I had to replace the ball rod assembly on a bathroom sink's pop-up drain since the old rod had corroded badly. I used a universal replacement kit that came with balls of several sizes and one very flimsy washer to seal the interface between the ball and the tightening nut. While trying to tighten the nut down for the first time, I cracked the washer, possibly by over tightening the nut.

Now I have a ball rod assembly that leaks around the ball. What is an appropriate way to seal that interface? The first idea that I had was to try a rubber O ring as a gasket. A #10 ring seems to fit well inside the nut, but it doesn't stay in place well when I tighten it (it tends to wrap itself around the ball somewhat, not staying in the joint between the ball and nut). It seems like some sort of rubber gasket would be the most sturdy solution, but I'm a bit out of my element.

Sorry if I mangled any terminology above; plumbing is definitely not my day job!

  • You should be able to find an appropriate sized washer. look in the parts dept of the big blue store. If not a plumbing parts supply house. or just buy another kit. – Alaska man Feb 27 '17 at 2:55
  • @Alaskaman Is rubber the material that I should be looking for, or are there even differing materials that are typically used? I did try the second-kit approach, but I had the same problem with the washer getting mangled. I was actually pretty careful the second time; it is just very flimsy. – Jason R Feb 27 '17 at 3:11
  • My experience is that universal plumbing replacements are a waste of time and money. – Mark Jan 28 at 14:47
  • 1
    @Mark that lines up with my experience as well. After trying two different universal replacements that didn't fit properly, I had to have the entire drain assembly replaced. – Jason R Jan 28 at 14:54
  • Jason, please provide and accept an answer or delete your question so it's resolved. – isherwood Feb 27 at 15:50
up vote 2 down vote accepted

Every lavatory faucet manufacturer also supplies the pop-up assembly; they are ALL different. There are also many replacement units from manufacturers all over the globe; again, all different.

Unless you know the manufacturer and source an identical replacement, you will need to find a tapered washer of some sort that fits the nut and ball. It might be shaped something like this:

enter image description here

You will likely need to change out the whole pop-up assembly or do what I have done: throw away the stopper, rod, linkage and nut. Plug the hole where the rod went in with plumber's epoxy. use a rubber stopper on a chain.

Something that can do the trick is regular petroleum jelly (Vaseline). Coat the ball and fit it in. It might work well in lieu of a gasket.

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