How to change a faucet cartridge
If a faucet is leaking at the base or dripping incessantly, this usually means that you need to change the valve cartridge. This will prevent the faucet from wearing out to the point that it needs replacing.
Changing a faucet cartridge is easy to do yourself, as long as you follow the necessary steps to ensure a job well done!
Warning signs that your cartridge needs changing
A faucet consists of a single knob that regulates the water temperature and flow. A ceramic cartridge containing two superimposed discs with openings in the middle is what enables this dual function. The discs move along with the knob, allowing hot or cold water to flow, according to the desired temperature.
However, this action results in wear and tear over time. When hard water deposits cause the discs to wear out or break, it’s time to replace the cartridge.
Changing the faucet cartridge
You can change your own faucet cartridge, even if you have no particular knowledge in that area. Just follow the instructions below:
- First, get your replacement cartridge, making sure to choose the correct model. Cartridges are often under warranty. To find out if yours is covered, contact the manufacturer of your faucet or the store where you purchased it.
- Turn off the hot and cold water supply to the faucet.
- Turn the faucet on all the way to let the water out of the pipes. This should only take a few seconds.
- Remove the cap from the knob and unscrew the assembly.
- Once you’ve removed the knob, twist off the bonnet nut in order to access the cartridge.
- Unscrew the screw retaining the cartridge so that you can remove it from the faucet. Keep the old cartridge in case you need it for reference when purchasing your new one.
- Change the O-rings in the cartridge. You may also need to replace the washers in the faucet if they show signs of wear. With time, they can weaken, exacerbating any leaks.
Cleaning the aerator
While you’re at it, you can take advantage of the opportunity to clean the piece situated at the tip of the faucet in order to eliminate any hard water deposits. If you can’t remove it by hand, use a pair of pliers, a small flathead screwdriver or a wrench.
Use a cloth to protect the piece, turning it gently, taking care not to damage it. You can then soak it in a bowl containing hot water and vinegar. This will dissolve any stubborn deposits.
Reassembling the faucet with the new cartridge
Once you’ve completed the steps above, you’re ready to replace the cartridge! It’s fairly easy to do. Place the new cartridge inside the faucet and turn it until the notches are properly aligned. You can then tighten the nut, as well as the rosette on the cartridge.
Do you need help changing the cartridge in your bathroom faucet?
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