Kitchen Sink Sprayer Not Working? 7 Common Problems

It is all too easy to take a kitchen sink sprayer for granted, only realizing how much you rely on it when it actually goes wrong. However, by understanding the types of problems that can arise, you will be in a better position to determine how to rectify any issues that can stop it from working.


The diverter is a component that splits the flow of water to allow the both the faucets and kitchen sink sprayer to be able to work. In the event that this has become blocked or damaged, the flow of water will be reduced or can even stop completely. Use a wrench or pinhead pliers to remove the faucet unit and access the diverter. If it has not suffered any wear or damage, it can simply be cleaned before being replaced. It will be useful to have a new one to hand in case it needs to be replaced.

Damaged Hose

As with any appliance that is used regularly, a kitchen sink sprayer can suffer from regular wear and tear, especially as it is likely to be stretched and twisted in order to do its job. This can create a situation where the sprayer stops working due to kinks, splits and damage to the hose. This can also be the cause if the water pressure from the sprayer has reduced. Examine the hose for any signs that something is damaged but be prepared to remove it for a closer look if nothing is found during the first visual inspection.

Spray Head

An aerator is located in the head of the kitchen sink sprayer and if this has become blocked or damaged, the flow of water may stop or reduce. Unscrew the head to check and clean inside it, leaving the aerator to soak in white vinegar or lemon juice to remove any mineral deposits. After it is clean, make sure it is refitted correctly.


Any part of the sink sprayer that comes into contact with water is liable to suffer from clogs from debris or mineral deposits. In the event that this has occurred, the sprayer should work again after it has been thoroughly cleaned. If attending to smaller tasks has not helped repair your sink sprayer, disassemble the entire unit and clean all the relevant parts in white vinegar, scrubbing with a toothbrush if necessary.

Wear and Tear

If any of the nuts or fastenings that join the hose to the sink have suffered damage, this is likely to be enough to cause the kitchen sink sprayer to stop working. Take apart the unit and replace any parts that show signs of damage, paying special attention to the small parts such as washers. Use PTFE tape when refitting threaded parts to help prevent leakage.

Loose-fitting Fixtures

If fittings have become loose, water can escape at the wrong location causing messy leaks, leaving very little water to flow through the hose as well as reducing the pressure of the water that actually does make it to the spray head. Tighten all the fastenings before testing the sprayer and if there is no change, you will need to consider removing the fastenings completely and wrapping some PTFE tape around all removable sections before securing them again.

Incorrect Parts

To reduce the risk of the kitchen sink sprayer failing to work, it is prudent to ensure that all the parts that make it up come from the same manufacturer.