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Water faucet

water faucet OFF We recently were camping in Zion National Park in southern Utah. There are water faucets in various locations throughout the campground. On each water faucet a lever, which looks like an "old fashioned" pump handle, is used to turn the water on and off. The photo at left shows a faucet with the lever in the down or OFF position.
water faucet ON To turn the water on, you simply raise the lever up to the ON position. As long as the lever remains in the ON position, the water flows continuously. The photo at left shows the lever in the up or ON position.
animation I saw several people who had obviously never used a faucet like this and who didn't know how to operate it. They pumped the lever rapidly up and down as if it were the handle of an "old fashioned" water pump. At the top of each stroke, the water would turn on and enough would come out to make them think they were operating the faucet correctly. Needless to say, it required a lot of time and energy to fill their water container. Even though the faucet looked like a hand-operated pump, it didn't work like one. The animation on the left shows the lever being pumped rapidly up and down.

Design suggestion


It is confusing to people when a faucet lever is designed to look like a pump handle but operates in a different way.

It would be less confusing to design the faucet with the lever pointing straight up in the OFF position. On the left is a sketch of the faucet with an upward-pointing lever resembling a gear shift lever in a car. Moving the lever FORWARD in the direction of the arrow would turn the water on.