Pull-down faucet spray heads quickly deposit hard water on the surface due to the continuous use of kitchen faucets. The flow of water reduces significantly due to the hard water buildup. The deposits can be in the spray head blocking the water path or in the hose adaptor. The aerator in the spray head may also catch the water deposit.
However, after cleaning the spray head with the right tools and methods, you can get the best water flow. If you are looking for ways to find the location of the aerator in your spray head, locate the deposit, or the methods to clean your kitchen faucet, you are on the right page. This article will answer all your queries regarding how to clean a pull down kitchen faucet spray head. Follow the step-by-step guide to find out the best cleaning tools and methods.
Continue reading to find out the best tools and methods for cleaning hard water buildup spray heads in the kitchen faucets.
Why A Pull-Down Kitchen Faucet Spray Heads Need Cleaning?
Regular cleaning of the spray tap heads in the kitchen prevents openings from clogging. If you are in a hard water area and do not have a water softener on your freshwater supply pipes, blockages can form.
Hard water gets its nickname from the presence of minerals in the water, such as calcium and magnesium, which can cause hard deposits called lime, according to the U.S. Geological Survey
These deposits take time to become large enough to be seen with the naked eye or to block a faucet. Since the openings are much smaller, spray tap heads are more susceptible to blockages caused by mineral deposits.
A small grain of lime can cause problems with an extendable spray kitchen faucet. Fortunately, all you need is a little household vinegar to dissolve these mineral deposits and restore the functionality of the faucet spray head.
Vinegar is harmless and safe to use on taps, unlike chemical-based solutions. It is not necessary to remove the spray head, although it is advisable for the most thorough cleaning.
What Are Some Basic Tools and Materials That You Need For Cleaning The Faucet Spray Head?
Here I have a list of tools that you may require to clean up the faucet spray head:
- Clamp or Clothespin
- A wrench that should be adjustable
- Flat-head screwdriver
- Sponge or a brush
- White Vinegar
How to Detach the Pull Down Kitchen Faucet Spray Head?
You can locate hard water buildup in the outer holes of spray heads or the aerators. In the majority of faucets, the aerator is either in the face of the spray head or in the junction point of the spray head and hose. Once you identify that clog is in the spray head or aerators, detach them from the faucet hose.
Here s the way to un-thread the faucet spray head from the pull-down hose:
- Hold the spray head and the pull-down hose.
- Twist it from the connector in the clockwise direction.
- Once you detach the connector, you will find a rubber ring. Don’t lose it.
- You also need to secure and fix the pull-down hose outside the faucet pipe.
- The hose can slip inside the pipe. It can be difficult to drag it out without a spray head.
- Secure it outside by rolling duct tape around the hose and connector.
- Now take a tool pick and take out the plastic screen inside the spray head.
- Plastic screens can also clog due to hard water. It helps to give the water a stream-let form.
- Now you can start cleaning your spray head.
Note: You can take out an aerator from some spray heads but not all. Check out all possible detachable parts on your faucet company’s’ website for deep cleaning.
Cleaning tips: How to Clean a Pull Down Kitchen Faucet Spray Head?
A plugin on the spray head could be the cause of the reduced flow of water from your kitchen tap. Calcium deposits in the aerator, intake sieve, or re-flux control device are the most common causes, and vinegar dissolves calcium deposits in each of them.
However, make sure that the problem is not caused by the spray head, because the real culprit is often a component of the faucet that you would not expect: the quick-release fitting between the hose of the spray head and the body of the faucet.
Faucet sprayers work to give that stream-let effect to water, hence continuous activity increases the chances of clogs. However, with little extra effort, you can clean these spray heads. Regular cleaning and maintenance are cheaper than the replacement of your appliances.
Clean Spray Head after Removing it:
Mineral deposits can form in the holes on the spray head and internal elements, such as the back flow preventer if the spray head has been in use for a long time. It’s not practical to disassemble the spray head to wipe off the debris from all the parts, and you don’t have to.
Only distilled white vinegar and a bowl large enough to dip the spray head are required. Soak the entire spray head, including the aerator, in warm water for several hours, preferably overnight.
Re-attach the spray head to the faucet after re-rinsing it and rinsing it under clean water. You should now have a normal flow from the tap.
For getting a perfect spray of water, you need to clean the aerator also. Let s check how to clean the aerator.
Clean the Aerator:
The aerator is the small screen that pumps air into the water and turns it into a package of small streams in a traditional kitchen faucet spout. Aerators are also found in spray heads, although their position varies depending on the manufacturer of the faucet.
To remove an aerator from the base of the spray head, remove it, fix the hose with a clothespin or small pliers so that it does not retract, and unscrew the head, which is usually done by hand. You can remove the aerator from the pipe fitting or spray head with a flat head screwdriver.
Aerators on the spray surface are usually removed by unscrewing them with an adjustable wrench. Hold the aerator under a jet of water and use a sponge to remove the silt.
If the aerator of your spray hose is directly in the spray face, you will need an adjustable wrench to unscrew the face and remove the aerator for cleaning.
This is all you need to clean the pull-down kitchen faucet spray head.
Clean the Spray Head without Removing It:
Lime can build-up to the point where it is difficult to remove the spray head. In other cases, the spray head simply won’t come out without completely removing the faucet. There is no need to worry; All you need is a plastic sandwich bag big enough to cover the entire spray head, a rubber band, and vinegar.
Fill the bag with 1/4 to 1/2 cup of vinegar. Place the bag in the vinegar so that the head of the spray tap is completely immersed.
If necessary, remove the bag and adjust the amount of vinegar. Attach the bag with a rubber band around the tapped shaft.
Remove the bag and turn on the water for about 20 minutes to remove dissolved sediment. If necessary, rub any residue remaining from the outside of the faucet spray head with a clean cloth.
If you don’t have enough vinegar, spray it directly on the spray head, then apply elbow grease, rinse it and repeat it.
Cleaners used to Clean A Pull Down Kitchen Faucet Spray Head
Here is a list of items you can use for cleaning:
White vinegar is one of the great cleaning items to remove hard water buildup, rust, and stains. It contains natural cleansing properties that help you to get rid of bacteria as well. You can clean the spray head with vinegar.
Things you will need:
- White vinegar
- Soft-bristled brush/sponge
- Soft cloth
- Take one cup of vinegar in a bowl.
- Take out the spray head and aerator and soak them in the vinegar.
- You can also soak the plastic screen that filters debris from coming to the spray head.
- Now let it soak for at least an hour or two.
- Vinegar gradually softens the hard water deposits.
- Now take out the spray head from vinegar and scrub it with a soft-bristled brush.
- Clean the holes thoroughly with a soft brush so that all the holes in them are open.
- Scrub the aerator and screen in the same way.
- You keep the spray head underwater and look if any residue is remaining.
- You can repeat the process if stains are still here.
- Wash under tap water, dry the items, and place them on the pull-down hose again.
Dishwashing soap and baking soda
Baking soda is a great cleaning agent. You can use it to remove stains. It also eliminates the smell of the items. Dish washing will give a soapy and foamy texture to your mixture. It will soften the hard water builds on the faucet.
Things you will need:
- Take a bowl. Add two tablespoons of dish washing liquid to it.
- Add water and mix until you get a foamy texture.
- Now add 2-3 tablespoons of baking soda to it. Mix well.
- Soak the spray head in the mixture and leave it to rest for at least 2 hours.
- These cleaning agents are mild, safe to use, but take a little extra time to clean the deposits.
- Take out the spray head and now scrub it with a brush.
- You can also use a toothpick to open small holes in the aerator.
- Wash with water, dry, and place on the hose again.
Commercially Available Mineral Deposit Cleaners
There are many commercially available deposit cleaners. You can choose any of your choices, such as CLR Calcium-Rem over-Enhanced-Formula. Just soak the spray head in the solution of 2 part water and 2 part mineral deposit cleaner. You will see instant results. It will take a minute or two. Scrub the spray head with brush wash. It is clean to work again.
Do not forget to wear glasses before using this highly acidic solution. They can cause severe damage to the skin. Always dilute these solutions with water. Do not let the items soak in for a long period. It can damage the real essence of your appliance.
Consider Water Softener
Although, you can clean hard water deposits from kitchen faucets and spray heads. It is the best practice to eliminate the real culprit. Install a water softener or filter in your home. It will not only secure your faucets clean but will also increase the longevity of your product. Moreover, hard water in the kitchen can also damage your dishwasher. Invest once on water softeners, and you will get rid of many maintenance stuff.