Submitted Date 08/17/2019

When I moved out of my childhood home I was unstoppable. Not only was I 18, but I also knew everything. I never felt more like an adult. I was in charge of my meals, my day to day schedule, and had my own place. Well, my own dorm room that was actually shared, and there wasn't a private restroom— or kitchen for that matter. Life was really good. Being an "adult" was fantastic. I didn't have to clean a kitchen or a bathroom. I had one square of carpet that got vacuumed maybe twice that year. I was on my own and when things went wrong, I called maintenance. These nifty individuals could fix anything and I never had to pay a cent! College was pretty awesome in a lot of ways and when I eventually graduated, I learned maintenance isn't free. When I moved into a house, and things went wrong my landlord would come over and fix it. I could sense he wasn't as thrilled to be called. He didn't exactly have a twinkle in his eye when it came to unclogging my shower drain or repairing the kitchen faucet. After a few of my calls, I thought it was possible I had become a nuisance. For fear I would be kicked out based on my lack of initiative and general knowledge, I began teaching myself a few things. So as embarrassing as it is, know that everyone has to learn sometime and if your bathroom sink is having trouble draining water through the pipes it might be time.

If the bathroom sink isn't draining water through the pipes filling the basin with water, or the opposite; the sink plug appears to be sealed but isn't
holding water at all. Wait, don't call the plumber yet. Here are some quick and easy ways to troubleshoot this problem without spending a fortune. Most likely the pop-up has accumulated debris over time and needs to be cleaned. Other times the pop-up may need to be replaced. In any case, follow these simple steps and your sink will be operating normally in no time.

TIME: 10-15 minutes

(Show me how)

What's in it for you?

A cleaner sink
Saved plumbing expense
Bragging rights

(Show me how)

Materials Needed:
Permanent marker
Cleaning solution/vinegar
Old toothbrush

Repair Pop-Up Sink Mechanisms All By Yourself

1. Grab your medium-sized bowl or bucket and place under your sink before beginning any repairs. This ensures any excess water in the pipes won't spill onto the floor.

2. Detach the clevis from the pivot rod by removing the spring-clip. The vertical rod with a series of holes is called the clevis. The pivot rod is the piece that fits into the clevis rod and connects to the sink drain. The spring-clip sandwiches them together.

Pro Tip: use that marker to indicate which hole the pivot rod was secured to and skip the guesswork.

©Don Vandervort, HomeTips

3. Remove the gasket that holds the pivot rod in place. Unscrew the gasket using your fingers. In some cases, you may need pliers. After the gasket is removed the pivot rod is exposed entirely. Wiggle free gently, and return to the top of the sink. Remove the sink plug from the top of the sink.

4. Rinse the pivot rod and pop-top mechanism in a different sink and let soak in a cleaning solution. *Bonus points for those who use vinegar* The pop-top can accumulate debris over time. The debris can make draining water after use difficult, a gentle cleaning can solve this issue.
Vinegar is safer than bleach and has the same effect **

5. Check the rubber seal on the pop-top. The rubber seal on the pop-top can become dry and brittle. This is bad news, you better get that replaced at your local hardware store. To be safe bring the old one with you, that way when you're wandering around lost someone can guide you through the labyrinth that is the "Hardware Store".

6. Check for damage on the pivot rod and the bottom part of the pop-top mechanism.
The rod can accumulate rust and break off. The pop-up's plastic end can break off from repeated pressure from the pivot rod. Inspect these pieces for any wear and tear. If these pieces are damaged then you will need to replace those parts at a local hardware store. When replacing fixtures it is smart to bring these parts with you. There is a surprising selection at most hardware stores.

Pro Tip: To save time, grab an employee as soon as you walk in. They basically live there, and you'll be able to leave as soon as possible.

7. Reinstall the pop-up mechanism. Working in reverse, grab the pop-up mechanism first and insert on the top of the drain. Be sure the hole that the pivot rod goes into is facing correctly. Next, insert the pivot rod back into the pop-up. The ball should be flush with the drain. Find the gasket and screw tightly into place. Finally, slide one end of the spring clip onto the pivot rod. Attach the clevis to the pivot rod at the marked notch, and sandwich the other end of the spring clip to the pivot rod. The spring-clip should be pinched so the rods are secured. Boom, you're done.

I'm so proud of you! You're truly growing up. You spent like $20 instead of calling a plumber that was going to charge you for their time. I've been there, you make a call, they give you a 9-hour window where you have to be present. They show up thirty minutes before that window closes and charge you for an hour. Don't spend your paycheck on a plumber unless you absolutely have to. This applies to all household mishaps. Now when something breaks I am capable of handling it on my own, instead of wasting someone else's time, or my money.

TWITTER: When your sink's pop-up loses its POP, don't call the plumber; I got you— and you got this. []




Ashley Aker


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