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Old 12-11-2008, 12:19 PM   #1
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Replace a shower valve with no access panel


I need to replace an old Delta single handle "crystal ball" style shower valve with a new Price Pfister valve. Trouble is, I have no access to back of shower due to another bathroom located directly behind this one.

I realize that I will probably have to cut into the fiberglass shower to make the hole around the valve bigger, but could use suggestions to make the job easier.

Here is a pic of the hole with existing vave and new replacement valve. And a pic of the cover plate
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Old 12-11-2008, 03:11 PM   #2
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Replace a shower valve with no access panel


You can get larger estucheon plates from a pro plumbing supply shop for this type of tub side installation.
Good Luck!
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Old 12-11-2008, 03:21 PM   #3
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Replace a shower valve with no access panel


Thanks for the reply Mike!

Actually, I think I need to cut the original hole just a little bigger to access the copper pipes running to the old valve, unsolder the old valve, then solder the pipes to the new valve. I just want someone to tell me that I will have enough room to solder four pipes through that hole.

I guess I just need reassurance that i won't screw up cutting the hole larger and have to buy a new shower surround.
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Old 12-11-2008, 04:31 PM   #4
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Replace a shower valve with no access panel


my plumbing skills are'nt the greatest but it sure looks like you are going to need some room to do the soldering, just to get the old stuff off, I'll let someone else step in but to me, its going to have to be a big opening.
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Old 12-11-2008, 04:58 PM   #5
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Replace a shower valve with no access panel


I think that you might be getting false hopes about how easy this will be to do. You still have to make the cuts, and flux and solder. Not easily done, even for the most seasoned plumbers.
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Old 12-11-2008, 05:06 PM   #6
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Replace a shower valve with no access panel


A PLUMBER WOULD USE A "SMITTY" REPAIR
PLATE TO DO THIS KIND OF CHANGE OUT AND EVEN THEN IT'S VERY TIGHT WORKING SPACE !
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Old 12-11-2008, 05:15 PM   #7
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Replace a shower valve with no access panel


I don't solder behind closed walls unless I have lots of access. To much danger of burning a house down.

More than likely you will have to remove the shower and do it that way.

In the past I have seen showers that were cut out and a fiberglass cover put over the opening. One was real ugly with lots of silicon and the other was an excellent job with fiberglass molding around the insert. Both were caused by frozen and broken pipes so my guess was that a larger area had to be cut out.
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Old 12-11-2008, 06:09 PM   #8
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Replace a shower valve with no access panel


Thanks for the replies. After looking at it again, I decided to take the easy way out and just buy a Delta kit that will work with the existing valve housing in the wall.

Thanks again for the advise!
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Old 12-11-2008, 06:24 PM   #9
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Replace a shower valve with no access panel


Quote:
Originally Posted by ALfromSTL View Post
Thanks for the replies. After looking at it again, I decided to take the easy way out and just buy a Delta kit that will work with the existing valve housing in the wall.

Thanks again for the advise!
Good call.
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Old 12-11-2008, 08:52 PM   #10
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Replace a shower valve with no access panel


I don't know if the hole is big enough to work in but you don't need to soldier. If you can cut the old one out use shark bite to install the new one. I used it recently to replace a shower fixture and it works great. They slide on and your done.
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Old 12-11-2008, 09:18 PM   #11
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Replace a shower valve with no access panel


Quote:
Originally Posted by MikeyP View Post
I don't know if the hole is big enough to work in but you don't need to soldier. If you can cut the old one out use shark bite to install the new one. I used it recently to replace a shower fixture and it works great. They slide on and your done.
In order to use a Sharkbite you have to have clean copper/pvc/pex and have to have at least an inch on either end.

I seriously doubt that they could be cut back, cleaned, and then installed in such a small hole. Remember that you would have to get your hand in there to press the connections in the Sharkbite.

The pipes are also connected to the studs and maybe even through a hole in the stud.
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Old 12-12-2008, 09:56 AM   #12
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Replace a shower valve with no access panel


The pictures may also be a little deceiving. Although the newer valve housing seems to be about the same size as the older one already in the wall, it is a little smaller. Having said that though, if you look at the new echelon plate, I would have maybe an extra 1/2 inch on either side to cut the hole in the wall larger for "easier" access.

With so many variables (including setting the house on fire ), I decided to just get a new Delta kit off fleabay last night.

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