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Thread: Shower handles falling off

  1. #1

    Default Shower handles falling off

    I recently had an American Standard 3-handle shower valve installed (model Colony, 3375). Almost immediately, the handles came off. They attach to the stem with a small hex set screw (“handle screw” in the diagram). I think it is a design flaw, as I can’t get them to stay on. Any suggestions on how to remedy this? Thanks.
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  2. #2
    Retired Defense Industry Engineer jadnashua's Avatar
    Join Date
    Sep 2004
    New England


    A couple of things I can think of right off:
    * is the bottom of the set screw flat or pointed?
    * does the screw feel sloppy in the hole, or solid?
    * did you use any thread locking compound on the set screw when you installed it?
    * does the handle ever feel solid or does it rock on the shaft?

    I, when you first install it, it is tight, then loosens over a few days, then thread locking compound (LocTite blue has worked for me, the red can seal it so tight you can't get it out once it cures) might keep the setscrew tight. If the setscrew doesn't have a point on the end and the shaft is round without a flat milled on it, then I'd buy one with a point. Sounds like bad design to me...

    I recently replaced some door handles,and they came with two set screws...one to hold it together during shipping, and a second one, supplied with thread locking compound, for when you installed it. A real professional package - I was impressed, anyways. (Baldwin, in oiled bronze finish, if you were interested).
    Jim DeBruycker
    Important note - I'm not a pro
    Retired Defense Industry Engineer; Schluter 2.5-day Workshop Completed 2013, 2014

  3. #3


    Thanks for the tips. The screw is flat. It is also tiny (size 5/36). I will try thread locking compound. I called American Standard, and they said there were no updates on file for this product. Since all three handles are coming off, they suggested the plumber may have roughed it in too deep. But I don’t think this is the case.

  4. #4


    Close all drains and cover them with something so nothing can fall down and into the drain. Next remove the allen screws totally. Push the handles fully on and then screw in the allen key. If the allen key goes completely in and no backpressure as if it were seating right and then it goes loose while still on the allen key then the roughin is too deep or the handles are not installed correctly.

    my first guess is exactly what the manufacturer stated .. It sounds like it was roughed in too deep. Measure to the tip of the adaptor and then measure to where the allen screw is. Is the adaptor measurement longer than the other measurement . If not the rough in is too deep.
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