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Shower Faucet Basics

A standard shower faucet includes a showerhead and a valve. Shower faucets come in a wide variety of styles and shapes to suit your design wishes.

Shower faucets are available in single-handle or two-handle designs. Single handle shower faucets are the most popular. A one-handle design allows the user to quickly adjust the temperature and volume of the shower to a comfortable level. Two-handle shower faucets tend to be used for a more traditional look and/or when replacing an existing two-handle unit without disturbing or replacing the tile and/or shower stall. Some two-handle shower faucets have a third handle that serves as a diverter for the shower.


Valves are the faucet components behind the wall and can't be seen. They play a very important role in determining the performance and longevity of your shower faucet. Valves can also make your bathing experience more comfortable. There are different types of valves that perform different functions.

Pressure balancing valves help keep the water temperature stable when the water pressure suddenly drops, like in the event of a toilet flushing or washing machine starting, which eliminates the risk of scalding. Thermostatic valves adjust the cold and hot ratio water settings and help to maintain the desired original temperature. Standard compression valves don't regulate pressure or temperature and use rubber washers, which will wear over time causing potential leaks. For greater longevity and a better overall performance, choose shower faucets with ball, cartridge or ceramic-disk valves.

Additionally, many shower faucets feature anti-scald protection also called scald guards, built directly into the faucet. This feature protects individuals from unexpected bursts of hot or cold water when other appliances are being used.

Shower valves are also available in Tub & Shower Faucet models. Please contact our Product Experts to inquire about the proper configuration and the required diverter & volume control valves for your bathroom.

Handle Options

Handle types are usually selected to match the other faucets used in the rest of the bathroom. Consider both the desired style and the ease of use when selecting handle options. Below are the handle types available at Ferguson.

Shower Faucet Purchase Options

Shower faucets are commonly sold in two configurations:

  • Complete set which includes the trim and valve. Sometimes the handles are sold separately. The trim is the faucet component you see. The valve is the faucet component behind the wall.
  • Valves sold separately and trim sold separately.

The shower faucets shown on our site are configured as complete sets with everything you need for installation and the price reflects the complete cost. Shower faucet trims and valves are also sold separately. If purchasing items separately, we encourage speaking with our Product Experts to ensure you have all the correct and necessary parts.

1. CxC or sweat connections - most common

2. IPS or iron pipe thread standard - do not require a torch

3. With 1/4 turn stops (these are generally used on commercial fixtures)

Your contractor will be able to install any of these variations, so you need not be concerned with the specifics unless your contractor states a preference.

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Shower Faucets