The diverter in a kitchen faucet enables the water pressure to switch from the main spout to the faucet sprayer. Sometimes, the sprayer quits working, which could be due to an issue with the diverter.
Whether you need to troubleshoot issues, such as a kitchen faucet diverter thumping sound, or are just curious about where it is located, we can help you find it. Keep reading for a quick guide on how to locate the diverter in your kitchen faucet.
What Is A Diverter In A Kitchen Faucet?
The faucet diverter in your kitchen functions to redirect water from the faucet spout to the faucet sprayer. By squeezing the trigger on the sprayer, you tell the water pressure to drop in the faucet body, which engages the diverter. This restricts the water flow at the spout and transfers it to the sprayer.
How Do I Locate The Diverter?
The water diverter in kitchen faucets is usually located near the front of the faucet body. However, in some faucets, the diverter faces the back. If you are unsure where the diverter is, the sink manufacturer may have a kitchen sink diverter valve diagram that may help.
To find the diverter, you need to start by shutting off the water supply to the faucet you are working on. Test that the water will not give you an impromptu bath by turning the faucet handle to the on position.
There will likely be some water remaining in the water lines that will drain out, but it should trickle off. Once nothing is coming out of the faucet, congratulations, you have successfully turned off the water, and you can now go to town on taking the tap apart.
What You’ll Need
To locate the diverter in your kitchen faucet, you will need:
- Hex or Allen wrench
- Needle nose pliers
- Silicone faucet grease
Remove The Handle: Start by removing the faucet handle. You will need to loosen and remove the set screw, which is typically on the bottom of the handle on single-handled faucets.
Sometimes the screw is hidden by a decorative cap that you can pull off. Using the hex or Allen wrench, remove the set screw and pull the handle.
Find The Diverter: Next, you’ll need to loosen the faucet bonnet by turning it counterclockwise. The faucet bonnet is a dome-shaped covering. You should be able to turn it by hand, but if you can’t get the bonnet to give, place a cloth over it to avoid damage and use a pair of pliers.
Gently remove the spout by moving it back and forth as you lift up. The diverter should be nestled in the front of the faucet body, but it may be in the back in some models.
Clean Or Replace: To clean or replace the diverter, gently remove the sink faucet diverter valve from the faucet body with your needle-nose pliers. If the diverter is clogged with mineral deposits, you can soak the piece in vinegar to break down the gunk. While it soaks for a while, use a small brush to carefully remove the deposits in the faucet body where the diverter sits.
If you need to replace the diverter, you will need your correct replacement part. To reinstall or replace the diverter, carefully push it into the faucet body with your finger. Use the silicone faucet grease to lubricate the rubber O-rings in the faucet body, then push the spout onto the faucet.
Tighten the faucet bonnet and reinstall the handle with the set-screw. Place the decorative cap back over the set screw.
Turn On The Water: If you had to shut off the main water supply, hopefully, you did not leave anyone stranded in the shower. Once you have put the faucet back together, turn on the water supply shutoff valves. Test the faucet and sprayer to ensure you replaced everything correctly.