If your bathroom sink will no longer hold water, the pop-up stopper is not making a good seal. The rubber washer around the stopper can be cracked or the bottom might not be connecting with the rod that makes the stopper move up and down. The easiest way to correct this is to replace the entire stopper with a new one. In a couple of hours, and with a few household tools, you'll have your sink working again.
What You'll Need for This DIY Project
- screwdriver (flat blade)
- small pipe wrench or channel-lock pliers
- an old rag for cleanup
From the plumbing supply store:
- bathroom sink pop-up stopper replacement kit
Note that you'll have the choice of stainless steel, brass, or plastic in various colors. They all work the same, so choose the material and color that matches your sink and bathroom decor.
Steps for Replacing Your Pop-Up Stopper
- Follow the rod that extends down from behind your faucet, under the sink and into a flat plate (clevis).
- Loosen the screw on the clevis that's holding the push rod and remove the rod by pulling it straight up.
- Loosen the clip that holds the clevis onto the pivot rod, the horizontal rod that extends into the drain pipe, and remove the clevis.
- Remove the large plastic nut holding the pivot rod in the drain pipe. You should be able to loosen the nut with your hand, but if not, use the wrench or pliers.
- Pull the pivot rod and ball out of the drain pipe.
- The end of the pivot rod slides into the bottom of the pop-up stopper. Once you remove the rod, pull the stopper out of the drain.
- Clean any material out of the drain pipe while you have access to it.
- Place the rubber gasket onto the new stopper.
- Position the stopper in the drain so you can see the slot at the bottom of the stopper through the hole where the pivot ball and rod will sit.
- Place the pivot rod and ball into the side of the drain, feeding the end of the horizontal rod into the slot at the bottom of the stopper.
- Use the large plastic nut to secure the pivot ball in place. Hand tighten the nut so you can still move the ball and rod up and down in the drain.
- Slide the clevis plate onto the horizontal rod with the clip.
- Place the push rod through the hole behind the sink.
- Connect the push rod to the clevis and secure it with the screw.
- Move the push rod up and down, watching the movement of the pop-up stopper. Adjust the push rod on the clevis to get a good seal with the drain.
Problems You May Encounter
If your plumbing pipes are metal and the connections are corroded, you may need help disassembling the pop-up stopper mechanism. Contact a professional service, like South West Plumbing, and have them replace the metal pipes with plastic to make future repairs easier.