How can I tell if the tub spout copper tubing is screwed on or soldered behind the wall? I removed the tub spout and now have a threaded copper pipe that is too short for the new spout. I would like to replace this spout with a longer threaded 1/2 pipe.
The pipe above, the shower arm, was threaded and easy to remove. The tub spout is covered with tile and I can't see in the hole to tell if it's threaded. Here are some pictures. The one with the hole is from the shower arm. I am assuming the tub spout can be unscrewed, but don't want to damage the pipe if I am wrong.

  • Pics are not present. Commented Jul 9, 2023 at 2:49
  • Pic didn’t take, but can you cut the existing and extend it? Or is it a brass nipple? Commented Jul 9, 2023 at 2:50
  • If you use pliers and gently try to turn you will know
    – Traveler
    Commented Jul 9, 2023 at 3:46

2 Answers 2


Since the picture isn't here, yet:

If the pipe itself is thick-walled & threaded, it's likely red brass (not actually copper) and it will be threaded on the other end. Those pipes are the wrong size for soldered fittings.

If the pipe is thin-walled and has a threaded adapter soldered to the end, it's going to be soldered inside the wall.


Carefully examine the copper tube sticking out.

Are there any plier marks on it? If yes, then you know it was screwed in.

Not for faint hearted, use pliers and very gently try to turn the pipe. Mark it with marker to notice if it is turing.

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