Nothing beats the joy of taking a hitch-free shower to end a stressful day. However, on getting home, if you have to battle with your shower, things can turn sour fast.
In this article, whether you just moved into your new home or you are renovating your bathroom, we’ll like to show you how to install a wall-mounted shower arm like a pro.
It's easy; walk with us, and you'll get your wall-mounted shower arm installed in no time.
Table of Contents
Tools and Materials You’ll Need
Fitting a shower arm into a wall becomes less stressful when you have the right tool and materials for the task.
So, to start the process of installing your shower arm, you need to first source the necessary tools. Most of these materials and tools are available in local stores or warehouses. They can also be found in the home.
The essentials include;
- Plumbing tape or Plumbing compound
- Adjustable Pipe Wrench
- Step Stool
- Paper towels
- Rubber gloves
Step-By-Step Procedures on How to Install a Wall-Mounted Shower Arm
Now that you have the essential tools and materials ready, it’s time to install the shower arm.
Step 1: Stop the Water Flow
Putting a stop to the water flow to your shower head and your entire bathroom is important when installing a shower arm.
We wouldn't want water popping out of the pipes and spilling everywhere while mounting your shower arm now do, we?
So how do you stop the water flow to your bathroom?
Well, it's quite easy; you can start by turning off the source that supplies water to the whole Bathroom. To successfully do this, locate where your plumbing system connects with your water supply and shut it off from there.
Alternatively, you can find the turn-off valve in your bathroom for the shower under your bathroom sink or look behind the removable wall panel if you have one.
Step 2: Prepare Your Work Area
This is where your step stool and paper towels come out to play. It’s also advisable to wear your rubber gloves at this stage of the installation process.
Ensure the stool is not wobbly or worn out from use. Also, place the towels in the spot you would need them. There are no specific ways to do this since bathrooms differ, do it however you find comfortable.
Step 3: Find the ‘’Female’’ Fitting
Look through the hole that you intend to install the shower arm, using a flashlight find the female fitting.
If there is no hole, use a saw to cut the drywall. Make sure to cut a large portion because you need plenty of space to fit in your new shower arm. After locating the female fitting, use your fingers to wipe off the dust on the thread.
Step 4: Wrap Both Ends of The Shower Arm
Now, it’s time to use the plumbing tape.
Wrap the plumbing tape in a clockwise motion around the two ends of the shower arm. Doing this will secure the shower arm and prevent it from coming loose when it’s time to attach or install the showerhead to the shower arm.
Step 5: Insert the Shower Arm Through the Hole
This step is a bit tactical, but don't worry, you can pull it off. All you need to do is insert the shower arm in the hole, find the fitting, and mount the shower arm into the fitting; this makes the tightening process less difficult.
After finding the fitting and mounting the shower arm, tighten the shower arm as tight as you can using your hand.
Next, wrap a towel around the shower arm attachment to avoid getting it scratched or damaged while tightening the shower arm into the fitting.
Then, keep tightening it until you cannot make another complete rotation; that way, you would know it's well tightened.
Step 6: Mount and Install the Showerhead
Now it's time to mount your shower head on the shower arm, this is easy, and your hands would be very much needed here.
Just fix the showerhead into the arm, then using your hands move the showerhead in a clockwise motion to make it tight and secure on the shower arm. There are varieties of showerheads, and you can have a choice of what you want. It could be any of the following;
- Best Handheld Shower Head for Low Water Pressure
- Best Rain Shower Head with Handheld
- Best Water Saving Shower Heads
- Best Magnetic Shower Head
Step 7: Run water and check for leaks
As a final step, turn on your main water source or water supply unit and run water through your shower arm and showerhead to check for leaks. Using a flashlight to check for leaks will help make the process faster. If you discover a leak, ensure the head and shower arm or the shower arm and fitting are properly tightened.
How To Dismantle and Replace an Old Wall-Mounted Shower Arm
You might want to remove a rusty shower arm or a damaged shower arm; whatever the case may be, here we will walk you through the process of removing a shower arm and replacing it with a new one.
STEP 1: Get your Gear Ready
The right equipment not only guarantees an easy job but a perfect one. It is important that you get the right size shower arm, so ensure you measure the old one before disposing of it. You’ll also need the following in your arsenal;
- Eye protection
- Rubber gloves
- Adjustable pipe wrench
- Plumbing tape or plumber’s compound
- Metal lubricant
- Large bowl
- Step stool
- Calcium and limescale remover
STEP 2: Turn Off the Water
As stated earlier, turning off the water flow is important when installing or removing a shower arm.
STEP 3: Clean the Old shower arm
Clean the surface of the shower arm with a towel to make the shower arm easier to remove. We advise that you use a limescale remover or calcium, and vinegar would do this.
STEP 4: Unscrew the Old shower arm
Here, with your adjustable pipe wrench, hold the shower arm and rotate it anti-clockwise.
If the shower arm seems stiff and doesn't loosen easily, take a break from losing it so you don't damage it, then use a metal lubricant to rub the shower arm's joining point, leave it to sit for a couple of minutes or an hour, go back to try it again.
After successfully unscrewing your shower arm, you would discover a pipe and a thread projecting out of the wall.
Step 5: Proceed to follow steps 6 and 7 here. Once you are done, you should have a new shower arm with no issues.
Types of Wall Mounted Shower Arms
You need to know the different types of wall-mounted shower arms options available today. There are three shower arm designs, and each is unique in its way. Here they are;
Standard Shower Arm
Standard shower arms are the most popular of the lot. They feature a simple design, have a small extended horizontal arm, and are angled 60 degrees downwards.
Straight Shower Arm
Straight-styled shower arms are angled at 90 degrees to the wall. They are perfect if you own a rainfall showerhead or intend to install one.
Gooseneck/S-Shaped Shower Arm
The Gooseneck shower arm, also popularly called the s-shape shower arm, is the new school shower arm due to its recent increase in popularity. They give users the freedom to personalize and adjust the height of the showerhead and help deliver a modern look to your bathroom.
Things to Look out for When Choosing a Wall-Mounted Shower Arm
Once you have the right type of shower arm, here are some other things to look out for when choosing a wall-mounted shower arm
The Existing Shower Head
Before purchasing your shower arm, you need to ensure that the shower arm you intend to buy matches the existing showerhead. The shower arm should be of a diameter and threading that makes screwing to the shower arm easy.
Additionally, you’ll also need to ensure that the color of the existing showerhead matches the shower arm you will get. In this case, mix and match is not recommended.
Quality of the Shower Arm
The quality of the shower arm is crucial when choosing a shower arm; we don't want a shower arm built from low quality or inferior materials that get damaged easily.
As you can see, installing and replacing a wall-mounted shower arm is not difficult. All you need to do is;
- Turn off your water source/water supply to the shower.
- Carefully remove the old shower arm if you are carrying out a replacement procedure.
- Fix the shower arm into the fitting as much as you can, tighten it and do the same when fitting the shower arm to the showerhead.
- Lastly, check for leaks. If you discover any, be sure to tighten again.
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