I have a problem with a leaky shower faucet that won't stay fixed.
Before I describe my problem, I should describe my faucet. The faucet
stem rotates inside a long metal sleeve that has internal threads which
matchup with the threads on the stem. The metal sleeve has a nut-like
shape on one end and external threads on the other. The metal sleeve is
inserted through a hole in the wall. The sleeve screws into the pipe
behind the wall. You can use a wrench on the nut-end to screw the
sleeve in tightly. Clockwise motion of the stem is stopped by the
washer hitting the seat. Clockwise motion can also be stopped by the
the faucet handle hitting the outside end of the sleeve that faces out
from the wall. Counter-clockwise motion is stopped by the stem threads
hitting the inside end of the sleeve that faces out from the wall.
My problem is that when I turn the stem counter-clockwise to turn the
water on, the stem threads hit the end of the sleeve, which then causes
the sleeve to move too! Since the sleeve moved, the whole assembly has
moved away from the seat. When I turn clockwise to turn the water off,
the faucet handle hits the stem before the washer hits the seat. So the
water leaks. I can turn the handle harder so the sleeve starts to screw
back in, but it only slows the leak, it doesn't stop it.
So I need some way to keep the sleeve from moving.
I cannot tightly screw the sleeve in all-the-way because it prevents the
stem from rotating at all. I can't turn the stem clockwise because the
washer is already hitting the seat. I can't turn the stem
counter-clockwise because the stem threads are hitting the end of the
sleeve. So to leave enough room for the stem to move in-and-out, I end
up having to unscrew the sleeve a little bit. But since the sleeve is
not screwed in tightly, it tends to move.
The odd thing is, if I remember correctly, the sleeve of the other
faucet is screwed all the way in. I tried swapping the sleeve and stem
from the other faucet, but that didn't help.
So to "fix" the leak, I'm always adjusting how far the sleeve is screwed
in. I make sure the stem moves in far enough to turn the water off and
I also make sure the stem can move out at least a little bit to turn the
water on. But since the sleeve doesn't stay in place, the next time
someone uses the faucet, the sleeve moves and I get the leak again.
Does anyone have some suggestions on how to fix the problem?