Plumbing choices · · PAGE 4.
November 24, 2013: The shower in the master
bedroom has one OLD valve that controls water temperature. Like the other shower,
this one has multiple shower heads and the valves to go with them. Most of the
shower heads are clogged with lime deposits and do not work. They also stick out
from the front and rear walls of the shower room. This old commercial shower valve
is a Safetymix model popular in the 1950's and 1960's and was popular in hotels for its
long life. This one has corrosion problems with the face plate. The Delta
valve below it turns on the water at the mid-level shower head and you rotate that knob
left and right to control how much water flow comes from the front or rear head if it
worked. I removed all the shower heads but the one in front above this valve.
I will get it off some day and replace the short pipe and cap it off. The only
shower head we use is near the top of this "front wall" as you enter the shower
door located left of these valves.
This is the view of the bottom of the Symmons valve that controls only
the water temperature to all three sets of shower heads.
This is the only shower control I use to turn the water on or off to the top
shower head in the front of the shower. The white hoses are connected to a shower
wand that has multiple water patterns, pulsed massage and regular flow. Turning the
knob seen here right or left selects front or rear water. Since all the other
shower heads were clogged, I removed them and capped off the pipes. We now leave
this knob turned fully counter-clockwise for maximum water flow to the only remaining
shower head that works via the wand.
Here is the old Symmons cover plate after removal. The old steel screw
that held it in place was rusted solid and you can see where the cover plate broke as I
pulled it off with a claw hammer. The aluminum was flaking off inside from years of
At the heart of this control is this classic valve that still does what it
should, control the water temperature. The original "O-ring"inside this
valve to shut off the water was removed when the six shower heads were installed when the
house was built in 1972. The three other Delta controls stopped the water flow and
diverted it to front or rear shower heads, high, mid, and low on the walls. That
"glamour ring sleeve" had a steel nut holding it in place, but it also crumbled
during removal due to corrosion. I cleaned up the sleeve and it is still in use
Here is the valve behind the decorative sleeve seen above. That brass
knob at the front was corroded in place and the plastic control know broke when I tried to
There is the rusted screw still firmly in the body of valve.
The decorative sleeve is off and the threads on the valve have been cleaned.
I tried a spray to cut the rust on the screw below, hoping to remove it but it
sheared off when I turned it with a pair of pliers. I will have to cut it off with
my Dremel tool and drill out the center of it to re-tap the hole. The screw
that goes in there will hold the new faceplate to the wall. I cleaned off the green
oxide before final assembly.
December 20, 2013: The old and new parts are
spread out next to the sink. I finally used my Dremel tool to cut the brass knob off
the original valve spindle. Notice the hole in the center of the plastic
handle. The two halves of that brass knob were inside the plastic at the center of
that handle. The new handle is all metal and the faceplate is larger than the
original, but they are corrosion-resistant. The new handle fits perfectly to the
spline on the end the valve spindle. The new stuff was ordered online from a
plumbing supply company in Myrtle Beach, South Carolina. The bag of
"O-rings" and the metal parts came from a very old plumbing shop on US 1 here in
Melbourne, Florida. They had an identical old valve in their shop that had never
been in service. I took their valve apart to examine the inside of it before I
worked on this one. The wife is happy I have the parts, but does not want me to be
messing with the plumbing until after the Christmas and New Year holidays are over and
visiting family members go back home.
January 11, 2014: I had to trim the
faceplate of the Delta valve below the new faceplate. My tin snips did the job
easily on the thin metal of that Delta face plate. The large faceplate is held in
place by a stainless steel flat head screw and Tinnerman washer for flat head screws.
Those two dark slits on the wall in between tiles are where the the grout did not
get properly installed. Any water that could get in the slits would not get into the
wall behind the tiles.
Here is the view of the front wall showing the one remaining OLD shower head
that is still clogged. I could not separate if from the pipe in the wall at this
time. I took the pipe out of the wall, put it in a bench vise, heated the shower
head with a propane torch, and it still would come apart. I will have to buy a new
short piece of pipe and cap it off like the others in this shower.
April 22, 2014: Here is another minor
plumbing issue. The garbage disposal finally quit after 9 years (made in 2005).
It was full of RUST and the motor would HUM but not turn. A quick trip to
Lowe's found the exact same model on the shelf. The new one is on the left. I
have to move the power cord from the old one to the new one before installing this one
under the sink in the kitchen. Those quick change collars make this an easy
attachment to the sink. When we first moved in, I wrote down the model numbers of
the refrigerator, range, microwave oven, and the dish washer. I was able to download
manuals for each from the internet. While I was getting the model numbers from each
item, I checked the date of manufacture and found them to be from 2002, 2003, and 2005.
The glass cook top electric range with convection oven had a hand-written label
showing 6-23-2003. The Whirlpool side-by-side refrigerator / freezer was made in
October 2002. The microwave oven under the cabinet was made in October 2005.
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