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Faucet Fixed

May 14, 2012

Well, after several trips to Lowes, Home Depot, and a specialty plumbing store I was able to finally fix the Pegasus faucet that I broke trying to install it. It was, relatively speaking, quite an ordeal. Here’s what happened.

I installed the shut-off valves and water filter before the counter was installed. After the counter was installed, I mounted the faucet on the counter, but the water filter terminated with a 3/8″ male fitting, not a standard 1/2″ female fitting. The instructions said I should get a 3/8″ to 1/2″ adapter. I picked one up from Home Depot, not realizing two things: (a) if I rejiggered the water filter tubing, I could use a standard 3/8″ to 1/2″ braided line, which I had on hand, and (b) the male end on the faucet needs a washer. I screwed the adapter on and in trying to stop the leak, over-tightened it so that when I tried to take it off, I broke the copper tubing that connects to the faucet. (Because the adapter didn’t have a washer, it was never going to stop leaking).

At this point, I still had about 5″ of good tubing left, and I thought a SharkBite 1/4″ to 1/2″ adapter that would work (available at Home Depot). Upon further inspection, though, the tubing I had was a bit smaller than 1/4″ pipe, so that didn’t work. I started looking at 5/16″ fittings, but the tubing on the faucet was a fraction smaller than standard 5/16″ tubing, so none of those would work, either. (Unfortunately, it took me two trips to Home Depot and one trip to a specialty plumbing store to figure this out).

Next, I tried to sweat the tubing off the 1/2″ fitting that I had on hand (the one that I broke off) — thinking that I could solder it back on. Unfortunately, I didn’t have much tubing left on the fitting, and I wasn’t able to get it off — and in my attempt to do so, I “squished” the fitting, making it unusable.

So I called Pegasus. I explained what happened, and they kindly said they would send me a new fitting “no problem”. Unfortunately, they sent me a valve, not a brass fitting. Not sure what the confusion was there, but I was back at square one.

At this point, I figured I was either going to be able to get a standard fitting to work, or I was going to have to buy a new faucet, and I wasn’t 100% sure but I thought the remaining tubing may have had a crack in it at the base. So I broke the remaining tubing off and used plyers to unscrew the fitting where it attaches to the faucet. It looked like 1/4″ thread, so I took the fitting to Home Depot and bought 2″ and 4″ brass nipples with 1/4″ threading on both ends, and a 1/4″ to 1/2″ adapter. After I verified that the nipple fit, I was able to easily unscrew the existing tubing and fitting from the faucet (I had bent it a bit and figured I’d rather not have to make yet another trip to the hardware store for more of the same parts). Thankfully, that worked.

Unfortunately, though, the 2″ nipple is a bit too short — I had to use nipples with different lenths so that I would have room to attach the fittings (and to get the faucet through the hole in the counter with all the fittings on — which I technically didn’t have to do, but wanted to so that I could have an easier time tightening). But because the 2″ nipple is so short, the fitting sits above the bottom of the counter and impedes the bracket that is used to secure the faucet to the underside of the counter. For the time being I’m just using the nut that came with the faucet (no bracket) but I’m going to have to use a washer of some kind to give the nut more surface are to make contact. Or, I may look for a 6″ nipple (which Home Depot didn’t happen to have, but I think I can get from Amazon) — but then, the faucet is connected and not leaking, so I’m inclined not to mess with it.

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From → Plumbing

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