How to Replace a Shower Arm

Several reasons can make a homeowner decide to change the shower arm.  You may decide to replaces it because of rust, residue, leaking or you need an improved arm. Replacing a shower arm is a simple task that homeowners can perform with their standard tools.

This guide will give you more tips on how you can replace a shower arm. Before you even move ahead to replace the shower arm, first you need to assemble down all that you require in the process.

  • A new shower arm( of the same size as the old one)
  • Metal lubricant
  • Plumbing tape
  • Eye protectors
  • Rubber glovers
  • Adjustable pipe wrench
  • Vise grips
  • Step stool
  • Calcium and limescale remover
  • Vinegar

If you have everything you need, follow the steps below to replace your shower arm

Shutting off the water is obvious the first step to making. You can decide to cut the entire room or just the water flowing to the bathroom. However, you can accomplish this by shutting down the main switch of the shower.

Usually, determine the location of the plumbing system connects to the water supply. However, you can check the shut-off valve under your bathroom sink or anywhere in the bathroom.

2. Detach the shower head

For you to have secured processing to remove the shower arm, its better you first detach the shower head with handheld. You can decide to use a new shower head or reuse it depending on its state as it helps to reduce frequent replacing. 

The vise grip will be useful to immobilize first the arm while still, you are turning the head of the shower ring nut using the pipe wrench. Deep the shower head into an aluminum bowl filled with vinegar.

This will helps to reduce and remove any scale around the shower head. In case it stuck, you need to cover the teeth with a hand towel or a rag to avoid instances of scratching ring nut.

3. Inspecting and cleaning the shower head arm

Make a step ahead to check the states of the title just near the old shower head arm. In case of leaks or crack, you need to replace the titles immediately after you fix the shower arm. Also, in this step, you need to remove any scale, mildew, and mold around the old shower arm.

Cleaning the arm will make it easy t remove the shower arm without causing any damage. While removing the arm, we also recommend using either vinegar, calcium, and liming scale.

4. Pull the existing shower arm out of the wall

You need to use the most extended adjustable pipe wrench to grasp the shower arm. Turn the pipe wrench clockwise slowly as it will help to reduce any physical damage. However, in case the shower is tightly fixed, stop immediately to minimize the issue of breaking the pipe and give it some time.

Besides that, if the shower arm is tightly fixed, consider using a metal lubricated to coat the meeting areas of the arm and the wall. After the processing of unscrewing the shower arm, you will notice a protruding pipe from the wall designed with a lot of threads in the exterior.

5. Install the new shower arm

Before you insert the shower arm, you need to have a plumbing tape in the recommended size. It will fit 0.5 inches or 0.75-inch pipe. First, you need to wrap the upper threaded part of the tube with a layer of plumbing tape.

In case the tape is currently not available then apply plumber's compound to keep the shower arm free from leaking. After wrapping the pipe, you can now insert the new shower arm while turning the shower arm clockwise. Ensure the arm is tightly fitted to reduce instances of water leaking.

6. Reinstall the shower head

The same you did to the shower arm apply the plumbing tape around the threaded end. In case you lack the plumbing tape, you can use the plumber’s compound and apply it around the shower head before starting to reinstall the shower head.

Once you finish, you can move an end and insetting the shower head by turning it clockwise up to a snug point then make a half turn.

Note; they are two ways of replacing the shower head. The first way is to reinstall it into the shower arm before fixing the shower arm in the wall. This process helps to reduce time and make sure that the head threads are well installed before setting the shower arm.

Apply the plumbing tape or the Teflon tape to the pipe threads on the shower head then install it by screwing into the arm by makes turns clockwise on the shower head.  The second method is the one we have discussed above.

7. Texts for leaks

Now you can turn on the water supply for either the entire room or to the bathroom. In case you sport ant leaks, turn the water supply off, remove the shower head and re-tape the threads of the arm then install the shower head. Repeat the process to ensure no leaks available.

8. Tips and tricks

Tips and tackle are the last steps in any kind or replacing broken or new system.  Make sure that the water is shut off if the process is successful or not.

If you are unable to stop all the leaking, then make a step ahead and a call a professional.


In conclusion, replacing a new or broken shower head or arm is a simple task that anyone can do if he/she follows the steps above. The only thing is to make sure you are keen while replacing the shower head or arm.

For better results, make sure you have a plumbing tape before you begin the process as it helps to prevent any leakage.

Follow the above steps carefully, then you are assured of replacing a shower head.  Lastly, make sure you have everything that is required in the process (tools) as we have illustrated above.

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