up and reset. Some manufacturers have such a tight +/- that it might as well not exist. For those the plumber has to know the EXACT wall thickness and the carpenter and tile installer MUST keep keep it to that dimension, which seldom happens.
     
  7. jadnashua

    jadnashua Retired Defense Industry Engineer xxx

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    Put another way, if the trim fits, it is proper per the manufacturer. Now, you may not like the look if it sticks out at the max, but you'd hate it if you had to tear out the wall to fix if it was too recessed to fit on.

    It is risky to get the rough-in set the minimum, as it only takes a whisker to make it not fit.
     
  8. ejacobson

    ejacobson New Member

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    I'm hoping someone will be able to answer my 3 questions in post #24.

    BTW - I showed my plumber actual pieces of the tile I planned to use and went over the plans for the 1/2" backerboard, furring strips, and vapor barrier. I also showed her the finished plumbing (e.g., trim plate, lever). She took notes in a scrappy old notebook. At a later visit she had trouble finding any of my information. As I watched her flip through scraps of paper I realized she was probably not organized enough to keep up with details.

    However, it sure would be nice if companies like Moen would put a little more flexibility into their products. The valve sure depends on a lot of other things falling perfecting into place...
     
  9. jadnashua

    jadnashua Retired Defense Industry Engineer xxx

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    You seem to be missing the point! If you asked for the fixture to be set a certain way and it wasn't, then you have a leg to stand on. If it was plumbed with the bits fitting per the allowable tolerances of the manufacturer, barring other agreed instructions, it is correct. Some bits require extremely tight tolerances of less than 1/16". Just a slight difference in thickness of thinset or a slightly warped tile and it wouldn't fit...they design most things for more tolerance than that, and that is what you got with the fixture you have.

    It is correct if the faceplate can seal and the handle can fit on using the stock bits, spacers, screws, etc.

    It can be moved, but at this point, would be extra cost, not a plumber's mistake. Often, the allowable tolerance is as much as 3/4-1".
     
  10. ejacobson

    ejacobson New Member

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    jadnashua,

    Ha! Are you saying it was my responsibility to tell my plumber to rough-in the valve so the handle could attach like it says it should in the instructions? Like Moen shows in EVERY picture? That is ridiculous. :) Shouldn't the plumber figure that out on their own. Especially after being given all the trim pieces and the installation instructions. They're the experts on this stuff.
     
  11. jadnashua

    jadnashua Retired Defense Industry Engineer xxx

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    If the handle fits, the trim covers the hole, then it was installed within the manufacturer's min/max tolerance. The fact that it looks beter if it is near the min is a matter of preference. If it was critical it be near the minimum, it should be in the written instructions, and if not, and it is within the manufacturer's tolerances, it's technically okay.
     
  12. mrhutton

    mrhutton New Member

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    Jan 21, 2009
    Problem is in Moen's spec

    To be clear - the problem with the bad aesthetics is due to Moen's incorrect instructions.

    The Moentrol valves come with a plastic disc affixed to the face of the valve, and this disc is clearly stamped "IMPORTANT! THIS SURFACE MUST BE FLUSH WITH FINISHED WALL".

    And if one abides by these instructions (i.e., setting the valve in the rough framing with the face of the disc protruding ~13/16" past the face of the studs to accomodate .5" Durock + thinset + .25" tile), then yes, the back of your finished valve handle will have roughly an inch of gap between it and the face of the escutcheon when in the "off" position (and will surely make your wife cry).

    The asthetically-correct install requires the face of the plastic disc to be roughly 3/4" *recessed* before the face of the finished wall - *not* flush with it. (or roughly flush with the face of the studs if using standard .5" rockboard and .25" tile.) This will give you about 1/4" of gap between the escutcheon and the back of the handle when in the "off" position.

    And the Moentrols are not particularly "workaroundable" when it comes to this problem - removing the stainless sleeve might buy you another 1/8", but will also introduce play, expose some of the valve's brass, as well as allow the handle to spin freely over 360 degrees.

    All you can do is reseat the valve, and if you're lucky, it just means a miserable weekend of tearing out the back side of the wall (which is hopefully just sheetrocked, if you can access it at all), then sawzawling your mount board and reseating further back instead of redoing your tile work.

    I know this because it's what my upcoming weekend entails. Thanks Moen...

    PS: I should add that my wife decided-on-and-ordered the finish/trim parts several months after I installed the valve itself, so I didn't have a viable means of testing the finished product during rough-in.
     
    Last edited: Jan 21, 2009
  13. hj

    hj Master Plumber

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    faucet

    The position of the handle is not a fixed location, otherwise Moen would not give a degree of latitude even with the plastic ground plate. If the faucet was able to be trimmed with the handle and plate, and it works, then it was installed correctly. YOU may not like it, but if it were installed incorrectly, you would like it even less.
     
  14. mrhutton

    mrhutton New Member

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    The first sentence in my previous post speaks of the "aesthetic incorrectness" of Moen's install instructions - I know my "functional install" is correct.

    I disagree with your first statement - when the Moentrol is off, the handle's distance is *fixed* relative to the escutcheon (you can still spin it side to side, but this doesn't affect the distance to the plate) - so it could have been roughed in to a tee if their instructions weren't so grossly conservative. My suspicion is that Moen did this as a "CYA" move - it's easier to tell complaining customers that they're just overly sensitive about aesthetics as opposed to having to address the major functional problem incurred when it's roughed in too shallow (and the handle can't even go on the valve).

    The short of it is, *every* Moen photo shows their handles and escutcheons spaced by 1/4"..3/8". And if one follows their install instructions to the letter, they should expect the same result - *not* a 1"..1.25" gap!
     
  15. GabeS

    GabeS Remodel Contractor

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    Chel in el,

    You definitely should have taken out that galvanized pipe. I also noticed unions that were buried in the wall. You are not supposed to bury unions in the wall. Should have been couplings.

    Anyway,

    I know that everybody is talking about tolerances. But when I have my installed I do a very simple thing. When you open the box up there is a temporary plastic attached in the shape of a circle. It says on that plastic "THIS EDGE FLUSH WITH FINISHED WALL". That's it. End of story. Doesn't matter what thickness sheetrock or tile or whatever. There is only one finished wall surface.

    The pic of the valve looks fine to me. There are no exposed unfinished parts visible. It does stick out further than other valves I've seen (kohler and delta), but still looks fine to me.
     
  16. GabeS

    GabeS Remodel Contractor

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    mrhutton,

    I reread your post more carefully after my last post.

    If what you are saying is true, then the argument has to be with Moen and not the plumber.

    I'm always told and hear it repeated a million times: whenever you are installing something or using a product, the manufactorer's directions and instructions trump all other directions and codes. If they built it, then they know how to install or use it.

    If they say this edge flush with finished wall, and then it sticks out after you follow their directions, then that's how it was meant to be. The advertising pics need to be updated or the instructions need to be updated. One or the other.

    In this case I do not think the plumber is at fault IF he followed the manufactorer's directions.
     
  17. mrhutton

    mrhutton New Member

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    > If what you are saying is true, then the argument has to be with Moen and not the plumber.

    Correct - I hope I made that clear in my previous postings.

    > I'm always told and hear it repeated a million times: whenever you are installing something or using a product, the manufactorer's directions and instructions trump all other directions and codes. If they built it, then they know how to install or use it.

    I agree - this is sensible, and is why I did what I did. However this experience has taught me to take the manufacturer's instructions "under advisement" instead of treating as an absolute.

    To restate - I see no harm in reseating the valve deeper so that the final aesthetic matches the product brochures - as long as there's *some* clearance between the back of the Moentrol's handle and the escutcheon when the valve is off, then it's functionally correct. For reasons that aren't clear to me, Moen simply opted for bad, over-conservative valve seating instructions.

    > If they say this edge flush with finished wall, and then it sticks out after you follow their directions, then that's how it was meant to be. The advertising pics need to be updated or the instructions need to be updated. One or the other.

    I agree - as it stands, their brochures are deceiving as they don't accurately depict the finish-installed product (isn't that the whole point of the photos in product brochures afterall?). If I knew it was going to look like it does, or that I'd have to do a non-trivial correction job after the fact, I'd've gone with another brand.

    > In this case I do not think the plumber is at fault IF he followed the manufactorer's directions.

    Again, I completely agree.

    But I've learned my lesson - always have the finish/trim pieces in hand during the rough-in so that you test out the depth for yourself and don't have to rely solely on the manufacturer's instructions. (Geez - so I guess this is my fault afterall and not Moen's, right? i.e., I should've known better than to trust a world-renouned manufacturer... ugh.)
     
  18. ryanwj

    ryanwj New Member

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    Moen handle

    I have a very similar Moen faucet and I followed the installation directions as best I could when I framed the tub surround and mounted the valve. The problem I had was that there were literally NO words on the installation instructions - it was all done with pictures and frankly I'm an engineer and I use drawings on a daily basis and I still never quite understood the Moen instruction sheet per the valve setback. Thus, when I was finished with the installation, I ended up with a valve handle that sticks way out from the wall and just looks bad. It is functional but not pretty. After my experience with the instruction sheet and another with the way the tub spout seats (or in my case doesn't seat) against the tub surround as a function of NPT thread engagement (see my question in another post) I will never purchase another Moen product. I know I probably should not have purchased a unit from HD, but for $150 you would think you could get a decent fixture and instructions to go with it.
     
  19. hj

    hj Master Plumber

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    Moen

    1. What is this piece truly intended for?

    It controls how far the handle rotates. Without it the handle would just spin 360 degrees.

    2. If it was meant to be used back inside the wall why would its finish match that of the handle? In other words, it certainly looks like it was designed to be seen, not hidden.

    It was NOT meant to be inside the wall. It IS intended to be seen.

    3. Finally, many people on this thread are saying this is acceptable. When I look at the wall side of the handle piece (see 3rd picture), I certainly can't believe Moen designed it to be away from the wall in some installations. Am I missing something.

    If you go back to one of your other postings, you complain about companies, like Moen, not having adjsutability. But that very +/- tolerance, which they do give, is what you are complaining about now. IF you had had a fiberglass shower, and IF the plumber had installed it as a "thin wall" installation, the handle WOULD have been the way yours is, AND it WOULD have been Moen's design location for the handle. Regardless of what their customer service "specialist" tells you.
     
  20. Karace

    Karace New Member

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    Jul 30, 2009
    No viable solutions offered, just he said, she said

    Help! Moen Banbury 82910
    I have the same problem. I have the same unit. The tolerence is very tight.
    But the more important issue now is how to fix the problem without removing tile or cutting the opposite wall apart.
    I'm looking for a wall plate that is not recessed as much in the center as the original might work great. Does any one know if Moen has such a plate to replace the original?
    I'm looking for a different handle that slides futher back over the exposed cartridge. This would require the inside of the handle to be futher reccessed. Does any one know if Moen has such a handle?
    Does Moen have options for the millions of installers that did not hit the 1/4 inch tolerance required?
    Waiting for solutions, please help.
    Does Moen have customer support that may provide part numbers for the possible solutions I have mentioned?
    Thanks
     
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