Fixing a "Push Button" Sink

Introduction: Fixing a "Push Button" Sink

About: I am a Marine Engineer in the RNZN (41 years done in various navies) and am looking forward to retirement!!! so I can do more messing about with tools

We have these spring loaded push button sink plugs in our house, and from time to time they stick in the closed position so you can't drain the sink.

This is usually due to a build up of soap scum, mould etc (yum) so this is how you get them to work again --with the added bonus of cleaning the crap off of them, so they are more hygenic.

Sorry some of the pics are a little blurry but I was trying to get close ups while doing the job and holding the camera -- I need a slave to take the pics!!

Step 1: Materials and Tools

A pair of pliers

Screwdriver

Steel Wool or Wire Brush

Silicon Spray or WD40

Mould Cleaner

Step 2: Removing the Plug

Firstly you have to get the plug bit out (the shiny chromed bit)

If you can get the plug to open (ie you are doing this before it is jammed in as preventative maintenance) you can grip the outside with your fingers or CAREFULLY with pliers and rotate it to come off

If the plug is jammed shut the push down on the top surface while trying to rotate anticlockwise, they will usually come apart pretty easily, for extra grip try wearing a rubber glove. (On your hand - silly!!)

Step 3: Removing the Stem

Use the pliers to CAREFULLY turn the stem anticlockwise and remove, sometimes it will come out in one piece still attached to the plug, This is a BONUS!!

Step 4: Clean

Clean as thoroughly as possible using wire wool, wire brush etc

I also sprayed with mould killer, washed the whole thing in very hot water and then sprayed with silicon spray.

Work the "action" several times (open and close) to ensure it is free to move

If it is still a bit sticky then there is a small locating screw on the side, which may have worn a groove or lip internally, try slackening this 1/4 turn.

Step 5: Reassemble

As they say in the Haynes Manuals Reassembly is the reverse of dismantling --easy enough, don't overtighten anything just do it up and "give it a nip" Remember these bits are usually brass and not got a huge amount of strength.

Operate it a few times to make sure it functions

While you're at the sink it is probably a good time to clean the U-Bend or P-Trap depending which you have.

I will cover this in a later I'ble

Thanks for reading

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    36 Discussions

    0
    gillclement1
    gillclement1

    Question 5 months ago on Step 1

    Did you get my question asked earlier this afternoon please? Gillian Clement

    0
    buck2217
    buck2217

    Answer 5 months ago

    Sorry not on inscrutable 24/7, plus was night here in nz, try using a suction cup like o n the end of a dollar store bow and arrow or nerd gun to get a better grip, if you can get something down (or up by removing the waste trap) spray with a calcium cleaner (kitchen spray or CLR or similar) once sprayed fit suction cup and sharp anticlockwise turn, if that doesn't work the repeated pressing may free it, once open use a wrench to remove and clean

    0
    gillclement1
    gillclement1

    Question 5 months ago on Step 2

    Despite my efforts at press down and twist anticlockwise, it won't move. I tried easing the screwdriver down one side but no luck. Is there anything I can put into the basin that will seep through and soften whatever is holding it down please?

    0
    Kycheriton
    Kycheriton

    Question 5 months ago

    Great tips, but my bath plug will go down and up, but even when it's down it still drains. The seal looks OK from what I can see, any recommendations?

    0
    buck2217
    buck2217

    Reply 5 months ago

    Probably full of hair and gunk, especially if you have long haired people of the female persuasion living at your house
    Unscrew the top and fish it out or take off the u bend and pull it through

    0
    ChazRivers9
    ChazRivers9

    6 months ago

    Hi there!

    I’ve managed to get the plug stuck right down the sinkhole.

    Any suggestions on getting this out?

    Image provided to show the extent of the stuckness.

    Much appreciated.

    image.jpg
    0
    buck2217
    buck2217

    Reply 6 months ago

    I think you'll have to take the trap/u-bend off underneath and push it up, alternative is to get a valve grinding stick (with a rubber sucker ) and pull it up , you may find something similar like a kids bow and arrow set from a dollar shop

    0
    MalcolmT13
    MalcolmT13

    7 months ago

    Mine was stuck in the open position unscrewed the cap then removed the spindle bit of anti limescale bleach in a little pot watched it dissolve in a couple of minutes rinsed it put it back works again

    0
    pepelynx
    pepelynx

    1 year ago

    Honestly thank you so much! The plug was jammed and I ended up taking apart the plumbing underneath the sink to see if I could push it back up haha. Nothing worked until I found these instructions ☺️ was dreading having to call someone in just for a jammed plug. Lifesaver!

    0
    buck2217
    buck2217

    Reply 1 year ago

    Happy to have been of assistance

    0
    Funnyblackpuppy
    Funnyblackpuppy

    1 year ago

    I removed from the sink but the mechanism isn't budging! I removed screw from side, soaked in vinegar, still no luck. Any other ideas?

    0
    buck2217
    buck2217

    Reply 1 year ago

    When I say press in and out I mean lots of times like compressing a spring or clicking a pen so it eventually frees up

    0
    buck2217
    buck2217

    Reply 1 year ago

    Hi, try giving it a scrub with scotchbrite (green scouring pad) and a spray with wd40 or similar then just press in and out and it should free up, once it does and it's fully open clean all the freshly exposed surfaces with the scotchbrite before re fitting

    0
    GlenS57
    GlenS57

    1 year ago

    Simple, straight forward and effective instructions. Thanks to the poster and ten points to Gryffindor!

    0
    mphobbs
    mphobbs

    Question 2 years ago

    Hi, I was able to get the stopper out in one piece and I scrubbed it but the top won't pop up. It won't budge What can I do?

    0
    buck2217
    buck2217

    Answer 1 year ago

    Try slacking the screw and make sure that there are no ridges etc in the groove. Sorry for late reply missed the question

    0
    BulaVinaka
    BulaVinaka

    Question 1 year ago on Step 5

    Hey! I’ve been looking for the spring operated basin plug you used in your pictures to show how to remove it from the basin! Any idea where I can get one from? My plug is broken beyond repair.

    0
    buck2217
    buck2217

    Answer 1 year ago

    I had some come up in an email the other day, Amazon iirc kid I find the link I'll post it

    0
    martinhalliday01
    martinhalliday01

    Tip 2 years ago on Step 4

    Turn chrome top anti-clockwise to release, add a few drops of oil or WD40 to the center spindle, sorted!