A sticking diverter is nearly always caused by one or both of:
- Something has gotten onto the rod and/or the seals and made them sticky.
- The lubrication has been worn or wiped away.
Clean and lubricate the diverter. If you haven't done this in a while, do not be surprised if you must do the more thorough cleaning:
- Lift the diverter knob all the way up and hold.
- Use a soft damp cloth to clean the diverter rod. Do not scratch the surface of the rod.
- Rinse and dry the rod.
- Lift the diverter knob all the way up and apply a small amount of non-toxic silicone (plumber's) grease to the diverter rod.
- Work the diverter rod up and down to coat the diverter rod and push the grease down into the seals located in the spout base.
If a more thorough cleaning and lubrication is required see these instructions:
Tip 1: Try flipping the seals over. If the seals and rod have been sticky or without lubricant for too long, the leading edge of the seals may have become distorted.
Tip 2: In some cases, depending upon water pressure, the diverter will perform better if one of the two X-ring seals is removed. However, this is not an acceptable solution if water subsequently appears from the hole below the knob where the rod enters the spout.