By Gene and Katie Hamilton
Today’s shower heads do a lot more than spray water, so if you expect more than what yours is delivering, consider replacing it with a new one. They can sprinkle, spritz, swivel and rain down in a gentle stream, straight spray or powerful downpour. You’ll find easily installed heads that attach to a standard shower arm. Take a walk through the plumbing department of any bath or home center and you’ll see a dazzling array of shower heads. If your house has an old plumbing system, consider adding an anti-scald device that screws in between the shower arm and head; it will stop the flow of dangerously hot water, over 120 degrees.
To remove an old shower head and replace it with a moderately priced new one, a plumber will charge $155, which includes the labor and shower head. If you have some experience working with plumbing jobs and have the necessary tools, you can do the job for $60, the cost of a moderately priced new showerhead, and save 61 percent.
To remove the old head, use a slip-joint pliers and adjustable wrench to unscrew it from the shower arm. You may need a lubricating spray to loosen it. Before installing the new head, clean the threads of the arm and wrap them with Teflon tape. Then use the pliers to tighten the new head on threads making sure there’s a rubber washer inside.
The average price to replace a shower head noted above is cost data to compare a contractor’s estimate with doing it yourself. Tweak the data by adding your ZIP Code to find a local cost.
Cost updated 2012