Wednesday, April 8, 2015

New Spring to my Faucet - Changing Washers and Springs in One Handle Faucet

You can watch the video and then check the pictures for more details to change out your springs and washers.

First thing you have to do when changing out your sink faucets washers, cartridges or springs is to get the new parts. 

The second thing, is to TURN OFF THE WATER at the shut off valves beneath your sink. Make sure to get the hot and cold both turned off all the way so you don't have a water explosion in your kitchen or bath. 

Once your water is turned off and you have the new part for your sink faucet, you can begin. 

Ease the plastic cover off the front of the handle using your fingernail or the tip of a dull knife. It will come off easily. Under that there is a screw. Sometimes, it is a regular screwdriver but my Delta faucet has a hex screw. You can purchase a set of hex nut tools at any hardware store or often times, the dollar store will have a cheap set. 
My water is very hard water and has lots of minerals in it as you can tell by the state of the underside of the faucet. I continually spray it with cleaner but in no time, it has built up again. 

Trying to get the nut loose took a bit of elbow grease and I had to use some leverage to get it loose. I actually tightened it a bit and then was able to get it off. 

Remember that with plumbing, turning some thing to the right tightens it and to the left, loosens it. "Righty tighty, lefty loosy" is the rhyme that people recite to remember that. 

Once you have the nut out some, stop taking it out. You don't have to pull it out all the way to get it off and I actually had it go down into the disposal and had to fish it out. 

Take off the handle and you will see some gunky minerals. I actually sprayed the spot with my favorite lime/mineral cleaner at this point hoping to get some of the minerals loose to make it easier to take the next part off. 

I had to use a pipe wrench to take this part off but an adjustable wrench would also work. I think if I did it again, I would put a cloth over the top and go at a downward angle through the cloth as to not scratch the metal. 
Once this part is off, you can pull the white plastic part up and the washer underneath it and the rotating metal ball with a "handle" on it out. 

I put all the items in a row as I take them out and place them down in the same direction as I removed them making it easier to remember how they go back on. 

You can then see down into the handle and there are two black washers and when you remove those, there are springs beneath those. 

Ace or your local plumbing supply store often get boxes of these extra parts that break down so that the companies that have life time warranties such as Moen and Delta don't have to pay shipping to each persons home. 

For Moen parts, I go to the plumbing supply store. For Delta parts, I go to Ace Hardware and ask the plumbing supervisor for the parts I need or if I don't know the part I need, I tell him what problem I am having and he tells me the parts I need. I have never changed out the springs and washers in this type of faucet before so he told me how to do it and gave me the parts I needed for free. 

If you don't have a store near you, contact Moen or Delta and tell them the type of faucet you have and they can send you the free part. It is easier and faster to go local. My plumber knows me now so he gives me the cartridge and allows me to return the old one after I have put the new one in. This helps me not to have to keep the water off for long periods while headed to the store to swap out the cartridge. Here is a post about changing the tub cartridge from Moen.
Take the opportunity to clean the entire area with some type of lime cleaner. I share many times in my post that my favorite cleaner is the "Tub and Tile" from a company called Melaleuka out of Idaho. I give the 1-800 number in my video. It is WONDERFUL to take white deposits off my windows and garage door from sprinklers. 

Here is a post about the garage door.  

Here is a post about the windows and sink.

Here is a link to my post about comparing cleaning toilet bowels with them.  

Be aware when putting the pieces back together, that you need to make sure the little metal piece that stick out inside the handle, needs to be in the groove on the ball part. 

Also, there is a plastic lip on one side that fits into the groove crack on the handle outside metal. I show that in my video on this. 

Once you have those all back in place, and everything is cleaned, hand tighten the cover back and then use the pipe wrench to tighten it. Don't over tighten it as you don't want the handle to be on crooked. 

Lastly, replace the handle on the metal holder and tighten it with your hex tool. Once you have it tightened, test it by turning on the water shut offs under your sink. If you have done it correctly, it should work fine. Don't be alarmed if the sink drips slightly for a few minutes after shutting it off for the first time as the washers take a minute to "fill" with water and expand to fill the space and once they have, the dripping should stop.

After you are sure everything is functional, put the little plastic decorative cover back over the nut. If your faucet continues to drip, you may have not tightened the "cover" portion enough, you may not have the tongue in the groove or you may also need to change out the other rubber gasket. It couldn't hurt to do all three if you can get the parts but mine has been great with just changing the springs and washers.

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