Removing a stuck cold water handle from its stem??

Hi,
I'm trying to take the shower/tub cold water handle off because there is a lot of dripping from it when the water is on which says to me a washer on the Gerber stem must need replacing. If I can remove the handle, then I can unscrew the chrome and expose the exposed part of the stem and check.
If I can't check, then I can't tell if its a worse problem requiring removal of the whole stem, which is a plumbing job. Furthermore, the master cold water knob, while certainly reducing the amount of water that comes out of the tubs faucet, doesn't by any means stop the water completely. Its way more than a trickle. So that in itself likely means that that particular stem also might need replacing.
But removing the whole stem or stems is a plummers job. I take a back seat if it has to go that far. I'm just looking for some sort of solvent that I could squirt into the tubs cold water handle (not master) after removing the screw, that might help to loosen and remove it. I get the uneasy feeling that it has fused onto the stem over many many years. I don't want to bang it for fear of making matters worse.
Any help and advice is much appreciated, thanks.
Nelson
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Hi,
I'm trying to take the shower/tub cold water handle off because there is a lot of dripping from it when the water is on which says to me a washer on the Gerber stem must need replacing. If I can remove the handle, then I can unscrew the chrome and expose the exposed part of the stem and check.
If I can't check, then I can't tell if its a worse problem requiring removal of the whole stem, which is a plumbing job. Furthermore, the master cold water knob, while certainly reducing the amount of water that comes out of the tubs faucet, doesn't by any means stop the water completely. Its way more than a trickle. So that in itself likely means that that particular stem also might need replacing.
But removing the whole stem or stems is a plummers job. I take a back seat if it has to go that far. I'm just looking for some sort of solvent that I could squirt into the tubs cold water handle (not master) after removing the screw, that might help to loosen and remove it. I get the uneasy feeling that it has fused onto the stem over many many years. I don't want to bang it for fear of making matters worse.
Any help and advice is much appreciated, thanks.
Nelson
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Nelson wrote:

<SNIP>
Buy a "Handle Puller". It's made expressly for this job. Might find one at Big Box.
Jim
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As Jim said, a handle puller is the best solution. I did pick one up at big box. 9 bucks 9 months ago.
You may have a lot of calcium buildup under there which is causing it to be nasty. Once you get the handle off, just be prepared that calcium may give you further problems. You mentioned chrome. If it is calcium, vinegar will help dissolve/losen things sometimes. Don't use the calcium/lime stuff like CLR. It will tarnish and/or strip the chrome after a period of time
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