My apologies for what is likely a simple and dumb question. We plan to remodel our bathroom and are able to turn the water off for the sinks using the valves underneath them. However, what about the water to the bathtub and shower? Is the shut off only from the main water supply to the whole house? I ask because it could take 2-3 days to complete the bathtub and shower remodel and it would be unfortunate to not have water for the whole house during that time.

  • A bathroom remodel in 3 days? Did you mean months? :)
    – jay613
    Sep 9, 2023 at 2:21
  • 1
    Yes. I've gotten 4 bids and all say 4-5 days including flooring, demolition, replacing vanities, and redoing showres and bathtub. So 2-3 days for just the part related to the showers and tub seemed a reasonable estimate
    – ptownbro
    Sep 10, 2023 at 15:08

2 Answers 2


There may be shut off valves for the shower and tub in the wall that are accessible by an access panel on the other side of the wall. Or maybe in a basement, or a crawlspace, if your house is built over one. If not, then the water to the whole house needs to be shut off.

But, done right, this should not entail shutting off the water for days. The contractor should cut the old pipes where practical and immediately install shut off valves, turned off. Then the main house supply can be turned back on while the rest of the plumbing and remodeling work is done.

  • Makes sense. Assuming no shut off valves, what if it's just changing the shower and tub handles and shower head? Still need to turn off the main supply?
    – ptownbro
    Sep 10, 2023 at 15:05
  • Should not have to. There's no water to the shower head if the valves aren't turned on. Same think for the handles. Assuming the tub/shower drain is still in place, the worst that will happen is you might get a little wet should you accidentally turn one of the valves on while working.
    – SteveSh
    Sep 10, 2023 at 15:11

Steve answered my question (than you again to him), but I thought I'd add to it for others who may be novices like myself. I was able to buy a PVC plug for the shower head to keep it from dripping. Mine was a 1/2 inch PVC plug from Home Depot (link) below. And, just kept the shower faucet off (of course haha) and all was good.




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  • Those plugs have been around for years - usually in brass and I have them in 3/8, 1/2,3/4 and 1 inch…
    – Solar Mike
    Sep 15, 2023 at 5:00
  • Thanks Mike. Now I know =)
    – ptownbro
    Sep 17, 2023 at 22:01

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