Note: Illustration A, Illustration B, Illustration C, Illustration D, Illustration E, Illustration F, Illustration G, Illustration H available using
Sometimes it’s less trouble and not much more expensive to replace a faucet than it is to fix it.
Tip: Wrap the wrench
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Replacement faucet (prices vary) Plumber’s putty
Masking tape Silicone caulk
Scrubbing pad or steel wool Adjustable rench
Basin wrench Putty knife
Rags and old towels
Removing the Supply Tubes
- Shut off the water to the old faucet and open the faucet to
with masking tape to keep it from damaging
the finish on the faucet.
The basin wrench makes it easier to work in tight spaces.
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relieve pressure inside it. Use towels to make the work space under the sink as comfortable as possible.
- You will probably have six nuts to loosen. Use a taped adjustable wrench to loosen the coupling nuts at the shutoff valves, and a basin wrench to loosen the coupling nuts and the lock nuts attached to the faucet (illustration A, click above to view).
- If you have rigid supply tubes, remove them very carefully; one wrong twist and they will be kinked beyond repair.
Preparing the Sink
- Once the supply tubes are removed, remove the lock nuts and carefully lift the faucet out.
- Protect the sink with masking tape, then scrape away any old putty with a putty knife (illustration B, click above to view). Scour off any remaining putty residue using fine steel wool or a fine abrasive pad.
Dropping In the New Faucet
- Single-lever and two handle faucets are available for three-hole bathroom sinks with the outer holes spaced 4 inches apart, and kitchen sinks with 6- or 8-inch spacing.
- Feed the spray hose and supply tubes, if any, through their holes. If you have copper supply tubes (illustration C, click above to view), take care not to kink them.
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- Some faucets require you to bed the faucet’s mounting plate in a continuous rope of plumber’s putty; others come with a gasket. Push the faucet into position on the putty, or position the gasket carefully. Many plumbers prefer to use silicone caulk rather than putty, and some put a little bead of silicone around the perimeter of the gasket to improve the seal.
Tightening the Sink Connections
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- Have a helper hold the faucet in the correct position above while you work below.
- If your new faucet has lock nuts for each tailpiece (illustration D, click above to view), just slip the nuts on and tighten with a basin wrench. (Tighten a plastic lock nut by hand.)
- For the type shown (illustration E, click above to view), slip the flange onto the threaded mounting stud or the tailpiece. Thread a lock nut onto the stud and tighten with a basin wrench. Thread a second lock nut onto the sprayer hose tailpiece and tighten it in the same way.
- Scrape away excess putty from around the mounting plate. If you used silicone, wipe it up with a vinegar soaked paper towel before it dries.
Attaching the Supply Tubes
- Cut the tubes with a tubing cutter, and use a tubing bender to reshape the tubes without kinking them (illustration F, click above to view). Use a tube cutter to make any cuts. Make sure the tubing goes straight into the shutoff valve with no abrupt bends. Slide a top coupling nut, bottom coupling nut, and compression ring onto the tube, slip the tube into the valve, and tighten the bottom nut over the ring. Fit the top of the tube against the faucet tailpiece and tighten the top nut.
- Flexible supply lines are easier to install; just twist on the coupling nuts. Purchase one that will fit your shutoff valve (either 1/2 or 3/8 inch). At the faucet tailpiece you may need to place a washer in the large coupling nut (illustration G, click above to view); some flexible tubes come with washers already installed.
- Turn on the shutoff valves. If there are any leaks, tighten the leaky coupling nut another quarter turn. Remove the aerator and run water for a minute to flush the lines.
Connecting the Hose
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- To attach a spray hose, screw its coupling nut onto the stub-out behind the supply tubes (illustration H, click above to view). Tighten the nut with a basin wrench.
- To check the installation, unscrew the aerator on the faucet and on the sprayer. Turn on the water, slowly at first, and run it alternately through the faucet and the sprayer. If it leaks, tighten the coupling nuts another quarter-turn.
- Run water full force for a minute to flush the lines, and replace the aerators.
Supply lines = $8.58
Plumber’s putty (4 oz.) = $1.15 Masking tape = $3.98
Silicone caulk = $4.46 Steel wool = $2.99 Total = $21.16
Note : The faucet used in this project, including sprayer, cost $70; the basin wrench cost $15, bringing the total cost of materials and tools to $106.16.
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ALSO IN THIS EPISODE:
Replacing a Faucet
House Call: Repairing a Gutter/Downspout Tip of the Day: Making Perfect Connections
02-Plumbing 034c FYP029b.art
ABOUT VALVES and FAUCETS
Because Ask An Expert frequently receives questions pertaining to repair or replacement of valves and faucets commonly found in residential applications, this article has been prepared, as a reference, to provide basic information about several of those devices. We hope the
do-it-yourself homeowner may find this information useful in determining the nature and extent of some of the problems frequently found in their plumbing and hot water heating systems, as well as helpful when attempting to repair or replace such devices.
Because there are many types of valves and faucets, it is beyond the scope of the article to provide exhaustive descriptions of the materials and configurations found in every available type.
Almost all domestic, potable water supplies are from a distribution system owned, operated and serviced by a Public Utility, usually a City or County. In some rural, or remote, areas the water supply may be from a “drilled”, deep well or a shallow “dug” well.
Occasionally, a source of “spring water” is used. City and County water supplies may be from rivers, lakes, reservoirs or deep wells. Such sources usually contain, among other things, air and a variety of minerals. Where deep wells are the source, sulfur may also be present. Sulfur is frequently found in domestic well water, but most well water supplies contain little, or no, air.
Air in domestic water supplies is both “beneficial” and an “annoyance”.
Airless water, such as “distilled water” has an unpleasant taste. For this reason, Utilities with well water sources often incorporate a feature, in or near the holding reservoir, at the treatment plant, called an “aerator”. The device resembles a large fountain that forces the water into the air, where it dissolves some of the air, and falls back into the reservoir. Small, rural, well water supplies rarely incorporate “aerator” devices and the water retains its unpleasant taste, sometimes amplified by the presence of sulfur.
In the past, many municipalities, enjoyed domestic water sources relatively free from most contaminants such as calcium and silicates. Users of those water supplies enjoyed relatively trouble free service from their valves and faucets, unless they abused them by
over-tightening or other physical damage. That advantage has either become extinct, or is rapidly disappearing because the EPA (Environmental Protection Agency), in its infinite wisdom, now requires suppliers of domestic water that is inherently free of minerals to be mixed with other supply sources that contain such minerals. The excuse for this ruling is that, because pure mineral free water is an effective solvent, it MAY dissolve lead from a lead supply pipe to the residence (some still do exist) or from the solder in copper pipe system,
installed before lead bearing solder was banned. The latter seems most unlikely.
Corrosion, or coating of valve and faucet parts, due to the presence of minerals in water supplies, is a major source of deterioration and malfunction of those devices. Water that is high in mineral content is known as “hard water.” The effectiveness of soap is greatly impaired by “hard Water”, but detergents are affected to a lesser degree. The result of all this is a thriving “water softener” business in nearly every part
of the United States, more costs and more maintenance problems to plague the home owner.
Air in water enhances its taste. It can also create problems in plumbing systems if it is not properly taken into account in the design of such systems. Domestic hot water heating systems are the most vulnerable. When water, containing air is heated, most, or all, of the air will be released because cold water can dissolve more air than hot water can. If
the released air is permitted to remain in the heating piping system, air bubbles will form and be carried to a portion of the system higher than the boiler. When an air bubble forms in a horizontal pipe, circulation will cease because the circulators, used to move water in the system, are not pumps and cannot force the air bubble along in the system.
Hot water heating systems should always be equipped with an “expansion tank.” The purpose of that tank is twofold. The water in a hot water heating system expands when heated and any air that it contains is released. The expansion tank, located well above the boiler, allows the heated water, which would otherwise cause excess pressure on the system, to expand into it, compressing the air in the tank. At the same time,
air released from the heated water, migrates to the expansion tank. The expansion tank, at start up, should not contain more than half of its volume of water. The principle involved is that air, as a gas, can be compressed but liquid water cannot.
An additional measure, to assure proper operation of a hot water heating system, is to install one or more manual, or automatic, “air vents” at
the highest point(s) in the heating system.
Normally, air present in a domestic water supply does not create a problem at the water heater because the water is not heated excessively and the water is being continually removed and replaced from the heater tank. The air in the hot water is normally released when hot water is drawn from a faucet.
If the water supply to a fixture is shut off and a portion of the supply pipe drains while a valve or faucet is replaced, air will enter the
empty pipe. When the repair is completed and the water supply is restored, that air will be expelled, in loud bursts, from the nearest faucet. This should persist for only a few moments and is remedied by running a quantity of water from the faucet.
A simple experiment that will reveal how air is dissolved in and released from water can be performed as follows: Fill a glass with very
hot water from a domestic hot water faucet. Observe how the water seems
“milky” with many minute bubbles of air rising to the top of the glass. This is because the air is being expelled from the hot water when the pressure it was under is lowered. Soon, all the air will escape and the water will become clear. This is an illustration of what happens within a supply piping system, unseen.
A valve might be defined as “a mechanical device by which the flow of liquid, gas or other loose material may be started, stopped, or regulated by a movable part that opens, closes, or partially obstructs, one or more of its ports or passageways.” The function of valves, as applied to the control of liquids and gas, is the main thrust of this article.
The subject of valves is addressed in two broad categories, which are industrial valves, addressed only briefly, and those used in domestic plumbing and heating systems. Because the purpose of the article is to provide a basic knowledge of valves found in domestic plumbing and hot water heating systems, those devices are addressed most extensively.
Valves used in industrial applications are available in a wide variety of sizes, types, patterns and materials. The term “pattern” refers to
the manner in which the valve is intended to be connected into a piping system. Thus, a “screwed pattern” means that the valve has a female threaded inlet and outlet to be installed in a threaded pipe system. A “flanged pattern” means that the valve has a flange on its inlet and outlet sides. The flanges are attached to mating flanges on the ends of the pipes of the system in which the valve is installed, by means of four or more bolts and nuts. Various types of gasket materials are used between the flanges to prevent leaking. Flanged valves are most often used in systems where high temperature and/or pressure is present.
Many industrial valves are made of cast iron, but stainless steel, brass and forged steel are commonly used, as well. In high temperature and pressure situations (over 125 psi) industrial valves are usually made of forged steel, or stainless steel, in a flanged pattern.
The designation of a valve usually indicates the service for which it is
intended. For example: a (brand name), “Screwed, King Clip Gate Valve, 125 psi, W.O.G.” means that the valve is a threaded cast iron gate valve for pressures up to 125 psi and is suitable for use with water, oil, or gas. “King Clip” is a designation of how the valve is assembled.
The bonnet, stem housing and packing gland, in this case, being attached to the body of the valve by means of a “U-shaped Clip” with threaded ends and hex nuts. These bonnets, as is true of all valve bonnets, have openings through which the stem rises, called a “packing gland” that utilizes various kinds of packing materials, or washers, to prevent leakage around the stem.
In general, fewer types of valves are necessary to meet the demands of domestic plumbing and hot water heating systems than are required for industrial applications. The majority of domestic valves are made of cast brass, bronze, or drawn red copper. A few, more specialized types, are furnished in cast iron and, more rarely, stainless steel. Drawn red copper valves are the most economical and for that reason, as well as ease of installation, are commonly used in domestic water distribution systems. These valves are always furnished in a “sweat” (or solder)
pattern. The two most commonly used “types” of valves, found in domestic plumbing and heating systems are “gate” valves and “globe” valves.
Gate valves are intended for use in situations where the valve is normally either open or closed. They usually have a cast brass, bronze, or drawn copper body with a disk-shaped, machined and slightly
tapered, “gate” attached to the stem. In the closed position, the “gate” fits snugly into a machined, slightly tapered, “slot” in the valve
body. The assembly is held together by a “bonnet” which is screwed to
the valve body. The “bonnet” has a round aperture through which the stem rises and contains a “packing gland” to prevent leaking around the stem.
The packing may be either a neoprene washer or graphite and mica coated packing material, referred to as “string packing”.
About the only repair that can be made for a malfunctioning gate valve is to tighten the nut on the packing gland, or repack it, if a leak develops. Repair parts for other portions of gate valves are not
generally available. If such a valve fails to completely shut off the flow of a liquid, or if the gate becomes detached from the stem, it should be replaced. Gate valves are not suitable for use in situations where the regulation of flow, or “throttling”, is required because vibration, due to liquid, or gas, flow through the valve, can (and does) cause the gate to rise or lower in its chamber. This action results in
an increased, or decreased flow through the valve, effectively defeating its intended purpose. Flow through a gate valve can normally be in
Globe valves are intended for use in situations where flow control (throttling) is required. They usually have a cast brass, bronze, or drawn copper body. A globe valve’s internal configuration is very different from that of a gate valve. The valve body incorporates two passageways, an inlet passageway that enters, horizontally, into the lower portion of the body and an outlet passageway that exits, horizontally, from the upper portion of the body. The two chambers are separated by a machined port, or “seat” into which a round, machined “plug”, attached to the valve stem, fits when the valve is closed. Both the seat and the plug are slightly tapered to provide a watertight seal, when the valve is closed. Flow through this port is vertical. The valve assembly is held together in essentially the same fashion as that used for a gate valve with a screwed bonnet, packing gland and nut. Because of its configuration and the way the stem is threaded in the bonnet, the plug in a globe valve will not normally change position relative to the seat due to flowing liquid, or gas. Also, because of its configuration,
a globe valve must be installed in a piping system with the inlet and outlet properly oriented. Most globe valves have a small, raised arrow on the side of the casting, or an inscribed arrow on the body of a drawn copper valve, that indicates the proper direction of flow.
A somewhat unique valve, known as a “street valve”, is used mainly to accommodate special situations. It has a female threaded inlet, a male threaded outlet and may be either a gate or globe type. Street valves are available in cast iron, brass, bronze and stainless steel. They are most often used in industrial applications.
In domestic plumbing and hot water heating systems, gate, globe and
other types of valves, whether cast or drawn, are usually found in “sweat” (solder) patterns, where the valve is attached to the piping system by means of a soldered joint. On occasion, where a specialized device may be used in the system, screwed valves or fittings (usually cast bronze) may be required.
One valve that should always be installed in the water supply risers to the various fixtures is known as a “stop valve”. When the water supply to the fixture is from the wall, an “angle stop” is used. When the supply pipe is from the floor, an “in-line stop” is used. These valves are usually modified types of “needle valves”, or “globe valves.” Needle valves usually have cast bodies with a machined, conical port/seat combination into which a cone-shaped, machined plug, that remotely
resembles a “needle” fits when the valve is closed. Stop valves have the usual hex nut bonnet cap and packing gland using a neoprene washer. Stop valves handles are usually oval-shaped, pressed metal. These valves may have threaded inlets and compression outlets, or compression inlets and outlets. They are most often finished in chrome plating, but are sometimes available in a bronze, or polished brass finish.
Another useful type of valve, frequently found in industrial applications, but less often in domestic applications, is called a “plug” valve. Plug valves usually have cast iron bodies, but are available in cast bronze, as well. When used in industrial applications,
plug valves are available in both “screwed” and “flanged” patterns. In domestic use, “screwed” patterns are the norm. The body of these valves incorporates a machined, vertical cylinder, with a port on its inlet and outlet sides, the ports open into inlet and outlet passageways in the
valve body. A machined, cylindrical “plug”, with a horizontal port that mates with those in the cylinder, fits snugly into the body cylinder and is equipped with a stem that terminates above the valve bonnet in a square or oblong “nut” that requires a wrench for its operation. Plug valves usually provide a positive shut off, great durability and trouble free, service. In domestic applications, these valves are most often used as shut off valves in gas supply lines to domestic water heaters, furnaces, gas-fired boilers, or other appliances requiring a gas supply. They are also found at the Utility Company’s meter. For these services, cast iron valves should always be used. Brass or bronze valves are not
recommended for service in natural gas lines because hydrogen sulfide in the natural gas will react chemically with brass or bronze. Plug type valves are also used as shut off valves at domestic water meters. In such installations, they are either copper or bronze.
Special Purpose Valves:
Better domestic hot water heating systems always employ a special type of valve referred to as a “solenoid” or “zone” valve for temperature regulation in the several rooms, or areas, of the house. These valves usually have cast brass, or a combination of cast and drawn brass bodies. The valve itself resembles a “plug type” of valve with the
“plug” operating in a cylindrical port either vertically or rotating.
The “plug” is usually spring loaded to be normally closed. Operation of a solenoid with a vertical rising stem is by means of an
electro-magnetic coil that surrounds the stem, causing it to rise when the coil is activated. In a zone valve with a rotating plug, the stem is gear operated and rotates when a small electric motor is energized.
Normal operation of these valves consists of the coil, or motor, being activated when the thermostat for a particular zone calls for heat.
A common type of special purpose valve is known as a “Ball-Cock” or a “Fill Valve”. It is a lever-type valve, one form of which is found in every domestic water closet with a “tank”. For many years these valves
were always an integral part of a cast bronze standpipe, about 11 inches high, within the tank of the water closet. The standpipe was mounted in the tank with its tailpiece (similar to tailpieces found on faucets) installed in an opening in the tank bottom, at the left side. It was
held in place by a friction washer and mounting nuts and connected to the water supply tube by a coupling nut.
The valve itself was a machined, inverted cone-shaped, port at the top of the standpipe tube with a mating, conical plug attached to a rod with a ball-float on its end. The float rod could be bent to provide a measure of adjustment of the volume of water in the tank. When the closet was flushed, the water level in the tank would drop, followed by the ball-float. The falling float caused the valve to open, by lever action, through the attachment rod. When the tank filled, the float would rise and close the valve, again through its lever action.
Because of the relative simplicity of these lever valves, they normally functioned for many years, mostly trouble free. Most problems were due to a leaking ball or corrosion of the valve seat and plug. Over time,
these valves have undergone many modifications, most of which have been intended to improve their operation, render them more trouble free and decrease their cost. Not all of such changes have served the intended purpose well.
Valves with bronze standpipes are still available as are similar valves made entirely of plastic, for the most part, nylon. An innovative valve assembly with a plastic standpipe and a plastic float wrapped around it, adjusted for height by means of a clamp on a wire rod, has mostly replaced the standpipe assembly, at least in most “repair kits.” Because of the configuration of these assemblies an “anti-siphon” feature has been added and the assembly is usually called an “Adjustable Anti-Siphon Ball Cock.”
Manufacturers of fixtures, for the most part, continue to install some form of the standpipe, ball-float-lever valve assemblies in new water closets. In addition to several other modifications, some form of plastic has, almost totally, replaced the more expensive bronze in current lever valve assemblies.
Check valves are special purpose valves most often found in industrial applications. The function of a check valve is to prevent reverse flow of a liquid or gas when flow in the intended direction is interrupted for whatever reason. When used in vertical piping, they are usually “ball-check” valves and are most often installed to prevent “back-flow”
of a gas. When used in horizontal piping, they are usually “swing-check” valves and serve to prevent “back-flow” of liquids in most applications.
Ball-check valves have cast bodies of brass, or other metal, suitable for the service intended. Usually, they are in a screwed pattern, with a machined, cup-shaped, ported seat into which a highly polished ball, made of stainless steel, monel metal or sometimes brass, fits snugly when the valve is closed. Flow of gas in the intended direction causes the ball to rise allowing gas to flow through the device relatively
unrestricted. If normal flow is interrupted and back-pressure tends to cause reverse flow, the ball is forced into the seat, effectively
closing the valve and preventing flow in the opposite direction.
Swing-check valves usually have bodies of cast iron, brass, or other metal, suited to the intended service. Depending upon their size, they are available in either a screwed, or flanged pattern. The internal configuration resembles a gate valve, but the gate is hinged at its top to swing open when liquid is flowing in the intended direction and close tightly against a machined seat to prevent flow in the reverse direction, which is sometimes referred to as “back-flow.”
Large (4 inch or 6 inch) swing-check valves, referred to as a “back-flow preventer”, are sometimes used in residential sewer systems to prevent “back-flow” from the city sewer system into the domestic waste water system in situations where the city sewer becomes overloaded during heavy rainfall. These valves are most often found in systems where the house sewer exits below a basement floor. In these applications, the valve usually has an additional, vertical rising gate attached to a gear operated stem with a wheel handle that can be closed manually if the swing gate fails to close properly for whatever reason. These valves do require frequent inspection and maintenance to assure proper operation in emergency situations.
Small size “back-flow preventer” valves are usually required, or at
least recommended, by local plumbing codes in situations where domestic water supply pipes are connected to a lawn sprinkler system. They function in much the same fashion as a swing-check valve and are intended to prevent contamination of the domestic water supply in the event of a “back-flow”, or reverse pressure from one or more sprinkler circuits, when the pressure in the domestic supply drops significantly, for any reason.
About Valves & Faucets – Part II
Most often, a faucet is a form of globe type valve, equipped with a spout especially configured to deliver water in a specific fixture.
Faucets usually have a cast body with a machined base and “tail pieces” designed to facilitate attachment to the fixture and connection to the domestic hot and cold water supply piping. Faucets are available in a wide variety of configurations and finishes calculated more to please the eye, than to enhance their operation. Elegant design and high cost are not necessarily indictors of quality.
A special type of “faucet”, still in relatively common use, is know as a “sill cock”, or it is sometimes referred to as a “hose bib.” These
devices are found in almost every home. They may be made of cast brass, or even cast grey iron. They have an outlet spout with hose threads for attachment of a garden hose. Some “sill cocks”, in houses with basements, are simply attached to a water pipe that extend through the wall just above grade. These installations are usually equipped with a shut off valve with a small drain plug, inside the house. Shutting off
the water supply and opening the drain plug usually prevents freezing of the sill cock in winter, provided that the “sill cock” is also left open
to facilitate its drainage.
A more convenient type of sill cock, called a “frost proof” valve is also available. It can be used in installations with or without basements. The device is simply a modified globe type valve, in an elongated body, with a long stem. With the valve seat located in the
warmer interior of the building, freezing is usually precluded. When the valve is closed, any water remaining in the spout will normally drain
out, unless a hose is left attached to it. Most freeze-ups of
“frost-proof” sill cocks are caused by allowing a garden hose to remain attached to the valve in freezing weather.
Faucets are essential to the operation of most domestic plumbing fixtures. Manufacturers of plumbing fixtures usually refer to faucets, pop-up drains, drain strainers, tail pieces and either “P” or “S” traps, as “Plumbing Brass.”
Plumbing fixtures, most often found in homes, are “kitchen sinks”,
“lavatories” (sometimes also referred to as a sink) “bath tubs”, “water closets” and, occasionally, a single or double basin “laundry tub”, formerly referred to as a “laundry tray.”
Kitchen sinks are usually available in stainless steel, porcelain enameled cast iron, enameled pressed steel and vitreous china. Lavatories are generally available, made of cultured marble, vitreous china and porcelain enameled cast iron or pressed steel. Bathtubs are available made of porcelain enameled cast iron, enameled steel and cultured marble. A recent innovation in bathtub manufacture is the use
of a cast material marketed as “Americast” by American Standard. It is claimed to be more durable than cast iron at half the weight. Water closets are (and should be) made of vitreous china. All of these fixtures are available in a wide range of styles and colors.
The configuration of a particular fixture, as well as the material from which it is made, will often dictate the type of faucet, or faucets, that can be successfully used with it.
Better faucets normally have bodies of cast brass or bronze. A few economy types have bodies of cast grey iron or other metal. Regardless of the material from which they are made, faucets are always plated to enhance their appearance and increase their resistance to corrosion and staining.
Typical finishes found on faucets, regardless of the particular type, range from rough chrome, to highly polished chrome plating, polished brass, polished or satin bronze and even silver or gold. Some, more recent, offerings are porcelain enameled, either white or in color.
In general, faucets made by fixture manufacturers, such as American Standard, Kohler Company, Eljer and Crane Company, as well as those marketed under brand names like Delta, Moen and Price Pfister, among others, may usually be considered as high quality devices. As is true with many things, plumbing brass is available from a given manufacturer in a range from “economy” to “high end”. Often, “high end” devices and their corresponding higher cost, reflect “elegance of design” and “finish”, more than a superior mechanism.
Bathtubs and shower stalls are usually equipped with devices that resemble valves more than faucets. They may consist of two valves connected by a header (usually concealed) that is connected to a spout and/or a riser to a shower head. When found in tub-shower combinations, such supply valves are usually connected to normally route water to the tub spout, which incorporates a lift-type, valve, called a “diverter.”
When lifted, the diverter shuts off the water supply to the tub spout and routes it to the shower riser. On rare occasions, a third valve is
used to direct the temperature regulated water flow to the shower riser. Even more rarely, a second set of two valves are installed for the express purpose of directing water to a shower riser. In shower stall (cabinet) as well as some tub-shower installations, balancing valves are often used. Balancing valves are cartridge type valves with lever, or
ball-shaped, handles. Manually rotating the handle adjusts the water temperature to suit the user. In certain “special” installations, balancing valves may be thermostatically controlled to deliver the water to the shower head at a consistent, predetermined temperature.
Faucets for lavatories and kitchen sinks are normally available in one of three basic configurations. For lavatories, these are either two separate faucets, one each for hot and cold water, a single faucet with two valve handles and a single faucet with either one lever, or
ball-type handle. The handles found on these faucets are available in an almost infinite variety of material, style and finish. Faucets for Kitchen sinks are now most often equipped with a swing spout and have either two supply valves or a single, lever handle. In applications,
where two valves are employed, they are modified globe-type valves with machined seats and plugs equipped with hard rubber or neoprene, replaceable washers. Many kitchen faucets include some type of spray attachment, some more recent versions of which are “pull-out” extensions of the spout. Faucets with a single handle are easily the most popular.
Like lavatory faucets, kitchen faucets are available in various finishes with polished chrome being the most popular. A wide choice of handle styles, spout configurations and other accessories, is available to the consumer, as well.
Single faucets are a modified type of globe valve with an ornamental
spout of some sort. The spout may be a simple, straightforward device, or it may be an elaborately elegant configuration. In either instance, the intended purpose is the same. To deliver water, in regulated quantity to the fixture to which it is attached. While single faucets usually serve the purpose of delivering water to the basin well,
tempering must be accomplished by the balancing of hot and cold water in the basin because a single faucet will deliver only hot or cold water, depending upon which system it is connected to. This inconvenience was probably a contributing factor when manufacturers began to develop the, now popular, single handle, or two handle, faucet.