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I had a leaky Moen faucet (Moen 4600) so I removed the old cartridge and replaced it with a new brass replacement cartridge (model 1200.) Since replacing the cartridge I now have a leak from the valve stem, that leaks faster the more I open the valve. It appears to be coming from the outside collar of the cartridge. Here is a video of the leak so you can see exactly what I am talking about:

Video of the leaky faucet

Is this caused by a poor fitting cartridge / o-ring or is it possibly due to wear on the faucet itself? What can I do to stop this leak?

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You mention Moen 1220, but I don't believe there is a 1220 - just a 1200. Is that correct? –  alicez Nov 7 '14 at 17:53

4 Answers 4

up vote 8 down vote accepted

I contacted Moen directly with this same question and they let me know that they recommended a model 1225 replacement cartridge instead (that's what I get for trusting the guy at the hardware store to look up the matching part for me). Technically either one will work but apparently the plastic 1225 offers a tighter fit than the brass (and more expensive) 1220.

Moen also recommended cleaning out the inside of the valve with an old toothbrush or bottle brush and then flushing thoroughly before installing the new cartridge.

I will update this once I know if the new cartridge resolves my leak.

Update: After the installation of the model 1225 cartridge, the faucet works without any leaks from the stem. With the addition of a new knob the whole fixture is working better than new.

The moral of the story here is, when in doubt, try to contact the vendor (and post your results!)

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The same thing happened to me when I tried to replace the original Moen brass cartridge with a new brass cartridge (1220). I went to Lowe's and bought the plastic cartridge (1225) and put it in. No leaks, and the valve works with a finger tip touch. No more pulling on the knob to get the water started. In addition, with the original valve removed, I cleaned the inside of the housing with Lime-Away and a toothbrush so that it would be extra clean.

Who would have thought the plastic valve would be better than the brass?

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Ditto; I had the same problem (and it seems to be widespread with Moen replacement cartridges). I removed the cartridge for the umpteenth time (I was getting good at it). I then scrubbed the inside of the pipe thoroughly with lime-away and an old toothbrush. I had wifey hold a bucket over the pipe while I turned the hot water on for three seconds, then the cold. No leaks! I'm a believer. –  user23391 Jun 29 '14 at 14:36

I had the same problem. The new one I found had a point in the top o-ring because there was a plastic defect where the seams came together like extra plastic or blade. I scraped that off and then the o-ring was flat all the way around. No leaks.

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The name for what you ran into is "excessive mold flash", but yes -- that could cause the O-ring to not seal quite right... –  ThreePhaseEel Apr 5 at 17:27

The housing has some particles in it; take out the housing and clean the inlets.

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