Is Your Shower Won’t Stop Running? Here’s What to Do

Have you ever had to deal with a shower that won’t stop dripping or running, even after turning it off? 

It’s an incredibly frustrating experience that gets on your nerves and puts a dent in your wallet by increasing your water and electricity bills. 

Luckily, there are solutions to this problem, but the key is figuring out what’s causing it in the first place.

There are a few reasons why your shower might continue running even when you’ve turned it off, and it’s not always easy to pinpoint the exact cause. 

However, two of the most common culprits are a loose faucet and a faulty cartridge or valve.

If the loose faucet is an issue, the first step is to tighten it. This simple fix can be done with the help of a wrench or pliers to turn the nut that secures the faucet. However, if the issue persists, then it’s likely that the problem is a faulty cartridge or valve. You’ll need to replace the faulty component with a new one to address this. 

Wanna know in detail how to do it. Let’s jump into the content below.

Why Won’t My Shower Stop Running?

There are several reasons behind the cause of why won’t your shower stop running, which are explained below.

Loose Parts

A quick inspection of your shower’s faucet, handle, and showerhead can often reveal loose parts that cause your shower’s persistent running. 

Loose screws in the handle are common and can prevent your shower from turning off entirely. Loose components throughout your shower can also cause leaks, which can be both wasteful and costly.

These loose parts can result from regular wear and tear, but fortunately, fixing them is usually a relatively easy task. 

A Worn out Faucet

Your shower faucet comprises various small but essential parts, such as O-rings, valves, and gaskets, that can wear out over time. 

When this happens, water can flow even after you’ve turned off the shower. 

The faucet’s stem can also become damaged, and the handles may develop cracks that result in constant leaking.

If your faucet has suffered significant damage, you may need to replace it to resolve it entirely. 

Neglecting a damaged faucet can lead to additional problems, such as the growth of mold and mildew.

Faucet Cartridge

The cartridge in your shower faucet is a vital component that regulates the flow of hot and cold water and plays a crucial role in stopping the flow of water once you turn off the shower. 

However, these cartridges can wear out over time and fail to function correctly, leading to showers that won’t turn off.

A faulty faucet cartridge is a common cause of this frustrating issue, and if you haven’t replaced the cartridge in a while, it’s likely the source of your problem. 

Diverter Valve

A shower diverter valve is a critical component that regulates water flow into different outlets, such as a bathtub or showerhead. 

These valves typically come with one to three outlets and can develop issues over time, leading to leaks or an inability to turn off the water flow.

It’s essential to promptly address any problems with a diverter valve, as water damage can occur if the issue is left unattended. 

One clear indication of a malfunctioning diverter valve is water coming out of both outlets simultaneously.

Clogged Faucet

As time goes on, rust, dirt, sediment, and other debris can accumulate in your shower faucet, causing it to become clogged. 

When left unchecked, this buildup can eventually cause damage to your faucet, leading to leaks and difficulty turning off the handles completely.

While clogged faucets are the least likely cause of a shower that won’t turn off, it is still possible. 

It’s essential to regularly clean and maintain your faucet to prevent any future problems. Not only will this prevent clogs, but it will also improve your water flow.

How To Fix A Shower That Won’t Stop Running?

After successfully inspecting the issues, let’s move toward how to fix them to solve your shower running issue when it’s off.

Tightening Loose Parts

It’s always best to take precautionary measures before tackling any work on your shower, such as turning off the water supply. Once you’re ready, let’s start with tightening the faucet handle.

To access the handle, remove the faceplate by turning the bonnet counterclockwise and unscrewing the screws that secure the faceplate. 

Then, use a screwdriver or Allen wrench to check the screws underneath the faceplate that holds the handle in place. Please make sure they are tight before replacing the faceplate.

Loose showerheads are another common issue that expansion foam can easily fix. 

Before applying the foam, cover the area around the showerhead hole with masking tape to catch any excess foam. For handheld showerheads, tighten them using seal tape and an adjustable wrench.

Replacing a Damaged Faucet

To fix a shower that won’t stop running, you must first turn off your bathroom’s water supply or cut-off valve. 

If your showerhead or handle is loose, you can remove and replace them with new parts. When replacing parts, install the new O rings and gaskets that come with them.

Suppose the issue is with your valve stem or pipes. In that case, hiring a professional plumber is best, as these parts require specialized removal tools.

To replace a faucet cartridge, start by turning off the water supply and covering your drain to avoid losing small screws or pins. 

Remove the faceplate and handle with a screwdriver or Allen wrench. Once removed, you will have access to the cartridge, which is located inside your wall.

A metal sheath around the cartridge can be removed by hand or with pliers. Once removed, you’ll find a U pin holding the cartridge in place that you can remove with needle-nosed pliers. 

You can then use the pliers to replace the old cartridge with a new one. Finally, put everything back together.

Inspecting Your Diverter Valve

There are a few ways to access your shower diverters, such as cutting a small hole next to your shower handle but removing the shower faceplate, handle, and cartridge is more cost-effective. Once you have removed the cartridge, you will see the diverter valve.

Please take a closer look at the diverter valve to determine its condition. Tightening all the nuts on the diverter valve can sometimes fix the issue of the shower remaining on even when turned off. However, replacing the diverter valve is necessary if you observe cracks or leaks.

Cleaning a Clogged Faucet

Cleaning a clogged faucet is essential to ensure proper water flow and prevent damage to your faucet. 

Fortunately, there are several ways to fix a clogged faucet, and one of the most effective methods is to remove the aerator.

To remove the aerator, use a plumber’s wrench and protect it with a cloth to prevent scratches or damage. 

Once removed, soak the aerator in a chemical solution specifically designed to remove rust, lime, and calcium buildup. 

The soaking time may vary depending on the product instructions, but generally, it takes a few hours.

After soaking, rinse the aerator thoroughly, removing all the debris and chemical residue. Finally, reattach the aerator to the faucet and turn on the water to test the flow. 

Why Do My Tub and Shower Run At The Same Time?

If you’re experiencing the frustrating issue of water flowing from both your tub and shower simultaneously, the culprit is likely a faulty shower diverter valve. 

This valve regulates the flow of water between the tub spout and the showerhead so that only one works at a time. 

When it becomes clogged, damaged, or malfunctions, water can start to flow from both fixtures or neither one.

Fortunately, you can resolve this issue by following these simple steps:

  • First, turn off the water supply to your bathroom from the main valve.
  • Next, remove any screws, nuts, or bolts securing the shower diverter valve to the pipe.
  • Inspect the valve carefully for any signs of damage or blockages.
  • If you notice any blockages, clean the valve using a soft brush or blowing air through it.
  • If the valve is damaged, replace it with an identical one of the same dimensions.

Following these steps, you should be able to restore proper functioning to your shower and tub and avoid further water wastage or inconvenience.

FAQs Related To Shower Won’t Stop Running?

Is a leaky shower a concern?

Yes, a leaky shower is a concern that should be addressed as soon as possible. Even a small leak can waste significant water and increase your water bill. Additionally, a leak can cause water damage to your walls, floors, and ceiling, leading to mold growth and other structural issues.

Why is my shower tap not turning off?

A shower tap not turning off may have a few potential causes. It could be due to a worn-out washer or valve, mineral buildup, or a faulty cartridge. A faulty cartridge is a common reason for shower taps not turning off, as it controls the water flow.

How do you stop a tap that won’t turn off?

If a tap doesn’t turn off, you should shut off the water supply to prevent water damage. Next, you can try tightening the tap handle with a wrench, as it could be loose. If that doesn’t work, you may need to replace the washer inside the tap, which can wear out over time and cause leaks.

How can I tell If the shower valve has been dripping?

If the shower valve has been dripping, there may be several signs that you can observe. One of the most common signs is a consistent dripping sound from the shower, even when turned off. Another indicator is a sudden increase in your water bill, which could indicate that you are using more water than usual due to the dripping shower valve.

Hey there, I'm Abdul Moeed Shahid, the DIY aficionado and experienced writer. With a wealth of knowledge gained from years of honing my craft, I bring my expertise to the world of DIY and home improvement projects.

Leave a Comment