How to Remove a Delta Shower Handle: 5 Easy Step To Do

Delta shower handles are a popular choice among homeowners due to their durability and stylish designs. However, there comes a time when these handles may need to be removed for cleaning, maintenance, or replacement.

In this article, we’ll explore five different tips for you to remove delta shower handles, followed by a detailed step-by-step guide on the removal process. We’ll also cover troubleshooting common issues. Let’s get started!

How To Remove a Delta Shower Handle: Step-by-Step Guide


  • Screwdriver (Phillips or Allen)
  • Adjustable wrench
  • Flathead screwdriver
  • Plunger or handle puller (optional)


  • Replacement handle or cartridge (if needed)
  • Plumber’s grease
  • Cleaning cloth

Before starting the removal process, gather all the necessary tools and materials. Make sure your workspace is well-lit and clear of any clutter. It’s also a good idea to wear safety goggles and gloves to protect your eyes and hands during the process.

Step 1: Turn off the water supply

Before you begin the process of removing your Delta shower handle. It’s crucial to turn off the water supply to your shower. This ensures no water will flow through the showerhead or faucet while you work on the handle.

Next, you need to locate the main water shut-off valve in your home. Normally, this valve can typically be found in your basement, garage, or utility room. Also, turn the valve clockwise to close it. You may need to use an adjustable wrench if the valve is difficult to turn by hand.

After that, you should test the shower to confirm the water supply has been successfully turned off. In detail, turn the shower on and ensure no water flows through the showerhead or faucet.

Turn off the water supply before removing your handle

Step 2: Locate and remove the set screw

First, examine your Delta shower handle for a faceplate or plug button. Typically, these components often conceal the set screw. If a faceplate or plug button is present, carefully pry it off using a flathead screwdriver. Be sure not to scratch or damage.

Once the set screw is exposed, use either a Phillips or Allen screwdriver (depending on the screw type) to remove it by turning it counterclockwise.

Step 3: Remove the handle

After the set screw has been removed. You can now detach a handle from the valve stem or cartridge.

Firmly grasp a handle with both hands and gently pull it straight out from the wall. Be cautious not to apply excessive force, as this may damage them or the valve assembly.

Moreover, if it is still stuck, use a plunger or handle puller to assist in its removal. Place them over the handle. Also, apply steady pressure until the handle comes off.

Step 4: Remove the cartridge or valve stem

With a handle removed, you can now access the cartridge or valve stem for cleaning, maintenance, or replacement.

To identify the retaining nut or collar that secures the cartridge or valve stem in place. This component is usually located directly behind the handle.

Next, use an adjustable wrench to loosen the retaining nut or collar by turning it counterclockwise. Once the retaining nut or collar is removed, carefully extract the cartridge or valve stem from the valve assembly.

Afterward, if you want to clean, use a cleaning cloth to wipe away any grime or mineral deposits. If needed, apply a small amount of the plumber’s grease to the threads of the cartridge or valve stem before reassembling.

Step 5: Reassembling the delta shower handle

In this final step before reassembling, clean any debris or mineral buildup from the cartridge or valve stem. To clean, you need to use a cloth and a mild cleaning solution. Moreover, apply a small amount of plumber’s grease to the moving parts and O-rings. Also, ensuring smooth operation and preventing leaks.

Next, carefully align the cartridge or valve stem with the valve assembly and insert it. Ensure that it is seated correctly and in the proper orientation.

Additionally, place the retaining nut or collar back onto the valve assembly. Also, use an adjustable wrench to tighten it by turning it clockwise. In the process, make sure it is snug, but avoid over-tightening, which can damage the components.

You continue to position the handle onto the cartridge or valve stem. Besides, you should ensure it aligns with the corresponding grooves or notches. Gently push the handle onto the stem until it is firmly seated.

Next, locate the set screw hole on your handle and align it with the hole on the valve stem. Insert the set screw and use a Phillips or Allen screwdriver to tighten it. Remember to turn it clockwise. Additionally, do not overtighten the set screw, as this may strip the threads or damage them.

If your handle has a faceplate or plug button. Should carefully snap it back into place, ensuring it is aligned and secure.

Afterward, turn the main water shut-off valve counterclockwise to restore water flow to your shower. Test the shower handle to ensure it operates smoothly. Also, check for any leaks around the handle or valve assembly.

Locate the screw that secures a handle to the valve stem

5 Tips To Remove Delta Shower Handle

In the process of removing the Delta shower handle, to ensure effective results. We’ll provide you with 5 detailed tips below:

Screws that hide beneath the faceplate

Some Delta shower handles have screws located beneath a decorative faceplate. To access and remove these screws, first, should create a small gap. You need to carefully insert a flathead screwdriver between the edge of the faceplate and the handle.

Next, gently pry off the faceplate using the screwdriver, taking care not to scratch or damage the surrounding area. After that, the faceplate was removed. The screws should now be visible. Should use a Phillips or Allen screwdriver (depending on the screw type) to remove them by turning counterclockwise.

Visible screws

In some types, the screws are easily visible on the surface rather than concealed beneath the faceplate. This feature simplifies the removal process.

You can start by unscrewing the handle screw to detach the bonnet, handle, and sleeve from the valve stem. Next, remove the two screws securing the handle to the faceplate. Additionally, you need to disconnect the faceplate and escutcheon afterward. In this process, may need to use a flathead screwdriver to carefully pull the pin out of the adapter. By doing this, you can loosen the adapter from the valve and release the handle.

Plug buttons

If your Delta shower handle has a plug button covering the set screw. You should follow these steps to remove the handle.

First, locate the plug button on the handle. Next, gently insert a small flathead screwdriver under the edge of the plug button. In the process, you carefully pry it off. Now, when the plug button is removed. You use a Phillips or Allen screwdriver to loosen and remove the set screw. Afterward, pull the handle away from the valve assembly.

Set screw handles

For some types secured with a set screw, follow these instructions.

In the first step, locate the screw on the underside or back of the handle. Use an Allen wrench to loosen the setscrew by turning it counterclockwise. Once the set screw is loosened, gently pull your handle off the valve assembly.

Threaded bonnets

If you want to remove some types with a threaded bonnet. First, remove any visible screws using a Phillips or Allen screwdriver. Next, place an adjustable wrench around the bonnet. This is the circular component surrounding the base of the handle.

After that, you turn the wrench counterclockwise to unscrew the bonnet. Apply steady pressure, but avoid using excessive force to prevent damaging valve assembly. Lastly, after the bonnet is unscrewed and removed. You continue to gently pull the handle away from the valve assembly.

Troubleshooting Common Issues

Additionally, you may encounter common problems when removing the handle. To address these issues, we will provide some detailed steps for resolution:

Stripped screw

If you encounter a stripped screw during the removal process, follow these steps to remove it:

Firstly, you need to buy a screw extractor kit that contains various sizes of extractors. Choose the one that best fits the stripped screw.

Next, you use a power drill with a reverse function and a drill bit slightly smaller than the screw extractor. After that, you drill a small pilot hole into the center of the stripped screw

You continue to place the screw extractor into the pilot hole and gently tap it with a hammer to secure it in place. In this process, apply steady pressure while turning the extractor counterclockwise.

After that, when reassembling the handle. You ensure to replace the damaged screw with a new one to ensure a secure connection.

Stuck handle

Another issue is a stuck handle. This may be due to mineral deposits or corrosion. Should follow these steps to remove a stuck handle:

First, spray a generous amount of penetrating lubricant around the base of your handle and the valve stem. Allow the lubricant to sit for at least 15-20 minutes.

After letting the lubricant work, try to remove the handle by gently pulling it straight out from the wall. If it remains stuck, proceed to the next step.

Another solution is to use a plunger or handle puller. In detail, you position them over your handle and ensure it is securely in place. Next, apply steady pressure while pulling the handle away from the wall.

Damaged cartridge

In this problem, a damaged cartridge can cause leaks or irregular water flow. Follow these steps to replace a damaged cartridge.

In the first step, you should check your Delta shower handle’s user manual or contact the manufacturer. This will help you determine the specific cartridge model required for your shower handle.

Additionally, you need to buy a new, compatible cartridge from a reputable retailer or online store.

To replace the old cartridge with a new one, you could follow the steps outlined earlier in this article. Also, ensure proper alignment and seating to avoid leaks and ensure smooth operation.

Replace the damaged screw


Removing a delta shower handle is a straightforward process when you follow the tips and step-by-step guide outlined in this article. With a little patience and the right tools, you’ll be able to remove, clean, and reassemble with ease. Should you encounter any issues during the process, refer to our troubleshooting section for guidance.


How do I prevent my Delta shower handle from getting stuck in the future?

To prevent it from getting stuck, regularly clean and maintain it. Additionally, you need to remove mineral deposits and apply the plumber’s grease to the threads of the cartridge or valve stem.

What can I do if my Delta shower handle is still leaking after reassembling?

If your shower handle is still leaking, double-check that all components are properly tightened and seated. If the issue persists, consider replacing the cartridge or consulting a professional plumber.

Is it possible to replace a Delta shower handle?

Absolutely. Delta offers a broad range of styles for their two-handle lavatory and shower models. This allows you to customize according to your preferences. Replacing Delta faucet handles is an easy process that takes just a few minutes.

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