How to Change a Showerhead with a Ball?


Showerhead loses its shine and often gets rusted or limescale build-up with overuse. It may have leaks as well. That’s when we think of replacing it. After all, we will be taking a shower using it, and we don’t want the water come out of something that is not in good shape. Sometimes dirt also, and it may get into the water. So, you need to change the shower. If you know how to change a showerhead with a ball, then you won’t need to call a plumber for this minor job.

How to change a showerhead with a ball?

Showerheads are usually connected to a half inch threaded shower pipe. This pipe is often called the arm. In the past, these pipes had a built-in ball end which was screwed on the pipe’s end. There was a gland type nut behind the ball end. If you have to replace these shower heads, you need to replace the arm. You can also get an adapter having a threaded end.

It is very simple to replace a showerhead. With some advice, you will be able to change it easily. The step-by-step guide to change the shower head is given below.

Buy a new shower head

The modern shower heads have interesting features. There are shower heads that have low-flow. This type of shower head will help you to save water. You can get a shower head filter in the market. Many people buy it, especially if they live in an area where the water is heavily chlorinated. The shower head filter will help to prevent any chemical from getting in your hair or skin.

The cost of shower head ranges from $10 to $500. You will find shower heads from different manufacturers like Kohler, Delta, Moen, etc. There are different types of showerheads available in the market. Most of them are mounted on the wall. You will also find shower heads that are attached to the ceiling. You will also get a shower system with handheld option.

Gather tools

You should first gather all the tools necessary to open the shower head. You can get all these tools in a hardware store. These are the tools you will need:

  • Adjustable wrench
  • Blanket or towel
  • Teflon tape or plumber’s tape
  • Flat-head screwdriver
  • Ladder or stool
  • Cleaning solution

Prepare the workspace

You should make sure that the shower is turned off completely. Check the shower knobs. This way you will prevent water from leaking out when working. Many people shut off the water supply, but it’s not necessary. You should place a blanket or towel on the shower floor. There are small shower head bits which might fall when working. If you don’t place the blanket, these bits may go down the drain. Additionally, you can put tape on top of the drain.

Remove the old showerhead

Use the wrench to open the shower head. Then turn it counter-clockwise until it loosens up. Hold the wrench towards the end; that will make your work easier. Then unscrew the showerhead. Make sure to place a soft cloth around the neck of the old showerhead when you use a wrench to open it. That way the showerhead will be protected.

Sometimes the bolts and valves may get stuck. You can use a liquid wrench or other penetrating oil to loosen the bolts and valves.

Get rid of extra materials

After you take out the old showerhead, you will notice materials like dirt, plumber’s take, etc. around the pipe. Use a rag to remove all these. You should make sure that the pipe is clean.

Use Teflon tape

Use Teflon tape or plumber’s tape to wrap the threads of the pipe. The tape will adhere to the threads of the pipe. Make sure that the tape is placed properly. Before applying the tape, you should look at the pipe threads and find out how much tape you may need. You should get enough tape so that you can wrap around the threads. You should start at the base and move clockwise. Continue wrapping until you get to the end of the threads.

Install the new shower head

You should first read the instructions written on the shower head you bought. Some shower head requires assembling as it may contain a rubber washer or extension arm. You need to tighten the new shower head using your hand. You should turn it clockwise until it gets tight. You can use the adjustable wrench to tighten. However, make sure not to over tighten it.

If you are installing the fixed-mount model, then you should screw the shower head on by hand. For hand-held model, you should screw the mount from the new shower head to the arm clockwise. Then you should attach the end of the shower hose to the mount.

Turn on the shower

You should now turn on the shower to check if there are any leaks. If there are leaks, you will need to reapply the Teflon taping.

Check for leaks

You should check for any leaks that may lead to high water bills. After installing the new showerhead, turn the water on and wait and see for a few moments. If you see that the water is coming from the wrong parts of the shower head, then you should disassemble the head and use more Teflon tape to secure it to the arm. Then check again to see if the water is coming from the right parts.

You should clean the shower head once a year so that mineral deposits don’t build up. It will distort the shower stream. If there is any leak, then you should try to fix it or change the shower head. You shouldn’t wait for the plumber; instead, try to change the shower head yourself following the guidance is given here.