How to Repair a Sink Diverter

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Sink diverter valves, as the name suggests, divert hot and cold water away from the faucet to the sink sprayer attachment. Repairing or replacing a sink diverter valven is a fairly easy home improvement job for a do-it-yourself type homeowner. Repair or replace a diverter valve when water pressure to the sink sprayer diminishes or the does not flow at all.

Things You'll Need

  • Adjustable wrench
  • Tape
  • Screw driver
  • White vinegar
  • Tooth pick
  • Turn off the water supply to faucet.

  • Use an adjustable wrench to remove the faucet spout ring or nut from the spout. Wrap the wrench in tape to protect the faucet finish from scratches, gouges or mars. Remove and set aside.

  • Look into the hole and see the diverter valve usually marked by a brass screw.

  • Turn the screw with a screwdriver to loosen. Pick up the screw and diverter valve from inside the hole. If no screw shows, simply pick up the diverter valve and remove. Diverter valves come in two varieties: screw and nonscrew.

  • Clean a clogged diverter valve by soaking it in white vinegar for 30 to 45 minutes, rinse with plain water and use a toothpick to pole out clogged holes. Place the diverter valve back into the hole, screw in place and replace the faucet spout.

  • Replace a cracked or damaged diverter valve. Purchase a new diverter valve at hardware stores, home improvement stores or plumbing supply stores. Match the brand and screw or nonscrew diverter valve to the one in need of replacement.

  • Place the replacement diverter valve in the hole, tighten the screw, replace the faucet spout and tighten with an adjustable wrench.

Tips & Warnings

  • Bring the old diverter valve to the store to ensure an exact match and easy replacement.
  • Do not poke at the diverter valve holes with metal rods to prevent nicks on the soft metal surface.

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References

  • "Plumbing"; Time Life Editors; 1979
  • Photo Credit kitchen sink image by jedphoto from Fotolia.com
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