diverter valve problem


I have an old claw footed tub, with newer plumbing fixtures. There is a diverter valve that sits on top of the tub faucet and is changed with a handle that turns. This morning the shower began to dribble water, one minute it was okay and then it slowed to just drips.
The tub water faucet was fine, good pressure and flow so I assumed that there was a problem in the diverter itself plugging up fixture. I replaced a washer on the end of the stem of the diverter valve which was worn and although it is better it still isn't good.
I read on another list that I should take the valve out and run the water to flush out any debris. Is there something else this could be? Should I call a professional? I have a very good husband but he isn't all that handy.
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Margaret,
First of all, shouldn't it be your husband asking us??
Secondly, try removing the shower head itself (it unscrews off the little arm to which it's attached). It could be the head itself is plugged.
Thirdly, if step two doesn't work, take the diverter out and look inside to see if something's caught within sight. If both hot and cold comes out of the tub spout, then, obviously, the problem is between the diverter and the shower arm.
Most diverters like yours have a washer and a gasket. If the gasket comes apart, it can lodge in the shower outlet, or the shower riser, or the shower head.
Lastly, if nothing's worked so far, take the shower head off, and remove the diverter and then blow hard on the shower arm to see if air comes out from where the diverter was. The gasket or washer could have lodged in the vertical pipe (riser) between the diverter and the shower arm. Be certain to do this in private, or you'll be teased to death.
If none of these work, then write back for more advice.
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You were right. It was actually a small rubber gasket that, I assume, is to conserve water. It wasn't actually in the shower head but in the little connector that the shower head screws into. It was degraded and totally clogging up the flow of water. I struggled with whether to remove it or not, but decided what the heck. It is amazing how great that shower is now. I live in Michigan and although we don't want to waste water, it isn't yet a critical problem.
And here is the other thing, we have a tankless water heater that relies on the flow of water to trigger the heating coil. It was really messing that up.
My husband is great in many things, but he is missing the DIY gene or something. Thanks, Margaret

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