US plumber frustrated by UK fixture Hudson Reed

Discussion in 'Plumbing Forum, Professional & DIY Advice' started by Andrew Uroskie, Feb 20, 2014.

  1. Andrew Uroskie

    Andrew Uroskie New Member

    Feb 20, 2014
    Thanks for looking at this. My wife liked this shower diverter from Hudson Reed - - didn't realize it was a UK company at first, since it was a US distributor, but it's caused a problem. First off, the thermostatic mixer/diverter didn't come with US adapters. Called the company, and they sent those from the UK. But the adapters just wind all the way into the unit - they're straight, not tighting, so there's nothing really to hold them tight. Even with teflon tape and threadlock, the joins start to drip after a few minutes. My plumber basically thinks this is just garbage and wants me to send it back and buy American. I'm about to do that, but before I do, I wanted to see if there was something easy he was missing. Is there supposed to be a gasket or something that works with UK pipes to make a proper seal? They can't possible expect lasting installation with non-clinching pipes and teflon tape?!?
  2. jadnashua

    jadnashua Retired Defense Industry Engineer xxx

    Sep 2, 2004
    Retired Systems engineer for defense industry.
    New England
    Some of those fittings work like a garden hose - it requires a gasket to make the seal. Only a tapered pipe thread uses pipe dope or tape, all straight threads rely on some other method to create the seal...the threads just provide the leverage to create it. So, you need to find a suitable gasket/washer for the end of the fitting so it can seal things - no tape or pipe dope required.
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  4. Sean Beck

    Sean Beck Plumber

    Jun 14, 2013
    Toronto, Ontario, Canada
    In the UK, we measure our pipe in (mm). The equivilent of 1/2" is 15mm, and the equivilent of 3/4" is 22mm. You probably need a 15mm to 1/2" adaptor. There is a chance that they could have sent you the wrong adaptor, although I'm pretty sure you could find somewhere in the states when you could pick one up. I know I've been able to pick up these adaptors here in Canada.
  5. wjcandee

    wjcandee Wise One

    Apr 27, 2012
    New York, NY
    My plumber basically thinks this is just garbage and wants me to send it back and buy American.

    Let me translate: "My plumber doesn't know how to install this, and isn't interested in learning, so he wants me to give him something he knows how to do."

    For what it's worth, the ad for the thing says right on it that it has 1/2" (INCH) NPT inlets and outlets. (The British instructions say that the inlets and outlets are all tapped 3/4" BSP.) The reviews say that it "went right in, no problem", "easy install", etc, and this from US customers. So I'm thinking that it may be the person doing the installing as much as anything. Here are the Installation Instructions (in British):

    They aren't detailed, but they also aren't complicated. One thing I have learned on this forum is that plumbers don't like to read instructions. Terry reads them, but many others don't. Maybe reading them would help get it installed correctly? Also, there is a phone number right there at the end. The Brits do speak an odd version of English, but it is indeed English, and it doesn't cost much to call over there, so that might be a prudent approach. Hey, we 'Merkins are having trouble installing this thing. Other 'Merkins seem to have been able to install it. I don't want to return it, so please help...

    Let us know how it works out.

    PS Depending on where you are in New York, I can recommend an excellent licensed plumbing company.
    Last edited: Feb 20, 2014
  6. Terry

    Terry Administrator Staff Member

    Aug 17, 2004
    Bothell, Washington
    It sounds like Jim has it.
    No threaded male adapters like we would normally do in the USA.
    It sounds like they want something like a faucet connector in the wall. Not something we like doing.
  7. craigpump

    craigpump In the Trades

    Apr 12, 2012
    Self employed water system tech
    It looks nice, but if it screws up, how long will it take to get parts?
  8. hj

    hj Moderator & Master Plumber Staff Member

    Aug 31, 2004
    Cave Creek, Arizona
    quote; The Brits do speak an odd version of English, but it is indeed English

    So do the "Indian" customer service representatives and you know how that goes when you make the call for help.
  9. BillTheEngineer

    BillTheEngineer Member

    Jan 19, 2011
    Hauppauge, NY
    Well BSP comes in two varieties, straight and tapered threads. you can get a NPT to work for a thread or two, but the pitches are different. If you use an epoxy pipe dope you can get it to seal, not my preferred choice.

    The better option is to get adapter from grainger or McMaster-Carr. They both have them and they are one a few buck a piece.

    There is also a thread that will fit either BSP (straight or tappered) called uni-thread. but you still need an adapter to go to npt. BSP usually seals with face seal rubber gasket.
  10. Paulypfunk

    Paulypfunk In the Trades

    Feb 26, 2010
    If it is brass could you get out your copper and torch and sweat your way to victory? I've done that a time or two when I could snugly insert 1/2 copper inside the threaded end.
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