Today, I’m a Plumber.

09 Jan

The kitchen faucet at my cabin has been leaking for how many months now? Six? At any rate, it was time to fix it. This time I decided to do it myself! I have a Delta washerless faucet with a center control handle. Having never seen the inside of a washerless faucet, I figured I could do it anyway, whatever the effort involved. Can’t be that hard, right?

So, how was I going to accomplish this, having zero knowledge of it except that there is no washer? Easy. Just go to the internet! I looked up a video on YouTube on “repair delta washerless faucet” and sure enough, an array of choices appeared for me to choose from. I went with the first- it was from Home Depot. The handywoman knew what she was doing. Her most important instruction was to keep everything in order and put it back in exactly the opposite order I took it out in.

When I got to my local hardware store, I told the person that helped me exactly what I needed. Then I found out that there are more than one kind of washerless faucet. Ugh. Didn’t know that. Mine is not the kind with the cartridge. It has a ball and stem center. After my second trip to the store, I came home, ready to repair!


My parts all in order at the top. Parts from the kit on the bottom.

I did exactly as my video handywoman told me to do- keep everything in order (even though it was a different type than she used). She was right. I was in and out relatively quickly and painlessly. I will not go into great detail about the steps necessary to replace the faucet.  There are plenty of people that have done it already.  What I will tell you is something they left out. Look at the tool below.  One end has an Allen/hex wrench and the other, a curved and hooked end.  The hex end takes the handle off.  The other end is for the cam (white plastic piece underneath the handle).  Nobody seems to point that out. ( I can’t seem to find the name for it the other tool/end.  Please feel free to provide it if you know.)


Tool that comes in the repair kit.

Nearing the end, when you are tightening everything up, this tool is crucial to the process.  Once the metal cap is on above all the small pieces, the handle can go back on.  However, the cam must be tightened! If it is not, everything will seem to appear in working order, but the faucet will produce a stream of water. Tightening the cap with an adjustable wrench or pipe wrench will not complete the job.  So, make sure this is snug before the handle is replaced.


Hooked ends on included tool fit right into the grooves.

Hopefully, this little tip will help you on your way to becoming an at-home plumber.  Live and learn.

Cheers, Olivia

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Posted by on January 9, 2013 in House


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