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Thread: Shower handle sticking out too far

  1. #31
    Retired Defense Industry Engineer jadnashua's Avatar
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    Default

    If the handle fits, the trim covers the hole, then it was installed within the manufacturer's min/max tolerance. The fact that it looks beter if it is near the min is a matter of preference. If it was critical it be near the minimum, it should be in the written instructions, and if not, and it is within the manufacturer's tolerances, it's technically okay.
    Jim DeBruycker
    Important note - I'm not a pro
    Retired Defense Industry Engineer; Schluter 2.5-day Workshop Completed 2013, 2014

  2. #32

    Default Problem is in Moen's spec

    To be clear - the problem with the bad aesthetics is due to Moen's incorrect instructions.

    The Moentrol valves come with a plastic disc affixed to the face of the valve, and this disc is clearly stamped "IMPORTANT! THIS SURFACE MUST BE FLUSH WITH FINISHED WALL".

    And if one abides by these instructions (i.e., setting the valve in the rough framing with the face of the disc protruding ~13/16" past the face of the studs to accomodate .5" Durock + thinset + .25" tile), then yes, the back of your finished valve handle will have roughly an inch of gap between it and the face of the escutcheon when in the "off" position (and will surely make your wife cry).

    The asthetically-correct install requires the face of the plastic disc to be roughly 3/4" *recessed* before the face of the finished wall - *not* flush with it. (or roughly flush with the face of the studs if using standard .5" rockboard and .25" tile.) This will give you about 1/4" of gap between the escutcheon and the back of the handle when in the "off" position.

    And the Moentrols are not particularly "workaroundable" when it comes to this problem - removing the stainless sleeve might buy you another 1/8", but will also introduce play, expose some of the valve's brass, as well as allow the handle to spin freely over 360 degrees.

    All you can do is reseat the valve, and if you're lucky, it just means a miserable weekend of tearing out the back side of the wall (which is hopefully just sheetrocked, if you can access it at all), then sawzawling your mount board and reseating further back instead of redoing your tile work.

    I know this because it's what my upcoming weekend entails. Thanks Moen...

    PS: I should add that my wife decided-on-and-ordered the finish/trim parts several months after I installed the valve itself, so I didn't have a viable means of testing the finished product during rough-in.
    Last edited by mrhutton; 01-21-2009 at 09:59 PM. Reason: afterthought

  3. #33
    Moderator & Master Plumber hj's Avatar
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    Default faucet

    The position of the handle is not a fixed location, otherwise Moen would not give a degree of latitude even with the plastic ground plate. If the faucet was able to be trimmed with the handle and plate, and it works, then it was installed correctly. YOU may not like it, but if it were installed incorrectly, you would like it even less.

  4. #34

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by hj View Post
    The position of the handle is not a fixed location, otherwise Moen would not give a degree of latitude even with the plastic ground plate. If the faucet was able to be trimmed with the handle and plate, and it works, then it was installed correctly. YOU may not like it, but if it were installed incorrectly, you would like it even less.
    The first sentence in my previous post speaks of the "aesthetic incorrectness" of Moen's install instructions - I know my "functional install" is correct.

    I disagree with your first statement - when the Moentrol is off, the handle's distance is *fixed* relative to the escutcheon (you can still spin it side to side, but this doesn't affect the distance to the plate) - so it could have been roughed in to a tee if their instructions weren't so grossly conservative. My suspicion is that Moen did this as a "CYA" move - it's easier to tell complaining customers that they're just overly sensitive about aesthetics as opposed to having to address the major functional problem incurred when it's roughed in too shallow (and the handle can't even go on the valve).

    The short of it is, *every* Moen photo shows their handles and escutcheons spaced by 1/4"..3/8". And if one follows their install instructions to the letter, they should expect the same result - *not* a 1"..1.25" gap!

  5. #35
    Remodel Contractor GabeS's Avatar
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    Chel in el,

    You definitely should have taken out that galvanized pipe. I also noticed unions that were buried in the wall. You are not supposed to bury unions in the wall. Should have been couplings.

    Anyway,

    I know that everybody is talking about tolerances. But when I have my installed I do a very simple thing. When you open the box up there is a temporary plastic attached in the shape of a circle. It says on that plastic "THIS EDGE FLUSH WITH FINISHED WALL". That's it. End of story. Doesn't matter what thickness sheetrock or tile or whatever. There is only one finished wall surface.

    The pic of the valve looks fine to me. There are no exposed unfinished parts visible. It does stick out further than other valves I've seen (kohler and delta), but still looks fine to me.
    Gabe

    Don't follow my advice, I only know a thing or two about a thing or two.

  6. #36
    Remodel Contractor GabeS's Avatar
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    mrhutton,

    I reread your post more carefully after my last post.

    If what you are saying is true, then the argument has to be with Moen and not the plumber.

    I'm always told and hear it repeated a million times: whenever you are installing something or using a product, the manufactorer's directions and instructions trump all other directions and codes. If they built it, then they know how to install or use it.

    If they say this edge flush with finished wall, and then it sticks out after you follow their directions, then that's how it was meant to be. The advertising pics need to be updated or the instructions need to be updated. One or the other.

    In this case I do not think the plumber is at fault IF he followed the manufactorer's directions.
    Gabe

    Don't follow my advice, I only know a thing or two about a thing or two.

  7. #37

    Default

    > If what you are saying is true, then the argument has to be with Moen and not the plumber.

    Correct - I hope I made that clear in my previous postings.

    > I'm always told and hear it repeated a million times: whenever you are installing something or using a product, the manufactorer's directions and instructions trump all other directions and codes. If they built it, then they know how to install or use it.

    I agree - this is sensible, and is why I did what I did. However this experience has taught me to take the manufacturer's instructions "under advisement" instead of treating as an absolute.

    To restate - I see no harm in reseating the valve deeper so that the final aesthetic matches the product brochures - as long as there's *some* clearance between the back of the Moentrol's handle and the escutcheon when the valve is off, then it's functionally correct. For reasons that aren't clear to me, Moen simply opted for bad, over-conservative valve seating instructions.

    > If they say this edge flush with finished wall, and then it sticks out after you follow their directions, then that's how it was meant to be. The advertising pics need to be updated or the instructions need to be updated. One or the other.

    I agree - as it stands, their brochures are deceiving as they don't accurately depict the finish-installed product (isn't that the whole point of the photos in product brochures afterall?). If I knew it was going to look like it does, or that I'd have to do a non-trivial correction job after the fact, I'd've gone with another brand.

    > In this case I do not think the plumber is at fault IF he followed the manufactorer's directions.

    Again, I completely agree.

    But I've learned my lesson - always have the finish/trim pieces in hand during the rough-in so that you test out the depth for yourself and don't have to rely solely on the manufacturer's instructions. (Geez - so I guess this is my fault afterall and not Moen's, right? i.e., I should've known better than to trust a world-renouned manufacturer... ugh.)

  8. #38
    DIY Junior Member ryanwj's Avatar
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    Default Moen handle

    I have a very similar Moen faucet and I followed the installation directions as best I could when I framed the tub surround and mounted the valve. The problem I had was that there were literally NO words on the installation instructions - it was all done with pictures and frankly I'm an engineer and I use drawings on a daily basis and I still never quite understood the Moen instruction sheet per the valve setback. Thus, when I was finished with the installation, I ended up with a valve handle that sticks way out from the wall and just looks bad. It is functional but not pretty. After my experience with the instruction sheet and another with the way the tub spout seats (or in my case doesn't seat) against the tub surround as a function of NPT thread engagement (see my question in another post) I will never purchase another Moen product. I know I probably should not have purchased a unit from HD, but for $150 you would think you could get a decent fixture and instructions to go with it.

  9. #39
    Moderator & Master Plumber hj's Avatar
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    Default Moen

    1. What is this piece truly intended for?

    It controls how far the handle rotates. Without it the handle would just spin 360 degrees.

    2. If it was meant to be used back inside the wall why would its finish match that of the handle? In other words, it certainly looks like it was designed to be seen, not hidden.

    It was NOT meant to be inside the wall. It IS intended to be seen.

    3. Finally, many people on this thread are saying this is acceptable. When I look at the wall side of the handle piece (see 3rd picture), I certainly can't believe Moen designed it to be away from the wall in some installations. Am I missing something.

    If you go back to one of your other postings, you complain about companies, like Moen, not having adjsutability. But that very +/- tolerance, which they do give, is what you are complaining about now. IF you had had a fiberglass shower, and IF the plumber had installed it as a "thin wall" installation, the handle WOULD have been the way yours is, AND it WOULD have been Moen's design location for the handle. Regardless of what their customer service "specialist" tells you.

  10. #40

    Default No viable solutions offered, just he said, she said

    Help! Moen Banbury 82910
    I have the same problem. I have the same unit. The tolerence is very tight.
    But the more important issue now is how to fix the problem without removing tile or cutting the opposite wall apart.
    I'm looking for a wall plate that is not recessed as much in the center as the original might work great. Does any one know if Moen has such a plate to replace the original?
    I'm looking for a different handle that slides futher back over the exposed cartridge. This would require the inside of the handle to be futher reccessed. Does any one know if Moen has such a handle?
    Does Moen have options for the millions of installers that did not hit the 1/4 inch tolerance required?
    Waiting for solutions, please help.
    Does Moen have customer support that may provide part numbers for the possible solutions I have mentioned?
    Thanks

  11. #41
    DIY Junior Member Davebutch's Avatar
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    Default Me, too.

    Quote Originally Posted by mrhutton View Post
    And if one abides by these instructions (i.e., setting the valve in the rough framing with the face of the disc protruding ~13/16" past the face of the studs to accomodate .5" Durock + thinset + .25" tile), then yes, the back of your finished valve handle will have roughly an inch of gap between it and the face of the escutcheon when in the "off" position (and will surely make your wife cry).
    It would have made me cry, too! Thank God I noticed this thread before I put up the wallboard around my shower valve. I installed the valve (Moen) per the spec, but dry-checked it with a piece of sheetrock and tile after installing the handle, and it did stick out much too far. I will recess the valve further. Thanks again!

  12. #42
    Retired Defense Industry Engineer jadnashua's Avatar
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    Default

    There are NO shorter trims, only extensions if the valve is mounted in too far. To recess it, you'll need to move the valve.
    Jim DeBruycker
    Important note - I'm not a pro
    Retired Defense Industry Engineer; Schluter 2.5-day Workshop Completed 2013, 2014

  13. #43

    Default Easy Solution?

    I have the same problem, and after much yelling and swearing, I think I found an easy solution.

    You can buy a piece called an ESCUTCHEON EXTENSION (the one I bought is made by Moen). Do a Google search for the term and you'll find some distributors (the piece I found is called a Moen Escutcheon Extension 162 - Chrome).

    The Extension piece fits between the finished wall and the escutcheon plate, and pushes the escutcheon plate 0.5" from the wall. When installed, it should just look like the escutcheon plate is extra thick, and you will have swallowed up 0.5" of space between the handle and the plate.

    I saw that it came in 4 different finishes, and the one I found fits all 7" Moen single-handles.

    Once I recieve the piece and install it, I'll post a photo.

  14. #44
    Moderator & Master Plumber hj's Avatar
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    Default Moen

    That Moen valve is EXACTLY the way I would have installed it, i.e., about halfway between the maximum and minimum settings. That way I am protected against you making the wall a lot thicker, OR a lot thinner than you told me it would be. I also like it that way so the trim plate does not have to be removed to replace the core. (A side benefit is that the screws reach the threads without having to labor trying to get them started.)

  15. #45
    DIY Junior Member cmccowan's Avatar
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    Default

    Add me to the list of victims of the Moen shower kit from Home Depot (82910 Banburry in my case). The walls were out when it was installed and I now have it covered with drywall and tile. The gap is at least an inch.

    I think the take home message is please avoid this product.

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