FAQ – Bathroom

Bathtub

How Do You Maintain Your Bathtub ?

Here are some things to keep in mind about bathtub maintenance. One, tubs need to be cleaned properly. Without regular cleaning with the proper soaptubs can develop mold stains.  You may want to apply a coat of wax to the freshly cleaned bathtub. Inspect your tub and tile regularly for cracks and repair them in a timely fashion.  Silicon caulk is useful in preventing water damage.

How To Maintain Sink Faucet ?

The tub spout on a shower and tub combo is a very useful part of the bathing process.  Many are choosing to replace older faucets with newer ones.  At times the faucets break. The most common reason for this is stepping. People will rest their foot on the faucet when shaving their legs.To do maintenance, shut off the supply water then remove the faucet.  New models can be installed using the existing plumbing. To remove the handle-simply turn the screws counter clockwise.

How To Remove A Bathtub Drain

There are a few different bathtub drain designs. The “toe touch” can be activated by pressing on it with your toe. The “push and pull” is activated via a small knob in the center.There are also models that utilize a lift and turn action and others you flip a stopper on a toggle.The one we are most familiar with is the “press-flow”, a ring shaped seal and a stopper that screw seals.  The “pop-up” style is also common. There is an arm attached to a lever or handle on the overflow face plate that pops the drain open.

How To Fix A Leaky Bathtub Faucet ?

When faucets leak the most obvious culprit are the washers.  They are made out of rubber. As the rubber ages it becomes brittle and looses its ability to seal. In the initial stages simply shutting the handle a bit more tightly will suffice, but eventually the washers need to be replaced.  First be sure to shut the supply water off. Then remove the valve handles.  You will need to disassemble the valve body and remove the old seals.  Install the new ones and reassemble the body and handles.  Turn the water supply back on and you’re good to go.

How to Replace Whirlpool Jacuzzi Tub ?

The most common problem is simply a clogged succession strainer. Unscrew the cover of the intake screen. Then you can use a brush to clean out the debris. It’s helpful to use a little powdered soap as well.  After rinsing thoroughly, replace the cover. Replacing a damaged jet is a bit more involved.  At times you even need a special tool to remove them without damaging the unit. It is important to locate an exact replacement as these tubs are custom designed with all the parts fitting together exactly.  The final item that you may need to replace is the heating element. This process is similar to replacing a hot water tank heating element.

How To Fix A Shower Diverter Valve ?

Most of the bathtubs out there double as a shower. The primary way this functionality is accomplished is via the diverted valve. There is a valve that can force water that would normally funnel through the faucet spout up and out of your shower head.  To replace the seals on such a valve or replace the valve completely is not too hard.  First cover the bathtub drain with a rag as you don’t want to loose the small screws down the drain.  Turn off the supply water and disassemble the valve.  After replacing the seals, reassemble and test the diverted valve to ensure proper operation.

How To Fix A Tub Drain Stopper ?

There is plumbing that connects the drain to the overflow vent space of the bathtub.  Start by unscrewing the the cover plate, that gives you access to the linkage.  Take hold of the tip of the lever firmly and pull out the the linkage. If there is no brass plunger at the end of it, be sure to retrieve it from the vent opening.  Reattach the plunger and pinch it with pliers to ensure a secure fit.  Once this is done, replace the screws and reattach the overflow plate. Finally, be sure to exercise the drain plunger linkage a few times to ensure proper operation.

How To Repair Bathtub Drain ?

Repairing bathtub drains is truly an art. For the pop-up style, try wiggling the drain assembly to remove the plug.  Another way to fix the drain is to remove the cover plate from the overflow and jostle the linkage. At times soap scum, dead skin and hair can plug the mechanism.  Mix vinegar and baking soda in a cup then pour it down the drain to loosen things up.Another technique is lubricant.  Lubricate the linkage to help loosen the drain plug.  The linkage may also need to be adjusted to perform more effectively.  Be careful not to over-compress the drain.

How To Install A Bathtub Flange ?

This is the part of the bathtub drain everyone sees.  Some plumbers call it the “basket”.  There is a special tool you’ll need to install the flange.  This wrench is called a Drain Key or Smart Dumbell.  This wrench fits down into the bracing within the drain flange allowing you to screw it in.  First clean the area to be sure it is free from debris.  Next mold a gasket out of plumbers putty and press it around the base.  Finally, screw the flange in place being careful not to scratch it up.  Clean up any plumbers putty that may have squeezed out while you where tightening the flange.

How To Install Bathtub Spout?

Now let’s install the faucet or water spout for your bathtub. Determine the type of spout you want to install. There are slip-on spouts and screw-on models. If your plumbing is a simple copper line from the wall you can use a slip-on spout.  Black pipe and nipples require the threaded type.  Depending on what you chose to use for the backing walls of your tub, the piping may need to be customized to be the right length.  Simple replace the nipples with longer ones or cut the copper down to size.

How To Install A Bathtub?

We all love to take baths. Installing a bathtub takes preparation. The first stage is the subfloor that holds your tub. Tear out the old floor boards and install multiple layers of water resistant plywood. Be sure to secure these to the structure and layer them with caulk.  Next cut a U shaped hole at one end for the drain.It’s best to put the drain plumbing together before you set the tub.  Now that the drainage plumbing is in place, pour bathtub securing mortar down over the plywood and set the tub into it.

 

Shower

How To Do Fiberglass Showers ?

The first step to any bathroom remodel is removing the old shower. The first step is to take off all the fixtures: shower head, hot and cold water supply fixtures.  The shower head is screwed to a brass fitting attached to the supporting wall.  Once these have been removed, The fiberglass sheet must be dismantled.  There’s no pretty way to do this just take a hammer and hole saw and get to work.  The next step is to repair any water damage that has been done to the structure of the house. New plywood should be installed including a six to eight inch lip around the base.  Now the new shower installation can begin.

How To Repair Shower Valve ?

To start with, turn off the water supply and drain the water pressure for the shower valve. Now, remove the valve handle and the decorative cover plate.  This gives you access to the valve body that sits inside the wall.  Next, remove the plastic inner piece of the valve, known as the cartridge.  Then change the rubber seals for the valve.  Install the replacement cartridge.  Place the new O ring over the unit and snug the locking nut down. Press the decorative cover plate back over the valve.  Last reinstall the valve handle and test to ensure the new valve parts are in proper working order.

How To Repair Shower Faucets ?

Faucets leak for two reasons.  At times it’s simply worn out rubber seals.  Sometimes the seat that the seal rests on becomes damaged.  If you are going to go to the trouble of disassembling the valve, just replace both of them.  First, shut off the water supply to the valve.  Then, disassemble the valve removing the seals.  Inspect the valve seats and replace them if they are cracked or grooved.  At times they can be renewed by grinding the surface smooth again.  More often they should just be replaced.Put the valve back together and test to ensure proper operation.

How To Install Shower Heads ?

New shower heads are the biggest bang for your buck when it comes to bathroom upgrades.  In three simple steps you can be ready to enjoy the fruits of your labors.  Step one, choose whether or not to change the shower arm.  That is the angled piece of pipe between the wall and the shower head itself. Step two, prepare the threads of your plumbing fixtures.  These units all thread on and off.  When replacing, be sure to wrap the threads in teflon plumbers’ tape. Last step, thread on the new shower head and take a fresh shower to test the unit.

How To Install Shower Valves ?

Shower valve installation requires some skill. The first step is to prepare the copper water pipes.  Cut them to fit the valve, cleaning and sandingthe oxidation off the tip of each pipe about half an inch. Remove the plastics insides of the shower mixing valve so that they don’t melt when you solder the unit in place. Be sure to sand and clean the female sockets of the valve that the copper pipes fit into. It’s important for both to be prepared for the lead solder to seal between them.  Once the unit cools enough for the touch work, reinstall the plastic inner workings on the mixing valve. Attach the face plate and test the unit.

How To Install Shower Drain ?

First of all, it’s important to install the correct drain type for your shower pan. Tiled showers will use a different drain style than a fiberglass pan. The basic types are: tile and grout, compression drains, and glued on drains. Purchase the correct one for your application.  Stand alone showers require a two inch drain line as they can easily flood. This is not necessary for bathtub shower combination units. If you are converting from a bathtub to a standing shower, the pipe size may need to be changed before the base is set to fit the drain unit.

How To Install Shower Pans ?

Showers are installed from the ground up. You start by installing the shower pan. These are used as the base for the shower and collect the water channeling it towards the drain. These are typically designed from fiberglass or acrylic materials. The size and structure may be a little different from brand to brand but the install process is basically the same. The first step is to measure the space you want the pan to rest into. The pan should fit well against each of the shower walls. Next you need to seal the installation space and level the ground where the pan will sit.  Be sure the area is dry, then install the pan with some caulk to keep it in place.

 

Toilet

How to Remove Toilet Tank ?

When the tank starts to leak, here’s how to replace it.  Shut off the supply water to the toilet and drain the tank by flushing it. There are two blots that attach the tank to the bowl, remove these.  Now, lift the tank off the bowl. When installing the replacement tank be sure to use rubber washers.  If metal bolts put pressure on the porcelain you will crack your new tank.  Reverse the order for installation and turn the supply water back on. Be sure to test your install to make sure it doesn’t leak.

How to Replace Old Toilet Flange ?

Old toilet flanges tend to become brittle and eventually break resulting in a rock and pivot effect. First, turn off the water supply to the toilet and unscrew the water hoses so you can remove the toilet. Clean away the old wax seal from off the flange and inspect it to be sure this is the source of the problem. Now, exchange the broken flange plate with a new one. Line up the closet bolts with a new wax seal placed between them. Now, set the toilet in place and tighten the nuts down onto the closet bolts and your done.  Don’t forget to turn the supply water back on.

How to Replace Toilet Seat ?

The first step is choosing the new toilet seat.  They come in different colors and sizes.  Some are soft closing which is nice for families with children. To remove the old seat simply pop off the decorative tabs that cover the two hinge bolts. Now unscrew the plastic nuts from underneath. Next it’s a good idea to clean the toilet. Line up the new bolts to meet the new toilets seat. Once in place, attach the seat to the bowl by screwing the plastic nuts down on the two bolts.

How To Fix Toilet Seat?

Wiggly toilet seats can be stressful. You never know if they are just going to break and send you tumbling toward the bathtub. You don’t always need a new toilet seat. Rubber washer bushings can be installed between the hinge nuts and the toilet bowl securing your seat. Simply remove the plastic nuts and install the two rubber washer bushings. You can also purchase seat stabilizers.These are little feet you can attach to the underside of the seat.

How to Install Toilet Flange ?

Rocking toilet? It’s probably a broken toilet flange. Here’s how to fix it: First, turn off the water supply to the toilet and unscrew the water hoses so you can remove the toilet. Clean away the old wax seal from off the flange and inspect it to be sure this is the source of the problem. Now, exchange the broken flange plate with a new one. Line up the closet bolts with a new wax seal placed between them.  Now, set the toilet in place and tighten the nuts down onto the closet bolts.  Then hook the supply water lines back up and test out your installation.

How to Install Toilet?

Good news! You don’t need power tools to do this job. Some may consider that to be bad news.  Either way, here’s what you’ll need. First of all, you’ll need to choose a toilet.  Some are wall mounted others mount right to the bathroom floor.  Second, purchase the wax ring that the toilet will sit on. They come in different thicknesses to help level the toilet bowl.  Buy a set of closet bolts to mount your toilet securely to the floor, water line hoses, adjustable wrench, screwdriver and level.Now mount the bolts to the face ring, place the saw seal between the bolts and set your toilet.

 

Bathroom Sink or Vanity

How To Do Bathroom Maintenance ?

Here are some maintenance tips for your bathroom faucets and drains.  Avoid over tightening the water valves on your bathroom sink and shower.  If they leak, replace the seals.Once a week pour a mixture or warm water and bleach down the sink drain.  The sink and bathtub should be cleaned at least once a week. Once mold spores start to grow, the work becomes much more involved. The oils from our skin and the moisturizers in our products create the perfect bed for mold to grow in the grout. Use a mild non-abrasive detergent to cut the oil.  For tough stains and mold, utilize a mixture of baking soda and vinegar. When your sink drains slow, remove the P-trap and clean out any blockages.  It’s also wise to keep a strainer over the shower drain to prevent hair from clogging the drain.

How To Remove Bathroom Faucets ?

The challenge starts with getting the old faucet out. Old plumbing fixtures tend to settle in.  They become corroded and need a little push.  Once you have removed the old faucets a drain assembly, installing a new one is easy.  You’ll need an adjustable wrench and a pair of channel lock pliers.

Place an old towel and shallow bucket under the sink to catch any water.  Shut off the water supply and disassemble the plumbing under the sink.  This includes the hot and cold water lines.  Now use a putty knife to pry the old faucet away from the sink.  Now you can install the new faucet.As for the pop-up valve, mold a ring from plumbers putty and smash the chrome ring into place.  Put the plumbing under the sink together and you’re good to go.

How To Replace Bathroom Sink ?

Old sinks not only go out of style, they can become stained and develop small cracks that harbor bacteria.  At some point all sinks need to be upgraded and replaced.To do this, you must first shut off all water supply lines and drain the back pressure.  Then undo the P-trap in your drainage plumbing by loosening the ring-nut and letting the excess water run out into a bucket.  Older plumbing that has corroded tends to deform or break when you go to disassemble it.  It’s a good idea to just replace the plumbing at this time. Next undo the water lines.

To separate the sink from the support wall, use a knife to cut the sealant attached to the backsplash.  Now that this is done you can lift the old sink off its supports. Sinks generally hang from the wall they are attached to. The connection points need to be solid. Sinks themselves are very heavy and we often lean, press, even sit on them.  Be sure to use a stud finder and anchor your screws or bolds firmly.Set the new sink in place and then install your plumbing.  Finally, re-caulk the backsplash and turn the supply water back on.

How to Fix A Pop-up Drain Valve ?

The pop-up drain is a simple machine.  It utilizes a system of linkages and levers to accomplish its purpose. This being the case, it’s not hard to troubleshoot a dysfunctional stopper if you know how they work.They use a lifting switch or knob to actuatemechanical motion. These are conveniently located near the sink faucet.  This lever actuates a lifting bar that joins itself to the “clevis”. The clevis has holes that allow you to adjust the fulcrum of the linkage.  The flat and slotted clevis operates a pivot ball-and-rod assembly that moves the stopper up or allows it to rest in the valve body. If any of these elements fail to work correctly, your pop-up drain may not open or fair to close properly.

How to Repair Leaky Single-Handle Faucet ?

The first step is to locate the source of the leak.  If the water is coming form the handle it means that there are bad parts inside the valve that need care. If the water is coming out from the base it indicates that there are bad seals where the plumbing connects.  If indeed the valve needs new parts, disassemble the valve by first removing he handle.  There are small seals inside that can be removed with a pencil and replaced.  There are two O-ring seals that will need to be greased and replaced as well. As you disassemble the valve, place the pieces on a towel in the correct order so that reassembly is easier.

How to Repair Bathroom Sink Drains ?

When the plumbing under your bathroom sink starts to leak, it may just need a bit of tightening. Try tightening the leaking nut about half a turn. If this doesn’t work, you must disassemble the pipes.  If the rubber washers are not seated right, no amount of tightening will fix the problem, and you may crack a fitting.  Disassemble the configuration and replace the gaskets and rubber seals.  Use plumbers putty for the drain connection. Inspect the parts you remove to ensure they are not damaged or cracked. If the parts are ok, you shouldn’t need to purchase new ones. It’s most likely the seals that are the problem.

How to Install Pop-up Drains ?

Installing a pop-up drain in your new sink is a nice feature.  You can stop the water allowing it to pool in the basin for washing your face or shaving.  Loosen the P-trap and remove the old plumbing.  Now prepare the new pop-up drain base plumbing with pipe sealant on thethreads.  After putting the new pop-up drain in place, prepare the chrome ring that sits above the sink basin.  Form a ring of plumbers putty for it to rest in.  After the pieces are all in place, assemble the linkage that is used to actuate the pop-up valve.

How To Install Vanity ?

Bathrooms are often designed around the vanity.  This where we spend much of our bathroom time preparing for the day.  When replacing the sink and vanity, it’s helpful to find one the same size and design. The first step is to shut off the hot and cold water supply.  Next, loosen the slip-nut on the P-trap attached to the drain of your sink and disconnect the water lines as well.  Have a bucket handy to catch the water.  Now, cut the caulk along the backsplash to free the vanity from the wall.  You are now ready to pry the counter top loose.  Some are screwed down while others are just caulked into place.  Once you have removed the top and sink basin, you can unscrew the framing that heals the vanity to the wall.  The new vanity can be installed in the reverse order.