Did you know your Delta Kitchen Faucet has a small part built into it that slows down the flow of water. It’s called a flow restrictor, also sometimes called a regulator, and it’s designed to help save water and lower your bills. But sometimes this simple part can cause a lot more harm than good, preventing a strong, steady flow of water or leading to weak water pressure.
Luckily, learning how to remove the flow restrictor from a Delta kitchen faucet is a relatively simple process that anyone can do with some basic tools and a little time. By following the simple process detailed below, you can increase your water flow rate in a little less than an hour or two.
- How to remove a flow restrictor from a Delta faucet
- Frequently Asked Questions
How to remove a flow restrictor from a Delta faucet
Before we begin, it’s worth pointing out that modern faucets have flow restrictors built into them for a reason. Always question if it’s worth removing a flow restrictor from your faucets, as it could cause long term issues.
Step 1: Close the water valves
Begin by turning off the water valves, found under the sink. You should have separate valves for hot and cold water.
If you don’t have under sink valves, or you’re struggling to turn them off, you can also turn off your property’s master water valve instead.
Once the valves are off, open the faucet to drain any remaining water and equalize air pressure.
Step 2: Open the base
In the base of your faucet, you’ll find a set screw holding it in place. Using an Allen wrench, remove this screw and place it somewhere safe. If you don’t have the necessary tools, a Delta repair kit has everything you need for this process.
Sometimes, the screw will be covered by a safety cap. These are easy to remove with a flat head screwdriver or similar tool.
Step 3: Protect your sink
Before moving further, there are several safety precautions you should take.
Block your sinks drain with a rag or something similar to prevent any of the small components from getting lost.
You’re going to be removing your faucet’s aerator, which is the piece at the end of the faucet that shapes the water flow. Removing it can strip the finish, so start by protecting it by covering with masking or electrical tape.
Step 4: Remove the flow restrictor
Take hold of the aerator using slip joint pliers. Loosen it, until you’re able to remove it by hand.
Inside the aerator is a small rubber washer, which needs to be removed. Beneath that is the flow restrictor, which is flat, normally plastic, with a star shaped hole at the center.
Step 5: Check and reassemble
Run the faucet for a minute to before reassembly to clear any larger debris that might be trapped inside, then replace the rubber washer and reattach the aerator, following the same steps as before, in reverse.
Test your new flow rate. Hopefully this has fixed any issues that you were suffering from.
Frequently Asked Questions
Why might you have low water pressure?
The most common causes of low water pressure are a localised blockage, usually in the flow restrictor or aerator itself, or low neighbourhood pressure.
If you have low water pressure, start by checking with your neighbours to make sure that it’s not just your property. If your neighbours also have low water pressure, it’s likely an issue with your water supply, so contact your water provider.
If it is only your property, then follow the above steps, flush out all the components, and run the faucet for a minute or two with the aerator removed, which can help to clear out stones, grit, and other obstructions.
When turning on your faucet without the aerator, the flow can be much faster and it can easily splash, so switch it on more carefully than usual.
Do all Delta faucets have flow restrictors?
Yes. Every faucet from every manufacturer produced since 1994 is now legally required to have a flow restrictor built in to save water.
This means any faucet that you buy will have a flow restrictor built in by default, reducing the total water flow you can get in any sink you buy.
Is removing a flow restrictor a good idea?
Flow restrictors have a definite purpose, and there’s a reason that all new faucets have them built in as standard.
The main reason you might have for removing your flow restrictor is when you have low water pressure. Removing the flow restrictor will increase your water pressure, and could cause a faucet that was running weakly or slowly to run better.
However, it’s worth understanding that removing a flow restrictor is going to increase the water flow, which is going to increase the amount of water you use, and therefore your water bill.
If you’re happy with your water flow, it’s generally not worth removing the flow restrictors from any faucets you have.
Is removing a flow restrictor illegal?
No. The laws regarding water flow are aimed at the manufacturers, not the consumers.
That means if a manufacturer designed and sold a faucet, or a shower head, without a flow restrictor, they would face possible litigation.
A flow restrictor is a water saving device. If you’re happy using and paying for more water, that’s your decision. What you do with your property once you’ve bought it is up to you.