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Plumbing 101: Replacing A Bathtub Spout

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Because bathtub spouts rarely require maintenance or replacement, many people find themselves at a loss when something does go wrong. The good news is that a faulty bathtub spout generally doesn't require you to hire a professional plumber--that is, so long as you're armed with the right information. If you've got a bathtub spout that needs to be replaced, read on. This article will present an overview of the entire process.

Why Bathtub Spouts Fail

Most bathtub spouts fail for one of three main reasons. A bad diverter--that little knob you pull upward to redirect the water to the shower head--is likely the most common and easy to diagnose. If you can no longer get water to go to the shower head, regardless of what position the diverter is in, you can be sure you're dealing with a bad diverter.

Bathtub spouts are also susceptible to corrosion. Often the screw threads inside of the spout become rusty and break apart, leading to leaks from the base of the spout. This problem also manifests as a loose or wiggly spout. The third way a bathtub spout can fail doesn't have to do with hardware, but rather with aesthetics. Over time, flaking or corroded chrome can easily become unsightly enough to warrant replacement.

Means Of Attachment

There are two distinct styles of bathtub spouts: slip-on spouts and screw-on spouts. As its name would imply, a slip-on spout slides easily into position, where it is then locked into place by means of a set screw. This screw is most commonly located on the bottom of the spout. To tighten or loosen it, you will need a hex key of the appropriate size.

If you can't find a set screw on your spout then what you've got is a screw-on spout. Once again, this means of attachment of this sort of spout is fairly well described by its name: the threaded spout is screwed into place by hand. Be aware that corrosion may make it difficult to remove a screw-on spout. If you're having trouble, give the base of the spout a generous squirt of penetrating lubricant.

Purchasing A Replacement Spout

Slip-on spouts are simple to replace. All you need to do is remove your current spout and take it with you when shopping for a new one at the home improvement store. Your main priority is to find a replacement of roughly the same length. Screw-on spouts, on the other hand, can present a bit more of a difficulty. Unless the length is just the same, you may not be able thread the spout on all the way. Be sure to measure the spout carefully to avoid this problem. Contact a business, such as Plumbing Now bathroom plumbing, for more information.