Thursday, August 15, 2013

Plumbing...why not

A couple of years ago when we bought our first house I couldn't DIY anything. And to be perfectly honest becoming a home owner wasn't really inspiring me to learn. Maybe if home ownership hadn't been so quickly followed by a high risk pregnancy and newborn things would have been different. But this house....this house requires us to learn to DIY. Way too many things need to be updated/fixed for us to rely on professional help each and every time. So we are embracing DIY. And it is in this spirit that I decided to fix my leaky faucet. 

And you know what??? It was easy, kind of fun and immensely satisfying. The faucet was leaking out of the base where it connects to the sink. Every time we turned the water on a pool of water immediately began to emerge. Not so conducive to dish washing. And with no dishwasher we're washing A LOT of dishes. There was also a pretty bad leak below the sink coming from one of the drains. Since that leak was covered by our home warranty and the plumbing under the sink looked pretty scary we decided to have the warranty fix it. While I met the plumber to fix the below the sink leak he explained to me how to fix my leaky faucet (which was not covered by the warranty). 
First the water had to be turned off under the sink, easy peasy. Then the faucet had to come apart. Once apart it was pretty clear what the problem was, the large o-ring at the base of the faucet had worn down in several spots and had finally broken apart. 

This is the original 1950 Moen faucet (so the guys at the hardware store informed me) and these faucets have two o-rings, a large one at the base of the faucet and a small one near the handle. If the leak is coming from the base it's usually a broken large o-ring and if the leak is coming from near the handle it's the smaller. However, since I was taking it apart anyway the hardware store guys told be to just replace both. I had a hard time getting the smaller one off but finally got it with a small flat screw driver.Once they were off I cleaned all of the gross black gunk off with a paper towel.

Then I put the new ones in place and covered them with some silicone grease as directed by the guys at the hardware store.
Now I was ready to re-assemble the faucet. First I scoured each part before putting it back together since it had a lot of caked on grime, grease and soap scum. I used my all purpose natural cleaner & de-greaser and a scotch-brite scouring pad to clean it all off. 
Then I re-assembled the faucet. Since I'd kept everything in the order as I took it apart it wasn't too hard. Once the O-rings were in place I set the faucet nozzle on top, placed in the bolt and screwed on the nut to hold it in place.

Then I put the lever back and replaced the screw, and finally, attached the cover. 

And ta-da!!! Shiny clean faucet as good as new. The best part is the plumber said he could do it but it would cost $150 and I only spent $6.47 at the hardware store for the two o-rings and the silicone grease.

That's 1 DIY project down and oh...230 to go. But at least it's a start.

1 comment:

  1. Yo are benefiting from learning on the job which boosts confidence and ownership pride.

    Oven is small? Why not get a Costco imitation Egg BBQ/Smoker for half the price of a genuine Green Egg. It can bake, cook, BBQ, smoke even for large parties of 30 plus people. It goes outside thus preserving your kitchen heritage look.