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This Is What You Need To Do When Your Shower Faucet Won’t Turn Off

Note: This post may contain affiliate links. This means that at no cost to you, we may receive a small commission for made purchases.

When your shower faucet refuses to shut off, it’s time to get out the wrench. The problem might be caused by a clogged drain or a faulty valve.

If you don’t want to spend hours digging around under the sink, follow these steps to fix it yourself.

You’ve probably heard that you should never try to unclog drains on your own. They can cause serious damage to pipes and plumbing fixtures.

Instead, call a plumber who has experience fixing clogged drains

When it comes to a shower (see also ‘Best Shower Timer Shutoff’) faucet that will not turn off, however, you need to act quickly, and there are a few steps that you can take to get everything under control.

Causes Of A Leaking Shower Faucet

A leaking shower faucet is one of those things that most homeowners dread.

It’s an annoying issue that causes water waste, leaks, and even mold growth in your bathroom.

Luckily, if you have this problem, there are some easy fixes for it. Read on to learn how to stop a leaky shower faucet before it gets worse.

The first thing to do when you notice a leaky shower faucet is to check whether the fixture itself is damaged.

This is because a leaky faucet could also mean that the fixture needs replacing. To find out if this is the case, take a look at the handle. 

If the handle looks loose, then it means that the fixture is likely worn down. In such cases, you may consider replacing the entire unit with a new one.

If you think that the fixture itself is fine but the leak still persists, then you should inspect the pipe connections.

These connections usually come in two forms: threaded and flanged.

Check both of them to see if they are damaged. If they appear damaged, then you should replace them immediately.

If none of the above solutions work, then you should call a professional repairman. He can easily identify the source of the leak and fix it right away.

Causes Of A Shower Faucet That Won’t Turn Off

There are a number of possible reasons why your shower faucet may not turn off, and these include:

The Faucet Is Stuck Open

When you use hot water, the temperature of the water inside the tank rises. As soon as the water reaches its boiling point, it begins to flow through the faucet.

This process continues until the pressure inside the tank drops below the level required to push the water through the faucet and into the outlet. 

Once the pressure drops, the faucet shuts off.

However, if the faucet is left open, then the water inside the tank will continue to boil until all the water is used up.

There Is No Water Pressure

If the supply line from the main water supply to your house runs along the side of your home, then you may not have enough pressure to force water out of the faucet.

In such cases, it is best to install a booster pump. This device helps increase the amount of pressure available to the faucet.

The Faucet Was Left Running For Too Long

If you leave a faucet running for more than 15 minutes, then the internal parts of the faucet begin to corrode.

Over time, this corrosion weakens the metal parts of the faucets, which leads to leakage.

The Faucet Has Been Turned Off And Back On Again

If you accidentally shut off the water while using the faucet, then you must wait for the water to cool down before turning it back on again.

Otherwise, the faucet will be unable to operate properly.

The Faucet Head Is Cracked

This Is What You Need To Do When Your Shower Faucet Won't Turn Off

Cracked heads are often caused by excessive heat or cold. They can also occur due to faulty installation.

If you suspect that the faucet head is broken, then you should contact a plumber.

The Faucet Ballcock (The Part Which Controls The Flow Rate) Is Defective

The ballcock works by opening and closing the valve.

It does so based on the difference between the water pressure inside the tank and the water pressure outside the tank.

If there is a problem with the ballcock, then it cannot close the valve completely. Instead, it lets some water pass through.

This results in slow draining of the water in the tank.

The Water Supply Line Is Blocked

A blockage in the supply line could prevent water from reaching the faucet. To check whether this is the case, try to turn the faucet on.

If you hear gurgling sounds coming from the faucet, it means that the water is flowing through the pipes.

But if you don’t hear any sound at all, then you need to call a plumber immediately.

The Faucet Cartridge Or Valve Is Defective

Faucet cartridges are usually made of plastic. If they fail, then the entire faucet needs replacement.

Defective valves let air get into the system when the faucet is closed, and the result is a faucet that will not stop leaking.

The Faucet Stem Is Bent

Bent stems cause leaks because they do not seal tightly against the pipe walls. A new faucet stem (see also ‘American Standard Faucet Stem Identification Tips‘) should easily replace an old one.

The Faucet Spout Is Damaged

Damaged spouts allow water to leak out. Replacing the spout is easy. Just unscrew the old one and screw in the new one.

The Faucet Nozzle Is Dirty

Dirty nozzles clog over time. Cleaning them is simple. Simply remove the faucet nozzle and wipe it clean with a damp cloth.

The Faucets Are Rusty

Rusty (see also ‘Rusty Hot Water – What To Do‘) faucets require immediate attention. The rust causes leaks. Remove the faucet and wash it thoroughly with soap and hot water.

Then, use steel wool to scrub the faucet until its surface becomes shiny. After cleaning, dry the faucet thoroughly.

What To Do When My Shower Faucet Won’t Turn Off?

How To Fix A Leaking Shower Faucet

Leaky faucets are very common. But, they don’t always need to be fixed. Sometimes, they just need to be replaced.

Here are some tips on how to identify whether or not you need to replace your leaky faucet.

Find The Shut Off Valve

One of the first things to do if your faucet will not shut off is to locate the shut-off valve, and this can usually be found on the wall behind the faucet.

It allows you to turn the water off whenever you want and will allow you to focus on finding the source of the problem without worrying about wasting water.

Check The Washer

The most obvious sign of a leaking faucet is a dripping sound coming from the faucet.

If there is no noise coming from the faucets, then you should look at the washer. Washing machines are used to protect pipes from damage.

If the washer is worn out, then you should replace it.

A washer is placed on top of the faucet stem. This part is used to prevent dirt from getting into the faucet (see also ‘How Many Faucets Should I Let Drip To Prevent Freezing?‘).

Replacing the washer is very easy. Just unscrew the old washer and screw in the new one.

Check The Stem

Another way to tell if your faucet needs to be replaced is by checking the faucet stem. If the stem is loose, then you should replace the faucet.

Test The Water Pressure

You should test the water pressure before deciding to replace your faucet.

If the water pressure is low, then you should probably replace the faucet because it is likely old.

Replace The Faucet Hose

This Is What You Need To Do When Your Shower Faucet Won't Turn Off

If the faucet has an exposed hose, then you should check the hose for leaks.

If the hose is cracked, then you should replace both the faucet and the hose.

Clean The Outlets

If the outlets are dirty, then you should clean them. Dirty outlets can cause corrosion which leads to leaks.

Check The Handles

Checking the shower handle is another way to find out if your faucet (see also ‘How To Fix a Stiff Faucet Handle‘) requires replacement. If one handle is loose, then you must replace it.

Replace The Spout

If the spout is broken, then you should replace your entire faucet.

Check The Filter

A clogged-up filter can also lead to a leaky faucet, so make sure that you change the filter every month.

Check The Plumbing

It is possible that the plumbing could have issues as well.

Therefore, you should call a plumber if you think that the problem might require professional help.

Remove The Cartridge

The cartridge is located inside the faucet. This part contains the valves that control how much water flows through the faucet.

You should only use a wrench when removing this part. Otherwise, you risk damaging the faucet.

Once you have removed the cartridge, you should replace it with a new one.

Replace The Stem

After replacing the washer, you should replace the valve stem. There are two types of stems available.

One type has an internal ball that moves back and forth. The other type has a plunger that protrudes from the side of the faucet.

Both types of stems are fairly simple to install.

Use A Combination Of These Tips

It is possible that none of these tips work for you. However, using a combination of these tips will give you a better chance of fixing your leaky faucets.

Call A Professional

There are many reasons why your faucet won’t shut off.

Some of those reasons include a bad water valve, worn-out parts, a broken shower head, and other problems.

In order to fix the problem, you may need to call in a professional.

Shower Faucet Repair Cost – How Much Does It Cost To Repair My Shower Faucet?

A typical cost to repair a shower faucet is between $50 and $100. However, if your faucet is severely damaged, then the repair costs will be much higher.

Shower Maintenance Tips

In order to keep your shower and faucets in tip-top condition, regular maintenance is important. Some of the main steps that you can take include:

  • Regularly inspect the faucet: Inspect the faucet regularly. Look at it from all angles. If you notice anything wrong, then you should report it right away.
  • Change the faucet filter: Change the faucet filter once in a while. Filters remove impurities from the water.
  • Change the faucet aerator: Aerators add bubbles to the water. Changing the aerator helps improve the quality of the water.

Final Thoughts

Finding yourself facing a leaky or broken shower faucet is far from ideal, but by following our simple tips, you can have your shower up and running again in no time.

author avatar
Anthony Barnes
Anthony Barnes is the founder of Water Heater Hub and a second-generation plumber by profession. Before developing Water Heater Hub, Anthony Barnes was a full-time plumber, and he has undertaken a wide variety of projects over the decades. As a second-generation plumber, it was easy for Anthony to get used to the technicalities of all from a tender age


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Note: This post may contain affiliate links. This means that at no cost to you, we may receive a small commission for made purchases. When it comes to dealing with clogged drains, many homeowners turn