If you notice your American Standard faucet is leaking or the water pressure is weak, it’s likely time to replace the faucet cartridge. Replacing a cartridge is a straightforward DIY project that can breathe new life into an old faucet.
In this comprehensive guide, we’ll walk you through the entire process step-by-step, from turning off the water supply to installing the new cartridge.
If you’re short on time, here’s a quick answer: Replacing an American Standard faucet cartridge involves turning off the water supply, disassembling the faucet to access the cartridge, removing the old cartridge, installing the new replacement cartridge, reassembling the faucet, and turning the water back on to test for leaks.
Shut Off the Water Supply
Before replacing an American Standard faucet cartridge, it is crucial to shut off the water supply to prevent any water damage or flooding. This step ensures a safe and mess-free replacement process.
Locate the Shutoff Valves
The first step is to locate the shutoff valves for your faucet. These valves are typically found under the sink or in a utility room near the water pipes. They control the water flow to the faucet and allow you to turn off the water supply.
- If you have a single-handle faucet, look for a single shutoff valve that controls both hot and cold water.
- If you have a double-handle faucet, there will be two separate shutoff valves, one for hot water and one for cold water.
Pro tip: If you are having trouble locating the shutoff valves, consult the manufacturer’s website or manual for your specific faucet model. They often provide detailed instructions and diagrams to help you find the valves.
Turn Off Hot and Cold Valves
Once you have located the shutoff valves, turn them off by twisting them clockwise until they are fully closed. This will stop the water flow to the faucet and allow you to work on replacing the cartridge.
Important: It is recommended to turn off both the hot and cold water valves, even if you are only replacing one side of the faucet cartridge. This ensures that no water will accidentally flow through the open valve while you are working.
By shutting off the water supply and turning off the hot and cold valves, you can proceed with confidence to replace the American Standard faucet cartridge without any water-related mishaps.
Disassemble the Faucet
When replacing an American Standard faucet cartridge, the first step is to disassemble the faucet. This involves removing the faucet handle, removing the cartridge retainer nut, and extracting the old cartridge.
Remove the Faucet Handle
The faucet handle is usually held in place by a set screw located either on the top or underside of the handle. Use a screwdriver or Allen wrench to loosen and remove the set screw. Once the set screw is removed, the handle should easily lift off the faucet.
Remove the Cartridge Retainer Nut
The cartridge retainer nut is typically found directly underneath the faucet handle. It may be a circular nut or a hexagonal nut, depending on the faucet model. Use an adjustable wrench or pliers to loosen and remove the retainer nut. Be careful not to damage the surrounding area while doing this.
Extract the Old Cartridge
After removing the retainer nut, the old cartridge can be extracted from the faucet body. Depending on the condition of the cartridge, it may require some force to remove. Use a pair of pliers or a cartridge puller tool to grip the cartridge and carefully pull it straight out of the faucet.
Remember to turn off the water supply to the faucet before disassembling it to avoid any potential leaks or water damage. It’s also a good idea to consult the manufacturer’s instructions or website for specific information on disassembling and replacing the cartridge for your particular American Standard faucet model.
You can find more detailed instructions and diagrams on the American Standard website here.
Install the New Cartridge
Once you have removed the old cartridge from your American Standard faucet, it’s time to install the new one. Follow these steps to ensure a proper installation:
Insert the Replacement Cartridge
Take the new cartridge and align it with the opening in the faucet body. Make sure the tabs on the cartridge line up with the notches in the faucet body. Gently push the cartridge into place until it is fully inserted. You may need to wiggle it slightly to get it to fit snugly.
Reinstall the Retainer Nut
Next, locate the retainer nut that you removed earlier. This nut secures the cartridge in place. Carefully place the retainer nut back onto the cartridge and use your adjustable wrench to tighten it. Be sure not to overtighten, as this could damage the cartridge or faucet.
Replace the Faucet Handle
With the cartridge securely in place, it’s time to put the faucet handle back on. Align the handle with the cartridge stem and push it down until it fits snugly. If your faucet has a set screw, use the appropriate screwdriver to tighten it.
Once the handle is back on, turn on the water supply and test your faucet. Make sure there are no leaks and that the hot and cold water are flowing correctly. If everything looks good, give yourself a pat on the back – you’ve successfully replaced the cartridge in your American Standard faucet!
Restore the Water Supply
Turn the Water Back On
Once you have successfully replaced the cartridge in your American Standard faucet, it’s time to restore the water supply. Locate the main water shut-off valve in your home, typically found in the basement or near the water meter.
Turn the valve clockwise to open it and allow water to flow back into the pipes. Take note that it may take a few moments for the water to fully reach your faucet.
Pro Tip: To avoid any potential mishaps, it’s a good idea to place a bucket or towel under the faucet in case there are any leaks during this process.
Check for Leaks
After turning the water back on, it’s crucial to check for any leaks in your newly replaced faucet cartridge. Start by visually inspecting the area around the faucet for any signs of water seepage. Additionally, run both the hot and cold water to ensure there are no leaks or drips from the faucet itself.
Pro Tip: If you notice any leaks or drips, it may be necessary to tighten the connections or recheck the cartridge installation. If the problem persists, it is recommended to contact a professional plumber for further assistance.
For more detailed instructions on restoring the water supply and checking for leaks, you can visit the American Standard website here.
Troubleshooting Common Issues
Leaks from the Handle
If you’re experiencing leaks from the handle of your American Standard faucet, don’t worry, it’s a common issue that can be easily fixed. The most likely cause of the leak is a faulty cartridge. The cartridge is a valve that controls the flow of water in your faucet.
Over time, it can become worn out or damaged, leading to leaks.
To fix this issue, you’ll need to replace the cartridge. Start by turning off the water supply to the faucet. This can usually be done by shutting off the main water valve in your home. Next, remove the handle of the faucet using a screwdriver or Allen wrench.
Once the handle is removed, you’ll see the cartridge. Take note of the cartridge model number and purchase a replacement from a reputable plumbing supply store or online retailer.
Once you have the new cartridge, carefully remove the old one by unscrewing it or using pliers to pull it out. Insert the new cartridge in its place and secure it tightly. Reassemble the handle and turn on the water supply. If everything is done correctly, the leaks should be resolved.
Low Water Pressure
If you’re dealing with low water pressure in your American Standard faucet, there are a few possible causes. One common cause is a clogged aerator. The aerator is the small mesh screen at the end of the faucet spout that helps regulate the flow of water.
Over time, sediment and debris can build up, leading to reduced water pressure.
To address this issue, start by unscrewing the aerator from the end of the faucet spout. Rinse it under running water to remove any debris. If the build-up is stubborn, you can soak the aerator in a mixture of vinegar and water to dissolve it.
Once clean, screw the aerator back onto the faucet and test the water pressure. In most cases, this simple solution will restore the water pressure to its normal level.
If cleaning the aerator doesn’t solve the problem, there may be a more serious issue with the faucet’s cartridge or valve. In this case, it’s best to contact a professional plumber who can diagnose and fix the problem for you.
Replacing an old or damaged cartridge can quickly solve leaks, pressure loss, and other issues with an American Standard faucet. With the proper replacement cartridge, a few basic tools, and following the steps above, you can complete this repair yourself in about 30 minutes.
The result will be a faucet that works like new again.
For optimal performance and longevity from your American Standard faucet, be sure to replace the cartridge with an identical OEM model. With proper maintenance and quality replacement parts, an American Standard faucet should continue providing reliable service for years to come.