How to Install a Bathtub Spout With a Diverter


Diverters in a bathtub spout direct the flow of water either to the spout or up to the shower head, depending on if you pull the diverter up or leave it down. Installing a spout that does not have a diverter will render the shower useless. If you are replacing an old spout, take it with you to the hardware or plumbing supply store when you buy the new one to make sure you get one that will fit in your space and work with your existing plumbing.

Things You'll Need

  • Allen wrench
  • Cloth
  • Adjustable wrench
  • Thread tape
  • Faucet nipple
  • Caulk
  • Remove the old spout, if one is installed, by removing any retaining screws on the underside of the spout. If there is a retaining screw, cover the bathtub's drain with a cloth (so screws don't fall down it) and use an Allen wrench to remove the screw, then twist the spout back and forth as you pull it off the pipe.

  • If there is no retaining screw on the spout, twist if off the pipe counterclockwise using an adjustable wrench. Use the old spout as a reference for the replacement spout, including the placement of the spout's threads where it screws into the pipe.

  • Use an adjustable wrench to twist the old nipple -- a cylinder-shaped adapter piece that joins the spout to the water pipe --counterclockwise out of the pipe as well. Wrap thread tape around both ends of the new nipple, then twist it clockwise into the pipe.

  • Fill in the gap between the new nipple and the wall with caulk. Screw or slide the new spout onto the pipe, depending on what type of spout you are installing.

  • Tighten the retaining screw in the underside of the spout, then remove the cloth covering the bathtub's drain. Open the house's main water valve.

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