how do i remove my old shower head
how do i remove my old shower head

Are you tired of your old showerhead and looking to upgrade? Well, fear not! In this article, we will guide you through the simple steps of removing and replacing your old shower head with a shiny new one.

Whether you’re a seasoned DIYer or a complete novice, we’ve got you covered. So, get ready to say goodbye to your old shower head and hello to a refreshing and rejuvenating shower experience.


Before beginning to remove and install a new showerhead, it is essential to make some preparations. Turning off the water supply is crucial in avoiding any unexpected water surges during the process. Locate the main water shut-off valve in your home and turn it off. This will ensure a safe and dry environment while working on the shower head.

In addition to turning off the water supply, gather the necessary tools for the job. Depending on your shower head type, you may need an adjustable wrench, pliers, pipe tape (also known as thread seal tape), and a soft cloth. Having these tools ready will make the process smoother and more efficient.

Determining the Type of Shower Head

Before you can remove the showerhead, it is essential to determine whether you have a fixed or handheld showerhead. Identifying the type will guide you through the correct removal and installation process.

To identify a fixed shower head, look for one mounted directly onto the shower pipe. It cannot move or detach from the wall.

On the other hand, a handheld shower head is designed to be easily detachable and can be held by hand. It is usually attached to a flexible hose, allowing for a more adjustable and versatile showering experience.

Removing a Fixed Shower Head

Removing a fixed shower head requires precautionary steps to protect the pipe from damage. Begin by placing a soft cloth or rag over the shower pipe to prevent scratches or dents. This will act as a protective barrier between the pipe and your tools.

Next, use an adjustable wrench or a pair of pliers to loosen the shower head. Place the wrench or pliers around the neck of the shower head where it meets the shower arm protruding from the wall. Gently apply pressure counterclockwise to loosen the shower head.

Once the shower head is loose, you can remove it by unscrewing it with your hand. You can use the adjustable wrench or pliers to provide extra leverage if it feels stuck. Be cautious not to apply excessive force that may damage the shower pipe.

Removing a Handheld Shower Head

When it comes to removing a handheld shower head, the process varies depending on the connection type. Let’s look at removing a threaded handheld showerhead and a snap-on handheld showerhead.

To remove a threaded handheld shower head, begin by unscrewing it counterclockwise. Use your hand to twist the shower head firmly, and if needed, use an adjustable wrench or pliers for extra leverage. As you twist, the shower head should start to loosen. Once it is loose enough, unscrew it by hand until it is entirely removed.

For a snap-on handheld shower head, gently pull the shower head away from the shower arm. There are usually clips or buttons that secure the shower head in place. Locate these attachment points and press or release them to detach the shower head from the arm.

Preparing for New Installation

Now that you have successfully removed the old showerhead, it’s time to prepare to install the new one. Before attaching the new shower head, it is essential to clean the shower pipe to ensure a secure and clean connection.

Wipe away any debris or residue from the shower pipe using a clean cloth or rag. A clean surface will allow for better adhesion when attaching the new shower head.

To further enhance the sealing of the shower head, it is recommended to add pipe tape, also known as thread seal tape, to the shower arm. This tape helps prevent leaks by creating a tight seal between the shower arm and the new shower head.

Installing a New Fixed Shower Head

If you have chosen to install a new fixed showerhead, there are a few steps to follow. Begin by removing any old thread seal tape from the shower arm. Gently peel off the old tape and clean the shower arm surface with a cloth.

Next, wrap the pipe tape around the threaded end of the shower arm. Wrap the tape clockwise to ensure it doesn’t loosen when attaching the new shower head.

Once the pipe tape is applied, attaching the new shower head is time. Align the threaded end of the shower head with the pipe tape on the shower arm. Hold the shower head firmly and twist it clockwise to tighten it onto the arm. Make sure it is securely fastened to prevent any leaks.

Installing a New Handheld Shower Head

The installation process involves a few additional steps for those opting for a handheld showerhead. Start by removing any old thread seal tape from the shower arm, just as you would for a fixed shower head.

Next, wrap pipe tape around the threaded end of the shower arm in a clockwise direction. The tape will provide an extra sealing layer for the handheld shower head.

After applying the pipe tape, you must attach the holder or bracket to the wall. Position the holder at the desired height and mark the mounting holes with a pencil. Secure the holder using screws or adhesive, following the manufacturer’s instructions.

Once the holder is in place, connect the handheld shower head to the flexible hose. Make sure the connection is secure and tight to prevent any leaks. Some handheld showerheads may require additional steps, so referring to the manufacturer’s instructions for specific guidelines is essential.

Testing the New Shower Head

With the installation complete, it’s time to test out your new showerhead. Turn on the water supply by opening the main water shut-off valve. Allow water to flow through the pipes and into the shower head.

Check for any leaks around the connections and make sure all connections are tight. If you notice any leaks, turn off the water supply and double-check the tightness of the connections. You may need to reapply pipe tape or adjust the shower head.

Once you have confirmed no leaks, it’s time to test the water pressure. Adjust the shower head settings to your desired water flow and pressure. Take a moment to enjoy the new shower experience and make any necessary adjustments to the settings.


Sometimes, you may encounter issues or challenges during the removal and installation. Here are a few common troubleshooting scenarios and their potential solutions:

  • Dealing with a stubborn shower head: If the shower head is challenging to remove, use an adjustable wrench or pliers for extra leverage. Be cautious not to apply excessive force to avoid damaging the shower pipe.
  • Addressing leaks: If you notice leaks after installing the new shower head, check the connections for tightness and make sure the pipe tape is applied correctly. Remove the shower head and rewrap the pipe tape or tighten the connections if necessary.
  • Handling low water pressure: If the water pressure seems lower than expected, there may be a clog or debris in the shower head. Remove the shower head and soak it in a cleaning solution, or use a small brush to remove any blockages.

Safety Precautions

While removing and installing a showerhead may seem straightforward, it is essential to prioritize safety. Here are some safety precautions to keep in mind:

  • Using protective gear: It is recommended to wear gloves and safety goggles while working on the shower head. This will help protect your hands and eyes from any potential injuries.
  • Turning off water appropriately: Before starting any work, ensure the water supply is turned off at the main water shut-off valve. This will prevent any unexpected water surges or accidents.
  • Avoiding damage to shower components: Take care not to apply excessive force or use tools that may cause damage to the shower head, shower arm, or any other components. Handle everything with care and apply gentle pressure when necessary.

By following these precautions, you can ensure a safe and successful shower head removal and installation process. Now that you have the knowledge and step-by-step instructions, you can confidently upgrade your shower experience with a new showerhead. Happy showering!

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Vincent Turner
Hello, I'm Vincent Turner, an award-winning expert in the world of bathrooms. With years of experience in the industry, I am delighted to share my knowledge and tips on all things bathroom-related on my website, My passion for bathrooms and design has allowed me to gain credibility and recognition within the industry. I have been honored with several awards for my innovative ideas and exceptional artistry throughout my career. These accolades inspire me to strive for excellence and give me the confidence to provide you with trusted advice and recommendations. I aim to transform ordinary bathrooms into extraordinary retreats where functionality meets style. Whether you're looking for tips on small bathroom design, practical storage solutions, or the latest trends in bathroom fixtures, I am here to guide you through every step. Beyond my professional achievements, I believe that injecting some personality into everything we do adds a touch of authenticity. As you explore my website, you'll find that I am not only passionate about bathrooms but also dedicated to helping you create spaces that reflect your unique personality and lifestyle. I understand that every bathroom is different and every individual has their preferences. That's why I strive to provide diverse information and ideas, so you can choose what suits you best. Whether you're a DIY enthusiast or seeking professional advice, you'll find valuable content tailored to your needs. I invite you to explore and unlock the potential of your bathroom. From step-by-step guides to product recommendations, I aim to empower you with the knowledge and inspiration to transform your space into a sanctuary of tranquility and functionality. Thank you for visiting my website, and I look forward to being a part of your bathroom journey. Feel free to contact me with any questions or suggestions – together, let's create the bathroom of your dreams!