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Whether it is for functional or aesthetic reasons, you may need to replace a shower head once in a while.

And when the time to change a shower head comes, it may initially seem slightly confusing. After all, knowing how to affix the new fixture without it falling out or leaking is important. And there is nothing more irksome than a leaking or poorly functioning shower head on a weekday morning.

Removing and replacing an old shower head with a new one is simple. It will take you a handful of minutes at most to complete the process and prepare it for daily usage. This small upgrade can enhance your daily shower experience quite a bit.

So, follow this simple guide to change a shower head without requiring any professional help!

Changing A Shower Head In 7 Easy Steps

Changing Shower Handles

Step 1: Gather Tools And Supplies

Don’t worry if you don’t have a dedicated tool kit. The supplies and tools needed to change a shower head can be found in any household or purchased from a local hardware or department store.

To change a shower head, you will need the following:

  • A replacement shower head
  • Plumber’s tape or thread tape
  • Soft cloth or soft-jaw pliers
  • An old toothbrush or wire brush
  • Step stool or ladder
  • Adjustable wrench

Step 2: Turn Off The Water Supply

Firstly, you should turn the water supply off before proceeding further to save water and keep the installation simple. You needn’t turn off the water supply to the entire house, just the bathroom the shower head is in.

Should you neglect to do so, the moment you take the existing shower head off, you will be greeted by a stream of high-pressure water. This is both a hassle to deal with and a potential hazard, depending on the location of the shower head.

Step 3: Remove The Old Shower Head

Wrap a soft cloth around the pipe in the wall, grab the shower head tightly and turn it counterclockwise to unscrew it. If the life of your shower head has run short, it may be corroded and require that you use an adjustable wrench instead.

Note that you must be careful while turning the fixture, as excessive force may damage the shower head pipe.

Step 4: Clean Up The Fixture Pipe

Next, remove excess dirt or mineral deposits in the fixture pipe coming through the wall. Over the course of a few years, the pipe may rust and become weaker, which can spell trouble for the new shower head.

Use an old toothbrush or a wire brush to clean up the pipe in the wall, then dry it with a cloth. Alternatively, you can use a damp paper towel for the same.

Step 5: Apply Plumber’s Tape

Creating a waterproof seal is one of the most crucial parts of shower head installation. You can use thread-sealing Teflon tape that wraps around the connecting pipe.

Start near the end of the pipe and wrap it around clockwise until you reach the end of the pipe threads. This ensures that your thread tape doesn’t slip off over time.

Here’s a handy tip to keep the seal as watertight as possible: use a single long piece of thread-sealing tape for this step. That way, there will be no breaks in the thread-sealing tape and no chance of water leaking through it.

Step 6: Install The New Shower Head

Installing the replacement shower head is as easy as removing the old one. Simply hand-screw the shower head on and carefully tighten it until it can’t turn anymore. As with the old shower head, be sure not to apply too much force, or else the threaded end of the pipe may snap off.

Additionally, feel free to look up the product’s instructions for a detailed look at any model-specific requirements. For instance, a handheld shower head may require a dedicated wall-mounted holder for the flexible shower hose and the shower head itself.

While the installation process remains broadly the same across different shower head types, following the instructions can make your showering experience trouble-free and smooth.

Step 7: Test For Leaks And Water Pressure

Finally, it’s time to turn the fixture on and test for any leaks. Resume the water supply and check if the shower head pipe has any water leaks or not.

Next, step aside and turn both the cold and hot water on at maximum settings. If you spot leaks, you may need to remove the shower head and apply sufficient tape to the pipe. You may also want to examine the rubber seal in the fixture to see if it lines up properly or not.

Adjust as necessary to maintain a steady water flow and ensure the shower head attaches properly to the pipe. Once all the leaks have been eliminated, your new shower head is ready to be used.

How To Choose A New Shower Head

Shower heads can be broadly segregated into four types based on the shower head type, water pressure, spray pattern and aesthetics.

Removing Shower Head Replacing

1. Shower Head Type

You can choose between several different types of shower heads, with the most common being:

  • Wall-mounted and single-headed shower heads
  • Handheld shower heads
  • Ceiling shower heads
  • Double shower heads

Based on your requirement, feel free to choose from these options.

2. Water Pressure

Shower heads require a certain level of water pressure to function properly. If your home frequently faces water pressure issues, you may want to pick a shower head that doesn’t require much to work.

Ideally, look at water pressure requirements to land somewhere between 40 and 60 PSI (per square inch).

3. Spray Pattern

The manner in which the shower head sprays water matters a lot in creating a great shower experience. You may choose between the following spray patterns:

  • Wide spray
  • Rinse spray
  • Targeted spray
  • Pulsating spray

This is largely predicated on your personal preferences, so feel free to experiment and find out what kind of shower pattern you prefer.

4. The Aesthetics

When it comes to aesthetics, you should pick a shower head that matches the looks of your bathroom. And since shower heads last for a long time, you can also try to pick a design that fits various bathroom styles. After all, if you don’t need to replace your existing shower head even after a bathroom renovation, that’s some money well saved.

Changing Your Showerhead DIY Style!

Changing your existing showerhead on your own is quite easy and very rarely requires additional help. It doesn’t take long to execute and requires very basic tools to complete, making the process as convenient and painless as possible.

But there will be those rare times when you need professional help to take care of the problem. You will need a licensed plumber to address the issue of a broken shower head pipe threading to a leaky shower arm.

So, if you ever need plumbing assistance, feel free to give us a call. Our team of experts will be able to assist you with all things shower heads, from repairs and installations to maintenance.


Ashley Woolf

Ashley Woolf

Find them on their website: Woolf Plumbing & Gas, Facebook and LinkedIn.

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