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A problem with my old house plumbing

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posted on Aug, 19 2018 @ 06:46 PM
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I have an old house .over 60 years old..the front bathroom has a shower tub combo...3 knobs hot cold and the one in the middle makes the water come out the tub or the shower depending on how you turn it.

a several months ago..the hot was not turning off all the way and had a little drip..got bigger..bigger...had a handy man come out he replace the stuff that screws into the wall but past that..I have old original pipes..he said there is a tiny rough spot (a burr) that rubs against every time we turn the hot off and on....he fixed it no leak...now it is dripping AGAIN...I tried to turn off my water at the main outside the house and it doesn't quite cut the water off all the way.

I undid the screw took off the handle. unscrewed the cover and unscrewed that part that the big cover screws onto..plastic in the front and metal at the end that screws into the wall

I don't see anything wrong......anybody have any suggestions??? oh there is a shutoff on the toilet and the sink but no separate shut off for the shower/tub water...of course it is the hot water side...so it is running up my gas bil;l as well as my water bill

I also see a handle down at the other end where the meter is in the ground but I am afraid to try and turn it and end up breaking it....I tried to move it but nothing happened...don't know if we can even move it.

Is it bad for my water heater when I turn off the water for a while??? someone told me it was bad and the water heater could blow up
edit on 19-8-2018 by research100 because: added info

edit on 19-8-2018 by research100 because: spelling




posted on Aug, 19 2018 @ 06:49 PM
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a reply to: research100


Sounds like you may need a whole new temperature blend valve, but with your house being 60 + years old it is probably copper and will need to be sweated in



posted on Aug, 19 2018 @ 06:55 PM
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a reply to: research100

You need a rent a husband with just a smidgen of common sense.



posted on Aug, 19 2018 @ 06:59 PM
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a reply to: CharlesT

yeah sadly my husband of almost 40 years passed away a few years ago, he was really handy we fixed things around the house together......



posted on Aug, 19 2018 @ 07:03 PM
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a reply to: research100

You should ask him if he replaced the entire stem or just the washers that's on it...if he did not replace the whole stem/cartrige I would replace it myself...

You need just a couple of tools to do it and it's surprisingly easy. There are probably only two tools you need that you might not have to replace the stem and it should be less than 40 bucks...

You will definitely need to shut the water off at the main in your house...if you go to your hot water heater you will one line that is cold going into it...shut that line off too...open all the faucets and let the water run out to ensure that there is not back pressure on the faucet you are working on...

Remove it and take it to the hardware store to they can match it...

Check to see on the old stem if the new washer is torn in anyway...I suspect he just replaced the washer...I would also look to see how hot your water heater is as far as it's setting..this setting is locate at the bottom or middle on a small square box...pull the cover off and see what it's set at for the temp...too hot wears out washers quicker...you can go online to determine what temp is good for you...

Whoops one of the other ATS mentioned that you should shut the water there is usually a red box at the top of the water heater on some conduit pipe..turn it to the off position...this video may also help..Second Link

This should help...Link
edit on 19-8-2018 by chrismarco because: (no reason given)

edit on 19-8-2018 by chrismarco because: (no reason given)



YOU CAN DO IT!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
edit on 19-8-2018 by chrismarco because: (no reason given)



posted on Aug, 19 2018 @ 07:07 PM
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I would get a shark bite valve the size of your pipe and install it somewhere after the main, you can install with water flowing if you install with valve open, I do this all the time with propress valves which is kinda the same thing.

Once you get a good shut off installed then you can work on your problem you can work on it without water spraying.



posted on Aug, 19 2018 @ 07:11 PM
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a reply to: research100

Sorry to hear that. Men tend to have a better knack for things such as this. As one poster said, the house is probably plumbed with copper and it sounds as if the entire tub faucet assembly probably needs replaced. I have well water that is very corrosive to copper and had to replace my entire plumbing with pvc some years ago because of reacurring problems at mostly anywhere in the system. I suggest getting professional advice, from more than one source, to see if you may be money ahead to have the entire house re-plumbed.

As long as the hot water tank is not drained below the heating elements, if electric, there is no problem there. Just turn off the breaker and make sure it is refilled before you turn the breaker back on. It won't blow up. If it's gas, turn off the gas.

Edit: I have electric hot water and installed a timer that lets me control when and how long my tank heats. It comes on twice a day for 1 hour and I have hot water all day. I'm single and don't require much. It will save you $$ over time.
edit on 19-8-2018 by CharlesT because: (no reason given)



posted on Aug, 19 2018 @ 07:12 PM
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a reply to: research100

You shouldn't turn off the cold water inlet to the hot water heater without turning off the hot water heater itself; if you turn off the cold water and use the hot water, the heating element could burn up. Anytime you turn off the cold water to the hot water heater, you should also turn off the power to the hot water heater until those repairs are made.

a reply to: chrismarco

Agree. Likely the problem will be solved with a replacement of the entire valve assembly. That may be difficult to access, but it older houses, often there is an access panel on the other side of the wall from the shower/tub. Unlike replacing the valve stems, replacement of the valve assembly is best left to those that have done it before.



posted on Aug, 19 2018 @ 07:21 PM
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Licensed plumber here. It sounds like a price Pfister? If so, there is a part called the seat that should screw out with a seat wrench. It's what you what the washer spins against. If you can't remove it, there is a tool to grind it smooth. Otherwise you'll have to keep replacing the washer. Godspeed and good luck
edit on 19-8-2018 by Starhooker because: (no reason given)



posted on Aug, 19 2018 @ 07:26 PM
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a reply to: Starhooker

Shuttle off the main house or unit valve. No need to do anything with the water heater.



posted on Aug, 19 2018 @ 07:34 PM
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a reply to: chrismarco

he replaced the stem got a set for a good price and since this side went..figured it was just a matter of time before the cold went as well and did both



posted on Aug, 19 2018 @ 07:42 PM
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originally posted by: Starhooker
Licensed plumber here. It sounds like a price Pfister? If so, there is a part called the seat that should screw out with a seat wrench. It's what you what the washer spins against. If you can't remove it, there is a tool to grind it smooth. Otherwise you'll have to keep replacing the washer. Godspeed and good luck


I believe you are correct....the fixture was so old we couldn't see the screw head anymorre he had to break off the plastic knob handle there was one part he could not replace though... a metal part screws into the wall and long stem sticks out the front end is plastic with threads the cover goes on that then the handle and the screw..those were all replaced.




edit on 19-8-2018 by research100 because: clarified was was replaced



posted on Aug, 19 2018 @ 07:45 PM
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originally posted by: chrismarco
a reply to: research100

You should ask him if he replaced the entire stem or just the washers that's on it...if he did not replace the whole stem/cartrige I would replace it myself...

You need just a couple of tools to do it and it's surprisingly easy. There are probably only two tools you need that you might not have to replace the stem and it should be less than 40 bucks...

You will definitely need to shut the water off at the main in your house...if you go to your hot water heater you will one line that is cold going into it...shut that line off too...open all the faucets and let the water run out to ensure that there is not back pressure on the faucet you are working on...

Remove it and take it to the hardware store to they can match it...

Check to see on the old stem if the new washer is torn in anyway...I suspect he just replaced the washer...I would also look to see how hot your water heater is as far as it's setting..this setting is locate at the bottom or middle on a small square box...pull the cover off and see what it's set at for the temp...too hot wears out washers quicker...you can go online to determine what temp is good for you...

Whoops one of the other ATS mentioned that you should shut the water there is usually a red box at the top of the water heater on some conduit pipe..turn it to the off position...this video may also help..Second Link



This should help...Link


YOU CAN DO IT!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!


that is a good idea for the time being if I can shut it off at the water heater for some hours every day until I can get it fixed I want to thank everyone for their suggestions!!



posted on Aug, 19 2018 @ 07:51 PM
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I agree w the plumber above. Sounds like the seat has
a burr on it. If you have a heat on demand water heater, or electric water heater, shut off power to it before water to house is shut off, so they don't risk damage, especial w a HOD unit.

Just crack the valves and release the water by opening the lowest and highest valve in the house at the same time to drain lines faster after the supply line coming into the house is off.

If you unscrew the handle screw, pop it off, the cover on the valve unscrews, comes off and you can usually just pull the valve out, you will be sble to see the seat the valve seals against. That is what needs replaced.

I'd try and pull the seat and take seat and valve to a plumbing supply place for a match.


Post some pics of the valve seat, when you do it, and I can tell you how to remove it, some can come out with a big flathead screwdriver in a pinch, if it can jamb PARTIALLY into the hole through the seat. It could be a clip too, just need to pull the valve to see.

Good luck!




posted on Aug, 19 2018 @ 09:41 PM
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a reply to: research100

I feel your pain. My house is over 140 years old and recently had to do a $4k repair job. I learned that from inside my house to the street I have copper, pvc, cast iron and clay pipes. Nightmare.



posted on Aug, 19 2018 @ 10:45 PM
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There should be a hot water shutoff that shuts off all hot water from the Hot water heater. And or one on the cold water line to the hot water heater, they are usually right above.

Whoa, Chrismarco seems to have explained it well. I can't think of anything to add. I did have a little problem visualizing what steps you had done on the faucet, I had to reread it many times, it wasn't sounding like you were taking out the valve where the gasket is. I am guessing it is not a modern unit with a cartridge, it sounds like it was not replaced. It sounds like the guy ground the brass seat.



posted on Aug, 19 2018 @ 11:20 PM
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If you live in the sf Bay area, I can hook you up.




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