Posts tagged: leaks

What a Drip – Exercise in Futility

By , May 30, 2009 6:30 pm

So today I decided to tackle the myriad of water leaks that seemed to have cropped up all over my house. The first item was the main valve for our main bathroom’s showwer/tub. Usually drips are just a simple replacement of a few O-rings right? How hard could that be.

Uh Oh, Not a Simple Valve

The first clue that I was in trouble was when I took off the handle and valve cover and exposed the actual valve. Now this valve mixes the hot and cold water and also has the tub/shower control all in one big unit. Here’s what it looked like after I got the “beauty” cover off.

This valve looks a little more complicated than I expected

This valve looks a little more complicated than I expected

Three Trips to the Hardware Store

So first set of O-rings was for the obvious one that shot out when the whole assembly rocketed out because of water pressure. OK, replace the two spring loaded rubber things and also the big O-ring around the entire assemble. I put it together and it was still leaking.

So I took it apart, had the water rocket the valve out again and then started to take apart more pieces. That’s when I discovered still another pair of O-rings around the central armature. Here’s that piece and some of the other rubber parts I replaced.

Hidden in the main armature was 2 more little valves.

Hidden in the main armature was 2 more little rings.

OK, out on the silicon grease, re-seat and let’s try it again. You guessed it, still no love. What else was there? Although I don’t see how, I guess the tub/shower selector could have something to do with the leak? So I took that apart, went to the store and got the 2 more rings and a spring loaded rubber thing for it.

I cleaned all of it up with Lime-away and then used chrome polish to make it all look so shiny. The action was very smooth and it felt like new!

At Least it’s Pretty and Smooth

To make a long story short, it still leaks although a tiny bit now instead of a lot. I can’t for the life of me figure out what else to replace in this assembly. Anyone have an idea? The brass looks to be in good shape. I don’t see any gouges or other damage. Maybe there’s more rings? Who knows. At least it looks good.

It sure looks pretty and is smooth as when it was new.

It sure looks pretty and is smooth as when it was new.

So, after burning almost 3 hours of my day on this, my problem is still not solved. Normally I am really handy with these things. I have re-modeled my kitchen, installed extensive new plumbing, gas lines, tiled my bath, even assisted in the expansion of my house. This dumb leak has done me in. Perhaps I’ll have to call a plumber next time because goodness knows I haven’t saved any money in this exercise. Well, in the words of Fernando (Billy Crystal) – “It looks fabulous.”

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