Plumbers Downriver

Basin Wrench, Regular or Telescoping

If you plan on replacing your kitchen or bathroom faucet, the basin wrench is a must have plumbing tool as normally there isn't much space underneath the sink to use regular pliers or wrenches. Regular pliers and wrenches are also not big or wide enough for most nuts, fittings, or joints. I recommend buying the telescoping basin wrench in order to get some length adjustment. Spending a few extra bucks would go a long way in avoiding some frustration and difficulty in using the tool to remove or tighten nuts, fittings, joints, or water supply lines.

How to Replace a Leaky Shower Spout and Diverter Valve

Using Allen Wrench Set and Pipe Wrench

Our shower spout and diverter valve has been leaking and I finally had some time to work on it over the Columbus Day holiday. Shower spouts and diverter valves generally come in two types--one is the threaded model and the other one is the slip-on model. If there is a hole and/or an allen screw at the bottom, the spout is a slip-on model. If it doesn't have the allen screw, then it is a threaded model. Our old Kohler spout happens to be a slip-on model.

After getting my bag of my allen wrench set, I found the correct size the fits and loosen the allen screw. I made sure to close the drain beforehand so that in the event I drop something, it would not go in the drain. I then pulled off the spout and took it as a sample at the nearby Lowe's Store. I was able to find a suitable Chrome substitute thought not the White or brushed nickel model I was looking for. With the new one on hand, I cleaned the pipe with a fine grit sandpaper to ensure there would be no burrs to damage the seals. I put a little bit of shampoo on the pipe as a lubricant prior to installing the new spout. I tightened the allen screw and then when everything was secured, tested the operation. After determining there was no leak, I sealed the new spout with bathroom caulk/sealer.

If you happen to have the threaded model, you'll need a pipe wrench or Grip Lock pliers, screwdriver, teflon tape, and a rag. You can watch the following You Tube tutorial before proceeding to ensure you have an idea what to do.

1. Using the rag and the pipe wrench, grip the spout and turn counter-clockwise. You can also use a screwdriver on the spout to turn counter-clockwise. If you are replacing the spout, then you don't really care if you damage the old one.

2. If you have the new replacement threaded spout on hand, then you're almost ready for the installation.

3. Remove any old teflon tape and wrap new teflon tape clockwise. This will prevent any unwanted leak.

4. Install the new spout by threading it clockwise by hand until it sits flush on the tile. If you need to use the pipe wrench, ensure you wrap the new spout with a tower or rag to ensure you don't scratch or damage it.

5. Test the operation and check for leak.

6. Once OK, seal the new spout with bathroom caulk or sealer.

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