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ohman 09-14-2012 03:53 AM

How to remove soldered cap on my bathroom shower flange?
Dear all, thanks for helping out in advance...

I have a old bath that we are trying to get the shower function back. Here is what the bath looks like now (notice the top of the picture there is a shower flange which was painted...):

It looks like a copper cap was soldered. I have tried to use some tools to remove the cap but failed. Here is a zoomed in photo for the flange:

My questions:
1. What tool (or procedure) should I use to remove the cap so that I can test it out to see if the pipes still work?

2. If it is not a shower flange, can we still somehow install shower pipes without damage the current tiles??


ohman 09-14-2012 03:55 AM

By the way, found this relevant article online but no conclusive answer:

biggles 09-14-2012 06:47 AM

did the wrench scrape the paint off to show copper put a magnet to might consider drilling a hole in the cap and threading in a fitting to take a shower head pipe.a plumber would open up that area around the cap and swet in a new fitting so you could screw in a pipe out with a chrome plate cover...i would bet that line is active when you turn that middle selection knob diverting the water

allthumbsdiy 09-14-2012 07:00 AM

If I had to guess, that has a short galvanized steel (or brass) nipple with a cap, screwed on to the drop ear elbow (like this -; also look at step 5 picture from this link

If that was me, I would;

1. Make sure the water is turned off

2. take a sharp utility knife and score around it to break any paint and/or caulk seal(s)

3. use a pair of large adjustable pliers (or small pipe wrench) and gently try to turn it counter-clockwise

4. if that doesn't work, make the opening slightly larger with a utility knife so that I can squirt in some WD-40 and try again

5. if that doesn't work, the nipple might be soldered on to the drop ear elbow. in that case, I would have to heat the fitting with my torch to melt the solder. To do that, I would need to make a large square cutout of the sheetrock to gain some working room.

Good luck

Alan 09-14-2012 10:08 AM


Originally Posted by biggles (Post 1009607)
you might consider drilling a hole in the cap and threading in a fitting to take a shower head pipe.



It almost looks like a pvc cap to me, but the image is not clear enough to tell if it's that, or a really nice paint job.

pwgsx 09-14-2012 11:00 AM

Scrape it and let us know what material is under the paint.

I would cut a inch or 2 all around the cap and see what you got behind the wall and go from there. Then when finished buy a sheetrock hole repair square, drill a center hole and slip it over the pipe and make it flush on the wall, mud, sand and paint and you will never know.

joed 09-14-2012 11:11 AM

I don't see any pictures.

ohman 09-15-2012 01:08 AM

Problem solved. I will post some pictures later. We hired a professional plumber and he used a pair of large adjustable pliers and was able to open it up easily.. and yes there was water coming out!! Thanks for everyone's help.. That only took the plumber about 3 minutes to open it up and he charged $75.. oh boy...

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