An escutcheon is a type of
plumbing supply typically made of metal that hides the unsightly hole in the wall
that pipes usually come through. People can also refer to them as
cover plates. For example, you can find them on the wall or ceiling around a shower
arm, under a sink where the faucet supplies are, and by the toilet next
to the shutoff of the toilet’s water supply.
While the escutcheon is merely a decorative piece, occasionally they do
need to be replaced. An escutcheon has one job, making your home look
livable. Without them, the bathroom or sink would look unfinished, with
big gaping holes in the wall around your pipes. When they get rusted or
tarnished, it’s incredibly easy to get them replaced.
Escutcheon come in all shapes and sizes, so you can shop around to find
one that suits your bathroom’s aesthetic. They are available at
most commercial hardware store and tend to cost less than $10.
Most of the escutcheons are easy to remove. With a shower arm escutcheon,
for example, it slips over the shower and fits snugly against the wall.
To remove one, you would need to remove the shower head and slide the
old escutcheon off.
Harder to reach escutcheons, such as those behind the toilet, are a little
harder to deal with. Some might have a shut off valve in the way. This
valve will need to be removed to get the escutcheon replaced. Before removing
the valve, make sure that you shut off the water in your house and drain
the water out of the lines by turning on the faucets until they run dry.
Have towels, a dish pan, or a bucket there to catch any water that may
come out of the line.
Removing the valve itself can be tricky. A threaded-on shutoff valve can
be taken off with a good pair of pliers; however, make sure to use a soft
cloth to keep the pliers from damaging the valve. A soldered-on shutoff
valve might be more of a problem, depending on your level of plumbing
experience. If you are familiar with this type of fitting, you’re
likely comfortable enough to remove it yourself. If not, you might need
to take out some shears, tin snips, or other tool that can handle cutting
stamped metal to cut away the old escutcheon.
If you removed the shutoff valve, just slip on the new escutcheon and replace
the valve. If you cut off the escutcheon, you can carefully cut a new
escutcheon and angle the cut so it is not easily visible. Alternately,
you can use a hinged escutcheon, which is more easily slipped on.
If you need help installing an escutcheon, don’t hesitate to call
us. Our skilled
Columbus plumbers are happy to help you with any plumbing project. We’re available
to assist you 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.
Contact us at (614) 401-4777 or fill out our online form to schedule a service today!