How to Replace a Bathroom Sink Pop-Up Drain Stopper

In life, we often take small things for granted. In the bathroom, that be the pop-up drain stopper of the sink. This handy little device makes it easy to close the drain opening to fill the sink, and then with a quick pull of the lever, allow it to drain. 

How to Replace a Bathroom Sink Pop-Up Drain Stopper

If the pop-up drain stopper breaks, which can happen over time, then you’ll quickly realize how important this plumber part is. Fortunately, it’s usually not too hard to replace it with a new one. In this article, we’ll explain how.

What you’ll need:

  • Pop-up drain kit – find at most home improvement and plumbing supply stores
  • Pliers
  • Pipe-joint compound
  • Plumber’s putty

Steps for installing a pop-up drain

  1. Remove the old drain assembly. Using the pliers, loosen and detach the P-trap from branch drain and drain tailpiece. If there’s an old pop-up, remove it by loosening the mounting nut from the tailpiece with pliers, then pulling out the assembly.
  2. Clean and prepare the surface. Clean the bottom of the sink, scraping off any old plumber’s putty.
  3. Slip the rubber washer on the new pop-up assembly and push it down until it is positioned on top of the mounting nut.
  4. Apply joint-pipe compound and plumber’s putty. Brush on a thin layer of compound on to the rubber washer. Add a layer of plumber’s putty to the bottom of the flange of the sink drain fitting.
  5. Install drain parts. Underneath the sink, insert and push up the pop-up drain tailpiece up through the drain hole. Use your other hand to place the chrome ring on the drain hole on top of the sink. Turn the chrome ring to thread the connection.
  6. Underneath the sink, hold the pipe and turn the mounting nut so it moves up toward the bottom of the sink. Position the opening of the tailpiece toward the back wall as this is where the pop-up lever will go.
  7. Use the pliers to tighten the mounting nut to the underside of the sink. Be careful not to overtighten the nut.
  8. Place the pop-up stopper down the drain with the hole in the linkage pointing to the back of the sink.
  9. Insert the pivot rod in the side opening of the tailpiece (not up the bottom of the drain pipe). You may have to wiggle it around until you feel the rod slide through the stopper linkage.
  10. Screw on the pivot rod nut so the ball is secured in the tailpiece. Test that the pop-up is working properly.
  11. With the stopper in the fully open position, insert the vertical pop-up lever through the hole behind the faucet spout. Attach this to the connecting strap underneath the sink and tighten.
  12. Thread the spring clip into the horizontal pivot rod. Test that the pop-up stopper opens and closes properly.
  13. Reconnect the P-trap to the drain pipe and tailpiece.
  14. Perform final tests and fill the sink to check for leaks where the assembly meets the drain opening.

Need a professional plumber?

Don’t let the number of steps scare you. In most cases, installing a new pop-up stopper in a bathroom sink can be fairly simple. But depending on how the sink was installed or your particular fixture, it can get a bit more complicated.

If you need any help or would prefer a professional to do the job, bring in the friendly team at Whitten Plumbing. We’re here to take care of all your plumbing needs, large and small. Call us today at (501) 607-6596.

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