Kevin Bell

I Have Many Skills, But I Don't Have This One

Medium Post

I have a fair amount of skills that I’ve acquired over the years. Maybe it’s an obsession with learning or maybe I was so inspired by Napoleon Dynamites famous line “girls only want boyfriends who have great skills”. Either way, I’ve liked to collect them.

From conversational Spanish and American Sign Language, to juggling, back flips and an array of other gymnastic-y related things, I really do like finding something I don’t know how to do and then figuring out how to do it.

With that said, I am NOT a super handy. I’m like your basic dad level handy. “Basic Bob” if you will. I know more than my wife and kids, but later in life they’re going to look back and realize I was not as handy as they thought I was.

For example, one of my best friends taught himself woodworking and then took that one skill and decided he could renovate a house that he bought. Bit by bit as skills were needed, he taught himself those skills. Plumbing, electrical, roofing, HVAC, you name it, he does it. Over the last 3 years, he’s just chipped away at the house. It went from being a dump, to a gorgeous home. INSANE.

I believe that I COULD teach myself those things, we all CAN… but I’m just not passionate enough about those to do it. So I don’t. Instead, I’m okay with being Basic Bob in this area and I’ll pay a professional to help with the big projects.

With that said, I write this to share from one Basic Bob to another in the most simplistic way possible how to fix a broke shower handle and replace a shower head.

For you “Advanced Adams” out there, this isn’t going to impress you, you can scroll right on. For my fellow Bobs, stick with me on this. If I can do it. So can you.

Here’s the sitch, there isn’t any plumbing involved here, it’s not going to get crazy or complicated. If you’re having real plumbing issues, I’m not your guy. This is a righty tighty lefty loosey thing.

  1. Take the shower head off by unscrewing it at the top. The part that comes from the wall should be a long tube. Your shower head attaches to the tube with some threads. It’s usually not on too tight that you can’t do it by hands or some pliers with an easy twist.
  2. Take the handle cover off the wall. This is attached to the plumbing inside the wall with two long screws. Take those screws out and then pull it off the wall. It’s not or shouldn’t be glued on.
  3. Remember, this is how to fix a broken shower handle. In this case, the handle is already off. If you still have a handle on, you need to take that off as well. You can take it off by loosening the handle with a tiny little screw that you need a tiny little Allen wrench for. Take out the screw and then take off the handle.
  4. What you have now is a mental rod that is sticking out of the wall. When you turn this, the water turns on. A handle attaches to that, so when you turn the handle, the water turns on. Makes sense right?
  5. Now that everything is off, you need to replace the handle and shower head.
  6. The shower heads are pretty universal. It’s just a threaded section of the pipe that you can screw a new shower head on (for the most part). But PAY attention to the handle. I don’t know much, but I would recommend trying to match the brand. Unless you want to open the wall and change things up. 👎🏻
  7. When you go to The Home Depot, BRING YOUR HANDLE so that you can match the parts. This is important!
  8. Find the shower head you want and the handle you want and get out of their quick before the Traeger calls your name
  9. Get home, attach the shower head. BOOM, half way done! Oh, wait, before you do that, make sure to rewrap that white plumbers tape around the thread of the pipe that goes into the wall. Its to prevent leaks. I forget what it’s called.
  10. NOW you’re half way! It’s time to put the handle on. First put the plate on and tighten the two long screws. Next, add on any other pieces that went over the metal rod. This might be a piece of plastic and a metal cover depending on what brand you have. It’s pretty self explanatory. It just slips over the metal rod so that the handle can attach.
  11. Assemble the handle by putting in the plastic piece inside the handle and screwing it in. Essentially that piece inside the handle allows for the handle to hook on and attach to the metal rod so that you can turn it easily.
  12. Slide the handle over the rod and then use the Allen wrench for the little screw to tighten the handle.
  13. DONE!

A complete lack of proper technical jargon, but there you have it, a fixed handle and shower head.

It wasn’t as hard as I thought it would be and dang it feels good to have it done.

Hope this helped. If not, take it up with Adam.