View Full Version : Shower controls don't fit w/ new tub

03-13-2009, 02:43 AM

I just installed a sterling tub in my bathroom and the old shower valve does not stick enough for me to get the trim back on.

First, a little background. We bought our house two years ago. The previous owners had done some shoddy plumbing work in the bathroom. The old shower valve was leaking, and knowing that I would eventually want to replace the entire tub/surround, I installed a Delta shower control. There is no access panel because the vanity is built into an alcove next to the shower, so I had to cut open the wall to access the valve and install the new one.

Now, I have installed the tub and surround only to realize that the new surround wall is much thicker(in terms of distance from the studs), and of course I did not check to see if it would fit beforehand. The surround wall has been clipped in and I can't see how to get it off to fix this. I really don't want to break through the wall on the other side again, and I am not sure that it would help anyway.

Is there anything that I can do? Thanks in advance.

03-13-2009, 06:17 AM
Did your trim come with any additional parts┐ They will sometimes have stem extenders.

03-13-2009, 06:48 AM
If you still have the instructions and literature, see if they offer a 'deep-wall' extension kit. If not, you'll have to move the wall or the valve. You might call the surround's manufacturer to see if there is an easy way to get the wall panel off without breaking things, otherwise, your third option is to remove the vanity and go in through that wall. The easiest is if the manufacturer has an extension kit.

The min/max spec on the valve is there for a reason!

03-13-2009, 07:46 AM
Thanks guys. I have contacted Delta to see if they have an extension. I understand that the valve should be installed as a "deep wall", but the valve was originally installed when the tub surround was not "deep wall".

03-13-2009, 04:02 PM
It's easy to overlook when remodeling...most people replace the valve when doing that, and then consider where to install it based on the new configuration. You only need the deep wall kit if it isn't installed per the instructions for your application...it's basically useful for remodeling or errors.

03-13-2009, 05:36 PM
Thanks Jim, if I can't find an extension I will have reopen the wall behind the vanity. I have also figured out how to get the shower wall if I have to. There is a clip on the back of the wall connected to the tub. I just need to push it back to separate the surround wall.

03-13-2009, 06:59 PM
I have never seen or heard of a Delta deep wall extension, but they may have one.

03-14-2009, 05:18 AM
Another question, can I replace the copper lines going the the valve with PEX? My main concern for moving the valve was having to solder behind the shower wall. I don't mind opening the wall next to the vanity if it's going to solve my problem.

03-14-2009, 06:11 AM
Saying is it fine to replace with PEX is as general and across the board as saying can I replace my old tv with a new one┐ Yeah, you can but what system of PEX should be the real question. I can only recommend Wirsbo and to use that you might need a plumber who has the tools unless you want to invest in a expander tool. The other PEX systems are dropping like flies.

03-14-2009, 09:04 AM
Are these any good?

SharkBite Fittings

I have been reading mostly good things about these. Some people don't seem to like them, but never mention anything specific.

03-14-2009, 05:24 PM
They were good enough for this guy:


03-14-2009, 07:20 PM
Sharkbites are okay, but like anything, you have to prep and install them properly. They rely on a couple of 0-rings to seal, and some SS grippers to hold things together. If you don't prep the pipe end properly (bevel the edges, keep the end cut straight), you can damage the o-rings, and it can leak. If you don't seat it fully, you won't engage all of the system, and it can leak or come apart. Installed correctly, they're fine, but expensive. They wouldn't be my first choice except for special circumstances, since a soldered connection is so inexpensive. They have their place.