So I woke up this morning to a leaking sink! It was the slow leak kind that just leaks back onto itself and then slides quietly down your pipes to your downstairs neighbor’s ceiling … Ya, not fun. At least we noticed it before the neighbor did. This is the neighbor that doesn’t like me because I walk too loud …
So first thing I did was run to try to shut off the water supply from the valves under the sink … little did I know these valves have never been touched since the house was installed. So I found out the hard way that these valves, although rarely used, need to work very well in case of emergency.
After some failed attempts at trying to stop the slow leak, Jenn contacted our building manager to find out where the main water shutoff to the building was. Turns out there is one that cuts off the water to 4 apartments located on the second floor in the ceiling behind a drop panel. This is a good thing for home-owners to know.
I didn’t end up cutting off water to the other neighbors. Instead, I cycled the valves a few times and just used a little more force (note later that this backfires, please read on).
So I googled how to take apart a Moen faucet, and after popping out the logo with a knife, the rest was pretty simple. It wasn’t long for me to see exactly what the problem was:
The main body of the faucet has been rusted completely. I was able to crack most of the body off just with my fingers. This used to be cast iron. The original leak must have started long ago, slowly eating away at the metal.
So pretty much all faucets are attached the same way. Turn off both under sink valves (make sure they are really turned off). Then, unhook them with some wrenches (most probably 5/8″) mine had a 5/8″ to 7/8″ adapter, so I needed both.
Once the lines are close to getting loose, use a rag to loosen the rest by hand (the rag will absorb the residual water in the line). Oh and put a rag on the ground to capture the fallout.
Now you need to disconnect the handheld loop. This may be different depending on the type of sink.
Once all the hoses are disconnected, you have to unscrew the nut and plate under the sink holding the whole thing in place (Note that when you buy a new faucet, they sometimes include a tool to make this a lot simpler … without it, you could be spending hours trying to unscrew this thing).
Now that everything is unscrewed, you can carefully pull out the whole assembly like a brain connector from the matrix.
Note that, if there is water damage (or possible damage). Its a good idea to keep the old parts, for insurance purposes. The adjuster for the claim may want to see it.
Now go shopping for a new faucet. We got this one: the Pfister Indira F-529-7NDS stainless steel finish, from Home depot. The beauty of the design is really what sold me on it. It really is like a work of art for the kitchen. It feels almost too nice for my laminate counter … I need to upgrade to marble now.