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Plumbing Category: Bathtubs and Showers

Problem:

Shower head is clogged or otherwise has trouble releasing enough water.

Tools / Materials (See Below for Applicability):

  • Adjustable wrench

  • Teflon tape / plumber's tape

  • Small tub / bowl (for washing a shower head)

  • Vinegar (in a bottle)

  • Water

  • Thin wire / wire clothes hanger

Solution:

Over the course of the use of your shower, you may find that your shower head progressively becomes worse in releasing water, disallowing you from enjoying your shower.  In all likelihood, your shower head is clogged and needs to be cleaned.  Do this before trying to replace your shower head with a replacement.

Unclog your shower head in a few steps, and here's how:

  1. First, remove the shower head:  Place an adjustable wrench over the shower arm to hold it in place while you use your hands to take off the shower head by turning it completely counterclockwise.

  1. Take apart all parts of the shower head, itself, carefully noting what order such parts are taken out in order to ultimately put them back together as part of the shower head later.

  2. Carefully place all the parts of the shower head, including the shower head, itself, in a small tub/bowl.  Fill this tub/bowl with vinegar until all parts of the shower head are covered with vinegar; leave no part protruding above the liquid surface of vinegar for the purpose of soaking such parts entirely.

  3. Allow the parts in the tub/bowl to soak for about a half hour to a whole hour.

  4. While the parts are soaking in the tub/bowl, as may be necessary, use a wire clothes hanger's arch tip (take the wire curve of the clothes hanger and make it straight) or other thin wire to poke through any blocked holes of the shower head.

  5. Then, after the soaking period, rinse off all the parts with water (usually at a sink).

  6. Put back all the parts to make up the shower head in its entirety  in order to make the shower head ready for re-installation onto the shower arm.

  7. In preparation to screw the shower head back onto the shower arm, left exposed from your first step of removing the shower head are the threads of the shower arm that you now must cover with about 5 clockwise rounds/revolutions of Teflon tape/plumber's tape.

  8. Upon applying the Teflon tape/plumber's tape, now actually screw this shower head clockwise (in the same direction of the Teflon tape) onto the shower arm threads.  Follow this up with the tightening of the shower head:  Place an adjustable wrench over the shower arm to hold it in place while you use your hands to tighten the shower head by turning it completely clockwise; be careful not to over-tighten.

That's what it takes to unclog a shower head.

Ed the Handyman

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Your Handyman Zone Team

 

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