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Friday, October 9, 2009

Easy Faucet Repair

Drippy faucets can feel like they are just part of life, right? Actually, the repair for them is often quite simple, if you know how to take one apart. Let's look at a simple single-stem faucet that would no longer shut off all the way.

Here are the steps I took to repair this common fixture from Delta Faucet:

1. Turn of the water. Hopefully, there are valves underneath the sink. If not, you may need to find the main shut-off. Either way, don't forget to turn it off.

2. Use a flat-head screwdriver to carefully pop the cover off the center of the handle. A screw will be revealed that is holding the handle onto the stem. Remove the screw and the handle.

3. Now get some wide mouth pliers and unscrew the casing around the stem. You may want to use a cloth of some kind to prevent scratches from your pliers. Once it's loose you can remove it with your fingers.

4. Inside you'll find a ball that is attached to the stem as well as a gasket. In my case today, the gasket was worn enough that it no longer applied enough pressure to make the valve close all the way. Take these out and look for problems.

5. Replace the parts. There's an entire department at most home stores dedicated to faucet repair. To be safe, take the parts from your faucet to the store with you to make sure you get the correct replacement parts.

6. Put it all back together in reverse order.

7. Turn the water back on and test.

This process works with many different types of plumbing fixtures. Just make a note of how they come apart so you can get them back together.


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