Supposedly DIY Plumbing Issue

Jem

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I have a single handle tub/shower. It has a faucet with a toggle to change water to shower head. Then there's that handle. One where you turn the handle counterclockwise to turn on the water, the further you go the hotter the water. Then there's the shower head (hand held - not fixed).
Similar set up as this....but older and uglier...LOL! Ours is an Moen.
1593375653779.png


Well......It leaks.

My step dad came over to help me and take a look at it so we knew what type of replacement kit we should get, in hopes that we don't have to open up the wall to replace the valve. We just can't without doing big demo...and I'm broke.

So step one, remove the handle....got it, although it was tough to pull off.

And now...that's as far as we could get.

We couldn't for the life of us get the handle adapter off. It's old and metal and yes some corrosion and calcium buildup. I tried CLR, some serious cleaner that's even more powerful than CLR, hammers and levers and grips and...and...and...It's stuck forever.

I've heard of the cartridge being difficult...be we couldn't even get that far!!!

So my Step Dad basically said the only thing we can do at this point is cut the darn thing off, and hope the rest of the guts follow suit.

Has anyone else ever tried to remove a stuck metal handle adapter, what worked for you?

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For reference of what I can't seem to get off....
I got the screw out, then the handle off, then the next screw....and that's it.
The handle adapter "supposedly" just pulls off....
Am I missing something? Do the old metal ones (now they are plastic) need to be unscrewed, or are they supposed to pull off as well?

So, we ended up just putting the handle back on, so we could still use the shower until we can replace the whole shower kit, it all needs to be replaced anyway, I just wasn't ready to do it all yet, we thought we could just fix what was leaking for now. But if I have to replace the whole handle mechanism...I may as well replace the whole thing (plate/cover, faucet and shower head too).
 

FeebysOwner

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I have changed out a cartridge in my shower stall that was leaking. But, once I took the face plate off, the cartridge was exposed, so I am not sure about the part you are talking about. However, I did consult with a long standing mom&pop plumbing store who I bought a cartridge puller from in order to get the cartridge itself out. Do you have a local plumbing shop you can talk to? If they are like the one I went to, they will help, I am sure. If no local shop like that, I would advise trying an Ace Hardware, if you have those, they have also been very helpful to me in the past.
 
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Jem

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My Step Dad has this doohickey that would be used as a cartridge puller if it is also stuck...which I'm sure it is, but like I said, we couldn't even get past the handle adapter. Even the face plate can't come off until the handle adapter comes off.
My Step Dad is one of those old guys who knows everything about fixing stuff, and he also knows current building codes and such so I know he knows what he's doing. It's just he was dumbfounded on how stuck the part was, we were both sweating as we tried to get it.
Our local Home Hardware stores are pretty good and I think we have an Ace near by...but I think the jigsaw (or whatever saw cuts metal) might be the next step! LOL!

I think it's time I really look into investing in a water softener. :rolleyes2: A lot of my plumbing is messed and super calcified.
 

susanm9006

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Did you try looking on YouTube to see if there were any videos that show what to do? One thing so do know about old plumbing is that you want to do everything gently because old galvanized can be brittle.

Just checked for you - a number of videos on removing stubborn Moen cartridges.
 
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Jem

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Just checked for you - a number of videos on removing stubborn Moen cartridges.
It's not the cartridge, it's the handle adapter. I've seen several of the videos about the cartridges. And in all these videos the adapter comes off and is made of plastic. Nothing about a metal handle adapter being stuck. The only video I saw similar to my case was one where the guy just cut the whole thing off, because even his handle was stuck on.
And we do have copper pipes, so that's good.
 

FeebysOwner

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This likely doesn't apply, as I am sure your step dad would know to look, but on the handle I had there was a hidden 'lid' on the face of the handle that popped off with a flat head screw driver (or a thin knife blade). Underneath that was a screw to undo in order to remove the handle itself. Just in case...

I see from your diagram that there is a screw in the handle, but I thought your actual version might be a bit different from the diagram??
 
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Jem

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Great thought, but nope. We were able to access the screw in the handle and remove it. We also were able to access and remove the only screw in the adapter as well. The diagram is accurate, except that now adapters are made of plastic and not metal.
She's just not budging! :lol:
 

susanm9006

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One more thing you probably have thought about or done - did you call Moen? They were very helpful when we were trying to fix one of their faucets and I didn’t know what parts the broken bits of plastic were.
 

Willowy

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Soak everything in WD-40 and leave it overnight?

You know the old joke---if it moves and it shouldn't, use duct tape. If it doesn't move and it should, use WD-40 :D.
 

IndyJones

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Where do you think?
Are you able to stick a flat screwdriver under it and just pry it off? Maybe it's rusted on.

Definitely invest in a water softener. I had a water heater leak from not having a softener.
 
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