8 Best Shower Valves for Any Bathroom – Easy to Install and Use

From renowned brands like Moen and Delta to less known yet quality options, we picked the most versatile and durable shower valves for you to consider.
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Last updatedLast updated: August 05, 2021
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First, the best shower valves not only ensure that your showers work smoothly but also control the water flow and temperature of the bath simultaneously. However, attempting to trade it in if it isn’t working properly is usually a headache in itself.

So you can get the highest quality shower valves, we have ranked the best valves from our list of favorites, taking a look at aspects such as the type, inlets, outlets, dimensions, and other features. We have also included important information on how to make the purchases so you can make an informed selection.

Top 8 Shower Valves Review 2021

1.

Moen 2590 Shower Valve with StopsEditor’s Choice

Features
  • Type: pressure-balancing
  • Inlets: 1/2″ IPS
  • Outlets: 1/2″ IPS
  • Dimensions: 7 x 7 x 6 in

Other features: Posi-Temp valve maintaining water temperature; quarter-turn stops included; limited lifetime warranty

This shower valve is made of metal and brass, which make it sturdy, robust, and non-corroding. You might be interested to know that its materials contain antimicrobial properties to protect you against waterborne illnesses similar to bacterial infections. This valve also has back-to-back configuration performance. It further boasts of three types of connection with Common and PEX to give you plenty of connection choices to go well with multiple types of plumbing.

It is perfect for a tub and can let you enjoy unlimited perspectives. With it, you can improve the design or performance of your shower system without changing the plumbing in your sink wall. In addition, the versatile design of this makes it suitable with one and two thermostatic cartridges. Nonetheless, it is essential to note that you must purchase the corresponding cartridge and packing individually.

Why is it special?

  • We liked that the brass has antimicrobial properties that stop waterborne illnesses. It is compatible with a single and double thermostatic cartridge. If you are looking for a shower valve that doesn't require you to modify your plumbing system, get the product. It is generally versatile as it fits most bath fittings and offers common connection choices.

What are the flaws?

  • You will need to buy an extension kit for the valve separately. But Moen doesn't mention this. To make the installation much less difficult, Moen needs to offer more comprehensive, easy-to-understand information that you can observe and follow.
2.

DELTA R10000-UNBX Shower ValveBest Value

Features
  • Type: pressure-balanced and thermostatic compatibility
  • Inlets: universal, 5″ NPT male thread, 0.5″ copper sweat
  • Outlets: universal, 0.5″ NPT male thread, 0.5″ copper sweat
  • Dimensions: 4.88 x 5.06 x 4.88 in

Other features: compatible with most Delta single-, dual-, or dual-function thermostatic trim kits; heat-resistant pressure test cap included; limited lifetime warranty

To ensure high quality, this heavy-duty diverter is made of brass for added strength. The solid brass provides excellent hold and excellent heat resistance. As a result, this shower valve will serve you for a very long time. The Delta Universal Tub Valve boasts spectacular efficiency in ensuring you can have a satisfying bath. Additionally, you can make use of this valve which has the Delta 6 or 3 setting bath bypass trim. As it provides daily circulation, you don’t have to worry about your water circulation fluctuating. It further solves the problem of getting a bath head with a low circulation load which can be annoying once you want to enjoy an invigorating bath.

Also, you don’t have to change anything when you install it. Moreover, when you install it, you can remodel your system at any time. Some great thing that we liked is that it comes with a non-return cap that can let you check as much as 200 psi and 300 psi air and water respectively. This can be an interesting feature that can let you know the perfect efficiency of your bath valve when you use it under totally different conditions.

What makes it special?

  • We liked that it's suitable with six or three bath bypass fittings. You can install it without modifying your current plumbing. We also liked its solid brass as it offers more robustness.

What cons did we find?

  • While you don't need to spend extra on the services of a plumber for installation of the Delta valve, it's essential to know that you'll need additional accessories to effectively have the shower running.
3.

Moen 2520 Rough-In ValveBest Warranty

Features
  • Type: pressure-balancing
  • Inlets: 1/2″ CC
  • Outlets: 1/2″ CC
  • Dimensions: 7 x 7 x 6 in

Other features: Posi-Temp valve maintaining water temperature; Moen M-PACT common valve system; limited lifetime warranty

The Moen PosiTemp Pressure Balancing Valve allows you to update trim styling or replace accessory finishes without having to change valves. Once the system is in place, you can change your decor as often as you like during construction or years later. It only takes a few minutes. Posi-Temp pressure-balancing valve keeps shower water temperature constant (+/- 1 degree C). It’s integrated with the M-Pact common valve system, allowing you to change the style of the faucet later, without having to replace the plumbing

The product has an entrance diameter of 1/2 inches and an entrance thread type with copper fitting. It is designed for use in the tub and shower. The Moen PosiTemp Pressure Balancing Valve is a pressure-balancing valve. It’s made of brass material. The product is part of Moen’s lineup of pressure balancing valves which include the Pack of 2, 3, and 4 with more than a hundred dollar difference between the one pack one and the pack of 2.

What are its best features?

  • Changing the look of your bathroom has never been so quick and easy. We liked how easy it is to install without having to replace the plumbing material. We also liked that it comes with a lifetime warranty. The Posi-Temp technology helps the valve maintain water temperature.

What could be improved?

  • You have to buy an extension kit for the valve separately if you need to, something which Moen doesn't mention. To make the installation much less difficult, Moen could have offered more comprehensive, easy-to-understand information that you can observe and follow.
4.

Kohler Pressure-Balancing Valve Body and Cartridge KitSmartest Temperature Control

Features
  • Type: pressure-balancing
  • Inlets: 1/2″ Universal NPT and direct sweat
  • Outlets: 1/2″ Universal NPT and direct sweat
  • Dimensions: 3.5 x 4.63 x 4.63 in

Other features: forged resistant brass construction; one-piece cartridge design

The Kohler K-8304-K-NA comes with a lot of features to make sure you have satisfying showering expertise. It’s a pressure-balancing valve with what is called the Rite-Temp function. This works by simply preventing the shower valve against freezing. It also ensures that the valve is in the best temperature. It also includes a temperature interrupt function which controls the water temperature for added safety and ensuring optimum water temperature. It also ensures that your water circulation load stays the same with no fluctuations. This bath valve comes with built-in stops to immediately stop the flow of water. This is ideal for different shower-related actions.

The bath valve can be a great option if what you have is a contemporary toilet. It’s made to increase robustness and maintain unique efficiency even after a long time of use. Its rugged construction further gives you a great bathing experience every time you use your shower space. This valve comes with a cartridge and a valve. It’s unlike the Kohler K-GP77759, which doesn’t include the valve body.

What makes it stand out?

  • We like the valve's stress management performance. It prevents the excessive water temperature from burning your skin when you shower. One of the good things about this valve is that, with it, you can rotate the tub effortlessly. It includes the valve body and cartridge.

Which disadvantages must you keep in mind?

  • This bath valve is a bit expensive, considering it has a lot of cheap plastic construction which may have durability issues. In shower valves, the more plastics there are, the higher the chance of the valve failing in a short time.
5.

Hansgrohe 1850181 iBoxBest Thermostatic Shower Valve

Features
  • Type: pressure-balanced and thermostatic compatibility
  • Inlets: standard 3/4-inch
  • Outlets: standard 3/4-inch
  • Dimensions: 6 x 5.88 x 5.5 in

Other features: brass construction; universal trim compatibility; includes 2 inlets and 2 outlets for versatility; 3-year warranty

With this Hansgrohe Ibox Universal built-in faucet system, you can save space, as the faucet disappears from the surface and allows greater freedom of movement in the shower. It is a very flexible system: the main body recessed in the wall can be completed with a wide range of faucet kits. It has a 10 bar working pressure, can operate at 80 degrees Celsius maximum temperature. The material of construction includes plastic and brass. It comes with a lot of certifications. These include the

ETA certification, the Kiwa certification, the NF certification, and more.

The unit has a 3/4-inch connection thread and is suitable for all conventional installation systems. It has a flexible recessed system, 1 main body, 9 different functional solutions. The pressure-balanced shower valve can be used in bathtubs, showers, built-in thermostatic taps, built-in bathtub taps, and built-in shower taps.

Why are we impressed?

  • The valve can save you installation time as the assembly is quick and easy. It has high reliability and great durability. We liked that the shower valve kit comes with an adjustable clamping flange, a boltic handle lock, an adjustable temperature limiting, and an automatic return.

What negatives must you be aware of?

  • The valve is fairly easy to install but the issue for a few plumbers is that its supply inlets are located on the side. It may not be a big issue for new construction but it is for remodeling jobs as it makes running a line from the lower and upper outlet in a 2 x 6 difficult.
6.

Dr. Faucet Shower Mixer ValveMost Attractive Design

Features
  • Type: pressure-balancing
  • Inlets: 1/2″ NPT
  • Outlets: 1/2″ NPT
  • Dimensions: 4.33 x 4.33 x 1.97 in

Other features: 3 ports; copper construction with chrome finish; 5-year warranty

This mixer valve is suitable for renovating high-outlet shower enclosures. You are probably wondering how it goes since it has a different design than most faucets. Well, note that this is a concealed valve that has two vertical bottom supplies in universal male thread and one vertical high outlet in a universal male thread. The shower mixing valve is certified. It has a certificate from the Canadian Uniform Plumbing Code (CUPC).

The hot and cold mixer valve has a construction made from brass and copper and is finished off with a chrome finish. It is suitable for bathroom and outdoor installations as the chrome finish gives it some weatherability. The shower mixed has a rough-in valve and a single handle that controls a bit and cold water temperature and volume.

What stands out?

  • We liked that the sanitary device is easy to install as it has a simple design. It has a classic design with a 5-year warranty. Taking all of these features into account, you might be tempted to buy it. Note in this regard that its price is relatively lower than most mixer valves in this review.

What cons did we manage to find?

  • Many users point out that the mixing valve has leakages in all three ports and it's surprising that Dr. Faucet has done nothing to correct this. It shoots water out of the center valve and you may need to tear the wall out for replacement. However, you can fix the leak with sealant.
7.

EZ-FLO 10551 Shower Stall ValveMost Durable Design

Features
  • Type: pressure-balancing
  • Inlets: 1/2″ IPS
  • Outlets: 1
  • Dimensions: ‎3.75 x 5.75 x 2.5 in

Other features: high-impact brass construction with chrome finish; replaceable brass seats and stems; fit on 3-3/8 inch centers

The EZ-FLO Shower Valve is a pressure-balancing shower valve with an 1/2-inch IPS inlet and one outlet. The shower valve has a 3.75 x 5.75 x 2.5-inch dimension. It has high-impact construction which includes the use of brass with a chrome finish. The stems and brass seats are replaceable and compatible with  3⅜-inch centers

The flexibility and ease of maintenance of the valve is suitable for residential applications anywhere in the world. The valve is constructed from highly resistant brass and it offers longer-lasting performance, thanks to the metal parts and the chrome finish which other a modern and sleek style. However, the handle is made of plastic.

Why is it special?

  • We liked the heavy-duty construction and design which requires no screws. It also allows for quick and easy maintenance. It has good inlet and outlet sizes and configurations, including anti-siphon, which meet the mounting requirements of different piping networks and geographic regions.

What are the flaws?

  • The product has handles and rings which are made of cheap plastics. Also, the internal fittings don't match all existing products. For some users, the steps didn't fit into their unit as the internal fittings are not the same size as their existing product. The installation process could also be made easier if the threads on the fixture are made longer.
8.

PULSE ShowerSpas Mixing ValveBest for Hard Water

Features
  • Type: pressure-balancing
  • Inlets: 1/2″ NPT
  • Outlets: 1/2″ NPT
  • Dimensions: 5 x 3.5 x 2 in

Other features: brass construction; durable ceramic disc cartridge; limited lifetime warranty

The PULSE ShowerSpas mixing valve contains a disc which slides in opposition to manage the temperature and water circulation. It is built of high-quality ceramic that has been hardened for maximum strength and minimal maintenance as it only needs to be wiped with a piece of dry cloth. The valve-cartridge also comes with an ½ inch NPT brass nipple. We also like that these valve options reverse the flow changes on the inlet aspect to simplify installation. Generally, this valve will ensure that your circulating load remains constant due to its strain stability capabilities.

If you have a tub, hand bath, or single bath, its design makes it the right choice. Another interesting performance value mentioned is its back-to-back configuration feature. With this function, you can optionally configure your valve easily in seconds.

Why are we impressed?

  • The mixing valve has the capacity to withstand years of use, in addition to washing. In case you stay in a space that uses or leaves the item exposed to hard water, this could be a great choice as the ceramic materials make it resistant to corrosion. Another cool feature you might like is its temperature control performance which can let you bathe at your preferred temperature. In addition, this function works as a protector against burns. So, when you set the water temperature too high accidentally and/or you forgot to adjust this, the feature will not let you get scalded.

What negatives must you be aware of?

  • It does not stop the water precisely. There is no valve cartridge included in some packages as indicated by the brand. It only includes a temperature control handle and a mixing component.

Things to Consider

A shower valve is an accessory that, when selected properly, will help control your water flow without any form of leakages. However, as there are a lot of knockoffs on the market, this purchase guide should help you decipher between a good and bad shower valve.

When do you need a new shower valve?

The first obvious sign that you need a new shower valve is when the current one is old, corroded, or is leaking and needs replacement. Leakages or drips are the most common reasons why people see the need to replace their shower valves. If left this way, you will be wasting water and cause new growth of mildew and mold.

Important features to consider before you buy a shower valve

8 Best Shower Valves for Any Bathroom – Easy to Install and UseDifferent shower valves can be found on the market. And this could make it difficult to select the best model. Some of the features that you should consider while looking for a good shower valve include:

Shower Valve Type

First of all, it is essential to determine what type of bath valve you need, as different types can be found. Some of these include, in general, the:

  • Diverter Valve: The divert valve is a good type to choose if you already have a bath that has a faucet but you wish to have a soothing bath rather than a shower. The shower valve sends water toward your shower head because it sends it from the faucet.
  • Pressure Balancing Valves: These valves ensure that your water circulating load remains constant without fluctuating both from full stream of water and then to a gradual stream or the other way round. All the shower valves selected and reviewed in this article are all pressure-balancing valves, from the Moen 2590 to the PULSE ShowerSpas Mixing Valve.
  • Thermostatic Shower Valves: These valves prevent the temperature of the water from changing while you shower, even if someone is operating different faucets in the same house.

However, you should know that showers valves operate with totally different management parameters. For example, pressure-balancing types have one mode. Meanwhile, others can operate up to 3 modes to let you to change the voltage or temperature of the water.

Number and Size of Outlets

Shower valves usually come with 1, 2, or even 3 outlets. Meanwhile, with models which have a shower valve with one outlet, you can operate an overhead shower. Meanwhile, a valve with two outlets can make it possible to add a side rail. And with a valve with three outlets, you can have an overhead shower, body jets, and a shower with a slide rail.

Material and Durability

Before selecting your bath valve, make sure it uses high-quality materials. The product must also have a stable development to last you for an extended time. The most used materials are welded metal, copper, and brass. Models with cheap plastics should be avoided. Whatever your selection, make sure the valve is protected from corrosion and heat. A chrome polish can offer aesthetics and function against corrosion.

Compatibility

8 Best Shower Valves for Any Bathroom – Easy to Install and UseNot all shower valves are universally designed so you have to ensure you’re choosing a valve compatible with your plumbing outlet. You can’t mix manufacturers when it comes to rough-in and trim valves. Hence, the trims cannot be interchanged. While the best shower valve to choose is that with a universal trim, many brands don’t ensure this. Some can only be used to replace their type of valve. However, some models are compatible with a single and double thermostatic cartridge.

Trim Kit

Trim is used to referring to the visible and decorative part of the shower or combo faucet set. It can include your tub spout, showerhead, handle and control. Some bath valves include handles, trims, and various accessories. In case you opt to choose valves that have a chord, check if the chord is easy to use.

Warranty

Warranty coverage is important as these items can be expensive. Some models in packs come in several hundreds of dollars, but there is no way to assure users of the product quality except by offering warranty coverage. The warranty coverage for this type of product can span 1 to 10 years. A lot of models come with a lifetime warranty, however. Four of the eight products recommended in this review come with a limited lifetime warranty. Such example is the Moen 2590 Shower Valve with Stops, the DELTA R10000-UNBX, the Moen 2520 Rough-In Valve, and the PULSE ShowerSpas Mixing Valve.

How to Install a Shower Valve

8 Best Shower Valves for Any Bathroom – Easy to Install and UseBefore you start the installation, ensure that all the valve openings are covered to avoid debris from getting inside while you’re working on the supply lines. Consider the wall type you have and the suitable shower valve. Decide the shower position as well as the pipe inlet direction. Run the pipe into the shower area when you’ve decided the position. Water pipes with cold and hot water must be fixed in the panel or wall to avoid movements after installation and to support your valve.

The installation is easier as explained. In other words, all you need to do is remove the existing shower valve that requires replacement. Then, disassemble the new valve. Prepare the valve for installation by applying a flux solder paste around the pipe sleeves located on your shower valve. Also, apply it to the cold and hot water lines before proceeding. Next, you need to position the valve and solder the connection with a propane burner. Next, you can install. the valve cartridge and complete the installation.

FAQ

While thermostatic valves sense and control actual water temperature, pressure-balanced valves sense, and control just the cold to hot water ratio.

While a plumber can best install the shower valve, it’s not an impossible task for a keen DIYer, provided he follows the instructions in the manual and the ones we’ve given out.

The trim and the handle for control of tubs and showers can be replaced without the need to redo the plumbing. All you need is a universal kit.

Yes, you can. For example, with Moen’s remodel cover plates, you can easily replace two or even three handle valves with a single-handle shower valve.

Our Verdict

All of the products on our list offer spectacular efficiency and is sturdy to provide you with a great bathing experience. Whether or not you want a shower valve that can help you maintain your water pressure or regulate the temperature, you will find a product that is right for you.

Rated 9.9 out of 10, the Moen 2590 Shower Valve, our Editor’s Choice, comes with Stops. This shower valve is made of metal and brass, which make it sturdy, robust, and non-corroding. It has antimicrobial properties to protect you against waterborne illnesses similar to bacterial infections. We, therefore, think this is the overall best shower valve on the market this 2021.

Rated 9.8/10, the DELTA R10000-UNBX Shower Valve is our Best Value Pick. To ensure high quality, this heavy-duty diverter is made of brass for added strength. The solid brass provides excellent hold and excellent heat resistance.

With a 9.6 rating, our choice of the model with the best warranty coverage is The Moen PosiTemp Pressure Balancing Valve. It allows you to update your trim styling or replace accessory finishes without having to change valves.

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