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Question DetailsAsked on 12/4/2016

Why would I have water everywhere but the kitchen sink. Ever since I turned water off outside to replace a hydrant,

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2 Answers

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Some thoughts, pretty much in order from easier to test/check to harder or require more plumbing ability - but I would suggest reading through first for ones that sound easiest to you or maybe you think are most likely, so you might want to attack them in a different order than I listed:

0) in the shutoff process, you also turned off another shutoff valve (maybe inside the house) thinking that was the one to the hydrant, and forgot to turn it back on


1) open faucet to let water run in sink (both hot and cold at same time) for 1 minute or so - could be when you replaced the hydrant you drained down the water lines in that part of the house so they have to refill the pipes with water before any water comes out. Should hear air coming out right off the bat as the pipe refills, though, if that is the case.

2) if no water at sink at all (hot or cold), try connected sprayer or dishwasher - if water there (if both hot and cold come out) then problem is in faucet or tubing leading to it or shutoff valve under sink, not pipes leading to kitchen. If no water at any of them (after letting run long enough to get any air out of the system), then problem is probably at or on the household plumbing side of the under-sink shutoff valves. If hot or cold but not both - problem is likely at the shutoff valve under sink on the one that is not working, or on house side of that. Course, dishwasher runs only hot water line in many cases, so if yours is that case hot there but no cold as sprayer/facuet does not narrow the issue down much and you have to move on down the list.

3) if you know or can see the plumbing runs, try any other faucets or water draw points on the same piping (if you have any) - washer, wash tub, bathroom, outside faucet, whatever comes off same pipes as runs to the kitchen but on the line AFTER it departs from the piping to the rest of the house that is getting water, to see if the problem is general pipe blockage or not. Obviously, if only pipe one is coming up dry (hot or cold) that narrows the search to those pipes. If both hot and cold are out in the pipes leading to kitchen, then blockage has to be somewhere in the cold piping on the cold water source or "input" side of the water heater in the pipe leading to both the water heater and the cold line serving the kitchen to affect them both at same time - possible but not likely. If hot only, then is at the water heater or on the kitchen side of it - and if you have only one water heater in house, then would have to be in the hot water line leading to the kitchen AFTER it splits off from the main house line going to other bathrooms and such, if other demand points are getting hot water OK.

4) some single-handle brands - you have to move the faucet handle back and forth a few times from hot to cold and through the range back to free up the floating splitter ball and let the water through - can get vapor locked with air.

5) some brands - the stutter valve that diverts water to the hand sprayer can stick if it has no pressure on it - so try not just the faucet, but also the hand sprayer (assuming you have one) - once water comes out one other should then work too.

6) if you have a point-of-use filtration or reverse osmosis or similar water treatment unit under sink, sometimes they can vapor lock if drained out - in which case you need to turn the shutoff valve to that off and disconnect output line, fill with water by opening the shutoff valve a touch, then reconnect. Course, with most units this is only on cold line (but can be on both if a point-of-use water heater too), so that might give an idea if that is the case or not.

7) of course, if cold in your area, is it possible a pipe froze - either the line leading to the kitchen, or the pipe in the wall leading into the sink or the pipes under the sink.

8) aerator usually will not clog completely just because water was shut off - usually will at least dribble at least initially - but could be the strainer on the faucet outlet aerator (looks something like this)

https://www.amazon.com/Delta-Faucet-R...

got clogged when you turned the water back on and needs to be removed and cleaned. There would have been at least a minimal amount of water come out when you first turned on the faucet before it got clogged with debris coming through the pipes. Some aerators (usually only if quite new) you can get out with dry hands on dry aerator surface, some you need a channellock or wide-opening pliers to remove - hard to do so without damaging the finish, but a couple warps plastic electrical tape or duct tape sometimes gives enough grip to pliers without damaging the finish. A very small rubber strap wrench will work on some. Grabbing hold with a piece of rubber on dry aerator surface will sometimes work. Some you need a special manufacturer removal tool, or a flat strip of metal to act as an ultra-wide flat blade screwdriver tip to turn it out, using two slots in the face of the aerator rim. Always turn counterclockwise (looking up from under the faucet) that I have seen to remove, but sometimes pretty well corroded in and you may have to use channellocks directly on the aerator to get it out and just accept you will have to replace it for typically $5 or so. Hit with a bit of WD-40 or other penetrating oil first and let it soak into the thread connection at the top of the aerator where it contacts the faucet for 15 minutes or more, but you then have to clean the oil off the surface first with a petroleum solvent or paint thinner or such or you will never get a good enough grip to turn it.

Sometimes just using a cotton ball or piece of very absorbent cloth (let's hear it for flannel) soaked in vinegar and squeezed up tight against the screen in the aerator will get enough up in there to dissolve blockages - but usually only if the screen is the bottom element, not with those with pinholed metal aerator at the surface with the screen well up inside. NOTE - the vinegar can mar polished or waxed metal finishes on the faucet - not chrome, but pewter and bronze and brass.

9) some single-handle faucets get real cranky if you remove the pressure on them, and the cartridge sticks (hello, Moen) - so you have to turn off the water shutoff (hto and cold both) and remove the cartridge, run a bit of water by opening the shuoff a bit (need towel to catch), then reassemble and test.

10) Otherwise, you have to track the blockage down - first if you only have hot or cold water but not both, then your blockage is on only that line, which narrows the search some. Shut off the shutoff valves on hot and cold water lines under the sink (the ones leading to the sink and/or any filtration unit), then (with towels and bucket ready underneath) gently and slowly remove the connection to the flex tubing - slowly so you can see if it is under pressure for more than the second or less necessary to relieve the pressure in the lines. Reason for such great care - sometimes those valves fail and do not actually shut off when you turn the knob because they are so rarely used, or leak a lot at the seat due to long-term buildup opf debris or corrosion, so if you just shjut the valve off (you think) and remove the connection for the flex hose rapidly, you can get a leak that will then run untill you can either get the tubing reconnected or get to the main house shutoff to turn that off - if THAT one totally shuts off. Spraying water under the sink not fun - oh and BTW, before doing this shut off the breaker(s) to the outlet(s) under the sink which dishwasher and garbage disposal use, just in case. OR if unable to find which one, unplug them and put child plugs in the outlet and tape over it with duct tape to waterproof it.

Anyway - if after removing the flex (or copper or pex) tubing connection to treatment unit or faucet, holding a container to catch the water, turn the valve as much as you can control with the bucket to see if water comes out freely. IF not, then you may have a clog in the line that freed up when you removed the water pressure (though rarely total blockage) - or if there is a pressure regulator or backflow preventer only on that line (not entire house) that could have stuck shut. In either case, if no water coming out, then you would have to work back down the line, shutting of main water shutoff, opening up a connection and checking for water flow, and work back to the connection to the rest of the house at acessible points to isolate what section of the pipe to the kitchen the blockage is in. Note - this is an unusual occurrence but if water is not coming out the undersink shutoff valves then a blockage or a plugged/failed valve is the likely cause,, so you start with removing the undersink valve and work back from there to find the blockage.

NOTE - when doing this, even if no water comes out of the pipe with the house shutoff valve open, do not let it sit that way - a blockage or stuck valve or such could free up and start a flood unexpectedly.

11) if water comes out the shutoff valve when tubing is disconnected, open the faucet(s) and blow through the tubing - should blow fairly freely. If not, then disconnect the tubing to the faucet and check if the blockage is in the tubing or filtration unit (meaning you can't blow through it) or the faucet. NOTE - if a reverse osmosis unit you cannot blow thorugh it with the element in place - remove element for this test. If blockage is in the tubing, probably best to just replace it but could clear out with a long pipe cleaner or small diameter wire brush or by flexing it to break up the clog (not a good idea to do the flexing with copper tubing). If in the faucet, then you would have to disassemble the faucet to see what is jammed up or clogged - as in 8) or 9).

This may seem like a lot of hassle, and of course how far you go yourself depends on how much of a DIY person you are, but if you can at least narrow down the possibilities (and check off the list as you do it so plumber can see what you did so far), could reduce the plumber cost a hundred $ or few by cutting down how many things he has to check.

I would appreciate it is you respond back with what the problem turns out to be, for info - use the Answer This Question yellow button right below your question, just as if you were answering your own question, to keep the response in this same question "thread".

Answered 1 year ago by LCD

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Votes

Hi,

This is Erick in Member Care. Thanks for your interest in Angie's List!

LCD's answer is certainly a good one and I would recommend reading over what he has to say. We'll be happy to help find top rated Plumbers to look into this if you'd like, but it doesn't look like you have a subscription to the List yet. You can join by visiting www.angieslist.com or by giving us a call. Our call center is available 8:00 am-9:00 pm weekdays and 8:00-5:00 pm ET on Saturdays.

Thanks for your question and we look forward to assisting you!

Answered 1 year ago by Member Services




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