Best Way to Identify the Correct Shower Faucet and Cartridge

There used to be a standardization of faucets, which had similar internal parts but a variety of exterior styles and appearances. Multiple suppliers were available for the replacement parts, making it easy to fix. Almost every brand today has its own specifications and parts.

The Best Way to Identify the Correct Shower Faucet and Cartridge

Identifying the Brand/Manufacturer of Your Shower Faucet

Splines, valves, and stems now vary. Therefore, before you can repair your faucet, you must identify its¬†brand. Disassembling and repairing something is easier if you know what you’re working with. This process can be started by:

  1. Searching for the brand.
  2. An identification chart is used to identify faucet cartridges.

Shower Faucet

What Kind of Shower Faucet Do I Have?

Unless the faucet is marked, it will need to be disassembled. The handle is the first thing to look at. Using cartridges, the length can be measured or the spline can be counted.

How to Identify the Cartridge Brand

Identifying the cartridge brand can also save you money. Count the spline and measure their length. By comparing these data with a reference, you can determine if they are accurate.

An Identification Chart for Faucet (Valve/Stem) Cartridges

  1. Measure the cartridge using a caliper or ruler. The area between the seat and the spline should be measured from the base to the tip.
  2. Your cartridge’s length tier (which ranges from 1 to 12) should be taken into account.
  3. On page B-5, you will find a broach chart that will help you identify the broach pattern.
  4. On each page, you can find the length tier of your stem (as indicated by the highlighting).
  5. Compare the cartridge photos with the matching broach pattern. Make sure the information is accurate.
  6. Once you have taken note of the part numbers, you will need to prepare a list of parts.

How to Take Apart a Shower Faucet

Step 1

Turning off the water supply is a wise idea. The hot and cold cut-off valves can be found by locating the cold and hot cut-off valves. The main water valve for the house is located outside the house or building, so you will have to locate it if you plan on fixing the shower.

Step 2

You can remove the handle with an Allen wrench set (all screwdriver sets work well). Handles determine what type of screwdriver you need:

  • You will need an Allen wrench if you are working on a single-lever handle.
  • Flat-head screwdrivers can be used to remove a plastic cover from crystal handles. With a Phillips screwdriver, you can access the stem.
  • Take the decorative cap or plastic cover off the faucet if it has two handles (pry it off with a Phillips screwdriver).

Step 3

Pull the stem and handle out after removing the screws – they usually come out together. If you want to fully disengage the stem, you may have to wiggle it as you pull it out.

Figure Out Where Your Faucet Is Leaking or Broken

Identifying the problem at hand is the next step. Leaks are commonly caused by worn out rubber O-rings or washers (usually due to wear and tear). The replacement of rubber washers is a cheap and simple process.

You can also take the parts to a plumbing shop or a hardware store. Upon identifying the type and failure of the part, they will be able to repair your faucet. Replacements can also be handled by them.


Additional Tips for Repairing Shower Faucets

  • Keeping warranty paperwork will help you qualify for free replacement parts if your faucet is under warranty.
  • Make sure you know where your brand supplies parts: Brands such as Pfister don’t sell parts in neighborhood hardware stores. Check Amazon¬†instead, as many parts can be found there and shipping takes as little as one to three days.
  • You should keep in mind that some rubber seats, O-rings, and springs may not be interchangeable. Brands may look similar, but they may not be the same. There are many similarities between Delta valve seats and Pfister’s, but the diameters are different, resulting in leaks.

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