I'm working with an older fixture and most of the pipes are fused which has made it unwieldy. I'm a novice at plumbing as well.

I've attached a picture of the faucet plumbing. Valves still work fine so I'm not touching those, but the spout portion had an elbow and nipple attached that were horribly corroded and fused, so I had to cut it off of the nipple in the center (hanging down). This took off part of that nipple's threading but not all of it, about half is left, it's galvanized steel as far as I can tell.

How should I attach a new elbow and nipple to this piece? Since the nipple is tapered (I think) I can't just buy a new steel elbow and screw it on, but I'm not sure. I've looked into the possibility of using a dielectric union to attach to it and then use a copper piece to run out to the tub, is that feasible?

I'm short on ideas but I know there are a ton of solutions in the plumbing space I'm not aware of. Thanks for any help.

enter image description here

  • 1
    I don't mix galvanized and copper like that that can cause some nasty crossion and pin hole leaks in the pipes. If the nipple is in bad shape get a torch and heat it it will probably release with some heat.
    – Ed Beal
    Jan 30, 2019 at 19:23
  • To reinforce what Ed stated galvanizeit.org/hot-dip-galvanizing/how-long-does-hdg-last/…
    – Eric F
    Jan 30, 2019 at 19:29
  • You could put a layer of PEX inbetween so the two metals don't touch.. I believe that would be legit still. Galvanized > PEX to galvanized adapter > small chunk of PEX > PEX to copper adapter > copper. Also it probably wasn't you, but the person before you, but you shouldn't cut out a beam like that as it severely takes away from it's strength. Rather holes should be drilled
    – Eric F
    Jan 30, 2019 at 19:30
  • @EricF How do I deal with the fact that the nipple threading is partially cut off, does it matter? Thanks.
    – Jacob S.
    Jan 30, 2019 at 19:50
  • As Ed stated, you can apply some heat and remove it with a pipe wrench. Jan 30, 2019 at 19:56

2 Answers 2


You should remove that piece you cut (hanging down) with a pipe wrench. Be sure to hold the piping going up to the shower so you don't break anything else loose or in half. Then you can take two pre-threaded brass pipes and a brass elbow (use thread paste) to create the "L" for your tub spout. You can buy those parts at most building supply stores. The straight pipes come pre-cut and threaded and are in several different lengths to suit your needs. enter image description here enter image description here

  • The fittings in my answer are brass. The diverter in the picture is also brass. How could that cause glalvanic corrosion? Jan 30, 2019 at 19:50

Probably not worth the trouble. I would remove the entire faucet and start fresh. I see there is some galvanized iron pipe forming part of your shower riser. Unless you have dielectric unions seperating the copper from the iron you will have never-ending corrosion and internal rust build-up inside your pipes, eventually clogging them completely. Chances are the faucet itself may already be clogged with rust from corrosion, another reason to start with a new faucet set. And using a pipe wrench to remove remnants of that cut piece of iron pipe could put too much torque pressure on those two 1/2" copper supply pipes. You dont want those to snap! Find the shut-offs before you start anything. If you cant find them or if there aren't any then go to the basement and familiarize yourself with the water main shut-off to the house.

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