How To Remove Kohler Shower Handle (4 Step Guide)

Last Updated On May 26, 2022
How To Remove Kohler Shower Handle (4 Step Guide)

Do you need to remove a Kohler shower handle? The thought of taking off some shower handles might seem intimidating at first. However, Kohler designs the shower handles to be detachable for cleaning and customization purposes. 

As one of the leading manufacturers of shower handles in the world, learning how to remove a Kohler shower handle will come in handy.

In this PlumbingNav guide, we will cover:

  • What you need to know about removing a Kohler shower handle
  • Supplies you’ll need to replace a Kohler shower handle
  • How to remove a Kohler Shower Handle without damaging it

What's In This Guide?

      What You Need To Know About Removing a Kohler Shower Handle

      The handle in your shower, also known as your shower valve, allows you to adjust the water coming from your shower head and tub faucet. 

      Most showers have a single-control valve, which uses one handle to control the water and the diverter. 

      The shower diverter is the device that allows you to switch water flow between the tub faucet and the shower head. 

      The main reasons to remove your shower handle are to clean it, repair a leak, access the valve, or replace the shower head. 

      If you plan to replace a cartridge, buy the replacement part in advance through Kohler. Kohler sells any faucet part you may need on their website. Always verify that the component you buy matches your product exactly by comparing model numbers.

      Supplies You’ll Need to Remove or Replace a Kohler Shower Handle

      You should find everything you will need to remove or replace your Kohler shower handle in your basic toolset!

      Phillips Screwdriver

      You will need a Phillips screwdriver to remove a shower handle that includes exposed screws, plug buttons, and a center cap. 

      Hex Wrench

      A hex wrench will help you remove any setscrews you encounter. You will need a variety of different sizes as you may require different sizes for different setscrews. 

      Flathead Screwdriver

      Flathead screwdrivers will assist to remove the face or button of the shower handle when no screws hold it into place. 

      Will you use the same tool to remove a faucet handle without any screws holding it together? Read our guide on how to remove a faucet handle without screws.

      did you know How To Remove Kohler Shower Handle

      How To Remove a Kohler Shower Handle (4 Steps)

      Step 1: Prep

      Prep your shower for work by shutting off water to the shower and taking the proper precautions to avoid unnecessary injuries due to slipping or using a tool incorrectly. 

      You should also ensure the shower drain closes perfectly so that no small screws or o-rings fall down the drain if you drop them. Place a towel over the drain if you don’t have a cover.

      Be mindful if you have a polished chrome finish that you may create water stains or fingerprints on the material. Handles with brushed nickel or stainless steel finish won’t show as many impurities. 

      Step 2: Remove the Diverter Button

      Not all shower handles have a diverter button. The button only applies to handles that control both the shower head and tub faucet. 

      The three types of diverter buttons include: 

      • Knob diverter buttons – use a flathead screwdriver to unthread and remove the diverter button and diverter sleeve. 
      • Threaded diverter buttons – unthread and remove the diverter sleeve to access and remove the valve trim. At this point, you can unthread and remove the diverter button. 
      • Diverter buttons with setscrews – unthread and remove the diverter sleeve to gain access and remove the valve trim, finally exposing the setscrews. Use a hex wrench to remove the setscrews and remove the diverter button. 

      Step 3: Remove Shower Trim

      With the diverter button removed, you can now remove the trim. 

      The different trims you may encounter include:

      • Trim with exposed screws – use a phillips screwdriver to remove the handle, bonnet, sleeve, then also the faceplate. 
      • Trim with plug buttons – use a flathead screwdriver to remove the plug button. Next, use a phillips screwdriver to remove the handle and adapter from the valve stem, exposing the screws to remove the faceplate. 
      • Trim with set screws – use a hex wrench to remove the set screws and than a Phillips screwdriver to remove the adapter from the valve stern. Next, remove he faceplate and collar. Use a Phillip screwdriver to remove the seal plate. 
      • Trim with center cap – unthread the end cap, removing the end cap, washer, and short sleeve. Remove the center cap. Use a hex wrench to unscrew and remove the bonnet. Finally, use a phillips screwdriver to remove the screws to the faceplate.  
      • Trim with threaded bonnets – rotate the handle counterclockwise to loosen and remove the handle and bonnet. Remove the faceplate. Use your phillips screwdriver to remove the seal plate. 

      Step 4: Remove Pin (If Applicable)

      If your shower handle has a pin in the adaptor, you will add an additional step to remove it with a flathead screwdriver. 

      Once you remove the pin, you can remove the adaptor. 

      At this point, the handle is completely removed. Continue with the rest of your task!

      Watch this video below to see how to remove your Kohler shower handle:

      f you decide that you want to replace the entire shower head, use our review of the best shower faucets to learn more about how you can find more efficient products or products that provide a better shower experience.

      FAQs For How To Remove Your Kohler Shower Handle

      How do you remove a shower handle?

      Remove your shower handle by first removing the diverter button. Once you remove the diverter button, continue to remove the trim. Once you remove the trim, you can remove the pin and adapter (if applicable) to completely remove the handle. 

      How do you remove a shower handle without a screw?

      Struggling to find the screws holding your shower handle in place? They may not exist. Use a flat screwdriver to remove the handle. 

      How do you remove a double handle Kohler shower handle?

      To remove a double handle Kohler shower handle, you will remove each handle separately. The diverter will also be separate from the two shower handles. 

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      About Plumbing Navigator

      We write about "all things plumbing," helping you navigate common questions, repairs, and the best plumbing products on the market.

      About Plumbing Navigator

      We write about “all things plumbing,” helping you navigate common questions, repairs, and the best plumbing products on the market.

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