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How To Remove a Stuck Delta Shower Faucet Handle

Nothing is worse than stepping into your shower and finding the faucet handle stuck. With no way to operate your shower, how can you keep up with hygiene? First, it’s crucial to know how to remove a stuck Delta shower faucet handle.

If you’ve been dealing with this situation, we’re here to help. Read on for a quick guide on how to remove a stuck Delta shower faucet handle, as well as what can cause the problem.

How To Remove a Stuck Delta Shower Faucet Handle

Why Is the Shower Faucet Handle Stuck?

There’s no one reason why your faucet handle is stuck, but several likely causes exist. Here are some of the many reasons why your shower faucet handle is stuck. 

Remember that this list isn’t exhaustive—you may need to call a professional to investigate why your handle isn’t functioning.


Your shower faucet handle can often corrode for a variety of reasons. Depending on how old it is, several sources cause your faucet’s interior to corrode.

At times, this corrosion can cause your handle to fall apart. If the corrosion gets too bad, it may stop functioning entirely. You might find your Delta shower faucet handle stuck if this is the case.

It’s often difficult to tell if this is the issue without removing the shower faucet handle. It’s also more likely to occur after an extended period, as new components will rarely corrode quickly.


Your shower faucet handle will come into contact with water every time you shower. Even if it’s out of the stream of water, the steam from your shower will cause the metal to get wet.

Rust is a natural result of this situation and is one of the most common reasons your shower faucet handle is stuck. This is especially true if your shower faucet hasn’t been replaced in a long time. Extensive use and repeated exposure to water will cause components to rust.

You can often tell if your shower handle is rusted because the surrounding area will also rust. Yet, if you’ve recently replaced the components, it’s less likely rust is to blame unless the parts were rusty before installing.


Sometimes, things just break. Unfortunately, there often isn’t a cause or issue that gets your handle stuck. Instead, there are times when the handle will simply malfunction.

When this occurs, it’s often an easier fix. But, if the pieces are stuck frequently, they’re likely faulty. So if you’ve experienced your shower faucet handle getting stuck, you should replace the parts to prevent them from getting stuck.

Hard Water

Hard Water

A fourth common cause of your Delta shower faucet handle being stuck is because of hard water. The hardness of your water is related to the concentration of minerals in the water.

The hardness of water ranges drastically and is entirely dependent on your home, pipes, water source, and more. Two houses on the same street can sometimes have different water hardness.

Hard water will cause sediment and chemical buildup in your components and pipes. This might be causing your Delta shower faucet handle to stick (for more information on Delta showers here). To prevent this, look into the hardness of your water and clean your shower frequently to prevent buildup.

How To Remove a Stuck Delta Shower Faucet Handle

Knowing why your handle is stuck is only half of the battle. Once you understand why it’s stuck, removing it is key.

Some of these methods work better for one cause than others, and some are more destructive. In case of massive issues, you may need to remove the handle altogether so you can install others.

However, be careful not to get in over your head. If these methods sound a bit tricky to you, it may be best to hire a professional and have them carry the task out. That way, you can ensure it’s being done correctly.

Doing the task yourself can severely damage your shower, tile, wall, and more. There’s always the risk of breaking the water pipe and causing a severe and damaging leak. 

In short, leave work you aren’t confident of your ability to do to the professionals.

Pry Bar

If your shower handle is stuck, brute force can sometimes be all you need to remove it. Because of this, you might decide that a small pry bar is the best option.

Situate the pry bar beneath the handle and gently apply force. If it budges, use more pressure until you have it free. Doing so can break away from mineral buildup, rust, and corrosion.

Be careful that you don’t apply too much pressure. Doing so will put a strain on the wall and other connected parts.

You can easily crack tiles or porcelain if you apply too much pressure. If you feel you’re putting too much pressure, stop immediately and try another method.


If you can’t get your Delta shower faucet handle to budge no matter what, you may need to go to extremes. Should you find the handle refusing to move, you might want to use a hacksaw.

Using a hacksaw will let you cut through the stuck handle and remove the component. But, unfortunately, it will also destroy the handle.

Due to destroying the part, you should only do this method if you already have a replacement part ready. You also may find the area beneath it corroded and unusable as well.

Again, it’s best to leave this to professionals, as you can easily cut through the wrong parts and need repairs to the area before using it again.

Dismantling Faucet Handle


At times, you can sometimes fix the issue of the handle being stuck by applying lubricant. Spraying lubricants that you might use to loosen a rusted bolt can improve a stuck handle.

Position the bottle and spray nozzle so it will hit the interior of the handle. This will help saturate the interior with the lubricant and make it easier to move the handle.

Rust and corrosion often give way with enough spray lubricant. Not all stuck handles can be fixed this way, but you can combine this method with a pry bar to make it more effective.

As a note, you should avoid getting spray lubricant on the handle itself. Doing so will make it more challenging to get a good grip and tricky to try to operate the handle.

You should also double-check what lubricant you’re using. Some may have chemicals that are meant for tougher materials. So you could stain your shower if you use too harsh of chemicals that eat through the coating of the area.


A final option is to dismantle the handle and see what has it stuck. There could be some sort of failure with the inner mechanism, making it impossible to operate the handle.

Each handle is different, but with an online guide, you can typically dismantle a handle without much issue. Look up the Delta shower faucet handle model you use and see the best and easiest way to take it apart.

With it properly removed, you can clean and reinstall it or install another. You can also more easily replace faulty components with the faucet dismantled.

Washing Up

Figuring out how to remove a stuck Delta shower faucet handle sounds complex, but it becomes much simpler once you know why it’s stuck. Diagnose why your faucet won’t work before attempting to remove it. Never hesitate to call a professional in for the task when in doubt.

For more home renovation tips, be sure to browse our informative site.

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