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How to fix a Pop-up Drain plug

One of the most common faults to occur in sinks is where a pop-up drain plug suddenly fails to open and close. There are a number of reasons of why this may occur but usually the problem can be resolved fairly easily. This article will help you to understand the mechanical workings of your sink and provide a step by step guide on how to fix a faulty pop-up drain plug.

Before we continue, it’s important that you understand the technical terms for the mechanisms you’ll be dealing with.

  • Lift rod – The lift rod is the very first rod that will be attached to the lever or knob you push or pull to bring your plug up or down.
  • Clevis – The clevis is a second rod which is screwed to the lift rod. The clevis is much flatter than the lift rod.
  • Spring clip – This is a clip fastened towards the base of the clevis.
  • Pivot rod – This third rod runs horizontally through the clevis. The pivot rod begins in the drain, connected to a small ball called a pivot ball, and ends pointing slightly upwards towards the base of the plug.
  • Retaining nut – This is the small cap that attaches the pivot rod to the drain. The pivot ball is held inside here and acts as a stopper to prevent water from pouring out.

sink plug

There’s a number of reasons why the mechanism may be faulty. It may be that one of the parts has disconnected due to rust or damage. Perhaps the plug itself is broken. It’s also possible that something is stuck down the drain and is caught on the mechanism. 

  1. Make sure you have room beneath your sink so that you can get underneath and reach the various parts.
  2. Find where the horizontal pivot rod and clevis meet. Undo the spring clip.
  3. Remove spring clip and clevis from pivot rod. Make sure you mark or remember the hole in which the pivot rod was situated in the clevis.
  4. Unscrew the retaining nut.
  5. Pull out the pivot rod.
  6. Remove the plug. Check to see if there are any bundles of hair attached to the base of the plug or inside the drain that could be stopping it from popping up and down. If so, remove the hair and clean the plug thoroughly. If the plug is broken, you will need to replace it.
  7. Inspect pivot rod. If it is broken it will need to be replaced.
  8. Put pivot rod back into the drain. Remember that the end with the ball goes into the drain and the other end points towards the plug. Screw the retaining nut back onto the drain, holding the pivot rod in place.
  9. Place pivot rod back to the clevis in the same hole.
  10. Attach spring clip.

Now your pop-up plug system should be working again. Once all the pieces are attached, push and pull the lever on top of your sink and the plug should rise and lower accordingly. If you’re still having problems with your plug, give Jet Rod a call and our expert team will be happy to assist you further.

At Jet Rod, our skilful team are fully trained to fix a variety of drainage issues. From the bathroom sink to large-scale industrial plumbing, we provide a full range of services to provide you with efficient, affordable resolutions. For more information, contact our professional team, available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.

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