What kind of valve to operate both fixed shower head and handheld

Gina_WNovember 28, 2012

Hi people! Okay, I am purchasing the fixtures for my remodel, and have a questions about plumbing innards. Specifically, valves.

I want to get a Pfister fixed shower head and faucet trim kit, along with the coordinating handheld kit. Problem is, if you purchase them separately, they are matched with the valves they need to operate singly. But I can't figure out what valve to get to operate them together. The staff at Builder.com only know the answers provided in their knowledge base regarding each individual fixture, so they cannot help me.

The fixed kit is matched with:
Pfister 0X9-110A 1/2" Mixing Rough In Valve (I.P. Connections)

and the handheld kit is matched with:
Pfister 015-3WDX 1/2" 3-Port Shower Diverter Rough In Valve

Do I need both?

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mongoct

Just to clarify...you want two shower heads? A fixed shower head and a hand held?

If so, then yes, you will need both valves.

The first valve is your mixing valve. That's how you turn on the water and select the temperature.

The second valve is your diverter valve. The diverter will direct the water from the mixing valve to the head you wish the water to come out of.

    Bookmark   November 28, 2012 at 7:08PM
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Gina_W

Jeez you're fast! Thanks. Yes, I want both. Will the diverter allow me to use both at the same time? I don't know if I will do that but I'm trying to figure out every possible angle.

    Bookmark   November 28, 2012 at 7:13PM
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kirkhall

Usually, a 3 port diverter valve can be plumbed to allow both to be used at once. But, you will want to make sure you have sufficient water pressure to do that.

    Bookmark   November 28, 2012 at 7:40PM
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Gina_W

Thank you. I will make a note of that.

    Bookmark   November 28, 2012 at 7:47PM
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dekeoboe

Usually, a 3 port diverter valve can be plumbed to allow both to be used at once. But, you will want to make sure you have sufficient water pressure to do that.

And that where you live does not restrict the total output to a gpm amount that is less than that of the two shower heads combined.

    Bookmark   November 28, 2012 at 7:58PM
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kmcg

gina - if you're not set on Pfister, you can get a single valve that controls both shower heads. Hansgrohe makes them. I have a Thermobalance II, which allows me to use one or the other; a TB III can be plumbed to allow you to use both heads at the same time. Their new valve is called a Unifit, I think, and it allows a lot of flexibility. All of these have a temp control, volume control, and diverter function built in, as far as I know.

    Bookmark   November 28, 2012 at 8:08PM
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mongoct

"Will the diverter allow me to use both at the same time?"

Yes.

    Bookmark   November 28, 2012 at 8:33PM
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Gina_W

Thanks everyone. I read through all the local codes and didn't see such a restriction. I will discuss with the plumbing contractor. Pfister fits my budget - all the fixtures for double sink vanity, bath tub, shower and powder room add up - this stuff's more expensive than I remember. Inflation? I know the Toto toilets have gone up a lot since six years ago.

    Bookmark   November 29, 2012 at 6:48PM
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mongoct

Two heads isn't an issue, especially with today's GPM restrictions on heads.

The number one thing that I see overlooked plumbing-wise in multi-head showers is if you have more than three heads in a shower (to include body sprays), then you have to increase the size of the drain from the standard 2" drain to a 3" drain. Or use two 2" drains.

    Bookmark   November 29, 2012 at 7:46PM
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dekeoboe

I read through all the local codes and didn't see such a restriction.

I mentioned it because your Member's Page states you are in CA, and I thought you might fall under the CalGreen water restrictions.

    Bookmark   November 29, 2012 at 8:35PM
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Gina_W

Mongo, we probably will never use the heads together - just wondering if it was possible.

    Bookmark   November 30, 2012 at 6:01PM
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krbb

How would you connect a 3 way diverter to allow you to use either or both the shower head and the handheld at the same time?

    Bookmark   April 14, 2013 at 3:38PM
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lee676

I used a single thermostatic valve made by California Faucets that has a large temperature control in the center of the bezel, flanked by two smaller levers for water volume control, which allow the two showerheads to be used together or alone in any proportion, with all three levers contained in one valve unit. They're available with round or rectangular metal backplates, in several colors/finishes, with numorous style choices for the knobs and levers. Like it a whole lot.

    Bookmark   April 17, 2013 at 3:36AM
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lee676

I used a single thermostatic valve made by California Faucets that has a large temperature control in the center of the bezel, flanked by two smaller levers for water volume control, which allow the two showerheads to be used together or alone in any proportion, with all three levers contained in one valve unit. They're available with round or rectangular metal backplates, in several colors/finishes, with numorous style choices for the knobs and levers. Like it a whole lot.

    Bookmark   April 17, 2013 at 3:37AM
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