Why does plumbing have to be so tricky?
I have a 2-handle Gerber bathroom sink faucet, looks like this one:
I need to replace the hot cartridge. So I removed the handle cap and
unscrewed the handle.
But it still won't come off. Either it's stuck, or there's some funky
other setscrew I know nothing about.
I'm afraid to keep pulling on it, because I might cause more damage that
I tried WD-40. No luck.
Any other ideas?
-- Steven L.
There's no set screw.
You have a white metal faucet handle stuck onto a bronze cartridge
After a long period of time, corrosion will cause these metals to seize
to one another, making the handle hard to get off.
You just have to fight with the faucet knob. Wiggle it from left to
right while pulling on it, pry up on it, use the faucet handle pullers
if you have them, there's no easy solution here. You just have to keep
working at the handle until it comes loose and comes off.
BUT, after you replace the hot cartridge, use antiseize compound between
the cartridge stem male spline and the handle female spline to prevent
your having this problem in future.
I literally have a hundred or more faucet knob in my building, and I use
antiseize compound on every one of them to avoid the problem you're
having with your faucet handle.
You are correct to worry. For the sake of stability, the handle is
attached to something sturdy, often a rock formation as much as 200
miles unnder your house.
If you pull too hard, you will displace the rocks and provide an outlet
for geothermal steam and sometimes lava. Sometimes this will set fire
to the house.
I use that all the time, but I don't remember it being recommended for
this purpose. Like Oren, I think Liquid Wrench is definitely
recommended. Put some on, Tap the metal piece a few times with
something else metal and heavy, to make the piece vibrate and suck the
liquid in as far as it will go. Wait until tomorrow. It might come
loose then without causing lava problems.
What might help is to put a prybar or screw driver
under two sides of the faucet handle. Pry one side
and then the other alternately. Gently. Some times
that won't shift the geological formation. Notify
the Seismic department first, of course. Just in
case. And keep a garden hose handy, in case of
On Thu, 9 Oct 2014 22:22:35 +0000 (UTC), Red Green
I've only had a couple where I had to use the tool. Faucets were
"fancy" old ones, and too close to tile walls. Banging on them past a
certain point could have cost me a wall tear out. They were
Just replaced the disk washers.
Was curious that there might be a cartridge in a two handle fixture and
googled this up:
Handle should not be a problem but that's the start and you may have
further problems if corroded.
I've got Moen fixtures and replaced bath tub cartridge a few years ago
at great peril. Needed so much force, I was afraid I might break a pipe
or the fixture.
When I needed to do the one in my shower, I let a couple of jobs pile up
and hired a plumber. He had to use a puller device.
Moen cartridges can be hard to remove if you have hard water.
I've been told that if you have soft water, they're not a problem.
But, some companies do make pullers specifically for Moen cartridges if
they're hard to get out.
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