I'm trying to fix a leaking bathtub faucet, but I can't unscrew these old stem at all...it's stuck. Do i need to open the back side of the wall?

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2 Answers 2


That part should move, try tapping it lightly with a small hammer, and maybe use a bigger wrench.

Also try tuning it the other direction the stem appears to have a left-hand thread so the valve body may also.

  • Tapping lighter not hard blows is the key. The idea is to increase the force applied to the part you attempting to take apart with a small impact force and also with a impact force less than hard enough to over stress all the pieces. Taps, not blows, no follow through
    – Ack
    Apr 17, 2020 at 15:44

Use WD-40 on the threads, let it penetrate for a few minutes, and try again. Also, use the hammer tapping method suggested by "Jasen", tapping the wench as you turn.

Try a fire-lighter to heat the stem a little, Not too hot, you don't won't to damage the rubber ring, but that might not be a concern, since that what you would be replacing.

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