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My shower valve was poorly installed. The pipes and valve were never secured or clamped to the surrounding framing. The valve rattles around in the wall and the cover plate has about a 1/2" gap between it and the wall.

I have the handle and cover plate removed - thus exposing about a 5" hole in the wall. The shower wall is a solid sheet of material. The opposite side of the wall is my beautiful tile backsplash in the kitchen.

Is there a device that will fit through the hole, but then un-fold to reach the studs and provide support? Should I just liquid nails a bunch of 2x4's to the drywall behind the valve and then secure to those?

Any other suggestions?

Straight on From the left From the right

  • FYI - I wouldn't secure it to the back wall AT ALL. The constant change in pressure and temperature of the valve will cause slight pressure to be induced around it. I won't just through the wall but could certainly after many hot to cold switches affect the wall enough to cause issues in your backsplash. – DMoore Oct 1 '15 at 15:48
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I'd consider canned spray foam around 2 or more pipes slightly back in the wall cavity (not around the valve itself). The foam should have enough flexibility to handle expansion, and the wide contact area should provide solid stability.

Be sure to use window & door (minimal expansion) foam so you don't bulge your drywall.

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This idea will be better than nothing, and it may not stop it all, and if you have large tile rather than small tile, there will be less chance of damaging the wall.

Since the water supply lines are PEX or something similar, you might could use those too. But to get at what the fix is, push the copper pipe that is at the top that goes to the shower head, the plastic (PEX) lines should flex enough to allow this to happen. Push it back the 1/2" you need to get the plate flush to the wall. Measure the space between the pipe and the wall board (tile backer) and cut a block that will fit the space. This is also considering that the pipe moves easily. If it takes too much pressure to push the pipe back, the block may crack the wall, the tile or both, from the backside by the pipe pushing back. The longer the block is at the correct thickness to hold the pipe the chance of it cracking the wall is lessened. The larger tile I referred to at the beginning will help too.

If it is easy to push back, the cover plate is made to still fit, if the valve is pushed back a little extra. Once you get the block to fit well, use a painters caulk or something that will stick it to the wall so it does not fall out over the long haul.

Your idea will work too about gluing the 2X to the wall, but it usually takes a piece of 3/4" to 1" material. You could use shims to get it the rest of the way once you get the 3/4" material in.

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Thanks for all the suggestions.

I was able to wedge a piece of one-by in front of the copper pipe going up from the valve. The board was able to secure all movement. I used construction adhesive to glue the board to the inside of the near surface above the valve opening.

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