Let’s face it. If you are on this web page, chances are that you are looking for the best shower valve. The reason behind it could be that you want to replace your old and leaky shower valve with a new, efficient and reliable model. Well, you know your reasons.
Nothing is as refreshing as a warm shower on a cold morning. But not just any shower valve can guarantee you a refreshing shower. A shower valve does the important job of controlling and maintaining the shower temperature.
It is also the component that directs or re-directs the flow of shower water from the shower head to the tub faucet. A poor quality shower may leak or fail to control and maintain the temperature of the shower water. It is therefore vital that you buy the right shower valve for your bathroom.
We provide you with one of intensively researched and informative resource on shower valves including the best thermostatic shower valves. Do not be confused about what to buy whether you want traditional or modern, thermostatic or pressure balancing shower valve.
Fast track your search by considering our list of the best shower valves currently in the market.
Best Shower Valves – Comparisons
Top 10 Best Shower Valve Reviews
Making the choice of which particular shower valve to buy can be daunting. This is due to the fact that many models and brands are on the market. You may need to have some background in plumbing to make an informed choice.
That’s why we provide you with best shower reviews. Later, we will provide you with a useful and practical buying guide. I hope you find this resource helpful.
1. Delta Faucet R10000-UNBX
Made right here is the United States, the Delta Faucet R10000-UNBX is my favorite. I stumbled upon it when I was looking for the best thermostatic shower valve.
It has several lovely features. The first is versatility, Imagine a revolutionary system that allows you to alter the style, function, and appearance of your shower. Yet, you will do all of these without having to interfere with the plumbing behind the bathroom wall.
The R10000-UNBX accepts dual, single and even dual thermostatic cartridges. This high level of versatility makes it compatible with most plumbing. It is, therefore, one of the best shower valves you can buy if your shower panel needs repairs.
The valve features brass construction. As you may know, brass is one of the most durable materials for any bathroom accessories. The material will provide you with years of reliable performance.
Although Delta sells only the valve body, you can find compatible trims (sponges and screws) in most hardware stores in your locality. The trims are sold separately but they include an appropriate cartridge.
Even more amazing is the fact that the R1000-UNBX has back to back installation capability. This means you can install them back to back but reverse the cartridge on one to prevent pipes from crossing.
I highly recommend the R10000-UNBX for anyone in need of repairing his bathroom faucet. It is also great for individuals installing a new faucet.
As common with most other shower facet accessories from Delta Faucet Company, this unit is affordable. It is also backed by Delta’s limited lifetime warranty. I invite you to check it out. You will not resist the urge to buy it.
2. Kohler Genuine Part Gp77759 Mixer Cap for Pressure Balance
Kohler is a King when it comes to making shower accessories. While The Gp77759 mixer cap is not a shower valve, it is an integral accessory that helps with shower pressure balance. The cap features an exceptional design with performance-oriented features and specifications. The unit is compatible with most models of Rite-Temp shower valves.
Most manufacturers of shower valves find it hard to control temperature limit yet allow maximum water temperature. Kohler does not have that problem. The Gp77759 has a temperature limit stop that allows you to adjust the water temperature to your desired level.
The same temperature limit allows you to set maximum temperature. These features aim at guaranteeing you a relaxing and refreshing shower.
Unlike most poor quality shower valves that make your shower handle rigid, the Kohler Genuine Parts provides smooth shower head handle rotation. This unit is designed to fit with KOHLER trim. It may not work well with other trim models.
However, you can use it perfectly with most models of shower valve. According to the company, some unscrupulous individuals are selling fake parts purporting to be Kohler accessories.
Potential customers should look for genuine Kohler logo in any products claiming to be from Kohler. You should do this to prevent any fraud. The only drawback is could say about this product is its construction material. Well, the part is made of plastic.
Although I have not used this shower valve accessory before, I realize many people have no problem with the plastic construction. The choice is yours to make.
3. Delta Faucet R11000-UNWS
An alternative shower valve to the two we have reviewed about is the Delta R11000. Similar in quality and performance to most Delta products, the R11000 is what you will need to repair your shower for long and reliable service.
The valve body is made of forged brass. This type of brass is known for strength and durability. Brass is also resistant to corrosion and heat. However, the brass body comes with a plastic rough-in. This does not, in any way, interfere with the quality and performance of the R11000.
The unit is so versatile. You can use it with three or six function diverter rough. It is a high flow shower valve which you can use with a wide variety of trim. However, you may need additional components for proper installation based on the trim you choose to use. I would recommend you go for a compatible Delta trim which is sold separately.
Like the Delta Faucet R10000 we discussed earlier, this unit allows you to change the appearance, style, and function of your shower. There is no need to interfere with your pre-existing plumbing. This feature makes R11000 shower valve and an ideal choice for those who wish to repair or remodel their showers.
On the flipside, I fail to understand why Delta would make a shower valve which can operate a combination of 2 of three shower heads. Yet it makes it impossible to operate all the three shower heads at the same time. Probably, it is an isolated case with my unit. I have tried to research but I haven’t found anyone with a similar complaint.
4. Moen 2510 Brass Posi-Temp Valve
Moen is a reputable company when it comes to producing bathroom and kitchen accessories. If you are looking for the best shower valve, then Moen 2510 Monticello PosiTemp is a great choice.
This wonderful shower valve accepts the traditional ½-inch IPS connection type. This means the valve is compatible with traditional bathrooms.
If installed, you can be sure that your traditional showerhead will deliver a performance similar to the one exhibited by the latest models.
As you can appreciate from the name, the unit is fitted with Moen’s PosiTemp technology. This technology helps to maintain the water temperature. All you need to do is set your ideal temperature and allow the valve to do the rest.
Thus, the valve will deliver the performance of the best thermostat shower valve. Although I have not had a chance to install and use this shower valve in my bathroom, my research reveals that most peoples are happy with the unit.
The Moen 2510 shower valve is compatible with Moen M-PACT trims. These trims are sold separately. Unlike the valves reviewed above, this unit is rather specific when it comes to trim.
One thing I like with this valve is the ability of its 1222 cartridge to accommodate back-to-back installation. This feature gives the valve a high level of versatility. It also makes the unit extremely easy to install.
Moen offers its solid limited lifetime warranty on purchase. Thus you should not worry if the unit delivered to you has any design or functional damages. Such confidence is a mark of quality.
5. KOHLER K-304-K-NA Rite-Temp Valve
The KOHLER K-304-K-NA Rite-Temp is perhaps the best pressure balancing power valve you can find on the market in 2018! I make this bold proclamation because it has many salient features that only serve demonstrate its great performance.
The unit allows back-to-back installation which is ideal for high-volume or unique jobs. Such versatility is homeowners and plumbers delight.
The K-304-K-NA is extremely easy to install. You do not need special skills to pull the job off. No need for sophisticated installation tools. The unit has its mounting tabs situated on rough-in so as to provide a secure installation option.
To complete the installation, you will need a compatible trim. KOHLER valve trim is the best. It is sold separately hardware stores. You can also order online. Other trim brands may also be compatible. However, you need to be careful not to buy an incompatible trim. That’s money wasted.
Its design features large internal ports that allow for quick bath filling. Such design also provides anti-scald protection as well as temperature regulation as flow rates as lower as 175 GPM. This flow rate is way below the federal recommended 25 GPM. Besides scald prevention, the valve also prevents freezing. Thus you can shower unperturbed in any weather condition.
Another important design feature is the proven diaphragm which eliminates the freeze-ups from unnecessary contamination and water residues. A high-temperature limit stop serves to enable you to pre-set your desired optimal temperature to eliminate scalding.
Similarly, a maximum comfort zone eliminates any hurdles in finding and maintaining the right temperature. This unit has many other wonderful features you can only appreciate if you install it.
6. Pfister 00131xa 3-handle tub & shower rough-in valve
Pfister is one of the most reputable companies in the home improvement industry. For over a century, the company has established itself as a major contender in creating premium-quality faucets and accessories. The aim is to provide products of value, innovation, and style.
Their 00131xa shower valve is a true testament to Pfister engineering prowess. This wonderful shower valve is compatible with 3-hole installations. The process is easy if you have the right tools. Besides, each unit comes with an easy to understand and follow the installation guide. Despite the easy installation, getting matching trims can be a daunting task.
The trim choices recommended by Pfister can be quite expensive. However, you can carry your own research to find matching yet affordable trims.
The Pfister 00131xa feature high-quality brass construction. Brass is the favorite material for making faucets and other kitchen and bathroom accessories. It is rust-proof, corrosion proof and can tolerate high temperatures. Unlike soldered metal shower valves that are prone to leakage, solid brass will serve you for years without as much as a small drop.
A drawback of the Pfister 00131xa is its compression piece for the shower diverter. A few users expressed their dissatisfaction with a possible manufacturing flaw in the compression piece. They note that the hot and cold screw in.
However, the shower one tends to only partially compress that water to direct it to the shower. I believe this is an isolated case and Pfister is working on how to fix the problem.
7. Danze D113000BT Single Control Mixing Valve
The Danze D112000BT is a ceramic disc valve that provides you with high-performance, drip proof solution for your bathroom shower heads. It offers smooth handle control to eliminate leaking and dripping. As you may already know, this shower valve features ceramic construction.
The material is high-quality hardened ceramic that will provide you with years of reliable service. The valve’s design features a lower and upper disc that slide over one another to control temperature and flow.
This Danze pressure balance valve is recommended for single showers. However, it is versatile enough to work with a shower and tub combination and even shower with hand shower combinations.
It features temperature limit adjustment. This means you can easily set your favorite water temperatures depending on the prevailing conditions and your personal preferences.
This unit is extremely easy to install. You do not need to see the services of a plumber. Even more convenient is the fact that the Danze Ceramic Disc valves allow for back to back installation.
This means you can do a high-quantity or strange installation without a problem. In other words, the valve makes it possible for you to divert the supplied water to either single tub filler or more shower components.
The D112000BT achieves a flow rate of up to 6 gallons per minute at 45 PSI so as to support two outlets. The valve is designed to adjust automatically the incoming cold and hot water. This provides a consistent, comfortable range of temperature.
These features make the valve an ideal choice if you want to convert your ordinary shower into a luxurious one. It comes as a kit consisting of plaster guard and mounting brackets.
8. Grohe 35015000 Grohsafe Rough-In Valve
Owing its origin to Germany, the Grohe Grohsafe Rough-In Shower valve is one of the very best. It is a pressure balance valve that will guarantee you and your family peace of mind. This is because it will offer you a stable, long-term and reliable shower protection from cold shocks and scald.
The valve provides a wide comfort zone. You can gradually and accurately regulate water temperature for a refreshing shower.
Germany is well known for the quality of the products they deliver. All Grohe products including the Grohsafe has undergone rigorous testing to ensure quality. The company integrates esthetics with performance to deliver something luxurious but still affordable.
The shower valve is very easy to install. The company covers it with a limited lifetime warranty on purchase. Based on customer reviews have so far seen, the valve will maintain the same performance as when you first used it.
The unit has many wonderful features responsible for its great performance. First, it features GROHE’s SilkMove, a technology that guarantees smooth operation. Second, the valve features a diaphragm cartridge which is known for great performance.
Such diaphragms are common with expensive high-end models. Other performance-oriented features include check valves and service stops. This means zero chance of drip or leakage.
In terms of installation, the Grohsafe Rough-In Valve almost installs itself. You need only minimal effort and time. It is sold as a kit which includes cap and plug for three-point installations.
It is recommended that you use this shower valve with compatible trims from Grohe. However, you can research to find of you can use other types of trims provided they are compatible.
9. KES BRASS Shower Faucet Body Valve
Another shower valve that can guarantee you exceptional performance at an affordable price is the KES BRASS Shower Faucet Body Valve. The valve body is made of high-quality brass with an elegant chrome finish. Such a body’s heavy-duty design is built to resist rusting, corrosion and tarnishing.
Its faceplate is made of high-quality stainless steel. The handle is also solid metal. These components are not just durable; they are also pleasing to look at. Installing the KES BRASS shower faucet body valve will give your bathroom a modern look.
The showering experience is also great with this valve. I have a friend install this shower valve and the experienced I had bathing in his bathroom is nothing but awesome.
The valve is fitted with ceramic disc valving. Ceramic valves are great in pressure balancing. This guarantees high-quality performance. Keep in mind that the valve is a replacement for the bathroom showering system with 1/2-Inch IPS connection size.
You will have to try to find compatible accessories such as trims. They are usually sold separately. I would advise you to buy KES accessories as these are less likely to give you problems.
Installing this shower valve can be difficult. The problem here is that the KES does not include any paperwork. That means you will have to gamble to find how you can install it properly.
Only in this way can you install it properly. Better still, you can talk to someone who has installed it before. Anyway, this valve body from KES will give your money for your value.
10. SR SUN RISE Pressure Balance Shower Valve
SR SUN RISE is a great company when it comes to faucets and other shower accessories. Their Square manual bathroom shower mixer boasts as one of the excellent This wonderful shower valve is compatible with 3-hole installations. The process is easy if you have the right tools. Besides, each unit comes with shower valves currently in the market. The durable valve is made of a high-quality brass material that does not pollute water.
The material ensures the valve delivers you with a batter bathing environment for you and protect your loved ones.
Brass is also rustproof. The box is made of high-grade ABS material. It serves to protect the valve body and extend its life. The design is unique as is functional. It features imported shower cartridge.
Inside the cartridge is a pressure balance to extremely hot water from scalding users of the showerhead. The high quality ceramic disc cartridge will open millions of time without leakage.
Before introduction into the market, the valve has undergone rigorous tests for quality and performance. Not only has it passed these tests, but it has also actually surpassed the expectations of even its manufacturers. This is proof that you are getting a high-quality product. It will serve you for years and you will enjoy the refreshing and rejuvenating shower.
The shower valve is the dual function that means versatility. However, there is no button to control water temperature. Therefore, you will need to gamble with hot and cold water to adjust the water temperature you desire.
Another drawback is that the unit is valve only meaning you will have to look for compatible rough-in as well as trims. They are sold separately in most online shops. You will love this shower valve.
Shower Valve Buying Guide and FAQ’s
From what you can see my selection is great. At least according to my research, they are the best you can find in the market in 2021. I understand that different people have different tastes. Therefore, you may not agree with my selections.
Nevertheless, there is no cause to worry. I have got you covered. Now, let’s move on by providing you with a buying guide and useful tips to help you make your own informed choice. Here are some questions you need to ask yourself:
Why Do You Need A Shower Valve?
Shower valves the thermostatic and pressure balancing models perform the great function of controlling and maintain a water temperature of a shower.
Other models are designed to help transfer, direct or re-direct the flow of water from the showerhead to the tub faucet. The latter is also true in the case of a handheld showerhead.
In most cases, you will need a shower valve as a replacement for your shower faucet. Many people prefer them because they deliver a better showering experience.
This is because they allow for better control of the temperature and even flow-rate of shower water. The result is a refreshing and rejuvenating shower.
What Are The Types Of Shower Valves?
Before proceeding any further, it is good to learn the different types of shower valves. Generally, people who talk about shower valves may mean any of three types. They could be referring to a pressure balancing valve, a thermostatic mixing valve or a diverter valve. Here are brief discussions of each of these types:
Pressure Balancing Type
This is perhaps the most common type of shower valves. You will encounter this in many households here in the US. This type works by maintaining water temperature. It does this by keeping the constant ratio between cold and hot waters.
In the simplest description, the valve utilizes a diaphragm or a piston with ball-bearings. These ball-bearings respond to changes in the pressure of cold and hot water pipes.
But what happens when pressure suddenly falls as in flushing toilet? Well, the valve will still control the flow of hot water strictly so that you don’t get a scald in the shower. To do this, it reduces cold water flow and overall pressure while maintaining the shower temperature the same.
Thermostatic Mixing Shower Valves
Just like the common thermostats you already know, this type of shower valve works by controlling water temperature.
Often, the temperature is controlled at the pre-set level. The strongest feature of this type is that you can simply turn the shower on and wait for the water temperature to attain the pre-determined temperature. The button eliminates the gamble you will have with trying to experiment with cold and hot shower faucets.
Thermostatic mixing shower valves can be either manual or electronic. Manual forms usually use a heat-sensitive material such as wax to control water temperature.
As water temperature increases, wax expands and restricts its flow. In the automatic balancing form, hot water makes way in and the wax begins to shrink. This lets more hot water in this maintaining a steady balance.
Transfer or Diverter Shower Valves
This last type is perhaps the least common. A diverter transfer valve works by changing the flow of water. Diverter valves are capable of diverting water in a single direction. For instance, you can from either your bath faucet or showerhead.
A transfer valve, on the other hand, allows you to run water from multiple outlets. The best diverter or transfer shower valves can run shower from a handheld head, showerhead or horizontal sprayers.
How to Choose the Best Shower Valve
There is not much to say about what you can consider before buying a shower valve. You may want to use what your instincts tell you to make the decision. However, we have researched and come up with a few factors that could help you make an informed choice.
Thermostatic vs. Manual
Ultimately, the choice of which valve to buy depends on its functionality. I believe you already know the difference between the two. It is pretty simple but it determines a lot when it comes to the performance valve.
A thermostatic model will simply switch of the flow of hot water if the temperature hits a certain level. The manual model will require you to try things out. Besides, it solves the old problem of losing cold water when pressure suddenly drops as in toilet flushing.
The Number of Controls It Has
Experts classify shower valves depending on the number of controls they have. The number can range from 1 to 3. As a rule of thumb, a valve with a large number of controls is better in controlling and maintaining shower water temperatures. This is because of a greater degree of fine controls.
For instance, a shower valve featuring a single control will regulate the amount of hot water, the amount of cold water and pressure. Conversely, a shower valve featuring 2 controls will have one manage temperature while the other manages the flow pressure.
Finally, one with 3 controls will have first control manage temperature; the second control manages pressure and the third control change the outlet being used.
The Number of Outlets
Similar to controls, the number of outlets a valve has also mattered. Usually, a model can have 1 to 3 outlets. A single outlet valve is extremely limiting in the scope of what it can do. A 3 outlet valve, on the other hand, is extremely versatile.
This is because of more outlets open to additional options. For instance, in a 2 outlet valve, one outlet may be the showerhead while the other may connect to a handheld showerhead. The other outlet might connect to a body jet. The preference, however, is yours.
Design and Material
A good shower valve must feature solid, leak-proof construction. The ability of any valve to resist leak is the number one determinant of its quality. Look for a valve that is well sealed and solidly constructed. Take a brand that has been tested and certified leak-proof. For how can you buy something costing tens of dollars only to throw it away because of leakage?
The material used in its construction is another important consideration. Generally, such shower accessories are made from plastic, brass or even soldered metal. Brass is usually the best material if you asked me. However, the choice is yours. Go for a material that will not rust, corrode or tarnish. This it guarantees durability and prevents water pollution.
Some brands of shower valves usually come as kits. This means the package includes the valve body, trim as well as handles and other accessories. Handle options matter a lot because with will determine the ease and smoothness with which you will turn your shower faucet.
A good handle should also be able to complement your bathroom décor. Shower valves come in a variety of colors and styles. The choice is yours to make.
It is always good to buy any product from popular and reputable brands. This is because their products have stood the test of time. Poor quality products cannot go any far. For instance, Delta Faucet Company is one of the most popular brands the make shower valves.
You can be sure their products are great. This is not to mean new companies cannot make great products. You simply need to be careful in making the right choice.
How to Fix and Replace Shower Valves
You passed the first hurdle of choosing the right shower valve. In fact, you have even bought and brought your choice home. You face a new hurdle – having to install or replace your shower valve. You have either of two choices. The first is to do it yourself.
The second choice is to employ the services of a professional plumber. The second choice is easier. However, you have spent all the money you had buying the shower valve in the first place.
Well, there is no need to worry. You can simply install it on your own. Luckily, most brands include installation paperwork in the package of the shower valve.
Sometimes, the paperwork is not clear. At other times, it’s not included. In such a case, you can follow a few steps. The process can be divided into two faces: removing the old valve and replacing the new valve.
Tools You Will Need:
- Assortment of Screwdrivers
- New shower valve
- Utility knife
- Allen- wrench (if necessary)
- Channel-type pliers
Removing the Old Valve
Step 1: Remove the Handle
Inspect the screw behind the cap that keeps the handle in place. You can remove it with a screwdriver or Allen-wrench if necessary. Removing the screw will automatically remove the handle.
Step 2: Remove the Trim Plate
In order to access the shower valve, you will have to remove the escutcheon trim plate. The second set of screws may hold the plate in place. Remove them with a screwdriver or Allen-wrench as appropriate. Pull the plate out of the wall.
At times caulk around the trim plate may prevent it from breaking free. Use a utility knife to free it. Some models have an additional protective plate the covers the valve. You will need to remove it too.
Step 3: Create an Access Hole
You may be forced to cut or break open a larger hole to enable removal and installation of the shower valves. To create a hole, you can either cut through the wall in your bathroom plumbing or work via a small aperture in the surround. The technique to use depends on the material you are dealing with.
Step 4: Make Ready the Necessary Fittings
This is where you decide how to remove the old valve and put in place a new one. Put the old and the new against each other and see the kind of piping needed. Each valve is different and therefore the fittings you will need depends on the type you buy. It helps to make a list of all the fittings you need for the installation part to go one smoothly.
Step 5: Remove the Old Valve
Now cut the water supply off. Cut the old shower valve out leaving some copper to help with the installation of the new unit. You can use a mini-hacksaw to cut the copper. Try to leave some copper piping that allows movement. This will make installing a new valve extremely easy.
Installing a New Shower Valve
Step 1: Disassemble the New valve
Start by removing the housing or plastic cartridge on the valve body before soldering. This is because the plastic components are nonresistant to heat. Keep in the back of your mind the manner in which the plastic cartridge or housing came out. This is because you will need to return it in the same manner.
Step 2: Prepare the New Valve Outside
Before putting the new valve into the wall, ensure you make all the necessary attachments outside. You may need to over one end.
An example is if the valve will fit into the shower devoid of an attached bathtub. In the example, the bottom of the valve needs capping. Just ensure you do not cap the wrong end.
Use the standard copper soldering instructions to be on the safe side. Before you can fix the valve into the wall, flux all valve connections.
Step 3: Fit the Valve into Position
Try maneuvering the new valve into position. Do it carefully not to damage the valve before it can serve you. In most cases, people find it difficult to put the valve into position because the available space is limited.
Be careful not to drop the valve in the wall. It is easier to start by putting the valve on to the shower riser. This will let the other parts fall into place more easily.
Step 4: Do the Soldering
Solder to join the copper piping to the new valve. Be extremely careful when soldering in tight and awkward spaces. The chances of stuff catching fire are very high. A piece of good advice would be to have a fire extinguisher and a spray of water readily available. Maybe you can wet the wall a little bit prior to soldering.
Deal with one joint at a time. Ensure you solder all around the joint to ensure the valve is leak-proof. Seeing the back of the valve can be difficult. However, you can use an inspection mirror to see what is going on.
Step 5: Allow Time to Cool Down
Once you have sufficiently soldered all the joints, allow the valve to cool for a short while. Re-install the valve cartridge and any plastic housing only after the soldered parts have cooled down to room temperature.
Use the same technique you removed the cartridge to return it into place. Place the shower valve in off position then turn the water back on to inspect for any leaks.
Step 6: Put the Final Touches
The last action is to install the trim and the handle. Follow this by setting the cover plate. You can then screw on the cartridge sleeve. Put the handle in place. Look at your work with admiration because you are done!
What do you think? Do you find this resource helpful in your search for the best shower valve? You know well. Whether you are looking for the best thermostatic shower valve or manual shower valve, our list is comprehensive.
Each of the shower faucet valves we have included in our reviews is top quality yet they are affordable. Please take your time and check each of them out. I believe you will find what you have been looking for.
Otherwise, you can use our comprehensive user guide to help you make an informed choice. You also know how you can install or replace a shower valve. Make your choice now and enjoy a refreshing and relaxing shower.