I bought a plastic shower head from home depot for $1.97. It said hand tighten. When I got home I could not find my teflon tape. I installed the new shower head by hand tightening very tightly and it seemed to seal good.

Should I use teflon tape? Should I use pipe thread compound as if I was attaching metal to PVC?

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    Be careful not to over-tighten, it's really easy to split the threaded part of those cheap plastic shower heads. Maybe leave it be now, it's not leaking. Even if you should have used Teflon... "if it ain't broke, don't fix it". Commented Aug 15, 2015 at 2:41

1 Answer 1


Most shower heads seal to the shower arm using a rubber washer. If that's the case with yours, the purpose of the threads is more to hold the washer tight, not provide a seal, and teflon tape or thread sealant compound are not useful.

  • On the other hand, I've seen many plastic fixtures where it wasn't possible to screw them down tight enough to form a good seal with the rubber washer, in which case the white tape may be useful. Commented Aug 15, 2015 at 1:23
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    I agree with @Craig. While it may not be required, PTFE tape couldn't hurt. The primary function of PTFE tape (and pipe dope) is to reduce friction, which allows you to tighten the joint a bit more.
    – Tester101
    Commented Aug 15, 2015 at 2:27

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