I have a very old shower stall. It has the original single-handle mixing valve, which constantly leaks. I have not been able to find a plumber who wants to fix this valve.
The last plumber who looked at it said that parts are no longer available and that it needs to be replaced with a new mixing valve. To do this, will I have to open up the wall? Any other repair ideas I can explore to solve this issue?
A shower mixing valve is the main component in a shower’s plumbing system. But just like any broken component, sometimes it may need to be replaced to solve the problem.
You mentioned that more than one plumber has looked at the valve and that no one has tried to fix it. This does not necessarily mean it can’t be repaired. But if parts are no longer available and the labor costs could be more to repair than replace, installing a new mixing valve may be the best option. Maybe you have an access panel on the wall behind the valve, and that can save on cosmetic work.
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Either way, once your plumber has access to the old valve, it can usually be cut out of the plumbing system and a new single-handle valve can be installed in its place.
The good news is that you are not replacing an old two-handle valve with a new single-handle valve. That could require much more cosmetic work, and your single-handle valve job could be double the money.