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Thread: leaking shower arm...

  1. #1
    DIY Senior Member chris fox's Avatar
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    Default leaking shower arm...

    I installed a 12" ceiling mount shower arm but having problems with it leaking.
    Its a standard 1/2 IPS connection but on one end the threads are tapered and is about 2". The reason for the length is the escutcheon is supposed to screw on all the way to the end of the thread area so no threads are exposed, then a nut.
    So if I screw this on to my connection a good majority of the threads arent used since its tapered. I thought it was bottoming out so I cut off a good inch of tapered thread but it still leaks. I am using teflon tape and a little pipe dope over the threads.
    Where am I going wrong on this?

    Also, I had to use brass fittings to extend the length from my drop elbow. The reason, I extended the copper line over the 2x4 rafter and soldered a standard drop elbow. This extension over the ceiling is supported by hardwood which is screwed into 2 rafters. In order to have a straight pipe coming out of the ceiling I had to add approx. 2.5" threaded brass fitting and a coupler to gain this length to be right abouve the sheetrock. I did this to get the most of the 12 arm out of the ceiling. However, I gained potential problems of 3 additional areas to leak. The only leak I am mentioning is at the 12" shower arm and not the fittings.

    Chris

  2. #2
    DIY Senior Member chris fox's Avatar
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    anyone?
    Maybe my question is too confusing?

  3. #3

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    The only thing that I can offer you is that on two occaisions I've installed a moen shower faucet head that had very tapered treads. No matter what I did it would leak. Called Moen both times they sent me out a new arm and problem was solved.

    So perhaps you have a bad piece of pipe? Maybe the fitting in the ceiling is the problem.

    The last part of your post was somewhat confusing but I followed.

    Tom

  4. #4
    Retired Defense Industry Engineer jadnashua's Avatar
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    More and more of the stuff found in the stores is made in China. They can make some good stuff, but their quality control is not known for being great. Might be worth just trying another one.
    Jim DeBruycker
    Important note - I'm not a pro
    Retired Defense Industry Engineer; Schluter 2.5-day Workshop Completed 2013, 2014

  5. #5
    Homeowner geniescience's Avatar
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    tapered male threads? Someone will know where these are to be used, but i think they are not appropriate in this application.

    Straight threads take teflon tape. Tapered are a special thing, for a special reason, but i don't know enough to describe it.

    david

  6. #6
    Retired Defense Industry Engineer jadnashua's Avatar
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    Most plumbing threads are tapered. Only tapered threads need teflon tape or pipe dope.
    Jim DeBruycker
    Important note - I'm not a pro
    Retired Defense Industry Engineer; Schluter 2.5-day Workshop Completed 2013, 2014

  7. #7
    Commercial Plumber markts30's Avatar
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    Any thread referred to as "iron pipe" thread (most plumbing fittings - MIPs/FIPs) are tapered and the threads are self-sealing (with a little help of tape or dope...)
    Straight threads are usually not encountered in fittings but can be found in some fixtures (faucet nuts for "mushroom" style supplies etc). These joints usually rely on a mating surface / ground joint or a gasket to seal.
    Compression fittings are also straight threads and just require a bit of lubrication for make-up.

  8. #8
    DIY Senior Member chris fox's Avatar
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    I was able to find a standard 1/2 IPS connection in the finish I need.
    thanks

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